When the Slipling Comes to Call
by N.R. Lambert
She rises. The ache of eons and a cold night brittle her bones. She cracks them one at a time, and sometimes all at once, like tree branches snapping in an ice storm. The stone floor of the hovel is chilled with October’s first frost, but it doesn’t bother her, her feet never need touch the floor. She hovers over it, knotted fingers dragging tangles of dark hair from her face and eyes.
Her slick black tongue flicks the melting frost from her flaky gray lips as she goes about gathering the scraps of bone, hair, and skin she needs to make her Littles. One by one, she stuffs them with dead leaves and other rot. She ties off the dollies’ necks with gut string, then tops each Little with a smooth clay head–the vessel–blank faces reflecting nothing of their fates or those of the ones to whom they’re tied.
The Slipling fills her basket. (Continue Reading…)