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Last Girls, Chapter Twenty-two

12/03/16

  10:01:00 pm, by Nic Wilson   , 585 words  
Categories: Last Girls

Last Girls, Chapter Twenty-two

Kelly wanted to hate Alan, and maybe some small part of her did. It had been easier, when she was able to tell herself he was just following his libido, taking her for granted and maybe even putting her health at risk.
But now she saw the truth. He was lost, a stranger as much to himself as he'd ever been to her. She wasn't sure she could swallow the idea that he cheated to preserve a friendship; that was shitty, even if she'd had the grace not to hit him on it- at least not yet.
She glanced back at him, standing on the edge of the water, lost in contemplation. She still loved some part of him, and found herself wondering whether, if that part won out over the rest, some day in the future, she would consider taking him back. Then she noticed the ripples in the water, not gentle swirls from the river depositing water in the lake, or the eddying as it left. This was something big, like the wake of a great ship, cutting a growing slice out of the water, heading right for Alan at the shore. But there wasn't a ship, and she realized as a fin protruded from the water that the disturbance was beneath it.
“Alan!” she screamed, as the creature's head rose from the water. It was a lizard, or a dinosaur, or amphibious or at least something wet and scaly. The fin atop its head was bigger than Alan, its head two of him.
Alan was standing still. She'd seen him freeze before, and started running.
The monster continued to rise from the lake, the water still waist-high on it. It was a multi-story office building, now, with more of its girth still lurking below. It was faster than her, faster than something that big should have been.
It was all but out of the water, now, and raised its hind leg. She was still too far away, and she knew what was about to happen, but was just as unable to stop herself from running towards it as she was to stop the inevitable. The clawed foot came down on Alan like the force of a falling tree, and he disappeared beneath it, his body disappearing into a fine pink mist and gore that mercifully splashed down in the water.
Kelly finally stopped, her urgent mission a failure. She could feel the warm spray, and for an instant she was at the beach that summer with Alan and their friends, all intact, before he cheated on her. But the warm mist was Alan. Her skin and close were painted red with what was left of him.
But she wasn't concerned over that. She was frozen, like Alan, staring up at the ridiculous lizard, standing on two legs like a squat tyrannosaur, but with long, powerful arms that ended in claws nearly as big as its teeth. Those were easily as big as her legs, maybe as big as Betsy.
The lizard turned, dragging its tail across the shoreline. Kelly ducked beneath it, trying not to move more than necessary lest she get its attention next. She stood there, as it walked back into the water, watching it disappear.
Alan had been insignificant. In the face of this kind of monstrosity, everyone was. But there was almost a kind of security in insignificance. It didn't need their destruction like the other monsters had. It just did what it needed to, and was gone.

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Nicolas Wilson is a writer and journalist. An archive featuring hundreds of short stories, comics and essays can be found here.

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