As Jesse sat up, he tried to shake the images of his fever induced dreams away.  They had been horrible.  At first, the dream had been the one he had been having for the last two weeks.  he was in the bar, and fighting the man that had bitten him.  It was pretty much the same, except he was a spectator.  It was like a camera in a movie scene, positioned so he could see the scene, and his own face.  After he knocked the man down, he jumped on him and kept attacking.  He used his fists to bludgeon the man’s face until it was unrecognizable as a human.

In real life, fighting was not something Jesse enjoyed, unless boxing gloves were on.  In this dream however, he was thoroughly enjoying it.  Every punch sent shivers of pleasure through his body.  Drops of blood spattered his face, and he was laughing.  He stopped hitting the man suddenly and looked around.  Everyone had scattered, and were looking at him with fear.  “A man has to eat!”  he yelled at them,  “And I’ve been hungry for a long time!”  With that said, he opened his mouth and leaned into the dying man, tearing a hole in this throat.  Blood ran in rivulets down either side of Jesse’s mouth he made smacking noises, while chewing the bits of flesh.

“What the fuck was that about?”  he questioned out loud.  He looked at the clock and realized that he was almost late for work.  He called in, and let them know he was running late, and went to the fridge to grab a quick bite to eat.  He didn’t really feel like eating after the dream he just had, but he had to make sure to keep his body healing.

He grabbed a banana, but his eyes fell on the raw steak sitting on the second shelf.  His dream flashed again in his mind, and made him feel like he was going to vomit.  He put the banana back and shut the fridge.  He wasn’t going to eat after all.  Instead, he washed some aspirin down with water and left for work.

Macdougall’s wasn’t far from the broken down apartment that Jesse currently called home, so he walked to work for the evening.  He was hoping the clean, Autumn air would clear his head a bit.  The dark streets were comforting to him as he made his was quickly to work.  A man walking the other direction wasn’t paying attention and bumped into Jesse as he passed.  “Why don’t you watch where the fuck you’re going asshole?”  Jesse said, as he turned around to face the man.  His fists immediately clenched up, ready for a fight.

“Hey bro… chill out.  I’m sorry.”  Stuttered the man, as he started backing up, obviously not wanting trouble.

Jesse’s brain was on fire, and screaming for him to kill this man.  He forced his mind to calm down.  “No… I’m sorry man.  I’m just not feeling well.  Just try to watch where you’re going.”  The man looked relieved as Jesse turned and continued on his way.  Jesse was still trying to figure out why he had reacted that way as he walked through the doors to work.

The lights were dim, and the music loud as he came in, and made his way back to Macdougall’s office to let him know he was there.  On the way he spotted Claire, a woman who he had been talking to quite a bit lately.  She spotted him and waved as he passed.  He smiled at her.  “Hello there beautiful.  I’ll be back in a sec.  Running late tonight.”  He said as he passed.

Macdougall was in the back, waiting for him as he came around the corner.  “Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!!”  He exclaimed.  “You look like shit!  Are you sure you don’t want to take the night off?  It’s been quiet here since that crazy guy bit you, and I can handle anything that happens to pop up.”

“I’m okay man, seriously.  I just woke up from a nightmare, and realized I was late, so I had to run in.”  Jesse lied.  “It’s nothing a couple shots can’t fix.”  He said, as he grabbed a bottle of Jack Daniels off of the desk.  He took a long pull from the neck of the bottle like a practiced alcoholic.  “There.  All better… see?”  The color started to come back into his face.

“Okay boyo.  I’m going to let you work tonight, but I’m watching you.  If you start to seem too ill… I’m sending your ass home.  Maybe you can take that Claire girl you’ve been talking to so much.”  Macdougall said with a wink.

Jesse smiled at the thought.  He would love to take her home, but that wasn’t his style.  He had a habit of talking to girls and never making a move.  He was afraid of rejection, and this was one girl that he did not want to be rejected by.  She was perfect in his eyes.  He walked back out to the bar, scoped everything out, and sat down next to her.  “How you doing tonight hon?”

She put a hand on his arm, “I’m doing well, but you aren’t looking so hot.  I mean…” she stuttered and blushed, “You’re always hot, but you don’t look like you’re feeling well.  Maybe I should talk to Macdougall about getting you to take the night off.  I’ll take you home and take care of you.”  She smiled as she patted his hand.