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sliced-lemonsThis story is very intriguing because it turns the Vampire myth on its head and makes it a source of pain and development for the character’s love story. The reader feels sympathetic to him because he does not desire to be a monster and was shaped by the Western/Eastern Vampire myths. His fear of acting as a Vampire should almost mirrors the fear the older woman had in the cemetery of what Vampires are known to do. He states, “The lemons relieve our thirst without ending it, like a drink we can hold in our mouths but never swallow. Eventually the original hunger returns. I have tried to be very good, very correct and conscientious about not confusing this original hunger with the thing I feel for Magreb” (8). What I found really effective is the description of his fear of the sun and his being convinced he would burn. His behavior is not merely dramatic because he later realizes the foolishness of it and how it inhibits him from moving forward. He feels safe in the myth and is comforted by what he sees as an instinctual need for blood. The sentence structure as he makes his way out of the cellar raises the anxiety for the reader. “Afraid, afraid” seems to echo mores through his mind than on the page (11). He sates “Thirty years. Eleven thousand dawns. That’s how long it took for me to believe the sun wouldn’t kill me” (13).

Much of their relationship hinges on the physiological aspect of hunger. Though blood does nothing, their ritual of searching and eating ties them to one another and this pattern propels the story forward. “Often I wonder to what extent a mortal’s love grows from the bedrock of his or her foreknowledge of death, love coiling like a green stem out of that blankness in a way I’ll never quite understand. And lately I’ve been having a terrible thought: Our love affair will end before the world does” (13-14). Their “marriage” is not confirmed as official, but it is founded on the same principles of taking care of one another, but he seems to see mortal relationships as weak because they are encouraged by the” foreknowledge of death” (13-14), whereas their relationship is far more transitory. It hinges on finding the ideal drink, but in many ways, I believe, it is more about the potential of boredom likely in any long-term relationship.


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