by Chris Wood
says. “Look at that
He looks up from his spoon of
“That . . .
thing .” She points
at the terrazzo floor. “How did
it get in here?”
She scuttles up, scrapes her
chair in front of her, creating a barrier
between her and the vermin, her wings beating behind her.
Her husband rises from his
The soup’s getting cold.
They look at the man on the
floor, waving at them
as though to halt traffic. “What you suppose it
wants?” he says.
“How the hell should
I know? Kill it,
it’s trying to say something. Maybe it needs us.”
He stoops down, scrutinizes it.
The man is jumping up and down now, waving
its limbs, rubbing its lips together
to form some obscure chirp.
They listen but do not
smart, you know,” says Harry.
“They can survive a
His antennae twitch with interest.
“And they multiply
like chickens!” she says. “Just let
one of them in. . .
He rolls his multiple eyes.
“All right! All
right ! Je-sus!”
Between his claws he lifts the man by the tie.
The man’s feet pedal
air. Blood rushes to its face.
It keeps chirping that same strange song.
Harry says, “Maybe
someday,” and saws
it in half with his mandibles. “Happy now, Doris?”
She scoots her chair back in
place. They return to the table.
says. “How could you love such
a thing? Now eat your soup, Harry.”
They slurp their soup in
© 2011 Chris Wood
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