The Yark by Bertrand Santini

The Yark by Bertrand Santini

Author:Bertrand Santini
Language: eng
Format: epub
Publisher: Gecko Press
Published: 2018-07-17T16:00:00+00:00

“Poor little innocent!” he muses, choking back his saliva and his shame. “This angel has no idea that she’s saved a demon! Ah, if she only knew the risk she runs in being so kind to me!”

A murmur from Madeleine interrupts his thoughts: “I thought you’d never wake up!”

Then she adds with a smile: “You gave me a scare, you know.”

This is hardly the first time the Yark has scared someone. Fear of the Yark is to be expected. But Madeleine’s fear is quite different.

He thinks her fear is for him.

“For me,” the Monster repeats to himself in disbelief, for this is first time he’s received such a feeling as a gift. At that, a wave of emotion sweeps over him. A sensation so new that he can’t find a name for it.

After a lengthy silence, the Yark opens one eye.

“I don’t frighten you?” he asks timidly.


“You don’t find me ugly?”

The little girl shrugs, as if the question is absurd.

“Actually, I find you beautiful!”

Beautiful? This word, which has never been used to describe him, gives him the shivers.

“Ordinarily, humans find me repulsive,” the Monster whispers.

“Humans don’t have a great deal of imagination. They see beauty only in what looks like them.”

“But you’re human yourself!” the Yark exclaims.

“True! And since I find you beautiful, that’s proof that we look alike!”

With these few words, the little girl thinks she’s said all she needs to. She smiles at the Monster, kisses him on the forehead, and leaves the room, wishing him good night.

The Yark finds himself alone with his exhaustion, the noise of the storm, and stirrings of happiness.

And now, he dreams… On an immense oval table, a constellation of dishes and bowls spreads out to infinity: boys in bacon, orphan gratin, chicken-fried children, breaded babies, leg of twins, brats in a bun, paté of little girl, stuffed schoolchildren, tandooried toddlers, choirboys in bundt cake…

But suddenly, a shock! The Yark discovers Madeleine’s decapitated head lying on his plate. The child’s big eyes stare sadly up at him. The Monster shrieks and wakes up in a cold sweat. For the first time in his life, a feast of children ends with a cry of horror!


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