Metal Spiders

One of the arms draws back, up. It hangs for a moment. The immense needle burns black, the mat light drawn to itskeen tip where it glows, radiating in machine gun fire arcs. It falls.

The brittle safety glass shatters, shards glinting in the air and ringing, jolly little Christmans bells, against the tile. They wink up as more legs repeat the action, showers of glass spilling from the derilect cieling. A lethal downpour glitters under the main glass dome. The architectural wound gapes, an eye, awake.

In the sudden lull the ancient priest's ragged breath echoes. He slides down the wall, crouching. His fingertips perch on the damp, chill floor, one arm laid tensely across his knees.

A silver wire leg lowers itself through the new opening, extending down to the floor. Seeming satisfied, it lowers more legs, circling around and curtaining the shard heap with a slick hiss.

A circle, the shadow centered over the glittering mass grows, wavers over the jagged pieces. The main body slides down.

The priest watches, tensing tighter under his thin robes as the silver orb drifts languidly down its legs. It stops halfway, the needle branches fold, and the metal spider sits thoughtfully, perched on its glass nest. A single eyespins open - black and empty in its unblemished face.

It grows, becomes a gaping mouth. A flat tongue stretches out, angling, and licks the floor - a ramp. The mall sucks in a breath. The collective sound of a thousand small hearts skipping a beat.

A figure strides primly out of the spider's belly, unbuttoning the cuff of his pressed white shirt. He rolls the sleeve back, huffs the pale hair out of his eyes. The man is all in white, standing stark and alone in the commons. His sable wings stretch in the open air, light sending oil slick rainbows across their surface. His flat black eyes blink, narrow at the thin crevice in the cement wall.

The priest whimpers, melding more with the deep shadows. The angel smirks.

The End

17 comments about this story Feed