"Nebula"

The multiplicity of colors danced in the night sky. Each speck of dust shone a different shade of purple, red, and blue. They glittered and they sparkled and they cut through the black firmament with a shriek. That was the first day.

On the second day, there were strange rocks littering my backyard, and every other yard in the town. They were shiny and porous, glimmering with strange gems embedded in their metallic surface. By midday they had grown cool to the touch. By afternoon, the girls had collected them and were picking at them, making them into shiny bracelets and necklaces that they pranced around in with youthful delight.

That evening, seven-year-old Debbie shoved her right hand into her cat Kibbles’s throat and straight out the back side. She wanted someone to help her find a new ‘glove’ for her left hand. I threw up when I saw what was left of Kibbles. It took all evening to clean the gore out from underneath Debbie’s nails.

On the third day, the dark green military trucks came. They closed off the roads to keep us inside. Not that it mattered anyway. When I went out for the morning paper, I saw Debbie crawling out of her front door, her belly distended from the large meal she’d eaten and her mouth, neck, hands, and chest covered in blood and gore. Her parents lay still in bed, their ribs encircling gaping holes where their innards had been. Debbie had eaten well past her fill.

The other girls, each with a bracelet and a necklace of their own, had each become terribly hungry over the course of the night, and they had each done what they could to fill themselves. As for me, Carlyle had made me a beautiful ring. And my gut was already beginning to grumble.