The Other

Blink sighed in her sleep, a tiny animal sound of surprise, perhaps fear. Her eyes rolled and jerked, tracking the images of a frantic dream even as her body lay absolutely still, curled tight in a fetal ball perhaps in a vain effort to protect itself from what ever assailed her mind. She jerked, once, sharply rolling onto her back. She was rigid, taunt as a board, muscles shivering, straining beneath her sweat dampened skin. Still her eyes scanned whatever played before them in her mind. Slower now, more sedate. Then one stopped.

It swelled, bulged and split open, the lid peeling back with a soft wet pop. Glowing faint crimson in the darkness, Blink's cyber rose on silver metal stalk sprouting from her skull like some grotesque flower, lubricant gel a shining "dew" hanging in great trailers from the bulb. It twisted and pivoted, searching. Thin metallic legs sprouted, whispery insectile projection that allowed it to scuttle down her cheek, over her shoulder and down her arm, her metal arm. Reaching her hand it stopped, stooping in her alloy palm. Its legs slide into sockets so small as to be nearly invisible. Her arm shuddered and lifted raising straight up. Servos clicked and hummed, sections slide and locked. Blink's hand reformed the fingers sliding out of place, spacing themselves evenly in a circle about the red "spider".

A smile slowly spread over Blink's face growing wider and wider until it seemed to threaten to split her cheeks all together. Her jaw fell open and something curled up, slipping over her lips, a ropy gray tentacle, slick with spit and bile, scrambling for purchase. Another followed, and another a flurry of whipping limbs latching onto her face and body getting a secure grip, then all at once the heaved. Blink's throat bulged as something was dragged from deep within her body. It rose from her mouth, pale pink and gray clotted with bile and moldering chunks of semi digested food. It wiggled and jerked, working itself free of the confines of Blink's mouth in spastic motions, seemingly endless coils of it, wet and reeking, sliding up from her throat. It resembled nothing so much as worm, a hideous lamprey-like mouth drooling as it twisted about, "looking" about though there were nothing on it that could be called eyes.

Slithering to Blink's up raised arm, it wrapped its tendril lovingly about it, coiled them into its workings and merged soft flesh with metal. Her hand, now a dish-like projector swivelled a bit. A shiver ran down the length of the thing as something made contact. It communicated. A sudden intense burst of electromagnetic energy received and another transmitted. Then the link was broken. Releasing Blink's arm, it slithered from the bed entirely, fading as it went gray skin taking on the colors of the rug and the shadows. Blink lowered her arm, hand sliding back into shape. The red spider settled back into its nest in her skull, tiny manipulators pulling its protective lid of flesh back into place. All was silent again.