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The Same Way

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“Do you think that will be enough?” Elijah asked, eying the small bowl of miniature candy bars Sean had set out on a small table by the door.

“I’m sure it will,” Sean replied. “Since we’re in an apartment, and on the third floor, we only get families that live in the building, and I don’t think many of them have children who are young enough to go trick or treating.”

Elijah had been more excited about this second Halloween with Sean, even buying a set of plastic fangs to wear when he answered the door for the trick or treaters. He was trying for scary, but even dressed in black and wearing the fake fangs, Elijah was still adorable, though Sean didn’t voice that opinion. When Elijah asked if he was scary-looking, Sean had said yes, very scary.

His young lover had wanted to decorate the apartment for the holiday, too, but Sean had talked him into putting all his creativity into decorating the diner, which he’d done with a vengeance, hanging colorful cardboard ghosts, witches, lanterns and haunted houses on the sides of the booths and the counter. He’d even gotten a real pumpkin, tried his hand at carving it, and set it in the diner’s front window under the neon Open sign.

He’d done the decorating only a few days before Halloween, which to Sean seemed like a lot of work when the decorations would have to come down tomorrow, but Sean didn’t have the heart to discourage him. At least he’d been able to talk Elijah out of wearing a costume at work. To make up for it, Sean kept a bowl of candy by the cash register, and allowed kids out trick or treating to come into the diner and get some.

Even if he couldn’t decorate at home, Elijah found a way to make the apartment look festive by including their cat, Cocoa. He had tied a huge orange bow around her neck.. To Sean’s eye, Cocoa didn’t seem to mind, seeming to understand how much it meant to her young master that she participate in the celebration.

Sean and Elijah were finishing up the dinner dishes when the doorbell rang for the first time. Elijah slipped in his vampire teeth and rushed to the door, trying not to look disappointed when only two small children stood in the hallway.. A young woman, undoubtedly their mother, stood a few feet away, watching. The kids, dressed as Wonder Woman and Batman, cried “Trick or Treat!” in unison.

“Good evening,” Elijah said in a fair Bela Lugosi imitation, showing his fangs, but instead of being scared, the kids only giggled. He put a handful of miniatures into each of their goodie bags They thanked him, and as they turned to go, Elijah said, “Thanks for keeping our neighborhood safe.”

The doorbell rang only two more times during the evening. Obviously disappointed, Elijah pulled out his vampire teeth and sat down dejectedly on the sofa. Sean sat down beside him and put his arm around Elijah’s shoulder. “I know you’re feeling let down,” he said, “but I told you there weren’t that many kids in the building. You did get to hand out candy at the diner, so that’s something..”

Elijah nodded gloomily. “I guess.”

“It’s still Halloween,” Sean declared. “Why don’t we watch a horror movie? We can cuddle up on the sofa together, and we can cover each other’s eyes during the really scary parts.”

“What movies have you got?” Elijah asked.

Encouraged, Sean got up and went to his DVD collection. “I’ve got some of the classics,” he said proudly., “the original Frankenstein, Dracula, and The Wolf Man. It’ll be fun seeing one of them again.”

“I’ve never seen any of them,” Elijah admitted.

Sean was flabbergasted. “Not even on TV?” When Elijah shook his head, Sean told him. “Then you’re in for a real treat. Which one do you want to watch?” Elijah only shrugged, so he made the decision for him. “Since you were a vampire for Halloween, let’s start with Dracula.”

“Okay.”

Elijah loved Dracula so much that he asked Sean if they could watch the other two movies as well, and Sean readily agreed.. By the time Lawrence Talbot gave his last howl, Elijah had gotten over his disappointment. As they got ready for bed, he told Sean, “I’m going to go to the diner early tomorrow so I can take down all the Halloween decorations.”

“It won’t hurt to leave them up for the rest of the week,” Sean said. “You did such a great job, it would be a shame not to enjoy them for a little longer.”

"Thanks," Elijah said, "but I'm going to take the bow off Cocoa tonight. I don’t think she liked it very much, even though she didn’t make a fuss when I put it around her neck."

"That’s because she loves you,” Sean explained. “I imagine there isn’t anything she wouldn’t do to make you happy.”

“You think so?” Elijah asked."

“I do,” Sean said with certainty, “because I feel the same way about you.”