Every Last One


She couldn’t see it, but she could feel it. The thick woollen fibres stood even more on end than usual. Her home bristled with the vibrating air. Her babies huddled where she’d laid them, oblivious to this world. A world that was in danger. She couldn’t move them now. She could move herself, but her instincts wouldn’t let her. She had to protect, but all of her being told her that was an impossible task. The noise began to get louder. It’s tubular screaming hovering around her, here, then there, then here, then over there. It wavered around her senses in a directional mess of confusion. First it was coming from this way, then that. She turned, then turned again. It was impossible to keep track of where it would come from when it came.

And she knew that it would come.

The noise grew louder still and she felt the wisp of sharp breeze push her off her feet. All eight of them. All of her eyes widened. Her body hairs tensed. She looked to her babies huddled in a pile for the last time. Then it came.

Brian was sure his wife would be placated after their argument last night. Amongst the many failings of himself she’d pointed out, his lack of completion of household chores seemed to come up most. After he’d worked out how to switch the vacuum cleaner on he’d hoovered from top to bottom. He’d even done behind the book shelves where the thick pile of the carpet seemed to have been covered in layers of cobwebs. He was sure he’d disturbed a nest of some kind when he saw thousands of little bodies with lots of tiny legs scatter across the floor. It was ok though, he’d managed to suck up every last one of them.