And now Jason's doing crunches on the mattress to stretch out his back, while Eddie watches. This kid, I tell ya. He says the back cramp went away right away -- "Guess that's a perk of me doing V!" -- but continues doing it because it feels good. It's not like he's got much else to do, I guess, but more than anything I think it's just those two things feeling good. Stretching his body, and being with Eddie: stretching. "What's with the weight, dude?" he asks, lying back. "I thought all you vampires were supposed to be in shape." Eddie shakes his head and says we're only what we ever were before: he led a sedentary life. Jason asks, blameless and curious, what "sedentary" means, and Eddie explains: "Desk job. I was an accountant." Jason backflips to a standing position, like a drug-addicted ninja. "Sat around a lot, ate a lot of junk food." Jason heads over to grab a beer, kicking Eddie's foot, friendly: "Well, how's someone go from being an accountant to being a vampire?" It wasn't the straightest line. It never is. We spend half our lives going to a place and the rest trying to figure out how we got there. The lucky ones can. "I always had this sense that it wasn't really my life I was leading. But I convinced myself it was the life I wanted." A year ago, when he was human, Eddie came home to find his wife, "crying like her whole family had just died." It had. She'd spent half her life going somewhere.
Some kid, not unlike Jason, now or in his youth, had suggested possibly, in the middle of a common fistfight, that his dad was a fucking faggot. Jason nods; it happens. "Well? Kids are morons." Which is all she wanted to hear, and instead her whole family was dying all around her. "What, she never even had a clue?" Eddie almost smiles, painfully: "How could she, when even I didn't?" Jason gets that, too: the multitude of places we don't admit we're going, the number of men inside us, waiting to come out. He apologizes to Eddie for the divorce, because he knows: at that moment it wasn't just her family dying, it was his too. Eddie was a Brontosaurus. Eddie was Pluto, cut and spinning out of orbit. Homeless.
"Comes a point in life when you realize everything you know about yourself, it's all just conditioning. It's the rare man who truly knows who he is. At least I accomplished that." Jason gets exactly half of that; he'll get the whole thing but he'll bleed for it first. "I guess it helps that you don't look all that gay," he says brightly, like it's a compliment, like it's the thing men tell each other, and themselves; he hops onto the washer, kicking his feet. He's like a little boy. Eddie considers him, amused. "Most of the gays I come across, they look like..." Eddie grins: "You. You're what we're supposed to look like." Jason smiles, he knows it's true.