The opening of Karl’s petting zoo promises to be the start of a new, brighter chapter in his life, but an unexpected meeting threatens to destroy everything he has worked for.
The freezing mist oozed up the river bank and slowly filled the main street. Echoes from late night revellers lingered in eddies drifting away half heard. He walked on watching the vapours swirl gently around the corners of the local shops, the orange incandescence from the sodium lamps painting everything in shades of ochre. A shadow moved in a doorway – two lovers unlocked lips and looked at him as he passed them by, glancing only out of curiosity. Beads of mist condensed slowly on his glasses as he wiped an old handkerchief through his long hair to mop up some of the damp. He had been walking for what seemed like hours and hoped he would be there soon.
Not wholly human, nor completely vespertilian, their bodies glistened as they came, tumbling through the night sky with abhorrent and deliberate ease. Their wide, empty, white eyes pierced the darkness which cloaked them. They struck with frightening voracity, precise in every manner, their three-clawed feet stretched out to welcome their prey.