One Ugly Bug

Posted: March 18, 2014 by writingsprint in Fantasy
Tags: , , , ,

shutterstock-insomniaCarl lay in bed, wired on five cups of coffee and two No-Doze. He breathed deeply, evenly, slowly, just like they taught in yoga class. His eyes were closed to slits, facing the mirror that he’d relocated from his wife’s dresser. He could see the entire room.

Carl coughed. Like Jessie, he was responding well to his antibiotics. This was a bitch of a cold, and he hated being sick. Jen and Jessie were staying in a hotel. Jen and Carl had come up with this last-ditch plan before they put a hood over their house and gassed it. Before he left, Jen had kissed him and told him to be careful. Carl wore pajamas and a long-sleeved shirt, not that the bugs had been stopped by clothes earlier.

Incidentally, there were no spiderwebs on the porch or in the house when he came home.

Carl’s eyes drifted the clock, which he could see in the mirror’s reflection. Two in the morning. Carl had re-imagined the first two Godfather movies, scene by scene, to keep himself from getting bored. Time for number three. Maybe better to switch to a different movie so that he wouldn’t fall asleep.

A pair of fireflies drifted up from below the window outside. It was all Carl could do to keep from jumping or breaking the rhythm of his breath. Simple as you please, they flew down to the edge of the screen. Carl almost peed his pants. He could hear little, tiny claw sounds scratching at the screen. What the hell kind of bug was this?

The fireflies came in. Two more followed them. He could hear their wings fluttering paper fwips, fast as hummingbirds. You couldn’t hear firefly wings. In the mirror, he watched them hover over him, then dive in. One landed on his arm. Another on his head. The third on his thigh, and the fourth, also on his thigh.

He thought he heard laughing as his skin began to itch. The bugs were drinking long draughts. It made him sick. Carl let it happen, then from under the pillow, he produced a pint jar and scooped up the one on his head. He snapped on the lid so smoothly the other bugs didn’t move.

The bug jumped against the glass hard enough to make clipping sounds. Carl swatted the one on his arm. The two on this thigh shot for the window. Carl tried to run after them. He swat one of them as it crawled under the still-bent edge of the window screen. The last one shook its fist from the other side of the window. It flew for the woods behind their house.

Carl held up the jar in front of his face. Inside, an elflling with big bug wings glared at him, glowing bright enough to light up his face.

“I believe in fairies,” Carl said. “Little, ugly, bloodsucking fairies.”

  1. A.D. Everard says:

    Ooh, I like how this is going! 🙂


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