I guess “cheese” isn’t a verb. And it isn’t close to Christmas. But it doesn’t matter because there’s only one vampire, and anyway, Real Vampires Don’t Eat Grilled Cheese.
(Beat. Anna enters with a pot of coffee. She crosses to pour Zoe a cup.)
Anna: What kind of fun and exciting vampire stories did I miss?
Earl: Zoe claimed you were a vampire hunter.
Zoe: Tattle tale.
Anna: The same woman who claimed you were a vampire based on fashion sense alone?
Zoe: I was right about that, wasn’t I? And we weren’t talking about me. We were talking about our resident vampire, mister… um… mister…
Zoe: Excuse me?
Earl: You’re trying to introduce me. For that, a name is helpful. My name is Earl.
Zoe: Perfect. A vegetarian vampire named Earl. How’d I guess?
Anna: You didn’t. He told you. Twice.
Zoe: Even with proof, no one will ever believe this.
Earl: Proof of what?
Anna: That you exist and that she’s not jumping to conclusions.
Earl: The two are not mutually exclusive.
Zoe: So, Earl here was just going to tell us how he became a vegetarian vampire.
Earl: I thought you didn’t want me to tell.
Zoe: I never said that.
Anna: We picked up on your ever-so-subtle hints.
Zoe: Fine. Suit yourself. He’s probably just going to lie about it anyway.
Anna: At least it will be an entertaining lie.
Zoe: We can hope. Frankly, I have my doubts.
Anna: Because you’re cynical and pessimistic by nature.
Zoe: Not true. Both are carefully honed skills.
Earl: So sorry to interrupt, but if you’re through chatting, can I finally tell what you wanted to hear in the first place?
Zoe: By all means. Don’t let me keep you. I’m not really in the mood for chit chat anyway.
Earl: I don’t believe it.
Zoe: Well, I’m not. It’s true.
Anna: Earl, just tell.
Earl: So I moved to Arkansas back in the spring —
Anna: Where’d you live before?
Zoe: And why would anyone move to Arkansas?
Earl: Already with the interruptions. This is going to get old fast. You move to Arkansas if you want to make sure the people from where you were before don’t want to follow.
Zoe: Ah, the vampire hunters.
Anna: Good strategy.
Zoe: They don’t sound very determined.
Earl: You could do better?
Zoe: Try me.
Earl: My place —
Anna: In Arkansas?
Earl: Yes, in Arkansas — was kind of tucked away from everything. I can keep a low profile when I want to.
Zoe: Because the cape’s not giving anything away.
Earl: I said “when I want to.”
Anna: Why don’t you want to now?
Earl: Let’s just say my life has become complicated recently.
Zoe: You’re trying to find yourself. Or having an identity crisis.
Anna: Just because he’s a vegetarian? I don’t think it works that way.
Earl: Um, my life, my story?
Zoe: Maybe because he no longer sucks blood. It seems like that’s the defining characteristic of being a vampire, and if he can’t even do that —
Anna: I still don’t think he un-becomes a vampire.
Zoe: I wouldn’t call him one.
Earl: Who died and made you queen of the undead?
Zoe: I don’t make the rules; I just know them. Vampires drink blood; you don’t. Therefore —
Anna: Therefore, we were talking about how he got this way and what made him a vegetarian.
Earl: Speaking of vegetarians, don’t I have a grilled cheese coming?
Zoe: If it’s not already burnt by now.
Anna: I’ll check.
(Anna starts to exit left.)
Zoe: But don’t worry. She’ll serve it to you anyway.
Anna: No, Zoe. That’s just with your food.