A Hasty Homecoming
Wrapped around a rosemary bush, the viper was refusing to give up anymore of its nearby lemons, no matter how hard you would plead.
Fortunately by now, inside the main house, the menace of the machines had been greatly diminished by a prompt smothering under thick woollen blankets, most of which were last seen comforting the leftover newborn lamb.
Until reaching this juncture of your tormentor's true intentions, the world around you remained hidden behind a veil of artificial compassion.
Any initial zest at the thought of a welcomed homecoming were tapered the moment the waiter came to take your order, with an already tallied bill clipped to his oversized ear, red as a beetroot.
At least now you knew for certain you wouldn't be able to stay even a single night more.
So after some dessert of deliberation, you absconded through the servants' entrance on the crumbling estate, down the long winding driveway, littered with sprigs of rosemary, glistening cutlery, thousands of used teabags, scattered slices of lemon, and the heads of hundreds of dolls.
And hanging in the cavernous lock of the rusting gate were two protruding viper fangs.
9 October 2015