10-year-old boys were never meant to be alone... But Bat is.
Ten year old boys were never meant to be alone.
Bat curled his legs up to his thin chest and dropped his face into his hands, breathing heavily. His lungs strained from the pressure of panting, and his throat uttered small, ragged gasps as air slipped through his lips in great gulps. His vision marred by tears, Bat peered up at the nighttime sky. The moon stared back at him, unmoving, eerie.
And then it began.
It was subtle at first, the slight prickling feeling up his arms, but then the sensation spread until soon it was not a prickling at all, but a persistent tugging at his skin. Bat hissed in agitation and clawed at his neck, where the stinging was the worst. Gasping in horror, he pulled his hands back only to find them black with blood, real claws protruding from under his fingernails. And, already, his prickling skin had turned a sickly brown color, his slim arms swelling with coarse fur.
Bat froze, holding his arms out in front of him, sniffling and quaking, his breath suspended as frost before his face. It was peaceful for a few moments, and Bat nearly released his pent breath.
Before he could, he was forced to his knees by pain, gasping and clutching at his stomach. His muscles quivered, tightening and stretching, elongating until Bat was thrown to his hands and knees, retching and sobbing, while a warm trickle of blood dripped slowly from his neck, pooling around his hands like oil.
For a long while he stayed there, his clothes in a bloody heap beside him, his only companion the silvery moon. Bat was alone.
When finally the sky paled he was asleep, curled into a protective ball, hands grasping his shredded neck, naked save for the tattered remains of his white undergarments, now bronze with his own dried blood.
A small Mexican boy, Bat was vulnerable, cold, needing. But when he blinked open his deep brown eyes, stretched sleepily, and glanced around at the remnants of his incident, he knew with a lurching of his stomach that no one would ever take pity on him again.