Below you’ll see the rough draft of my new work in progress. Obviously rough being the key word but I felt it might be of interest for you all to see what I’m working on. Let’s see if this one has more success than my last crack at full length over tale…
It is unseasonably cold for a bright summer day in the woodlands of Southern California. Here amidst the coast and scrub oak of the Black Water Canyon National Park, something stirs within the retreating frost. It is a day of anomaly and if one were to traverse these wild lands, they would question the unearthly chill in the air, the banks of red tinged snow and the grayish crystalline structure adhered to the forest floor.
Life begins here in these woodlands in as much as the same fashion upon which it ends: warm and then cold, indistinguishable between the two and yet slathered in blood. Life and death simultaneous wails a cry of primal need as something stirs within the crystalline chrysalis. It is the perfect size to contain something humanoid and such a form strains at its bonds and emerges from the structure; a resounding crack of shattering carapace splitting the quiet morning.
The Newborn tumbles forth ungainly over dirt, foliage and refuse coating its sticky and embryonic form. She bleats the cry of a newborn seeking warmth and comfort as she stands ungainly, blinking away hours of stillness.
Here on the forest floor, the struggle begins as something savage and ancient takes root and yet retreats all at the same time.
She cries out and holds her head in her hands, hair matted against her raw scalp as she struggles to make sense of what she feels. Her hands ripple unnaturally as though something is attempting to take hold and a wave of nausea waves through her. She glances skyward at the canopy with sleep gummed eyes and feels her head, expressing surprise at the slender smoothness of her scalp.
And yet, for all the wonder her eyes impart upon her, she remembers. It is the worst part of her awakening.
She remembers it all. The screams, the curses, the rending and tearing…and then a low growl. Oh yes, she remembers this feeling. It is not as intense as before but it is still an unwelcome sensation. The growl comes from within and she abhors the hollowness she feels.
She’s hungry, famished even and her feet, they hurt her so. Her feet burn and she stands erect unwarily on shifting form as the sensations of the wild overwhelm. She wishes she could crawl back into the crystal and sleep, sleep forever until she can no longer feel the burning from within and from below.
The Newborn smells something nearby, all at once tantalizing, inviting and beckoning. It rustles in the brush, the beating heart of fresh prey. And yet, something holds her back from pouncing upon warm flesh and partaking in the fresh innards. The conflict cause her to sob, opening her mouth amidst the strands of amniotic fluid as she bleats pitifully again.
Here in the vast wilds of the canyon, the Newborn has but one concern: to quell the ravenous complaint from within. She stumbles forward, slowly regaining her footing as she follows the scent. It’s so familiar, a musky odor that leads her away from the trembling creature in the brush and down towards the melodic tinkling of a shallow creek. Whatever it is and wherever it leads, she knows she will find food, warmth, shelter and companionship.
Creature comforts, of the basest form.
Her stomach rumbles…