Anne had not seen her brother for six months
he had been keeping in touch
being a scientist had gone on a research trip
to some distant rain forest
making contact once a week by satellite phone
now his whereabouts were unknown!
On the day he was due back heard a news alert
that heavy rain in south america
had caused severe flooding in the jungle region
unable to pronounce the area
recognised it as where her brother was based
added all life had been erased!
Finding this hard to accept rang the embassy
went home to be with the family
together in mourning waited for confirmation
but after months of agony
the parents calmly waited for news of their son
what else could be done?
Half asleep on a Saturday morning the phone
rang vibrating the bedside table
she had forgotten it was in the cabinet draw
or it had any power in the battery
last time she had used it was to speak to Jack
her brother was he back?
Picked it up and hastily spoke is that you Jack
a long pause then a quite voice
yes sis I am on my way home ring you again Species
when I arrive at the airport
are you alright she enquired he said no more
something was wrong for sure!
Sounded like a stranger this could not ignore
glad he was alive but worried
told her parents he had at last been in touch
yet did not make her happy
waiting for him to call once more so unsure
there was bad news in store!
At last he called spoke in the same timid way
it did not sound like him
could she pick him up now then he had gone
before she could speak
A very cold dark night then it started to rain
began to feel the strain!
Parking was not easy too many cars no spaces
at last headed for the arrivals
the area was very busy everybody pushing
impatient for their baggage
she waited to see Jack waving and calling out
but he did not seem to be about!
It was then she heard a scream and the anger
turned to panic as crowds
started running blindly in every direction
she managed to quickly hide
behind a pillar or would have been trampled
never before this fear sampled!
Security could do nothing it emptied quickly
unable understand why
looked around spotting a lone hooded figure
she knew it was her brother
approaching backed away she followed him
not really but on a whim!
She could hear the noise behind and dogs barking
what had frightened so many
please stop you know it is me what is wrong
her voice made him stop and turn
she came up close he cowered and was crying
it felt she were prying!
Pulling back his hood Anne had to turn away
could not stop an exclamation
there was a shrivelled old man staring at her
by his eyes she knew it was Jack
more monstrous than human she was shaken
hoping she had been mistaken!
Jack came close his gnarled hands afraid to touch
his sister soft perfect skin
sitting up she wanted to know what had happened
to her handsome brother
but that chance never came a police dog attacked
he lashed out it backtracked!
He was gone he did not move like an old man
was this another species
shuddering with the knowledge it was Jack
yet what had he become
the police chased him she just sat petrified
he should have died!
Back at the car wondered where he could be
what to tell mum and dad
that would be hard they had waited patiently
how could she tell the truth
that moment of decision would delay for now
hoping it was not real somehow!
It was her brother yet a stranger now!
The Foureyed Poet.