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    Justin4Fun
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Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental.
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Re-United - 10. Chapter 10

I pulled through the gate and drove half a mile up the dirt road until I saw Josh’s truck parked off to the side, along with a dump truck backed up to a pile of dirt. The Denali hadn’t completely stopped when Jake, Scott, and Billy bailed out of their doors and went running; Jenny, Brian, and I followed seconds later.

Chris appeared to be unconscious in the cab of the skid steer, which was lying on its side on the slope of the dirt pile, leaning so far it seemed ready to roll onto its top. Josh was on the ground with the cab of the machine crushing his left thigh just below his crotch. Jake, Scott, and Billy had gathered around and were preparing to lift the machine when I saw what caused Jenny to yell stop.

Quickly taking command, she told Scott and Billy to very carefully remove the door from the cab, not moving the machine at all, if possible. She then had me join her at Josh’s side, where she leaned down and listened to his chest, then ran her hands over both arms and the one leg that wasn’t trapped. After the second time she had to move Jake out of her way, I asked Brian to keep him away so we could work.

Jenny looked at me and said, “Without a tourniquet on that leg, he’ll bleed to death when we remove the machine, Greg.”

“Fine,” I all but shouted, unbuckling my belt. “We can use my belt.”

“Don’t you see? There’s not enough room for that,” she said, pointing to where the cab roof was basically crossing where the leg of a pair of briefs would be.

I glanced at Jake and saw understanding cross his face. With tears pouring down his face, he said, “You save our brother, Greg,” he gritted his teeth and nodded. “Do it!”

Jenny looked back and said, “He’s not in danger right now, Jake, as long as the machine stays there. I need to check on Chris, ok?”

Jake looked at his twin, then at the cab where one of his best friends was still unconscious. He looked at me and said, “I trust Greg. Whatever he says, do it.”

I looked toward the cab, then told Jenny to go check on Chris. Moving around so I could listen to Josh’s heart and breathing, I pulled out my phone. I needed help and lots of it.

My first call connected immediately. “Tommy, I need Donna to make enough tea for two changes, just in case, and I need that tea here ten minutes ago. Do you understand?”

Without giving him time to reply, I dialed my second call. When George answered, I quickly told him the situation and the likely outcome. Everything he told me confirmed what I already knew, but I needed that reassurance. Two things he was adamant about were I needed to be the cause of their hearts stopping, and I had to be the source of the first vampire blood they received. I asked his advice on saving Josh’s leg, and he gave me his thoughts, but he had no personal experience with something like this. He warned me that the leg might be lost or that Josh might limp for the rest of his first life.

Jake was pacing like a caged animal, but thank the gods, he was staying out of the way. Still listening to Josh’s heart, I watched as Jenny grabbed the door that Billy and Scott had removed and deftly tore metal strips from it to make splints. While she was doing this, Billy and Scott were ripping their shirts and shorts into cloth strips. With her supplies in hand, Jenny carefully climbed into the cab and, using the strips of metal and cloth, quickly splinted Chris’ lower right leg and entire left arm. With that done, she directed Scott and Billy as they gently lifted Chris from the cab and laid him on the ground to my right.

As they were laying Chris down, James’ RAM came flying up the road. It had barely stopped before Riva and Vega came leaping out of the cab with assault rifles at the ready. Billy moved to meet and explain the situation, and once they understood I was in no danger, they relaxed just a bit. Still, after a short conversation, Riva came to stand near me while Vega, who was in her camouflage uniform, quickly melted into the woods near the road, where she could intercept any incoming vehicles.

After laying Chris down, Jenny quickly checked him from head to toe, then, after instructing Scott to monitor his breathing and heart, came to give me the news. Chris should be fine for several hours and should be taken to a human hospital. When she said this, I gave her an incredulous look and explained why that couldn’t happen.

“If we take him in with all those injuries, human authorities are going to ask questions. If we call an ambulance, that delays Josh’s change and risks his life. You said Chris is safe for now, so we keep him comfortable while I deal with Josh. Between feedings, we can come up with a story for the cops. Do you disagree?”

I could see her mind racing as I explained all this, and she was nodding as I said it, so I knew she would agree. I called Jake over and told him to hold his twin’s hand, then I leaned down and said his name. After the third time, I said, “Josh, you’re hurt real bad, bro. Jakey’s here with me, and we think it’s best if I change you now. Do you understand?”

Jake sobbed as he said, “He squeezed my hand, Greg.”

“I looked Jake in the eyes and said, “I need you to understand, I talked to George, and even he isn’t sure if this will save the leg—”

“You shut up and save him, Greg. I don’t give a fuck about his leg,” he leaned down and kissed his twin, and I heard him whispering, “Don’t you leave me alone, you asshole. Don’t you dare, you hear me?” He looked at me, gave me a firm nod, then stood and moved to check on Chris.

I leaned down and whispered, “I agree with our brother. Don’t you leave me, asshole.” I kissed his cheek, then moved my mouth to his throat, extended my fangs, and began pulling the blood from one of my closest friends, ignoring the fact that my goal was to stop his heart. As I fed, I could see his memories flashing through my mind. I was amazed when I saw an infant inches away and felt a connection with this infant: Jake. I watched as Jake grew; I shared their most intimate moments, private conversations, and the few secrets Josh never shared with his brother. My heart soared as I felt the love Josh felt when my face appeared in his memories, and I was relieved when I saw an awareness of what was happening. He wanted this.

With roughly one-fifth of his blood blocked in his leg, it didn’t take long for his heart to begin to slow. Without thinking about it, I reached out and found Jake, pulling him to his brother’s side. He seemed to understand and was holding his twin’s hand as his heart beat for its last time as a human. Not worrying about licking the wound, I pulled back and put my fangs to my own wrist, ripping the flesh and holding it over Josh’s slack lips. I watched as a few drops missed but most landed and rolled inside his mouth. I lowered my wrist and pressed the wound to his lips, attempting to form a seal to direct more of my healing blood into his system. I felt the tears rolling down my face as I watched Josh lying there, not moving, not reacting. I had almost lost hope when I felt the first hint of suction, then he gripped my wrist with his free hand and sucked down my blood like his life depended on it. Truth be told, it did.

When Josh grabbed my wrist, Jake let out a sob and looked at me with hope for the first time since we’d arrived. He gently stroked his twin’s hair as he watched him do something that had, until recently, been the ultimate image from the horror movies we’d watched as kids. Now, his brother was becoming a vampire, and it filled his heart with joy. As I watched this touching scene, I heard the first hint of trouble behind me.

Chris had been talking to Jenny, but his speech was slowly becoming slurred and confused. I heard Jenny say something about internal bleeding and wasn’t surprised when I heard her call my name. Before I could say his name, Scott was kneeling and ripping his wrist open, preparing to take my place with Josh. When I pulled my wrist from his lips, he fought to keep his connection to my life-giving blood. As soon as the connection broke, Scott slid his wrist in place, and Josh quickly continued feeding.

The second my wrist was free of Josh’s grasp, I turned to ask Jenny the situation. Chris was bleeding in his abdomen. He needed a human surgeon within minutes; our delay had cost him his life. I leaned down and called his name but got no response. Remembering our conversation, I didn’t hesitate; I leaned down, kissed his cheek, and planted my fangs into one of my best friends for the second time in less than an hour, hoping to kill him like I had Josh.

I watched the twins and me playing Little League and felt the jealousy Chris felt because he wasn’t in our group yet. I watched as Chris approached a dark-haired little boy on the playground and felt his anger as Brian talked about how Josh and Jake had picked on him. I watched as Chris and Brian caught Jake blowing that boy at band camp. I felt the wonder and curiosity as Chris watched Scott, feeding from his wrist. I felt the amazement as he examined my beast at the farm, and, like Josh, I felt the realization that he was dying and would, hopefully, soon be reborn.

As I watched these memories, I felt Chris’ heart as it increased its rate, trying to compensate for the lack of blood by pumping faster, trying to get oxygen out to keep the vital organs alive. I felt it as this failed to increase the blood flow, and the heart rate began to lower. I felt it when, with his veins almost empty of blood, his heart skipped a beat, made a valiant attempt with several beats, and then stopped.

Again, without concern for the wound, I pulled away and put my other wrist to my fangs, ripping the skin and shearing a vein, allowing my blood to flow freely onto my friend’s lips. Chris reacted quicker and latched on within seconds as he hungrily sucked, seeking resurrection. After I’d fed him for several minutes, Billy knelt and replaced my wrist with his own.

I was surprised when Jake and Brian pulled me to my feet and off to the side, each of them offering his wrists to help me replenish. For some reason, I giggled. Before I could accept, Riva stepped forward.

“Forgive me, My Lord, but you’re already blood drunk. Feed from me if you need more blood.”

“The last thing he needs is more blood,” Jenny said, gently pushing her way through. “He’s just drained two human adult males; he should be able to feed both of them until they wake.”

Her mention of waking reminded me, so I pulled out my phone. After confirming that Donna was working on enough tea for two and getting Tommy’s estimate on when it would arrive, I began to get concerned. Josh had just stopped feeding and was now asleep, and Chris would likely do the same within minutes. That meant they both would be seeking their second feeding in an hour or so, and the tea needed to be given to them then.

My next two calls were more difficult. I put my phone on speaker when the first one connected. “David, are you alone?”

“I am, Greg, what’s up?”

“I don’t have a lot of time, but I thought you should know—”

“I said it was up to them, Greg. My boys will tell me when—”

“I wouldn’t call if it was just that, David, but Josh was in an accident and—”

“Oh my god, no. Is he ok? Where is he? What happened? Where’s Jakey? Is Jake ok?” Mike rattled off, obviously shaken.

“I’m fine, Dad, but Josh is, well, he’s—”

“Josh was dying, Mike, and I’m trying to save him, but I thought you’d want to know because I can’t make any promises. He was hurt pretty bad.” I paused and took a deep breath, “and if he does survive the change, he still might lose his leg. I just thought you should be prepared for either outcome.”

David was silent for a moment; then I heard a sniff. “Do I have time to get there?”

“Yes. We’re in the middle of the woods, and we can’t move him for several hours,” I took another breath. “There’s more.” I heard him gasp. “Chris was with him. I need to call Mike. He might want to come with you.”

“But Jake’s ok? He’s not—”

“No, Dad, I’m fine and still human, but honestly, it’s,” Jake fought back a sob. “It’s pretty bloody here, Dad. If Josh doesn’t make it, you might not want to remember him like this.”

“I’ve seen blood, Jake, and if he doesn’t make it, you’ll need me.” I heard his voice become firmer as he added, “Tell Mike to call me Greg. We can come up in my truck.”

My call to Mike wasn’t as bad, due in large part to the fact that Chris, if he survived the change, was likely to fully heal from his injuries and wake up perfectly fine. Mike agreed to call David and hung up.

I returned and knelt between my brothers as their bodies struggled to heal. Jake had followed me and was kneeling on the other side of his brother, leaning down, caressing his hair, and speaking softly to him. Behind me, I heard Brian teasing Chris about being one of the first to be changed. Scott and Billy were looking at the skid steer and discussing with Riva how to safely remove it from Josh when Jenny added two problems to our list, which was already long enough.

“You can’t just flip it off him, Greg, not if you want to save the leg,” she said, getting everyone’s attention.

“Have you ever been in a similar situation, Jenny? Or is this your nurse’s training overlapping with vampires?” I asked.

“I’ve never been involved in something like this, but in my opinion, the sudden exposure of that entire leg would flood his body with too much human blood. I’m afraid it would kill him, Greg,” she explained. I could see her eyes flicking around in thought, so I waited. She understood. “I can only think of two options, and I’m not sure which to try.”

She went on to explain her ideas, and after a heated discussion with Billy and Scott on opposite sides of the argument. I didn’t know which had the best chance of saving his leg, but based on what Jenny said about too much human blood getting to his changing body, I decided to risk the leg to save his life. I wasn’t surprised when Jake insisted he be the one to actually do it. Of course, with his human strength, he wouldn’t be much help otherwise, so I agreed.

Assuming that a sudden change in his blood chemistry might push Josh into wanting his second feeding, I called Tommy again, hoping he was already on his way with the tea. When I explained why I thought we should wait, Jenny argued that waiting risked the leg. I wasn’t going to save the leg and lose my brother, so we waited.

While we waited, we gathered the tools for what could only be called emergency surgery. Riva offered his massive knife, and I asked about alcohol to sterilize it. Before anyone could reply, Jake was searching Josh’s truck, hoping to find a partial bottle of whiskey from their last fishing trip. When I realized we didn’t need it, Jenny suggested we let him search. Keeping him busy and not worrying about his brother.

Finally, with Tommy ten minutes away, it was time. Scott, Billy, and Riva gathered around the skid steer and prepared to lift. While they were looking for handholds, Jenny used Riva’s huge combat knife to make a long, deep cut in Josh’s pelvis. Before it could begin to heal, Jake pushed both hands inside his brother and started feeling around.

“I think I found them,” he exclaimed. Then he nervously asked, “Tell me again, which is which?”

“The vein is the larger one, and the artery should be pulsing with his heartbeat. Pinch them both shut for now,” Jenny explained as Josh moved his hands around inside his brother’s body.

With a nod, he shouted, “Got the artery; it’s shut. Now,” he bit his lower lip as he moved his left hand a bit, and I saw his eyes shoot open. “Got it. Ok, they’re both pinched shut.”

This was the signal for our next step, and I saw the cab lift ever so slightly. Scott, Billy, or Riva could have simply flipped the machine off of Josh on their own, but we wanted to slowly expose the leg to its injured parts, allowing the healing to happen in a bit more controlled manner. We needed all three because they had to lift it very slowly and hold it in place in progressive steps, possibly for several hours.

Jenny told Jake to allow the artery to open just a bit to see if he was bleeding. There was some leakage, but she said it would heal quickly. This was an understatement. Jenny had to keep using the knife to prevent Josh from healing around his brother’s wrists. Once the artery was open, Jake had to keep the vein pinched, only opening it occasionally, to prevent too much human blood from reaching his body before it could be diluted by the vampire blood now flowing through the artery. Just as we feared, the human blood that came from his leg caused Josh to desire more vampire blood to assist in healing his massive injuries. His eyes opened, and he grabbed my arm.

Praying that he needed a longer feeding, I slit my wrist and put it to his mouth. I could feel the suction as he eagerly drew in the life-giving fluid, and after a minute, he calmed down and fell into a more sedate pace, staring into my eyes as he fed. Jake, as Jenny had instructed, released pressure on his femoral vein for a few seconds, and I saw the effect it had. Josh’s eyes opened wide, and he resumed feeding at a frantic pace, trying to dilute his human blood. Seeing this, Jake pinched the vein, and his brother once again calmed.

Jenny was watching all of this with her lower lip held between her teeth. She nodded and said, “I think it’s better if he doesn’t go through this too long, Greg. I suggest Jake lets the blood flow until Josh can’t take it. At least when he’s feeding. It’s obvious he can sense it and can compensate for it by feeding faster.”

I looked Jake in the eye and realized he was terrified. He literally had his brother’s life in his hands, and he had no idea what the right answer was, so I decided. Giving him a nod, I said, “Don’t lose that vein but let the blood flow fully. We’ll stop it in five minutes or if he stops feeding before that. OK? How’s that sound, Jenny?”

She nodded. “I think that’s best, Greg.”

I could tell when Jake released the vein due to Josh’s increased suction. Unfortunately, Chris chose that moment to wake up and want fed. Without thought, I pulled my other wrist across my fangs, reached around behind me, and, with a little guidance from Brian, began to feed Chris.

“Is the vein fully open, Jake?” I asked as Josh increased his suction.

“No,” he replied, looking concerned. “Why, is there a problem?”

“No, but shut it down a bit. I think he’s had enough human blood for now,” I explained as I looked around for Tommy and the tea we needed to feed Josh very soon.

Jenny was examining Josh’s leg, where it had been crushed, when I heard a vehicle. I looked up to see Vega standing in the middle of the road with her assault rifle aimed at the windshield. I saw her relax when the windows opened, and she caught the scents from inside. Tommy and James exited the vehicle, followed by Donna, carrying a little bundle that I immediately identified as my son. I noticed she was also holding a thermos bottle. Tommy asked Scott what he needed to do. Tommy quickly took Billy’s place, holding the skid steer in place while Billy rushed to Donna, slit his thumb open, and began feeding our son.

After Donna handed the thermos to Brian, I explained what he needed to do; I pulled my wrist from Josh’s lips and watched as Brian held the thermos in place. Josh fought the nasty-tasting tea, turning his face away and growling. He needed this herbal mix, and I only knew one way to compel him to drink it. I shifted my eyes, added my beast to my voice, and commanded him to drink it. His head snapped around, his eyes finding mine, then quickly moving down, and he opened his mouth. I remembered how bad this tea tasted, and Josh’s face said he felt the same way, but he obeyed his baron and drank. When the thermos was empty, Donna handed Brian another.

Confused, I turned to her. “It’s valerian root tea, Greg. It’s very weak, but it should relax him and help if there’s any pain.”

I gave Brian a nod, but it wasn’t necessary; he was already pouring the tea into Josh’s open mouth. Once this thermos was empty, I once again offered him my wrist. He quickly latched on and began feeding at a more sedate pace. Jake, Jenny, and I exchanged a few words and decided to wait until his next feeding before introducing more human blood from his leg. Minutes later, Josh stopped feeding and fell into a peaceful sleep. I pulled my wrist from his lips, turned to focus on Chris, and had Brian give him his tea. Soon, Chris was sleeping, and Donna took Scott’s place, holding the machine off Josh so Scott could feed Charlie.

The sun had set, and the cool night air was a problem for our human friends. Brian found some of Jake’s sweats in Josh’s truck, and we carefully pulled the pants on him. Since he was still holding his brother’s femoral vein closed, we wrapped a blanket around his shoulders and body. Josh’s sweats were too small for Brian, so James stripped to his underwear and gave him a choice; put James’ clothes on or sit in a vehicle. Brian chose to wear James’ clothing.

Everyone looked up when a pair of headlights came up the dirt road, and once again, Vega stepped in the path of the vehicle and leveled her weapon. Recognizing the truck, I ran to her and told her to stand down, then led Mike and David over to their sleeping sons. Mike reacted stoically, surveying the scene, but David saw all the blood and started to shake. He ran to Jake’s side, then realized where his son’s hands were. He turned to me with tears in his eyes, his face a mask of terror.

Josh chose that moment to wake up and seek food. While Jake explained why his hands were inside his brother’s pelvic cavity, I slit my wrist and fed his twin. Josh’s eyes remained on mine as he fed, ignoring his father’s voice as he focused on ingesting his salvation. Jake knew what to do, and a few seconds after his brother started feeding, he parted his fingers and let more human blood flow from the injured leg into his changing body. Once again, Josh increased his suction, but as we had agreed, Jake simply watched and allowed the blood to flow. When Josh relaxed into a more sedate rhythm, we all exchanged a look and agreed that it was time to let him decide for himself.

David flinched as Jenny once again cut the skin that had healed around Jake’s wrists, allowing him to pull his hands from his brother’s body. As the skin knit itself closed, he looked at me, amazed. He was asking if we should cover his son due to the chill when Chris woke and started looking for my arm. I quickly slit my other wrist, and Brian again guided it to his friend’s lips, allowing him to feed.

As Chris fed, James, Donna, and Riva lifted the skid steer off Josh’s leg and pushed it onto its wheels. With the three vampires standing near Josh, Jake jumped in and quickly moved it away, parking it near the excavator. He started toward his brother, but Donna grabbed a jug of water and helped him clean the blood from his hands, then pulled the sweatshirt over his head. Only then did she allow him to return to his brother’s side.

With Jake cared for, Donna pulled a cooler from the back of James’ truck and handed the humans meatloaf sandwiches and sodas. She then pulled out bottles of elk and whitetail and passed them around to the vampires; all except me. My hands were occupied, with Chris feeding from one while Josh fed from the other. James stepped to my side and held his wrist out, offering me the choice of feeding from him, from someone else, or from a bottle. Without hesitation, I dropped my fangs and fed.

I heard a noise and turned to see Brian holding Mike as he finally broke down and sobbed, wondering if his son would wake up. Jake and David were also huddled together as we all sat, silently waiting for the dawn.

Copyright © 2023 Justin4Fun; All Rights Reserved.
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If you'd like to buy me a cup of coffee, a donut, or a bottle of blood, visit Justin's Ranch
Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental.
Note: While authors are asked to place warnings on their stories for some moderated content, everyone has different thresholds, and it is your responsibility as a reader to avoid stories or stop reading if something bothers you. 
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What a great chapter, I found it very well written, and the tension was palpable.  I believe both will survive, this goes back to what George told Greg, something about Greg is special, I don't think he will lose anyone he tries to turn.  

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Well you made me cry again sigh...... with fingers crossed I hope for the best!

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