Among the dirt and discarded debris of the burnt out firepit hidden among the trees of the forest a small but aggressive life had begun. Maybe as long as a pencil a worm thrashed from side to side as it emerged from the scorched ground. Pale grey and glossy flesh began to spasm along the outer rungs of each segment, pulsing and engorging with blood that had long been burnt out by long dead flames. It was painful, if perhaps the sensation it felt could be considered that, but the pain was invigorating also. Stiff segments that had been flattened and begun to break down into the soil was slowly being reconstructed with each cell that reinvigorated the other.
The small worm lashed out from side to side as nerves began to come alive and cause the creature confusing jerks from one muscle to the other. It flicked around in circles around the makeshift wall of rocks barricading the blackened dirt in an uncontrollable dance of life. A dance that had drew one of the song birds from the neighboring tree to perch on one jagged corner of a rock.
As the worm danced back and forth the bird tweeted and hopped off the rock to the crisp ground, its head canting and tilting from side to side as it hopped from side to side wary of its' surroundings. The bird felt uneasy but couldn't see any predator with its' keen eyes and continued toward the perceived meal thrashing around before it. Finally sure it needed to nab the worm before it either escaped or some threat finally showed itself the bird snatched up the thrashing worm in its' beak and immediately took to the sky, eating the creature as it rapidly beat its' wings at the air.
As quick as life had begun it had just as easily ended.
It was mid afternoon, school had just let out and the children that were returning home from their studies played on one of the dirt paths that ran along an old country road. Rhydin was a big place and sometimes it took a minute to get home all the way out in the sticks like this... At least that was the excuse the children liked to use when they let their games run on for too long. The fun of running down the dusty roads as they played hero and villain was too much to pass up on such a cool day.
Close enough to hear the other kids laughing loudly, sometimes yelping and whining about being hit too hard, one of the kids had stopped and took a moment to admire the beauty of the countryside. After all it was vastly different than the city and all its' grand views. It was simpler, roomier.
It was as he paused on the road, as he often did to look at the cows or horses he might get to watch grazing, he had taken interest in the birds that perched on the lone power line above. Still guards that watched over him and his group of friends as they walked home every evening. Or at least that is what he liked to kid himself about in his delusions of grandeur. But today they seemed different. They seemed to be uneasy, their heads flicking from side to side and squawking as they shimmed from side to side on the line. All save for one that stood as stiff as a corpse at the very end near the gangled wood. Was that a crow? It was certainly small for a crow, almost like a black song bird. Was there any black song birds in this area?
Anxious himself the boy found he couldn't tear his eyes off the small bird, and sickeningly it stared right back into his eyes. Bulbous masses of green that stabbed through the very soul as it remained rigged and frozen. He gulped down the knot that had formed in his throat, a chill like a cold night without his favorite blanket running up his spine. Taking a step back he narrowed his eyes instinctively furious at the tiny creature for spooking him so deeply as he scooped up a handful of rocks. With a rough flick of his shoulder he launched the rocks at the resting birds sending them scattering across the line. He smirked with a smug and defiant sense of satisfaction at the show of how powerful he was to the weaker creatures.
Though confidence and satisfaction had began to fill the boy he froze and felt his jaw part as his mind took in the scene that followed in frames. The birds that scattered had moved closer to the small black bird but it hadn't moved even as a rock smacked and tore one of the masses of green that was its' eyes from the socket. From one side a mouth had formed from what once had been a wing as quickly as the boy blinked, a gruesome snout of jaw muscle and fangs with small patches of oily feathers down to the hooked tip. in an instant it slammed shut breaking one fleeing bird in two between the almost foot long snout and tearing the wing off another. The mouth didn't even chew, it just crushed the bird it had caught in a wave of flesh and blood before it descended clumsily after the other squawking bird on the ground with the eyeball still wiggling behind it. This was a scene from the deepest pit of nightmares to the boy, a sight that shook his very soul, and he had maimed it in anger. What if it decided it was still hungry, and worse than that, what if it was angry?
Deciding waiting wasn't an option the boy spun around and ran, his feet kicking his own thighs as he sprinted with abandon past his playing friends and all the way back to his house. All the while in his haste he hadn't stopped, or even glanced, to the mangled black bird now standing on the dirt roadside watching him run away...