Outside the holding cage, my mentor paces.
“Let me in!”
My fist tightens around the key.
The banner over her shoulder proclaims, “Fantasy Camp! Opening Soon!”
We’ll never open now. Thank God.
She presses her forehead to the bars. ”Please.”
In my lap, the young dragon I raised from a hatchling lies dead, pierced through the heart. I picture the mermaids, faces kicked in, drifting in the lagoon.
“You bred monsters,” I say.
“I didn’t know.”
Behind her, one of the beasts appears, mane spattered with blood, horn glittering through gore.
I cover my ears and turn away.
Author bio: Brigitte Winter is a storyteller, a jewelry-maker, the co-founder of No Discipline Arts Collective, and the Executive Director of Young Playwrights’ Theater, a Washington, DC nonprofit that inspires young people to realise the power of their voices through creative writing. Brigitte’s short fiction is featured in the 2016 City of Weird: 30 Otherworldly Portland Tales anthology by Forest Avenue Press, Columbia Writers’ 2014 anthology, Trapped Tales, and the 2017 Enter the Apocalypse anthology by Tanstaafl Press. All of her celebrity crushes are on authors. Visit Brigitte at brigittewinter.com, and stay tuned for her latest project: a pre-apocalyptic coming-of-age adventure novel.
Monster is part of 101 Fiction issue 18.