There’s a soft knock on the door and Dr. Clements comes in, looking at my chart as he walks.

“Susan, back’s not better, huh?”

“No and I noticed a mass about a week ago. It’s gotten considerably bigger. Oh, and the stretches you had me do aren’t helping at all.”

“OK, lie on your right side and let’s have a look.”

I do as he asks and I hear him wash his hands and pull a paper towel from the dispenser. I close my eyes and feel his chilled fingers as he locates the spot and very gently prods the mass.

“I feel what you’re talking about. This wasn’t here the last time you were in. You noticed it about a week ago?” I can feel him start to manipulate various spots and when he gets to what feels like the base of my spine, the pain is so strong and sharp that I can’t help but call out.

“Sorry about that. I just need a few more seconds.” He continues and the pain intensifies.

“Is it moving?! I think I can feel it moving!” I don’t know how much longer I can lie still. It’s getting very hard to control my breathing.

Suddenly it feels as though something has punched through my back. I hear him gasp and curse and the stool he was sitting on clatters over on its side. I feel light-headed from shock and pain.

My hand automatically goes back and I feel hot, sticky wetness. I move my fingers a little higher and can feel where my skin has been torn. I hear a gurgling yelp just before I feel something bite into my index finger. I yank my hand back and stare at where my finger used to be.

Before I can react, I feel it rip itself from my body. I can’t help the scream that rushes forth. I double over and fall from the exam table just in time to see the creature skitter across the floor and jump onto the doctor’s chest. Its spider-like legs, still heavy with blood and bits of my tissue, have small pincers on the ends and they’re holding tightly to Dr. Clements’ white coat. I scream again and I can hear the nurse pounding and shoving on the door but the doctor is pressed against it, trying to get the thing off of him.

I hear a loud crunch and a large portion of the thing’s body disappears into the doctor, who shudders and goes still. I sit up but can’t bring myself to move. I’m mesmerized by the sight of this thing feeding on my doctor.

It’s quiet except for the sounds of the pincers tearing at flesh and organs; the nurse must have gone to call for help. Slowly, the creature backs out of its meal and turns toward me. Its face is human-like with blue eyes and round chubby cheeks. It moves a little closer, opens its mouth, and says “mama.”

 

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I’m already feeling a little light-headed. It shouldn’t be long now. Just need to close my eyes and try to sleep.

I can feel him laying beside me. He always takes up so much of my bed. He’s much too heavy for me to move. But at least it’ll be the last time I have to deal with it. I won’t have to feel him on me or in me or smell him or hear him or see him ever again. I won’t ever have to get him out of my bed before Mom wakes up. I’m still not sure how she hasn’t figured it out. I guess it’s true that we only see what we want to see.

I know I sure tried to fool myself for the past few months but that’s impossible now. My breasts are sore and growing much faster than they should be and my belly is growing, too. I’m twelve years old! How can I be pregnant? How could he have been so stupid? He promised he’d always protect me and always love me and that this was his way of teaching me, of showing me his love. I feel so stupid but even I know that a little kid of five can’t understand what sex is or how a freaking pervert can also be your dad.

There’s no way I could have his baby. I can’t even imagine how that would go over. Everyone would find out about me and Dad. Mom already complains that she feels like an outcast, the black sheep of the family. Having a knocked up 12 year-old daughter and a sick pervert for a husband would make things so much worse. No, she’d never let that happen.

I think he’ll sleep for a few more hours. I’m glad he came to my room later than usual. It should leave enough time for me to be gone and for Mom to find us – and the note pinned to my nightgown – before he wakes up. Let him explain it. I only wish I could see that. I’d love to see how he tries to convince her that nothing was going on between us. Oh, I hope she gets the note before he does.

I sort of wonder what my baby would be like – what I would be like – but I just can’t do it. I’m sure he would deny everything if I told Mom what’s been happening under her nose for the past several years and deny that it’s his baby. He’d try to make me out to be some sort of slut. I couldn’t live on my own and there’s nowhere else for me to go.

It’s getting so hard to breathe. I’ve got to calm down. Relax… It’s nearly over. I won’t fail this time. I won’t rip the bag off of my head or tear the plastic covering my mouth. I was weak before. I wasn’t pregnant before. I can’t… fail this time. I… can’t… fail…

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