Returning to the Den of Horrors: The 15-Month Appointment

Like most pediatricians, ours will lie dormant for weeks at a time, awakening only to feed.

We had no idea what to expect on this trip, especially since it was clear that we comprehended her true nature.  Would she be cautious, to try to lower our guard?  Or would she feel backed into a corner, and more likely to strike?

I packed the snub-nosed revolver with silver bullets, the 11th-century ceremonial silver dagger with protective runes etched into the blade, a brace of wolvesbane, and the trusty photo of Dr. Benjamin Spock.  We went over our drills, summoned our courage, and steeled ourselves for the worst.  Anxiety was high.

As it turned out, our normal pediatrician was away on leave — hibernating while rearing her unholy brood.  So we got a proxy.  Or maybe this was a deliberate ploy to lower our guard.  She looked human enough, but if you squinted and looked at her through the corner of your eye, only then would her true form be revealed.

She must have known that we were on to her, because she was on her best behavior.  She and her hunchbacked minion had Max measured.

For some morphometrics:

Height:  33.5″ (95+ percentile)

Noggin circumference:  49.5 cm (95+ percentile)

Weight:  23 pounds, 2 ounces (50th percentile)

We kept the pediatrician at bay, and she was cautious.  She only betrayed her true nature when she said, “You should really think about” — pausing to lick her lips with a warty yellow tongue that passed over and beyond her chin — “yes, you really should fatten him up, he’d make a nice plump little fellow.”  And this kept us distracted long enough for her hunchbacked minion to impale Max three times in the legs and inject him with foul solutions that, when spilled on the floor, would eat through the linoleum and leave a cloud of toxic fumes.

Then the two of them cackled, transformed into a large mound of spiders, and scurried away.

So did we.  Without the turning-into-spiders part.


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