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This piece was written by Lilianna Vaughan.

Sacrament

Something hits my window.

The air is still and in the mirror fire hops and dances inside glass. A cat sits in the center of the medallion stitching of a cream quilt laid across my bed. It tucks its paws beneath itself and crouches, hind legs mimicking a rabbit’s. With little omen it jumps from the bed to the floor. As it passes through the doorway I hear the first echo of soft paws touching hardwood.

Something dances along my window. Takes form of leaves and twig and stone and pulls its fingers across the glass. The wind hums. The tips of my fingers are cold and my nose is red. Nothing blinks. My hand trembles and a dog whimpers, unseen. I answer it with silence and it continues its cry. I blink. Minutes pass and the dog cries again. I shout for quiet. It is quiet. A woman stands above me, her hands on my chest. In a swift movement she plucks what from which I was made. She blinks, and curls her lips past sharp incisors and moans from deep in her stomach, a wail that passes from her lips as a snarl, a gutteral sound that pulls bile up my throat. The bone in her hand grows tissue, which pulses and bleeds and binds together sinew and muscle. Around it grows a ribcage and a pair of lungs. It writhes as though in pain, growth begets growth, the woman releases the twitching invertebrate and it falls to the carpet with a soft, wet thud. I am paralyzed.

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