Vanessa Fogg

Of Milk and Blood

by Vanessa Fogg

The rifle feels heavy and unbalanced in her hands. Her knees are shaking, her arms weak as water. Her world has narrowed to a spot fifteen paces ahead. In the barn’s dim light, what looks like a young man lies stretched on the floor, dark hair spread out like a pool of ink. As her heart clangs within her, the figure groans and lifts its head. Dark eyes meet hers, fever-bright. Delicate features in a face pale as snow. A human face, but what rises from its head betrays the disguise. Winter light washes in through the door behind her and catches on onyx-black horns.

Beautiful horns, glossy and bright, rising straight from the head and then curving back and slightly outward like the horns of a goat. The horns of a demon. The unmistakable sign of devil-blood.

This is not the first time that Alis has encountered a demon.