Colour of the Scale

by Gabrielle L. Ricafrente (Blue_Notebook)

That day the cloudless firmament parted like paper torn by a monstrous claw. A grim darkness bled from the tattered wound of the welkin. It was accompanied by an echo so horrifying since it was the echo of a million vermillion screams hiding behind the universe’s obsidian cloak. After that came the most haunting silence that even birds forgot to sing their morning songs; the wind hesitated to whisper their news to trees tall and short. The whole world paused, waiting for what will come next.

Or who.

It didn’t take long for the silence to break. With every eye turned upward, the world saw nothing but the bleakest colour of smoke floating down the sky’s wound. The smoke descended first into the atmosphere, changing the air’s tincture into a bleak gaseous leak. Next came the gigantic tail slashing desultorily through the gap, making it more open for whatever cosmic identity is to come. And finally, the darkest colossal mountain of a back with the massive claws flailing waves of the night after it came into view. The monster is falling back-first from the sky. It is the size of Europe with the head enough to crush the whole of Britain and France. One will think of the people scurrying away in great panic and trepidation, but no! Every soul froze to the ground. There was nowhere to run as the monster grew larger and larger every minute and the world darker and darker. Once it was near enough for the darkest fumes to crawl on the world’s every crevice, in one fell swoop, the people vanished. The pious will, of course, comment and say that this is the biblical rapture. But hold it, hold that judgment. When the creature finally touched down, a hail of snow rose from the ground, gravitating upward and shaming Newton’s physics. It was the summer of 2022 when it happened.

The neighbouring countries watched in a screen of blood-coloured oceans rising above their sunken nations. Death filled the world as water became fire, and fire, like water, drowned all lives in an inferno. Earth unbelievably held its place in the orbit, violently thrashing as the colossal beast hollowed its inside. There should’ve been nothing, no one else left to tell the story of what took place in the world at the peak of its technological advancements (which did nothing to prevent such tragedy). It took an entire year for the burning black smoke to subside, leaving only the trace of ashes from what were once human beings and earthly lives. Another year passed before the world came to view, the sun’s rays burning through its lifeless surface. It is no longer earthen in the place where the tear dimly peeks from above. That place became hell itself.

Two more years have passed and gone. What fell from the galaxy opened its magmatic eyes, slit and caustic to everything its gaze landed. The colossal creature—which, it turns out, is a dragon— rose to its feet and looked around. After a few more minutes, it found what it seemed to be searching for—its dark acidic tail with all the spikes the size of Everett trailing its length. What happened next was a very curious event. The dragon took hold of its tail and lifted it high up to the world beyond where it came. Then, gathering strength and holding it with both monstrous claws, the dragon crashed it to the ground, splitting Earth in two. But the creature did not stop there. It smashed its tail down three times more until there was no longer a solid space to hit it down on. This fact agitated the creature, and it roared from the depths of its stomach. The entire universe shook as if in response to its voice.

Dissatisfied with its actions, the dragon flew upward toward the sun, its tail choking by its deadly grasp. But what the dragon knew not was that landing in that ball of fire which gave birth to it ensures its death. Intent on killing its tail, the monster sped up to the sun’s surface; its tail caught between its palms was ready to be smashed again. The sun, however, yawned and opened its mouth in a hellish welcome. Upon arriving, the behemoth erupted into a galactic ball of black smoke. Its existence has gone immediately.

And below the sun, floating with the stars, is its battered tail. Lifeless. The conclusion of a deed so odious that even the wiping of an existence won’t suffice to justify anything.

Author’s note:

In memory of the child killed by his drug-addict father.

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