Bone Deep

Bone Deep
by J. S. Arquin

“More coffee, darling?”

John bit back a snarl. More coffee on an empty stomach and he’d start chewing on the walls.

Bea hummed about the kitchen, nimbly washing and drying the dishes. Her right eye reflected the morning sunlight in a rainbow sheen. Her left eye stared blindly, a multifaceted orb, milky and opaque.

Every morning, she popped out of bed with a smile on her face, bubbly and talkative. When they first met, John thought it was cute. Now, it made him want to disembowel small children.

“I thought what Gretchen said last night was really odd, didn’t you?”

John ground his teeth. If he opened his mouth for any reason other than to put food in it, he would say something awful and ruin the whole morning.

“I mean, I understand what she meant about people changing each other. How can you share your life with someone and not change them? It’s only natural. But calling someone a monster? That’s just rude.”

John opened his mouth to reply. Fortunately, Bea took a tray out of the oven and scraped a steaming pile of food onto his plate at just that moment, so he crunched into that instead.

Bea folded herself into the chair across from him, delicately coiling her tentacles on her lap.

“I don’t think we turn each other into monsters. Do you?”

John ran his tongue along his sharp new ridge of teeth. They were much better for cracking bones than his old ones had been.

He didn’t much care if they became monsters. The way he figured it, time changed you or other people changed you. Either way, you changed. Didn’t everyone always say it was who you were inside that was important anyway?

He crunched down on a tibia and sucked warm goodness from its center. The only thing that really mattered was your marrow.

Copyright © 2014 J. S. Arquin