June 29th, 2013

cat wearing fez


I wrote this to kelkyag's prompt "Shedding one's skin."

It was the only thing she had identifiably inherited from the father who had misbegotten her on her mother.

It always took time and she was always crotchety in the lead up. It didn’t surprise her that Adan flung himself out of the flat, declaring that she was impossible as he went. It was for the best that he wasn’t going to be around for the whole, long, slow process. Explanations would have been called for and he would probably have left anyway. This way it might not be permanent. As it was, she’d have to call in sick for a week and that meant she’d have to persuade a doctor to give her a certificate for the time. That was an effort she wasn’t looking forward to in her current state.

First things first though. Food shopping. She wouldn’t be leaving the flat for a week, so she needed to stock up on everything. Bacon, beans, mushrooms, passata, eggs, cheese, eggplant, curry spices, swiss chard, cabbage, pasta, lemons, apples, sultanas, milk, butter, chocolate, rice and ice cream. Everything she needed for comfort food and nutrition to get her through a tough week. Also, what looked like gallons of skin lotions and creams – from past experience, she was going to need every drop.

The first few days when everything was loosening up and beginning to lift were frustrating. Her skin felt dry, she was itchy under it and she desperately wanted to wash and then moisturise all over. Unfortunately, experience had shown her that doing that just prolonged the process and made it messier. She felt miserable but food helped and she could tell herself she was nurturing her new skin by eating.

Halfway through the third day things got better: the skin split down her sternum and she could work on enlarging the split. By the afternoon of day four the old skin was off, most of it lying in one piece on the bathroom floor for the time being, and she was able to shower again. Applying moisturiser afterwards was heaven. In a few days the pink newness of her new skin would have faded and she’d be able to go out in public again.

Then she could go back to work, contact Adan to apologise for her moodiness and get on with her life. Until next time.

There were things she couldn’t tell anyone because no-one was like her. Certainly not in this city. Probably not anywhere there was a price on a dragon’s head.

She was the half-dragon and she had secrets to keep.