The Ladies of Horror
Picture-Prompt Writing Challenge!
What We Have Become
by Linda Lee Rice
When the insurgence began, our ancestors fled to the tunnels and sewers. They carried with them the survival items they would need for what they thought would be a short time. Food, water, clothing, flashlights and lanterns, such as the one you see here.
But time passed and the world did not become the Utopia that was planned. Riots, looting, and killing was the normal, so our ancestors stayed in the sewers and tunnels. Every so often, someone would volunteer to go above and scout out the world beyond but never returned.
So, our ancestors began to change as the years passed. Clothing became scarce, so hair grew to cover bodies to keep out the damp and cold. Eyes became larger, with slits that widened in the dark to be able to see, because the flashlights darkened, and the lanterns ran out of fuel.
We still had food of a kind and the water, although it smelled bad, was drinkable. So, we blossomed under the ground like a fungi…pale, quiet footed, and ears that rotated to any sound. We evolved into…something else.
The lantern was placed on the stone as a symbol of what we were and where we came from. Forgotten memories only told as stories now over the warming fires of wood which drifted through. The fifth generation of those who went underground and didn’t surface again listened to these stories and wondered.
We had a language, not quite the language that was brought down, but a combination of several languages along with hand signs and signals. After all, when you’re hunting for food, you must be fleet footed and quiet among the tunnels and sewers.
Our teeth changed shape and became sharper, pointed to make it easier to rip our prey apart since we didn’t have the niceties of forks and spoons. Ah, but the sharp knives! Those we had, carefully sharpened for ready use.
As I write this, I hear a noise in the tunnels that’s unfamiliar. Murmurs of speech that aren’t of our kind…and my mouth waters.
Fiction © Copyright Linda Lee Rice
Image courtesy of Pixabay.com
More about Linda Lee Rice:
Linda Lee Rice aka Ruzicka has poetry published in Twilight Times, Dark Krypt, Fables, Descending Darkness, Writing Village, Spine, and Page, Muses Gallery, Bloodbond, Lycan Valley Press Publishers, Alban Lake, Highland Park Poetry, Rosette Maleficarum, The Siren’s Call, Edify Fiction
and the June Cotner anthology, “House Blessings” and “Garden Blessings
She has short stories published in The Grit, and Reminisce, Haunted Encounters: Friends and Family, FrostFire Worlds. Plus, a personal essay at Mamalode. She also has various articles and blogs published online as a freelance writer.