I’m excited to be a contributing author with SLAY: Stories of Vampire Noire. Over 25 writers have come together to tell stories about vampires from across the African diaspora. Here are a few of us.
Check out an excerpt of my short story, Encounters, below. Click here to order SLAY on Amazon.
Part One: Lyric
My husband had been dead for twenty years when I saw him at the airport.
I choked on my chai latte when I noticed him strutting along, a suitcase in one arm and a twentysomething woman, who looked like a model, on the other.
I placed my cup between my knees and gripped the handles of my seat, as if I were
accelerating into oblivion rather than waiting to board a plane. I’d know that strut anywhere. That slow, relaxed gait. His aloof brand of confidence was an inconvenience to the travelers trying to push past him in the crowded terminal.
As he approached, I bent down and pulled a true crime novel from my suitcase. My thick, black curls concealed my face as I unzipped my carry on. I sat back up and held the novel high, its hardback hiding most of my profile. Pretending to read, I peered over the book and watched my husband and his woman merge into a line of people preparing to board first class on my flight. My flight! Heart pounding and with book in hand, I picked up my latte and moved to another seat to get a closer look.
The logical part of my brain knew this couldn’t be what it looked like. He couldn’t be
who he looked like. Not only was this man, to put it simply, not dead, he looked twenty years younger than me. Even if my husband faked his death during his trip to Nigeria, twenty years had passed since then and this man didn’t look a day over 25.
He did look just as handsome as I remembered, in that black tailored peacoat. His coily
hair was cut in a tapered fade, and his skin looked smooth.
As I watched him approach the boarding gate, I took a deep breath to settle my nerves.
My wedding was in two days, so it was the absolute worst time for me to run into my dead husband. Maybe I was seeing things because I miss him or imagining things as I wished they were. Or maybe my husband had a doppelganger, some unknown distant relative that happened to be boarding my flight.
Right before he entered the jet bridge, he turned toward me. I tried to hide behind my
book, but it was too late. Our eyes met. For a brief moment, he froze in his tracks, causing his model to bump into his shoulder and the strangers behind him to glare. Then, in less than a heartbeat, he turned his back to me and rushed onto the plane with his head down and his shoulders slumped, all prior confidence gone. One look into his eyes was all it took. I didn’t know how it was possible, but I knew it was Derek.