Monday, January 30
"This is how you do it," he says. "Grab it's head with this arm, and just... jam it down it's throat."
"I think he'll bite me if I do that," she says.
"No way." He mimes the action of grabbing the little thing's head and sticking his arm down it's throat. "Just in and out, grab grab grab, and then we're Home Free."
"If this woman puts her arm into my mouth," says the little creature, eyeing the two people calmly. "I will bite it off. I will. I'll just bite it off and that's it."
"Wait, so it ate three of your babies?" asks the man.
"No, just the two. The other's over there in her playpen." She points into her front yard behind her to a small playpen with a young child playing with some colorful toys. "Just my boys. My boys are in there."
The little creature stands silently as it watches the two tall people talking. It makes a funny little face and spits out a baby's shoe. It is a blue shoe with a baseball on it.
"I bought that last week for him, and now it's all spitty." She picks up the shoe and tries to wipe off the spit, but it's sticky and slimy and she drops it back on the ground. "Now he's gonna have to walk around with just the one shoe."
The man suddenly grabs the little thing and wraps one arm tightly around it's head. "Don't worry, ma'am. I'll get your babies." The creature doesn't struggle or move or anything. With his other arm, the man forces his hand down the creature's throat. He wiggles it around, searching. After a long moment, he pulls out a small, spit-covered baby. It is a beatiful boy with curly blonde hair and a big happy smile. The woman takes her child and sets it on her hip.
"If you do that again with your arm," says the creature. "I will bite it off. I will. I wish you would not put your arm in my mouth again. I really wish you would not. And if you do, I will bite it off. I will."
"What about the baby?" demands the man. "We'll need to get that baby out of you."
"You now have two babies. How many babies do you really need?"
"All my babies," responds the woman, jiggling her slimy son on her broad hip. "They're mine and I need all of them, thank you very much."
The man nods his head and rams his arm down the thing's mouth. This time there is some struggle as the creature squints its eyes up tight and thrashes its arms about. The man clenches his jaw and searches for that baby.
"Do you find it?" asks the woman.
"You sure it's in here?"
"I think I know where my baby's at, thank you very much."
"There's just slime... oh, wait..." He struggles some more, and the little creature manages to slip out of his grip. The man pulls and pulls, and the little thing digs its heels into the sidewalk and pulls and pulls. Both sides are straining hard.
A pickup truck pulls up to watch.
"What's going on here?" asks the old woman in the driver's seat. "What's with all the pulling and that small monster, bugger thing?"
"Oh, it ate some my kids," explains the woman.
"Oh..." The old woman turns off the engine to her truck and leans comfortably on the steering wheel to watch what happens next.
The man puts one of his feet on the thing's face and pushes, and his arm slides a little bit out of the large mouth it is penetrating.
"Nice day, though," says the Old Lady.
"Oh, yeah... real nice." replies the woman.
The man puts his other foot on the thing's face and pulls as hard as he can. He strains and all the veins in his neck and face and arms bulge out like he's going to explode.
With a loud POP the man pulls a very small baby out of the creature's large mouth. It is also covered in slime, and less smiley about everything, but seems to be just fine otherwise.
"Hey, look at that." The woman takes her third baby and sets it on the other hip. "Thanks much."
"Oh, no problem. None." The man tries to wipe his slimy hands off on the grass, but little bits of grass and leaves adhere to his slimy skin. "Now you go on and get. Get out of here and don't eat folk's babies, okay?"
"I will eat any baby I choose. Any. I have already eaten twenty and you can't stop that from having happened. You can not, can you, Mr. Grab Arm?" And the little creature runs off and disappears into a hedge.
"Sometimes I'd like to run off and disappear into a hedge like that," says the Old Woman. "But I've got some canned goods to buy. Corn and the lot." She starts her truck up and drives off, disappearing into the horizon.
The woman then disappears into the small puddle of sticky spit at her feet, and the man disappears into a haze of late night television and rigid self-appraisal.