Jansen sat alone at his table in Foster’s Steaks. A pretty waitress stepped up to him.
“Good evening, and welcome to Foster’s Steaks,” greeted the waitress. “What would you like on the menu?”
“I think I’ll go with the ribeye, thank you. Seared please. Oh, and instead of juice, serve me water? From the tap. Thanks.”
The waitress looked at him oddly, and left. He sat there alone, awkward. His group of friends had gone big game hunting tonight. “You get to chase and catch your own dinner!” they had enthused. “After catching it, they’ll help you kill it – quickly and mercifully, of course – and roast it over a fire. It’ll taste really fresh!” For some odd reason, Jansen had felt sick after hearing about it, and declined the invitation.
Ten minutes later, his steak was served on a sizzling hotplate. He took a bite, and found the meat too bloody for his taste. He wondered why; he usually relished seared steaks. He made a mental note to order rare next time. He took a second bite; it seemed more reviling than the first. He put down his knife and fork. ‘What’s wrong with me?’ he thought. ‘Everything’s really unappetizing today.’ He drank a gulp of water. It was surprisingly refreshing. Water usually tasted bland to him; he was used to flavoured beverages, like juice. He wasn’t sure why he felt like drinking water today.
He decided to finish the steak, if for nothing else but nourishment. He pressed his fork against the steak to squeeze out the blood, cut a piece and put it into his mouth. ‘Ah, tastes a little better,’ he thought.
He looked up and saw the waitress staring at him.
“What do you want?” he asked irritably.
“J-j-just here to serve you, sir,” she stammered.
“Yes, I know I’m eating weird,” he muttered.
“I could get the chef to cook the steak a bit longer for you.”
“No, it’s embarrassing. Normally, I like my steak bloody. Thanks anyway,” he said gruffly.
“You can’t stand having blood in your food?” she timidly ventured.
“Mind yourself, lady. I can eat blood, just like everyone else,” he waved his fork at her. “Please, don’t talk to me anymore.”
The waitress walked hurriedly away.
Jansen finished the last piece of his steak, grimacing. ‘That’s the worst steak I’ve ever had,’ he thought.
Jansen paid his bill and walked out of Foster’s Steaks. He looked back at the signboard. He always found it peculiar that many restaurant mascots were commonly an anthropomorphic cartoon version of the animal that the restaurant served as their food. The mascot would be grinning away and promoting meat that came from the dead bodies of its species, and tended to prominently appear on the sides of the boxes in which the restaurant’s kids’ meals came in. Bizarre and appalling when you think about it. In the case of Foster’s Steaks, their mascot was Foster himself. A fictional character created for marketing purposes, he was a smiling human in a neat suit whose head popped up through the ‘o’ in ‘Foster’s’, and proclaimed The freshest steak in town! in a speech bubble.
‘Hating the taste of blood. Seems rather unnatural for vampires. I better get myself checked,’ he thought to himself as he walked down the street back home.
Obviously Jansen and his race aren’t the ones living in a post-apocalyptic world. You may want to reread the story. ;)