“Oh honey, I love it,” Sheila said to her husband. “Can’t you image our daughters walking down that elegant stairway wearing their formal gowns on prom night?”
“I don’t know, Sheila,” Ben said. “It’s kinda dark and somewhat ominous looking, don’t you think?”
Sheila ignored Ben. “And that balcony. It’s so romantic. Picture the twins standing up there like two beautiful Juliets with their adoring Romeos below, looking up at them lovingly.”
“May I remind you, Sheila, that things didn’t end well for Romeo and Juliet,” Ben said. “Listen, dear, I know you’ve always dreamed of living in a castle in Europe, but I would rather find a contemporary place close to town with all of the modern amenities. This place is too cold and damp and way too big for just you, me, and the twins. Don’t you agree, Vlad?”
The real estate broker, who had been showing the couple different properties all day, smiled at the two of them. “Well,” he said, “as they say, ‘When in Transylvania, do as the Transylvanians do.’ And this place is the very model of Transylvania.”
“Okay, we’ll think about it, Vlad, and Sheila and I will get back to you,” Ben said. “Meanwhile, the sun is setting and it’s going to be dark soon, so let’s call it a day.”
“Don’t you you want to see the rest of the place?” Vlad asked. “One of the best features of this particular home is the large game room just down the stairs over there. You must see it.”
Sheila gave Ben a pleading look. “Fine,” Ben said. “But then we’re out of here.”
Sheila and Ben followed Vlad as he led them down a set of stone steps leading to the lower level. “This looks more like a crypt than a game room,” Ben observed.
Vlad got a large smile on this otherwise stoic face. “It does, doesn’t it?” he said, the smile on his face broadening.
Ben looked at Vlad and then at Sheila. A chill ran down Ben’s spine as Vlad’s appearance changed. Vlad’s top canine teeth on both sides seemed to have grown longer, and in the dim light, the whites of his eyes had turned blood red.