Undead Family Tree

by Maya Sabatino
Art by Christine Cheng
Issue: Aphelion (Spring 2016)

Posted, April 19th 2014 by Werewitch1313

Like Me On: Howler, Witchagram and Fearbook


Just several weeks from my wedding, planning continues to go to hell in a hand basket! For one reason . . . my family.

In my previous blogs I haven’t addressed the details of my family because they’re just so complicated but today, I’ll let you in on some of my family drama that often stops my wedding planning in it’s tracks. My once human uncle is a vampire. He married a vampiress from a very well known family by the name of Grimmald (cheerful sounding name, I know). My uncle Norm, fell in love, got married, got turned . . . converted . . . changed, or whatever is politically correct nowadays by his new wife, Aunt Bella — Belladonna Grimmbald (to love and to cherish forever more — quite literally). The couple and their son, Valentine Grimmald, acne ridden, perpetually fourteen going on one hundred and fourteen year old, live happily in a windowless apartment in my hometown. Now that’s all fine. I love my uncle’s family and their somewhat occult-ish ways of dress. Even their unusual diet, consisting primarily of goat blood and sheep organs doesn’t bother me, except for cold leftovers. It’s the family gatherings like Halloween that are the problem and of course that includes my upcoming wedding. For example, a special arrangement must be made to invite my vampire family into the wedding venue so they don’t get stuck outside, like at my cousin’s birthday when nobody went to the door to invite them in. Now I am even dealing with problems from my fiancé’s family. His great aunt Betty needs wheelchair access. These are just a few hurtles I must overcome.
My uncle is vampire, my mother’s side of the family are werewolves and my fiancé family are all human. The classic rivalry is featured in everything from lowly pulp fiction to cheesy blockbuster movies. And my mother’s family is not just your standard mutt werewolves, but the purebred, stuck up, 10th year straight blue ribbon holders of the annual Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show sort of posh. They can be traced back to medieval kings. Kings who slaughtered vampires and humans for sport. Saying there is bad blood, isn’t just a witty pun, it’s an understatement. So now that the invitations have been sent, my biggest challenge is keeping everyone from killing each other at the wedding.

To put it in exact terms, my mother’s side of the family is still living in the past, while most of the non-human community is trying to live in harmony. Think Downton Abbey but with more blood. My mother’s family, the Wolfgangs (creative right?), are a proud bunch of werewolves with traditional values boasting lineage from myths like Beethoven Wolfgang, the stalker of the girl with the red hoodie, and Duke Baskerville Wolfgang, who had a bad cold and really didn’t mean to scare those farmers with the straw houses. This pride and formality that my mother’s side of the family has is making picking table settings difficult. They want a formal sit down dinner where as my fiancé’s side of the family are used to picnics on the farm. I don’t want to figure out which utensil is the salad fork and I also don’t want to be sitting on hay bales at my wedding.

The head of my mother’s side of the family is Grandma Lassie Wolfgang, she’s the most difficult to work with. And Grandma is fighting tooth and claw to stop any modernization in the family. This started years ago when my mother got married to my father and Grandma Lassie tried to stop it. At least I have my mother on my side for my wedding.

Of course, my werewolf mother being the black sheep eater she is (don’t knock it ‘til you try it, they taste great with ketchup), also caused a huge stir in our very traditional werewolf side of the family. She’s told me that just to spite her mother she decided Dracula was her favorite book as a teen and that she often dressed up as vampires and witches for Halloween. But her rebelliousness didn’t end with riding broomsticks and wearing fake fangs: she married my human father, a practicing witch, at age twenty-six. I’d like to think of it as a sort of superhuman Romeo and Juliet. But for Grandma, fighting this marriage was biting off more than she could chew and my parents were happily married. Similarly I have no problem with my Grandma’s displeasure. Unfortunately my fiancé John isn’t as relaxed; he is worried that the pretentious Wolfgang’s might eat him alive. Meanwhile John’s mother and two sisters already consider me one of the family and before the wedding we are all going for mani-pedis.

Also invited to the wedding is another rule breaker, my eldest cousin Winn. He eloped with a werecat just before a full moon (who even knew werecats existed?). Everyone could tell Winn had found puppy love with some mysterious objectionable non-werewolf, but they thought he was just chasing cars. Only his sister, Dixie, knew what Winn had done. After he was missing for a little over a week, Dixie let the cat out of the bag about his marriage. That reminds me, I’ll have to ask Winn where he got married. My human fiancés choice of venue: a cute chapel at the edge of town is an impossible choice since werewolves and vampires can’t enter churches without bursting into flame.

Grandma doesn’t like my fiancé, John. He’s human and exceptionally normal. He’s sweet, handsome, loving, and he eats cereal for breakfast not chicken parts. He’s a little terrified of my family and their constant arguing but he’s patient with them, trying to win them over with his charm (non-literal this time, he has no magical powers whatsoever). I met him at a mixed supernatural college — another of my mother’s progressive or as my grandmother says “wacko” rebellions. This is also where I met my best friend Beth a werewolf, my maid of honor and Laiken a merman, who is my fiancé’s best man. My grandmother loves Beth but really hates Laiken and his dainty fairy girlfriend Celeste. God help me if I had fallen in love with any of Laiken’s friends on the swim team instead of John.

The Wolfgang family always has some kind of drama, god forbid it happens at my wedding. Just look what happened at the hunt, and what a disaster that was — Grandma was mad for months. Every year the Wolfgang family has a traditional hunt on a blue moon. It’s pretty exciting but fairly dangerous. It’s always good and fun; nobody would be caught dead making a fuss at that special event except that one time when great uncle Barkley, Grandma’s younger brother, got gravely injured by a full grown moose (‘cause where else would the supernatural community reside but in the woods, in Canada?). He died for five minutes and was revived and left in a coma that lasted for a couple of weeks. When he awoke, he was quite in love with a ghost named Misty McCleary, an American settler from the 17th century. The family refers to Great Uncle Barkley’s marriage in death as a made up dream of purgatory speed-dating — Misty McCleary: enjoys long strolls toward the light, romantic picnics in the cemetery and is an advocate and leader of the LGBT+ community (left handers, ghouls, biodegradables, transparents). Nobody can see Misty except Great Uncle Barkley but we all let the sleeping dog lie except for Grandma, (in comparison my John is an angel, at least he can hold a conversation). Grandma is still angry that her brother Barkley makes her set a place at the dinner table with food for a ghost she can’t see. Grandma wants Barkley to give up the ghost, literally and figuratively. I am starting to see her view on this point since Barkley is requesting a low sodium menu option for his wife. Now I have to completely rethink the wedding dinner. And not only do I have to deal with no vampires in my wedding pictures I also have to deal with a ghost.

My father’s practicing Wicca side of the family, the Spellmans, are no stranger to dramatics either. However their struggles have been an inspiration to keep moving forward with my wedding planning. Uncle Frank, my dad’s younger brother turned to religion after his fashion designer wife died in a car accident. And when I say religion I mean the bad kind, like Satan worshipping, chicken blood pentagram painting, and infant sacrificing. After he took a turn to the dark side he basically became estranged and nobody heard much of him, until Grandma Glinda’s funeral. He arrived with his deceased wife, whom he resurrected using his newfound religion. She came back in her old body quite undead and very fashionable, killing it in a pair of black stilettos and the newest Covergirl color “sickly banshee green” and she showed off her drop dead-good looks (minus an eyeball which got lost in the car crash). It cost Uncle Frank an arm and a leg to bring her back. I’m not kidding. I suppose she won’t mind his appearance seeing as she is having similar problems. Unlike her body, her love for him is not decaying in the least. I can only hope John and I will be as devoted. Plus I’m happy she’s resurrected because she’s designing my wedding and bridesmaid dresses. My Aunt’s designs are simply to die for! My bridesmaids are overjoyed because they can wear the dresses again and again to all the “red” carpet pagan rituals this year’s stars are going to (it’s not what you think).

So yes, my family is crazy. And planning every little detail of this complicated wedding has caused me to develop all sorts of tics, like scratching behind my ears, cackling and stress eating dog biscuits. The logistics are insane: I can’t have any of the events on a full moon or any equinox, I have to accommodate a non-kosher meal for my vampire family members, a fish free meal for all my mermaid friends and let’s not forget the ghost. And I couldn’t even have daisies in my bouquet because John’s brother Brendan is deathly allergic (but that’s just a human thing). There’s the whole thing of mixing the human, werewolf and Wicca ceremonies and traditions. And don’t even get me started about my goal for tomorrow: making a seating chart. I have saved this part of the planning for last because it is a task that will most definitely result in all hell breaking loose.

I think I’ll just take this piece of advice, “for mixed supernatural weddings: just pick seating at random”. If your family really loves you like you love them they’ll all show up and politely make conversation with any fairy, mermaid, vampire or purebred werewolf sitting next to them.




<3jacobH8edward on April 20th

Hey Werewitch1313! I totally get the family problems! At my wedding my werewolf uncle ate the wedding singer and his banshee wife took the stage and the cops showed up due to noise complaints. Oh boy that was awkward!


Eternaloveweddings on April 22nd

Great blog Werewitch1313! Supernatural wedding are so much harder to plan than human weddings! Word of advice, don’t let him buy you a silver wedding band, the last couple who had that happen was a disaster. One word. Sizzle.


Daisyrainbowunicorn7 on April 22nd

<3 the user name! So funny 🙂


Werewitch1313 on April 22nd

Ha ha thanks would you believe it wasn’t intentional and that there are 1312 other people who have the same username. LOL