The Monster

by Marie Hybl, age 13
The Monster Marie is thirteen. She likes watching anime, and she's cool.

“There was nothing particularly frightening about its features. It had a long, drawn out nose that resembled something between an elephant’s trunk and an aardvark’s snout. It sniffed at my shirt, giving me a better view of its beady blue eyes, like buttons stitched onto orange fabric.”

The beast’s most striking feature was its sunset orange fur, like flames licking at the sky. The color flickered as it sped past my face. I stepped back, slipping on a cold puddle of gray liquid and falling onto the cold stone floor. The creature, which I am temporarily referring to as a midset, took my fall as an opportunity, pouncing on me and placing its large, circular foot on my chest. 

The midset arched its back, spikes shooting out of the yellow-red hair that extended throughout its body. I wondered if that was to threaten me, or perhaps a hostile indicator that it was preparing to attack. 

There was nothing particularly frightening about its features. It had a long, drawn out nose that resembled something between an elephant’s trunk and an aardvark’s snout. It sniffed at my shirt, giving me a better view of its beady blue eyes, like buttons stitched onto orange fabric. Its pupils were miniscule, and I surely wouldn’t have noticed them if they hadn’t been a sickly, swamp-like green. 

I observed this in about two seconds, shrieking all the while. Startled, the beast jumped up, it’s stomach glinting in the dim moonlight that seeped in from what seemed to be nowhere. It seemed to shimmer, glittering in a way that a cat’s fur would not. Similar to how glass could reflect light. 

The midset pawed the ground, its four stubby legs seeming like they should collapse under the weight of its body. Its heart-shaped nostrils widened, and it let out a scream that perfectly mimicked mine, albeit ten times louder. I writhed on the floor, whimpering, adding to the amplified sound of my agony. 

It bounded towards me, and I jumped to the side, catching only a glimpse of its small tail, sphered, like a bunny’s. It spun to face me with uncanny grace, and my screaming once again filled the cave, louder still. My ears must have been bleeding as I crumpled to the ground. The beast approached me slowly, and I couldn’t tell if it had stopped the horrid sound or if I’d gone deaf. 

In that moment, while I could not hear, I noticed strange things about the midset. It had human ears atop its head, acting like flat horns. They were the only things not covered in that orange fur, and yet, as I watched, that orange fur wasn’t so orange anymore. It deepened to a sudden crimson, then a passionate blue, spotted white. Finally, it turned midnight black, its eyes an ominous lavender. 

Those captivating purple eyes were the last thing I saw of it as the midset disappeared, melting into the cave walls. 


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