Mother Dearest

“No,” I whispered, dragging a hand across my face. “I’m not your Mama, for Yolanda’s sake – I’m Eloise. Just Eloise. The stupid farmgirl.”

“Stupid farmgirl,” it repeated, flapping its wings happily.

I grimaced at its eagerness, and backed away from the vitrine. It was at that moment that Mother Hannah decided to reenter the room.

“Eloise, I’m – oh, Yolanda be praised!” she said, clasping her hands together once she saw the baby in the glass case. “It hatched!”

“Yeah, it hatched,” I said, backing away as she pressed forward. “And it thinks I’m its mom!”

“That’s wonderful, Eloise,” Mother Hannah said, opening the incubation case.

I took another step back. “No, it’s not wonderful,” I whispered.

It was so small – but then – then it’d grow up to be just like its parents. Ferocious, bloodthirsty animals that have no mercy!

“I can see what you’re thinking, Eloise, and this baby’s not like that,” Mother Hannah glowered at me.

“You never know.”

“I do know, Eloise.”

“Do not.”



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