01 Feb The Midnight Blood Drive
Let me tell you the true tale of a midnight blood drive. I’m sure at least some of you have seen the mobiles set up where you can donate blood. They are most commonly run by the American Red Cross, but there are many others whom are legitimate as well. However, in this case things are very, very different. Let me start at the beginning. For the sake of some anonymity, names aren’t relevant here but all that you need to know is, I’m female and live in Florida.
It all started one evening when my husband and I set out on a trip to the local Wal-Mart. I cringe anytime I even think of having to go to that place but I enjoy eating and sadly, it’s the best place our town offers to get groceries. So there we were at Wal-Mart around 11pm because my husband had worked late.
It was muggy and humid as ever even though it was early Spring at the time. As we made our way inside, a petite woman with curly dark hair, along with a very tall, very built man who looked like no stranger to weight lifting approached us. They were both wearing teal colored scrubs which I immediately thought was kind of odd. Not because of the color, but just the fact they were wearing scrubs in general. The woman was all smiles and spoke first. She kindly asked us if we would like to donate blood and then she gestured to a long bus which was located across the parking lot.
I hadn’t even noticed it when we parked. For a moment I was lost for words but politely muttered, “No, thank you.”
My husband piped in and also said, “Maybe next time.”
Something that surprised me was as soon as I declined their offer, the woman’s wide smile dropped dangerously into a frown. In fact, she and the man immediately turned away swiftly and went on to other people who were also making their way into the entrance of the super store.
Feeling a bit weird and off put, we went about going inside to start the daunting process of food shopping. For a short time the occurrence ran through my mind. The area we live in is certainly no stranger to a diverse plethora of people from different backgrounds. Even so, the thick accents the pair had seemed to be not from around our town.
That mixed with the fact that there was a blood drive going on at night and at a Wal-Mart of all places kind of blew my mind. It was definitely weird and not something I’d seen before. Honestly, I just chalked it up to the fact that it was Florida and strange stuff seems to happen here on the regular.
About an hour had gone by once we had collected what we needed and made it through the backed up check out lines. Sure enough as we loaded the groceries into our car, the blood drive was still in service. I could tell because a couple of people exited the bus brandishing fresh bandages on their arms.
On the ride home, my husband and I made jokes about how outlandish it was that a blood drive was going on at midnight. That it was probably vampires preying on unsuspecting victim’s who at first willingly go to donate blood and end up getting more than they bargained for. After a few days we forgot about it to be quite frank.
A week passed by and this time my husband needed to pick up a few things he wanted. I wasn’t real keen on going to the store but I went anyway just to get out of the house. This trip was earlier in the evening. I’d say around 7pm. We pull into the Wal-Mart parking lot and surprisingly enough, that damn blood bus was there again.
Once my husband parked the car, he went inside and I opted to stay behind. I leaned my chair back, laid down and started scrolling through Twitter on my phone. Every now and then I would glance up and watch as different people came and went to the bus since I had a direct line of sight to it this time. My husband parked in the same row so our car was adjacent to the lengthy, peculiar automobile.
The outside of it was painted bright blue. On the side and in the center was one large, red blood drop along with the company’s name which I won’t disclose. My mind started to go off into one of it’s tangents of curiosity. Maybe it was sheer boredom or maybe the Florida heat had impaired my rational thought but I really wanted to see inside that bus.
My window was rolled down so when I heard someone exit the bus and say, “Let’s take a thirty minute break and meet back here then,” I saw the pair who had approached us last night, as well as another man. He was tall and appeared to be middle aged from what I could tell. Unlike the other two who were in scrubs, he had on a crisp, white coat resembling what some doctors like to wear. All three of them walked off in the direction of some surrounding restaurants.
At this point, I’d been watching the bus intently for quite sometime and knew that this was my chance. In a flash I exited the car and darted the short distance to the shiny steel door of the bus. I was a bit apprehensive as my hand went to reach for the handle but I had come too far now to turn back. Though my adrenaline was slightly starting to pump, I reasoned with myself that if anyone was still inside, I would pretend to be interested in donating.
Having that as my cover story gave me new found confidence and with that, I proceeded forward. The door handle gave way easily much to my advantage and after taking a deep breath, I peered inside the bus with caution. Just as I’d thought, it looked to be empty and void of any human life. Knowing the coast was clear, I climbed the two steps until I was completely inside.
My eyes went into overdrive as they analyzed the inner surroundings. The place appeared to be what your average blood donation set up would look like. The walls were a bright white which cast a clean and sterile visual appearance. Several posters also littered the walls depicting the importance of blood donation.
Some stainless steel counters along with matching cabinets lined one side of the bus while the other side contained two leather upholstered chairs. Typical things you’d see in any and most clinical operations. Nearly satisfied that everything seemed copacetic and that nothing more sinister was going on behind the scenes, I made my way towards the door to leave. Suddenly I heard voices outside which sounded like they were headed my way.
My heart felt like it leapt into my throat as panic took over. I darted my eyes wildly around the room looking for an alternate means of exit or a place to hide. Slight relief gripped me as I spotted a long set of cabinets on the far end of the bus. My feet made quick work across the expanse of the bus floor as I whipped open the cabinet to find it was filled with scrubs and lab coats hung neatly by clothes hangers.
The sound of the bus door handle being pulled radiated in my ears and with seconds to spare, I wedged myself in behind the clothing and closed the cabinet door. The bus started to shake slightly as voices echoed from outside of the cabinet. Even though it was risky, I quietly cracked open the door to my hiding place so that I could see what was happening.
The middle aged man from before was ushering a woman who I’d guess was in her mid thirties over to one of the leather chairs. They were accompanied by the woman with curly hair who originally asked if I would like to donate.
She made swift work in making the woman comfortable by setting her purse to the side and asking if she’d like a drink of water. The man whom we’ll call, “Doctor,” for the sake of the story grabbed a ball of cotton and began to apply a clear solution from a bottle. He gently took the woman’s arm and in a pleasant voice, said, “Just sanitizing the area a bit first. There we go.”
He then walked over to one of the counters and began preparing the needle, or so I thought. During this time I noticed the curly haired assistant had moved over to the door of the bus and just took position there as if she was on guard. This sent red flags up in my mind but I figured maybe she’s just squeamish when it comes to blood draws despite it being her occupation.
It was around this time I noticed the state of the woman in the chair. She had leaned her head back as her body looked limp and fully relaxed. A bit too relaxed in all honesty. The most unsettling part was her eyes. They were extremely open wide and transfixed in front of her like she was lost in a daze. Catatonic even.
I was starting to get very uncomfortable. Something wasn’t right and here I was trapped in the confines of the cabinet and in the middle of everything. Suddenly the most horrific noises emanated from the doctor in what I could only describe as the sound of someone asphyxiating. Strained groans and a sputtering noise barreled from within his throat.
In a flash his coat and shirt were shed on the ground, fully exposing his upper half. His fair toned complexion was now a vivid dark grey like that of burnt coal. Deep ridges littered his skin and were rough and looked cracked in appearance. Something akin to the consistency of sandpaper I would imagine. His salt and pepper hair now lay matted against his head. I gasped inwardly as my sight fell upon his ears. They had morphed into some kind of horned monstrosity which stretched upwards towards the ceiling.
Hastily I wiped my sweaty palms on my jeans and tried to keep my now highly erratic breathing quiet. Every bone in my body kept wanting to go into flight mode but I knew that was not a wise idea. Against all smart thought and better judgement I couldn’t tear my eyes away from the scene before me.
Things escalated within seconds as the doctor’s mouth went agape and opened in an unnaturally wide fashion. A slender, foot long tongue extended from within the cavern of his mouth and immediately latched onto the forearm of the dazed woman. Loud suction noises threatened to deafen me. I covered my ears with my hands in attempt to shield them from the pain. Even so I watched on intensely like some perverted voyeur.
With each draw of blood from the doctor’s wretched tongue in her skin, his veins began to pulse and protrude beneath the surface of his darkened epidermis. They were a bright, crimson red whose intensity grew with each sickening suck. An involuntary gasp escaped my mouth as immense fear overtook me. It must have been louder than I thought because the doctor or now blood crazed being whipped his head in my direction.
As his eyes scanned my vicinity I saw they were crimson red as well all except for the pupils. They were as black as tar and dilated, giving off a visceral, inhuman visage. I backed into the cabinet as far as I could while the words, “Holy fuck,” tore from my lips. The mad doctor let out a high pitched screech that will never be forgotten as he stormed towards me with the assistant closely behind him.
My fingers pinched circles into my skin frantically in hopes that I was dreaming. However, the violent thud of my heart against my rib cage assured me that I was indeed awake. I was trapped and soon to be the next victim in whatever literal suck fest these people were into. Footsteps thundered my way as the bus rocked as a result of the movement. With one last dire glance I saw the doctor’s hand outstretch and sharp black nails grasped the cabinet door. I screamed as it was flung open fiercely, exposing me completely.
The loud slamming of a car door woke me and ripped me back to consciousness. I shot up into a sitting position in the passenger seat, covered in sweat as my lungs worked desperately to capacitate the rapid breaths as a result. My mind was in a disoriented condition but made quick work trying to lift the thick fog of confusion.
I had been dreaming. I was certain of that much and the realization gave me slightly enough comfort to ease the state of panic that had overcome me. Being back in the realm of reality was nice but the dream, or nightmare as one might call it, left me feeling unsettled. So many thoughts and questions surged through my mind like a speeding locomotive.
I was taken from these thoughts by the sound of my husband’s concerned, yet subtle voice asking, “Well, are you alright?”
Up until that point I hadn’t realized that I must have given him quite a fright. The look of alarm on his face was a dead give away that my assumptions were correct. I’d been sitting there in utter silence, staring off into the void, covered in a thick sheen of sweat and breathing heavily. No wonder he was worried.
I did my best to ease his concern by chuckling awkwardly as I then assured, “I’m fine, dear. Just had a really strange dream is all. You know me.”
He looked me over as one of his eye brows quirked slightly higher than the other. This was the look he’d always give while he observed things with intense thought. “Okay then. You ready to go? It’s hot as fuck,” he stated more than asked as he started the engine.
With a sarcastic laugh, I joked, “Yeah, well, it’s Florida.”
This was a long time joke between us ever since we’d come to live here over a year ago. I kept pretty silent on the ride home, just watching the scenery whip by the window as my mind trailed down a rabbit hole of thought once more.
I’ve always been the type to have a very vivid imagination and always like analyzing things. Pondering over different outcomes to situations or them having possible theoretical conspiracies has become a strange hobby for me. What eludes me the most and is at the center of my curiosity is what the Hell is really going on? The entire thing just seems really bizarre to me.
Once we made it back home, I took some time to do a little online research. I looked up the name that was presented on the side of the blood bus in question. To my surprise, not very much was offered about it on the multiple search engines I tried. Luckily enough there was a link to their main headquarters. Turns out that it is located a full four hours south of our town. The building itself is a store front property in the business district.
All the front windows, as well as the doors are entirely covered by decals with the company logo. Any chances of seeing what is concealed inside are impossible. Overall, the place looks peculiar, especially with the set of six security cameras perched on top of the building outside. Scenarios have flashed through my head that what if it’s some kind of cult who goes to great lengths to have a plentiful amount of blood for their rituals?
What if it’s real people with a vampire role play fetish that have taken it to the extreme? Hell, it could just be a true, legitimate blood donation operation that helps people. It does make one question about just how easy it would be to fake something like that. With great effort put forth and a hidden agenda almost anyone could put together such a rouse to con unsuspecting people.
We may never learn the truth behind the Midnight Blood Drive, but that’s just the thing. The not knowing is still what haunts me, even to this day.