Cpl. Arthur Eisenstein: Viet Nam Vampire (3)

As we make our first circle, Doc slowly drops back behind me, until he’s on my rear flank by a full fifteen feet. I stop and turn. He freezes in his tracks, but I can hear his gear rattle as he trembles in the dark.

“Come on, Doc, you’re slowing us down,â€? I whisper just loud enough to wake the dead..

“Don’t worry,â€? he whispers back, a shakiness in his voice. “I’ve got your six.â€?

“I’m not going to bite you,â€? I try to reassure him.

“I know.â€?

He looks like he’s going to bolt, so I do what I promised myself I wouldn’t do. I use the mesmer on Doc. We lock eyes and suddenly my voice has a direct line into his brain.

â€?Come… here…â€?

His eyes are wide with fear, but he takes a step toward me. Then another. And another. I reel him in with my eyes and my mind. When he’s within arm’s reach, I turn away and schlep onward.

“Now, as I was saying, I don’t want to drink your blood,â€? I continue. “The truth is, what I really could go for is a creamsicle.â€?

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