Satellite 17

Warning: Sleep deprivation may cause hallucination. I was nearing 17; standing in the bathroom at the end of the hall. I had been up for days and likely had not eaten a thing. I was nearing the euphoria a piece of string cheese must feel as it is peeled off for consumption. Unsuspecting, I turned from the mirror to look over my left shoulder and down the darkened hallway. At the end of the tunnel where the last smoky bit of light lingered, the shade of a massive dog stood facing me: starved, lanky, masculine with the pointed ears of a pinscher. Just the one at first – two at a stare. Feminine twin to the first, the second lay on its side at the other’s back haunch. I locked eyes with the space for sockets on the first. I wanted to see it. Animus came forward and in less than four bounds was at the doorway, suspended. The creatures vanished from the gloom. All that remained was null. I would not start or turn away from what could be no more than a drug-fueled mirage.

Those hounds of hell.

Those phantoms black.

One goes forward.

One stays back.

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