Table of Contents

Brian the Writer

The Warrens

Brian McCorkle

This is a fragment of an idea. I hope to develop it into a short story.

Kevin slammed on the brakes. Getting out of his car, he looked with scorn at the skid marks on his concrete driveway. That asshole, he thought. His boss was watching his every move, bitching about this and griping about that. Kevin couldn’t get anything done because the guy made him so mad. Then, some coworkers claimed he had to work overtime on their projects because they had children and he didn't.

Kevin slammed the car door. He wanted relief from the coiling of his muscles and the roiling of his stomach. When a woman had claimed that she was a mother and therefore Kevin had to help her clean up her mess; the boss had jumped in insisting that Kevin would be happy to do all the cleanup.

That's when Kevin stood up and left the building.

He thought he saw some cages protruding from behind his neighbor’s garage. Now what, he thought. Are those jerks going to start raising rabbits? Dogs and cats were bad enough, but rabbits? Next thing you know, people will be clogging the streets to buy baby bunnies for kids or, or for food. Then the neighborhood would stink from all the guts and skins. Things always start small.

He tripped going up the porch steps and skinned his hand on the door, The door glass rattled when he slammed it. He sought the comfort of his easy chair. He wanted to sit in the darkness and think about things. The jerk boss threatening his job, big time assholes on the road getting in his way, and now the rabbits. Kevin had a piercing headache. He pounded his throbbing temples and felt a little better.

Then; there was a rustling. Now what, something else to cause problems? He looked in the direction of the rustling.

The sound changed locations and turned into a scratching. Kevin jerked his eyes in the new direction. A scrabbling sound that came next. Kevin steeled his eyes. This was too much. His temples were throbbing wildly. He stared in the direction of the scrabbling. There was a mound in his carpet. The mound lengthened and tunneled in his direction. The scrabbling and the burrowing stopped. The near end of the mound collapsed followed by a high pitched squeal. The burrowing started again and moved closer to Kevin. Those damned rabbits he thought. He knew there would be trouble. He had to do something and do it now.

Kevin heaved himself from his chair, stalking toward the disturbance. He stomped on the moving end.

His foot continued through what was the carpet and the floor as he fell forward. His other leg was straight backward, and his face was scrunched to the carpet. Kevin tried to push himself up. He managed to raise his eyes a couple of inches. A mewling sound came up to his face, and he felt something wet. Now he was angry.

A whitish blur passed his eyes. Cold rough wetness flicked round his nose. Kevin screamed as sharp teeth pierced through to the nares. He was barely aware as he went through the floor.

* * *

Kevin slowly came to. Something had his feet and was dragging him. His head thumped along the ground. He tried to speak, but could not. He felt wetness on his upper lip.

He was dragged into an enclosed area. There was the odor of cooking.

“Mom, mom. Look what we got.”

“Where on earth did you get that?”

“Oh, we just found it. Can I keep it?”

“Or eat it,” a third voice joined in.

Kevin opened his eyes to a slit. This place was dark; It had brown shading with a reddish hue from some kind of lighting. A glimpse through a dark opening with bright sunshine hurt, and he winced.

“Oh, I don’t know. How did you get it?”

“We went to the up there. It tried to stomp us.”

The third voice added, “Its head is real ugly. Weird ears. Nose that sticks out a mile.” There was a squeal. “Jeremy bit it.”

One of them grabbed Kevin’s hair and jerked his head upward. “See. Look. That big thing tasted funny.”

“That’s a human. You must put it back. They eat bad bunnies you know.”

Kevin’s nose was pulsing. There was a stench that stuck in his throat and stopped his breath. He tried to shout but croaked instead. He shivered, shook, and tried to be angry.

The others looked at him. “Jeremy, Joe, set that thing up. Maybe we’ll keep it for a while.” A lilting whistle followed.

Joe said, “Oh, oh. Mom’s in love.”

“With a monster,” Jeremy said.

“Shush you two. You know how hard it is to have a man with most of them at the Capitol. Not a buck for sure, but it might work anyway.”

The two youngsters pulled Kevin into a chair. His stomach rumbled. He forced his eyes open.

Jeremy said, “Listen. He’s growling.”

Another trill. “His mouth isn’t growling. Joe, Go closer and listen.”

“Mom. Why always me? Why not Jeremy?” There was a stridency to the voice.

“You’re the oldest. Shame on you.”

Kevin watched through bleary eyes as Joe cautiously approached. His stomach rumbled again, and Joe jumped back.


Joe approached in small steps. Kevin’s stomach gurgled. He stared at Kevin’s stomach. "I think his stomach is growling. Why can’t he growl like normal?"

Kevin stared at Joe. The youngster was furry, with two large upright ears and a small round nose. The mouth was wide. Two large sharp teeth were at the front and enclosed by two small tusks. Joe gingerly touched Kevin’s stomach. Kevin shuddered, and Joe leaped backward tripping over his feet.

There was a whistling laughter. Kevin looked around to see a much larger version of Joe, except the tusks were longer and curved upward. He looked around and saw a smaller version. That must be Jeremy. He looked back to the big one.

He noticed that they had very large feet and appeared to be sitting on them. The bigger one had a bunch of bristly hairs growing from the nose. All three had bright, beady eyes.

“What? Who are you?”

“Oh. I’m the mother of these two rascals. Joe is growing up. A couple of years and he’ll be off to the Capitol with the men. Of course, Jeremy will be able to stay here and take care of me when I get old. We're lagos you know."

Jeremy jumped up a couple of times. “When I grow up, I’m going to be a castrato,” he said with a proud voice.

“What’s that?”

The three giggled. Jeremy said, “It must be stupid.”

The mother’s ears raised. “Don’t be so harsh, Jer. After we eat, I’d like to sit, and talk with this &hellp;ah, man. Maybe he will be a guest for a while.” She smiled at Kevin, and her tusks seemed to protrude a bit more.

Joe snuffled. “Sure mom, a guest.”

“Joe, you can go to the Capitol right now.”

Joe whined, “Why can’t I be castrato too?”

“You know. Only one per family.” She turned back to her work.

Kevin saw there was a flame and a spit. A couple of carcasses were on the spit. The sight of the cooking meat triggered his hunger. The mother pulled up the spit and deftly placed the meat in a large platter. Joe jumped up and took the platter to a table. Jeremy skittered around gathering some plates, placing them on the table. The three hopped around the meal. “Come join us,” the mother said.

Kevin slowly stood. His nose still hurt. He felt weak and very hungry. As he approached the table, Joe tore off a hindquarter and handed it to Kevin. The meat was very tasty. He gnawed the flesh off the bones. The mother tossed another hindquarter with a smile that accented her tusks. Kevin finished that one as well.

“This is really good, Kevin said. “What is it?”

They all smiled. “Mrs. Dumpsy,” Joe said.

Kevin looked blankly at the mother, “Huh.”

“Well Mrs. Dumpsy keeps having babies. I don’t know how, but she does. When she goes out, me or Joe go get them. It keeps us in fresh meat.”

Kevin was suddenly nauseous. He bolted toward the sunlight he saw earlier. He started retching, but then he was outside. The fresh air calmed his stomach. He looked around to see several boxes, and he noticed the place he left was a box like the others. He stood staring at where he had been.

He heard a whistling cry. Something burst out of the next door box. It had one eye closed and one of the ears was bent double. It quivered and jumped up and down quickly. “My babies, gone again!” She saw Kevin. Tusks stuck out, and her mouth opened and closed causing her huge incisors to click. “Did you take my babies?” She lowered her head and pointer her tusks at him.

Kevin blurted, “I think those people in there are eating your babies.”


“I mean lagos.”

Mrs. Dumpsy charged into the box. There were screams, whistles, and thumps. Soon she came out. With blood dripping off her tusks and incisors, she held a forelimb from the recent meal. As Mrs. Dumpsy nibbled on it, she said, “Too bad. She sure was a good cook.”

First Appeared in Ego Trips Number Seven (Autumn 2008)
Experimental Literary Journal of the
Fox Valley Writers Club (Wisconsin)