She wanted it again. Like syrup thick and heavy on her tongue, sweet cream and smooth down her throat.
Outside, she was silver, her step soft as a cat’s, her eyes starlight. She could smell it on the night air, feel the warmth of it against her mouth. She wanted it again, so badly.
She tried to remember a time before the need. When sunlight warmed her slender limbs and the laughter of friends filled her days. There had been moments, she supposed, when flashing strobes and pulsing music had pumped energy into her. When the heat of vodka, the buzz of ecstacy, the glow of sex had been enough.
Then he’d shown her. Then he’d shown her how one warm body could be so much more than an insubstantial moment of laughter, the fleeting throb of orgasm.
She wanted it so badly that it hurt.
She’d heard an interview once, with a heroin addict. How at first the drug had made him feel good, but now he needed it in order to be normal. That, he’d said, was what made it a true addiction. That, he’d said, was why they should decriminalise heroin, at least for people like himself.
It reassured her to know that she wasn’t truly addicted. Sure, the need came with pain, with a desperate, clawing urgency that went beyond hunger, but having it took her way past normal. She thought of the time before as being a shadow life, with few glimpses of reality.
Stolen apples are always sweeter. The first cigarettes, smoked behind the school library; getting men to go to the bottle shop for her when she was fifteen; fucking her mum’s boyfriend. Yes, there had been times but those had been the first uncertain steps. Even in her need she was more alive now than she had been then.
The night was soft and she knew it was cold from the way their breath misted on the air. She faded into shadow, watching with her wolf eyes. There, a gutter crawler, straying from his wife; there, a pair of Suits looking for some company; there, a group of boys with too much money and no idea. These were not what she craved; naive, easy meat did not satisfy her hunter’s instinct.
She waited, instead, for the slow strut of the Alpha Male; the sturdy, confident swagger. She saw him in the glow of his cigarette, smelled the raw musk of him, felt herself hollow and echoing with lust and let herself be seen.
‘What’re you doing here, honey?’ His smile, thick lipped and greasy.
‘N-nothing. I was just waiting for someone.’
‘Well,’ he pumped his chest. ‘I’m here.’
‘No, I was waiting for a friend.’
‘I’m friendly.’ His fingers pinched her elbow, steering her towards the darkness.
She resisted just enough.
‘Got something for you,’ he said.
He might have seen the moonlight reflected in her teeth as she smiled.
‘For me? Oh, thank you.’