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Aug 10 2013

Saturday Storytime: All Kinds to Make a World

Sometimes the horror isn’t quite where you think it is. Georgina Bruce is a horror writer who builds her stories out of vivid images.

It’s not like we didn’t try. A little tentatively at first, a little too gently, I’ll admit. We’d never done it before. We hadn’t even seen one, only heard them scratching around in the bushes at night. But we understood what we had to do–it’s our duty as citizens and all that. And after a while, we really got into it. I had the big stone mallet from the shed, Bridget had the kitchen knife, and we got into a rhythm. Smack, stab, smack, stab. And Bridge went a bit crazy, going stabstabstabstabstab, and then I took over with the mallet, gave it a good going over. It was brutal, honestly. So it should have died right there and then.

But–and this is what I’m trying to explain–it didn’t. Wouldn’t. It lay there for a bit, twitching the one spiny leg, rippling its wings in a feeble kind of way. It sucked in a tiny, pathetic breath, and we thought it was definitely about to expire. But when it breathed out, it opened its eyes. Looked right at us.

Bridget was screaming, die you fucker, and other stuff, but I held her back. I wanted to see what it would do, if there was really anything it could do. The table was covered in blood and slime and bits of fur and stuff, you know, like tripe or something. I mean, it looked like we’d smacked and stabbed all the insides out of it. Seemed impossible for anything to carry on after taking a beating like that. We even felt a bit sorry for it–well I did, anyway. But the tough little thing, it put out its two tiny flippers–put them against the window and pulled itself upright. Well, I assume upright, it was hard to tell. And its face was so comical, with the big watery eyes looking up at us.

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