I awaken. Roused by the mingling sounds of air-raid sirens, screams of horror, and insane laughter. And gibbering. The other noises seem to fade in and out, but the crazed gibbering sounds close, next to my ear. In my ear. In my head.
(my head, their head, our heads…)
My breasts feel cold; naked-in-the-snow cold, but my legs feel hot, slick and wet. Moist and moving, like I’m in a sleeping bag of licking tongues.
I don’t want to look, I don’t want to know what this is, but I must know. I am compelled. How much time has passed?
(moments, years, eons…)
I struggle to open my eyes, they feel glued shut. One eye opens, then the other cracks open.
(then another eye, and another eye, and another eye…)
The light is dim, flickering. The power is out, and I see only by the guttering flames of thousands of burning books on shelves. Books that keep burning, wicking the human fat that coats the tomes in the ‘Old Books’ section.
I whimper; I am still in the library.
(here, there, where…)
I brace myself and look down at my body. I scream. Out of my mouth, their mouth, our mouths, a cry that is a chorus, a song, a gibber.
My upper body is coated in the gore of the poor mortals who were near me when I read the text; from my navel, I stretch into a bloody cascade of flesh gone insane.
The book I read rests near me, its words echoing in my head. I cry out under the force of understanding. The old gods were delayed, not destroyed.
Mankind has ruled in their absence but no longer.
This return was overdue.
I cannot take it. Each mouth that I have starts to laugh a hitching laugh, a gibber as my mind breaks under the pressure. I only wanted to learn, to expand my mind…
Now blood is the paint on everything.
“I guess I’m well red now!” I scream.
The old gods join me in my laughter.