“AHHHHHHHHHHHHH, no, no, no, not my face!”
My scream reaches a pitch normally only achievable by a little girl. This turn of events surpasses my worst nightmare by a thousand times and I’m not about to hold back the terror. To round off my horrified disbelief it reaches down and rams a spiky leg deep into one nostril, way past where my finger has ever ventured. Now it’s in me as well as on me.
“Pleeeeeessee, noooooooo, EEEEEEEEEIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII!”
If the shotgun was handy I swear I’d fire it directly at my face. Another claw digs into my ear hole, scratching and gouging. Spiny legs wrap the body close to my face and slash my cheeks with ever twitching movement it makes. It tightens its grip around my head in a vile embrace, shifting and crawling across my cheek. It’s headed towards my mouth!
The knowledge of its intention must wade through my mind’s dread swamp therefore I am not forewarned to close my wide-open, screaming mouth. That is not until I suck in, and choke on, globules of sticky liquid that the filthy thing spurts onto my tongue. It burns, and then numbs my lips and throat like novocaine. I slam my mouth shut and continue screaming through my teeth.
Far from being thwarted it twists and shoves its leg further up my nose until it touches the back of my throat. I choke and cough. Ever tried doing that without opening your mouth? Not easy.
I forget which way is up. The horizon whirls as I crash over backwards, slapping and pulling at the bulging body. It defends itself; stabbing and hacking, lancing red hot painful slashes into my fingers. The searing heat of its poison instantly turns everything it injects to woody numbness. My swelling hands rapidly become semi-useless balloons on the end of my arms.
Rational thought bids me farewell, fleeing from an overload of revulsion and terror. I cocoon myself from the buffet of sheer, mindless panic that the greater part of my mind consumes by the tonne.
I can feel that slimy abdomen, still stinking of blood and bile from its previous host, humping my mouth like an insane Chihuahua. It deliberately sprays the deadening secretion into my mouth and the unblocked nostril at my every intake of breath. To add to my misery something sharp pierces my tight, terrified top lip, tugging it into an appropriate sneer. It’s biting my face! Instantly my front teeth and gums go numb.
Despite being frugal with my reserves of courage, I use up the last of them to shove a tingling hand under the creature’s body and desperately prise at it. It doesn’t like that. Sharp fangs repeatedly stab into the webbing between thumb and forefinger. The leather glove offers no protection. I yank my fiery hand away again.
“Fucking Hell! Will somebody pllllllleeeaaasassse fucking killlll me!”
An acidic trail is shooting along my arm towards a wildly pumping heart! I’m poisoned! I’ll rot from the inside!
I roll so I can crawl about; putting all my energy into finding either the shotgun or the pistol. I’m done for. I give up. I’ll shoot myself in the eye, right-fucking-now!
The threatened eye opens wide, probably alarmed at the thought of being shot at.
Ohhhhh Godddddd! I receive a major close-up of two huge, curved fangs lifting, ready to strike yet again. Clear venom drips from their tips asit gazes directly into me with a horrifying, intelligence. It’s enjoying this part, I can tell.
My dignity is undone as hot urine floods my pants.
I’m blubbering like a baby.
At least no one will witness my undignified death.
A door crashes open behind me. Boots thump on the concrete. A female voice shouts at me.
“Roll over on your back! Stay still, you idiot!”
I support the decision to help but ignore her commands since I’m a bit preoccupied.
And why does someone have to show up after I piss myself and start crying?
The girl swears in frustration. I guess she’s getting her fingers were being slashed by the Parasite like my own. She shows more smarts than me by tugging the forgotten hunting knife from its sheath in my belt. An indelicate knee then slams into my ribs, whooshing breath from my lungs that I’ve saved for a final, parting scream at the world. Winded, I fall onto my side.
I try to roll away but she lands on my stomach with all her weight. I swear the bitch wants to kill me even more than this creature.
Stab it! Stab it!
Unable to speak, I convey my message by bucking and gyrating like a break-dancer on speed.
Don't worry about my face, it’s already a mess. Stab it!
Something cold scrapes across my cheek. I’m instantly still. One eye, at its limit of vision, sees a shiny blade rather too close to it. She is using my cheek bone to lever the fiend off. I’m being cut but I barely notice. However, the spider-esque creature does notice, and it attacks the blade madly; its mandibles clatter and squeal across the hardened steel. At least that woman has managed to shift those jabbing fangs’ focus from my skin.
She wrenches at it several times, hard; grunting with effort. And it’s off!
The girl stands and looks about indecisively, holding it over my head like a large serving of cake. None for me thanks. The spider-thing stops flailing at the blade and turns its attention to the hand that presses down on top of it. She winces and squeals with pain as the claws tear rows of cuts up her forearms.
The forceful way she’s disengaged the bastard has snapped off several legs. It had let go rather reluctantly; although a pincer manages to take a chunk of my lip as a souvenir. One of the broken leg segments is still jammed in my nose, and the other is stuck inside my ear. Both are grossly uncomfortable.
“Wiww it. Wiww it!”
Blubbery lips are not able to form the words. No doubt she doesn’t need to be told to kill it but she looks at me questioningly anyway. She really shouldn’t have taken her eyes off the bastard.
The creature is very angry. It reaches behind itself and digs as many claws as it can into her wrist. Of course she reacts by letting go of the knife and attempts to shake it off. Freed, it swings around like a pendulum and grasps her forearm.
Though my vision is blurred by tears I see her face change from twisted revulsion to extreme terror at this turn of events. The Parasite is not picky about its Host and decides her warm body will do just fine if it can’t have mine.
My rescuer screams louder and higher than I ever could, and she instantly loses all self-control.
See lady, that’s what happens when you don't follow the Rules. Like the one I favour about not helping someone being attacked. Not for any reason.
As if guided by Karma’s hand, the knife stabs tip-first into the asphalt between my spread legs. The heavy handle wavers then falls, whacking my dick soundly. I fold in half with fresh pain.
The screaming girl kindly takes her struggle with the Parasite away from my multiple agonies. I spend a few moments contracted into the foetal position; accepting the severity of Karma’s punishment as my due. I’ll take this pain over those fangs sinking into my face any day.
When the throbbing of my testicles migrates into a heavy sack that sits in my lower stomach I lift numb fingers to scrub woodenly at cottonwool packed lips. Bumping the stump of the barbed leg embedded in my nose makes me retch. This causes the entrenched hook to further tickle my throat. Getting it out is hard work. Gripping the end between nerveless fingers, I tug it from me. Every tearing centimetre is won at the cost of copious amounts of blood that slicks my fingers and runs down my throat.
I accept whatever damage I’m doing to myself stoically as my face is totally dead. In fact the pervading numbness spreads across my entire head that wobbles on my neck like a lead balloon. I ruthlessly perform the same operation with the appendage in my ear and fling the pieces from me.
Rebellious feet wobble on a giddily turning dream-world when I get up. Shock is settling in so I am able to watch my panicked saviour continuing to scream and rushing madly around the car park in a hunched circle without emotion. The Parasite is doing its head shuffle.
Leaving them to sort it out would be so easy. No one would ever know. Or I could wait until it enters her mouth and then kill both of them. Every cowardly part of me longs to take this option. It’s the most sensible thing to do.
Unfortunately the pilot light on my conscience flares. I rationalise the decision to help her by naming vengeance as a motivator, but the reality is less flattering. She’s staggered very near to where I left my rucksack, and I’m not leaving without my drugs.