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Where are the Monsters
by James S Cole
James S Cole -- all rights reserved

The mansion loomed on the hill, it's rotting walls and floors creaking in the wind. A small group was assembled, all gathered together, all afraid. They where all that was left, all that survived. The clothes in shambles, there minds rubble, they were far gone now, merely frightened children. One week ago the small town of Martizville was peaceful, quiet, and serene. Founded by Jack C. Martiz it was a small midwestern farming community where nothing happened, then horrible flu hit. But a week or so after things seemed normal, then they came. They started with rumors, Frederick Holenger had gone missing, no one could find him, then the first sighting occurred, a quick on by Jessie Haorbik, she had only seen a shadow creeping in the woods near Frederick's house. The area was searched, and Fred's pajama's where found torn and slashed by some animal. First it was thought a roving pack of feral dogs had gotten him, but that was quickly dismissed, there where no feral dog packs around. Them the first whispers of "monster" came. Then one was seen in town, gunned down by the sheriff. It was horrible, thick scaly skin, vicious claws and fangs. An long muzzle, pointed ears, red eyes, and spines on it's back. Then more people disappeared, one by one at first, then entire families, with in 2 months, a quarter of the town was gone. No one ever saw the monsters take there victims, but everyone knew they where doing it.

Now this small group was all that was left, they had found them selves in a town infested with, monsters that looked like animals, they where the only family left. John Grayson, the once brave and though sheriff, now frightened beyond his wits, a tall husky man, balding with white hair, his uniform sweaty and torn. Lilly, John's wife, a thin and tall woman, the reverse of her husband, a mane of flame red hair, and soft green eyes, now full of terror, her lovely blue dress ripped and marred. The there was Harold, John's so and the local trouble maker, his hair oily black, his eyes blue, his normal cool demeanor now in ruins as where his leather trench coat, leather pants, and black T-shirt. Finally Jane, Johns daughter, the most popular girl in the local high school, her hair golden, framing doe brown eyes, he revealing dancing uniform sweaty and sticking to her body. They where all that was left, the mansion there only refuge. The scrambled in and gathered in the living room, the shadows playing tricks on there minds. The only thing keeping the terrified family company there fears and the memory of there mad dash through the woods to escape from town.

Hours passed, then morning came, the family still close together, all quivering in fear.

"I have to pee.." Jane whimpered.

"The bathrooms upstairs.." Lilly said.

"I'm not going there.. they might get me!" Jane cried.

"Harold.. you go with her!" John said.

"Ok.." Harold squeaked out.

The two left to the bath room only to return a few moments later screaming.

"She's one of them!!!" Harold shouted. "She's one!"

"I'm not!" Jane sobbed. "I'm not!"

"What is it?" Lilly asked. "Who's one of what?"

"It's Jane.. she's a monster!" Harold shouted. "I saw her, she's got scales!!"

"It can't be!" John said quietly scrambling for his shot gun. "My own flesh and blood one of those monsters?"

"Please no!!" Jane shouted. "I'm not one of them!"

"You have a scaly belly!" Harold said. "I saw it!"

"No I don't!" Jane said. "I'll prove it."

Jane unzipped the front of her white and red spandex, leotard, and revealed a stomach covered by soft yellow scales. He eyes went huge and she screamed. Frantically she ripped at her clothing and pulled it off. Her entire stomach now had yellow scales, green scaly skin covering her thighs. Her crotch now covered by a scales. Screaming she stared at her self. Then she looked over to he father.

"I.. I" He eyes grew huge. "Harold!! You.. you have a tail!!"

John side stepped and looked at Harold, indeed he was growing a long furry tail.

"There both monsters!" Lilly screamed placing her hands on her face then screaming more. Her hands now had sharp talons on them, yellow scales going to her wrists. John dropped his shot gun and slipped. He looked at his feet only to watch his shoes burst as hooves grew.

"Your all monsters!!" Jane shouted, her face sporting green scaly flesh.

"We're all turning into monsters!!" John whimper.

Hours passed and the family sat around each other, all waiting for someone to make a move. These were not humans anymore, but monsters. John now had the body of a goat, his fur snow white, his eyes brown, horns growing from his head. Lilly sat near but away from her husband, her arms scaly to the elbow, large feathered wings growing from her back, her legs still human, her hair now longer. Her feathers brown with red tips. Jane now looked like a cross between a human and lizard, scaly green flesh all over her, yellow scales on her belly and the underside of her new tail. Her mane of golden hair gone, her face now having a reptilian muzzle. Harold sat looking more like a wolf than human, he looked like a normal wolf with brown fur, but his blue eyes reflected back humanity.

"I don't feel like a monster.." Jane said.

"I don't feel like a wolf.." Harold added.

"Then if we don't feel like monsters.." Lilly said "why are we watching one another?"

"You think.. this is.." Jane said. "What happened to the others?"

"If it is.. then." John slowly began. "The first one I killed was.."

"Frederick Holenger.." Lilly gasped. "The first to vanish."

The four continued to stare at each other. Then the sound of the door opening startled them. A humanoid rhino, walking on two legs and swathed in a tog entered. Behind him a woman dressed in a business suit, she looked like mayor Carl Johnson, if he where a woman.

"Mayor.." The rhino said the woman. "These must be them.. I knew they where here."

"In deed." The mayor said, placing a hand on his/her hip and stroking her chin as if she had a beard. "And your sure it's the Graysons? After all they where normal when they ran."

"Davis.. Mayor?" John said. "We thought.."

"It was on the news." Davis said. "It's because of that flu bug.. they say it came from Mars.. It caused these transformations."

"People have been turning into things.." The Mayor added. "Some how the entire town was infected."

"Then we're not monsters?" Harold asked.

"Nope.. Harold is that you?" Davis asked.

"Yea.." Harold said.

Later that day the town of "monsters" assembled. The entire town was there. All transformed into things. Animals, both humanoid and normal, women who should be men, men who should be women, one man who became a car. The mayor addressed the assembled town.

"My fellow citizens." She began. "The nightmare of the monster invasion was not what we thought. All of us have been effected by a disease that the media has named SCABS. Even though I have lost my gender, I am still your mayor elect.. And intend to stay that way. I know this is a frightening time, but we must unite in the face of this adversity, for times will be tough. We have lost a large portion of our yearly corn crop. So I have called on the state government to help us. Don't fear, we will survive."

John eventually regained his office as sheriff, Lilly still lives with her husband, Harold left for the big city east. Mayor "Carla" Johnson, was reelected, replaced a few years later by Jane. The town prospered again the next year, and became a haven for SCABS during the early days of the disease. So much of the population became SCABS that it was nicknamed SCABville. Now a sign waits ahead of the city, painted on it a Norman Rockwell like scene of a family. But this Family is not any normal one. First is female foxmorph, then her husband, a normal human, and there two children, a human little girl and a boy with pointed canine ears. And it reads:

"Martizville, Where there are no Monsters."

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