The Snakemonster

The latest Random_Michelle prompt comes on a morning of great global uncertainty …or so my facebook newsfeed would have me believe, because #Brexit. I perhaps shouldn’t be surprised that this is what came forth:

She doesn’t pay attention to politics. She is five. But, because she is five, she is tuned in to her parents’ moods. This morning, they move with slumped shoulders and haunted expressions. What is so big it scares even Parents? That time Sonia told her about the trolls under the bridge between her home and kindergarten, it was mummy who stood with her on that bridge, and bulked up like HULK, voice raised, and said, I wish a troll would come for my baby. You know why? And they’d shouted it together. Because HULK SMASH. She was still smiling at break, stuttering Sonia and eating her sandwich of toasted guava jam – the one mum complained didn’t taste like home but it would have to do. She’s never been to this home her mother talks of and can’t imagine her mother in a home where she isn’t, can’t picture a time when her mummy existed without her. That thought usually causes goosebumps to chase each other up her arm. But this, this grey morning, seeing her parents defeated causes a chill that starts in her belly. She presses her hand against her belly, standing there in the kitchen doorway, watching them shuffle about like zombies, no real purpose to their movement, as though she can push the fear back in with just the right amount of pressure. “Turn it off,” her mother snaps, and the man’s voice on the radio snaps silent on “staggering result”.

A monster she would later be able to name as uncertainty dogs her dreams for years after. It wears red balloons like hair clips, blue charged light dances along its snake-like frame, and it is always hungry. She wakes from these dreams, still, haunted like her parents had been on the day the world changed.

3 thoughts on “The Snakemonster

  1. I like how subtle this piece is. It’s the right kind of incendiary, the kind that goes undetected until it delivers it’s payload, in this case some very deep thoughts. I love the nod to the Caribbean and the jab it provided to immigration issues in the UK and the immigrant response to this thing. Very Clever Ms Hillhouse, well played.

    On another note: What do you think about the increase in word count though?

  2. Pingback: Photo-Fiction #43 | Random_Michelle

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