Skalgreth shut the door behind him, pounded on his chest, and belched loudly. Not a bad meal at all. He grinned, showing hundreds of razor sharp teeth. A forked tongue shot out to lick some of the blood from his chin.  Suddenly he froze.  Someone was watching him.

There, across the street, a small face stared out at him between the curtains. Skalgreth sighed.  A child.  Hardly worth the effort to cross the street, but he had been seen, and he had a reputation to uphold.  He glared at the wide eyed face peering out at him.  A second child appeared, standing over the first. The newcomer waved. This could not stand.  He felt anger boiling up inside him. No one waved at Skalgreth. Certainly not a mere child.

He leaped into the air, and in a single bound stood at the front door of the house with the waving child.  As he reached a clawed hand the door swung open.

“…nobody out… Oh, hello.”  A human woman stood in the doorway, looking very surprised to see him. “I didn’t expect to see you standing there.”

Skalgreth leaned forward, putting his face close to the woman’s.  “I am Skalgreth, devourer of life.  Prepare your-”

There was some sort of commotion in the room behind the woman. She turned away. “Stop that. Can’t you see I’m talking to somebody here.  Quiet down or take it somewhere else.”  She turned back to him.  “I’m sorry. What did you say you wanted?”

Skalgreth frowned, taken aback.  “I am Skalgreth, devourer of life.”

“Oh, yes. I’m sorry, the kids are…” She turned away again. “Stop it!”  She smiled back at him. “You’ll have to be quick.”

Skalgreth’s voice rang out like thunder.  “Prepare yourselves, all who dwell in this place. I shall not leave while a single trace of life remains in this dwelling.”

“Oh.”  Now it was the woman’s turn to frown.  “That’s…”  There was a loud crash from somewhere inside.  She turned away and held up a finger.

Skalgreth’s head started forward, intending to eat the proffered appendage.

“Ok, sure. Give me a minute, would you.” The door swung shut in Skalgreth’s face.

Skalgreth fumed, and the spikes along his back stood on end.  What was going on here? He was Skalgreth. All life in this dwelling was forfeit. His hunger would be sated. He clenched his clawed fists and prepared to bash the door down.

The door opened.  “Here. Take them.” She  shoved something into his arms. “I don’t have time for this right now. Sorry.” She slammed the door.

Skalgreth looked down at the three white boxes in his hands with large colorful letters.  What had just happened?  Nothing like this had ever happened to him before.  Humans always shook with fear, or begged him to spare them. No one had ever just shoved boxes at him before.  He turned away from the door, and started across the yard, ignoring the eyes he felt on him from the nearby window.  He looked back at the boxes.  A picture of a white haired human with a big hat grinned back at him.  He snarled and tore at the box, ripping the grinning face in half.  He greedily stuffed the contents of the box in his mouth.

Skalgreth, devourer of life, decided he would always add cinnamon from now on.

Categories: 2013story

Jason Penney

I'm a software engineer who likes to write. So I should do that more.

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