Saturday, July 26, 2014


Tomas sat on the white marble steps. He liked watching the nighttime sky, but this world had none, just a sparse twinkling of ersatz stars blinking in the void. Clouds passed over head.  Leaves rustled in the breeze. Conditions were more or less 'normal' in this vast, artificial habitat. They even had mosquitoes and crickets. But through the clouds, far, far out there, he could just barely see the hazy image of the opposite side. Green. (a forest?) Lights. (a town?) Humans? Monsters? Benevolent, or threatening? 

And where did the gravity come from? Why didn't they all fall in toward the manufactured, sun-like thing at the center? He didn't like this place. So he closed his eyes, breathed in the nighttime air, or what passed for it and dreamed of home. But not Philadelphia, his real home.... the fragrant, sun kissed valleys of Al Andalus. After a time, he could smell the warm, dry perfume. He could taste the dates and olives. He could hear the cantor's prayer. Jonathon ben Macabi, also known as Tomas de Macabea was at peace. He leaned back against the stout, maple door of the shuttered inn and hummed a street song learned in the bazaars of Cordoba. If he only had an oud, or guitarra . How he loved to play.

So he never heard the thing as it approached. It's high pitched whoop? Perhaps a night bird. And it caught him by surprise. Nineteen feet in length it was. Fat like a walrus, humping along on small foot-like protrusions. Thick, wrinkled hide. Two heads. Elephant heads, they were, but earless and mouthless, each ending in a short, thick trunk. Large, black, front facing eyes... Spider's eyes... Eight of them... Four to a head. And this 'thing' brought here from another world was curious. What would a human (though it did not know that word) taste like? Should it masticate the prey, or swallow it whole? The left brain, in the left head, being the more logical of the two, opted for 'whole.' Three heartbeats later (human heartbeats, I mean) it reached out with a trunk-like proboscis and kissed his ankle. Tiny lancets mounted just inside the lose, mouth-like opening, perhaps remnants of long ago, arthropod mandibles, pierced his skin, injecting a cool, numbing, fluid. The other trunk, belonging to the other head, caressed our thousand year old, transplanted youth from Al Andalus, positioning his body so it's twin could suck him in. Tomas screamed. But it was a silent scream. His voluntary muscles no longer worked. Yet he was quite conscious of being eaten alive.

Luna, fresh from her first, Moon-World tryst, gazed through the mullioned bedroom window and saw it all. She gasped, crashed through the glass, vaulting down like an arrow, as her naked body instantly 'sublimated' right through the flaccid beast, shredding it to bits. Gray-red, gobbets of livery flesh flew everywhere, a feast for unseen crawly things. Then she dragged herself out from under what remained of the carcass and gently pulled her one time lover free.

He was just this side of death. And for the second time she quickened him with hot, little, blood-tinged kisses. Vampirinas can do that.

Doctor Franklin and the inn keeper raced 'round from the back, rifles at the ready. Takes time to unlock the gun cabinet and all. They immediately carried him back inside. Sarah, his consort, took over, helping him to a wash room, where she carefully bathed him and made him clean. Luna, now wrapped in a sheet, watched from across the hall, til Sarah quietly reached over and closed the door. Then she wiped her skin with a wet rag and got back into bed, where mister whoever he was still waited. 

Tomorrow, God willing, they'd enter Baby Philadelphia...


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