It took Mary by surprise when she figured out that her father-in-law had come to maw the lawn. She remembered, not so long ago, when that man had been just another soul she could drink from, and nothing more. Now she would feel a deep revulsion at the mere thought of what she could do to him. Love, it seemed, had changed her. At last.
Looking in the mirror she could see a very pretty and decently clothed young woman, proudly harbouring a pink apron lined with lace. Every morning her ritual was the same. Get up from bed, kiss her dead husband, and start preparing the morning breakfast. Then she would simply move on to the midday breakfast. She had never understood the need to name the various meals of the day by different names, and it still puzzled her that people would engage in such nonsensical precisions, when all meals were actually the same. In the afternoon, she would clean up the house and exercise a little. A young woman of her age needed to take care of her joints if she wanted to last into the next century. Her favourite move was the one called awakening of the zombie, in which one had to crawl up from the ground and come up slowly with hunched shoulders. Since she had discovered that little exercise she no longer wondered why the creatures were called the undead. It did make one feel so rejuvenated. Whistling away while she played the zombie, she had all the time in the world to think about her newfound happiness in her marriage. And today, was a big day. The week was almost over.
Jim had said he would do anything for her. And he had. Or hadn’t. It didn’t matter. Her art had needed a new body, urgently, if she was to keep her perfect complexion any longer. And a woman knows the sacrifices it takes to stay fit and healthy for the one they love. Mary knew it deeply, to the roots of her core, deep inside her unbeating heart. It did take something to be who she was, but she tried not to think about it too often. Disheartening memories aboun her fourth husband John would sometimes resurface when she did.

Her arrangements were, as always, very rigorous. Everyone thought Jim and Mary were having fun during their honeymoon-trip far far away at an undisclosed location, which gave Mary plenty of time to work. Some centuries ago, she had tried pretending that she and her husband were simply at home during the sleeping spells, but humans being the most curious and screechy little kind of annoying creatures, they would always become very interested in knowing what a young couple would do, alone, at home, for a whole week. This had almost led to disaster multiple times, and Mary had had time to reconsider her plans in the following years, adjusting ever so slightly to the changes in seasons, fashions and expectations. The honeymoon trick was her best so far. Or so she thought, eyeing out the window at the precisely cut lawn around her house. Had he tried peeking inside? Had he seen some movement behind the curtains? Mary was careful never to turn on a light, she didn’t need them anyways, but could habit have had the best of her? A candle was all she needed for her ritual.

Jim would soon wake up. Mary was preparing her favourite food for this great event. It would be the best breakfast of them all. Her husband probably wouldn’t notice the slight fatigue the spell would have inflicted upon him, or the absence of a beating in his chest, and their life would then start in full. They would revel in the happiness of their newfound love. Until his untimely death, that is. Unless Jim would be the one to finally survive? As long as Jim’s love would stay strong, the spell would hold.
Mary felt her lust wake up after this exhausting week of preparations. The unlit candle’s immaterial flame reflected in her grey eyes, the only movement in her immobile face, her hunger awakening. She opened his chest.