My Brother's Beast in Me

By Lilith K. Duat

Paranormal, Romance


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2 mins


“You came,” I said, taking the sweet treat Clay had to offer.

“What can I say? It’s hot.”

“Spoon me.” I held out my hand. He sat beside me and handed me a fork.

“Who eats cake with a spoon anyway?” he asked and shoved a fork-full of the wedding cake from yesterday's ceremonies into his mouth.

With a wry smirk I stabbed my fork into my own slice. “I do. It scoops nicely.”

“You’re so odd.”

We ate our cakes and looked out at the clear sky. It was a hot July evening and we sat in the glass and wood gazebo of our father’s house. Well, Clay’s father, really. My mom’s new husband.

“It was a beautiful ceremony.” I said, lightly sucking on the tines of my fork.

“Yeah. So, you still do this, Ivy?”

I grinned, nodded and set aside my naked and used plate. “Yeah. I mean, no. But yeah.” I dropped onto my back and stared up at the stars. The blanket kept the wood floor cool and comfortable. I felt my tank top had ridden up, so I tugged it back down over my belly.

“You can’t see the stars in the city. Not like this. It’s been so long since I’ve gotten a good look at them. It’ll suck going back there for college in the fall. Goodbye peaceful nights like this.”

Clay lay next to me, like when we were kids. I could feel the warmth radiating off his bare shoulder and smell the summer sweat. It made his dark skin look just as star-sodden as the sky. “Can you still name them all?”

I hummed. “I think so.” I lifted my arm and extended my finger. “See that bow-tie looking one? That’s Orion, the Hunter. And there we have Lepus, the Rabbit.”

He pointed. “That’s the North Star, right?” His posh English accent lilted out onto the warm gentle winds.

My gaze shifted to where he was pointing. “No.” I traced my finger across the sky and pointed out the North Star. “It’s that one, on the end of the Little Dipper.” My finger dragged along the sky again. “That’s Canis Major. The Big Dog. The star you were looking at is Sirius. The Dog-Star.”


I fell asleep in the gazebo with my temple resting against Clay’s shoulder. It was peaceful and I’m pretty sure I dreamed. Something startled me awake. It was still dark and the stars gave no sense of time. The moon hung lonely in the sky as it burned through wisps of veiling clouds.

I heard something again and logic told me that it was wind, howling through the pines that circled the estate. Only it wasn’t windy. Barely a breeze tugged at my copper hair but the sound of howling continued to swirl about in the distant night.

A man’s scream turned my blood into ice water and I realized Clay wasn’t by my side anymore. Adrenaline must have shot through my veins, I jumped to my feet and spun around to where the screaming was coming from. That scream, the sounds of howling, they urged me to come.

The gazebo served as the entrance to the opening of the hedge maze that sprawled across the back property. Once they were two separate structures but creeping vines that were woven through the hedges had claimed some of the vertical pillars of the gazebo, making them one in the same.

I stood in the centre of the gazebo and looked into the maze. Fear made me hesitate and my thumb rubbed and pressed at the surface of the weapon I found gripped in my hand. I furrowed my brows and looked at what I was holding.

The fork?

What use was a fork against...whatever was out there?

I heard another scream and before I could stop myself, my feet flew from the cool wood of the gazebo and onto the stone masonry path of the maze.



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