Tatarabuelo is as old as the devil Papi says. His age is a number so large I get sleepy
trying to count that high. He knows the secret of eternal life Papi says. Once upon a time, Tatarabuelo was an actor in Mexico and famous for the many vampire movies he made. His house is marvelous and scary with posters from his movies and mannequins wearing his costumes. His sharp white fangs rest in a gold case next to his bed.
On his birthday he tells the family he is tired and to leave him alone. Instead we bring cauldrons of food and a cake.
“My descendants are imbeciles,” he says to me. “But I must share the secret of eternal life with someone I love because soon I will be leaving to star in a new movie.”
The family of imbeciles sings Las mañanitas. Tatarabuelo blows out a forest of candles while spitting all over the cake. He pulls me close and whispers strange words in my ear.
By morning I grow sharp white fangs as the love of Tatarabuelo swells deep inside me. Then I hear Papi crying in the kitchen.
Sandra Cimadori was born in New York and grew up in South Florida in a multilingual home. She graduated from Florida State University. She teaches and writes, dividing her time between North Carolina and Florida.