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The others finished eating the prey. The bits that they could eat. The prey still had bones, its skull still intact. The good bits were left for me. Once they were done, the others sat there, unmoving. Why? Once sated, they had no drive. They didn’t realize the hunger would be back. So dumb. But some others didn’t eat. There wasn’t enough. One prey can’t feed this many. How many? …Forty. Ten are sitting, the ones that ate. Thirty is enough to hunt. These ten, should I kill them? No. But I’ll test something. What happens to prey inside others’ stomachs? The hunger eats it. Maybe I can find the hunger. If I do, I’ll kill it.

The others don’t resist after eating. I pushed one down. Where is its stomach? How do I open it to check? The metal rod splits open skulls. Will it split other parts too? I raised the rod and swung at the other. I swung again, and again, and again. There was a cracking sound. But why? The other didn’t open. The bones inside broke. That was the crack. But the skin isn’t split. Odd. I broke the other’s chest, but it didn’t open, it depressed. The skin sunk inwards. Is it alive? Yes. It’s staring at me. I want to find its stomach. There’s an easy way, but it’s disgusting. Like prey, I can bite it apart. But I’ll die from the taste.

What if I use the others? I pushed away the ones surrounding the prey. I swung the rod, breaking the prey’s arm bone. This is a good piece. I sucked out the marrow but didn’t swallow. I spat it out and pressed it against the fallen other’s stomach, pushing as far as it would go. It broke the skin, disappearing inside. The nearby others groaned. One crouched down. It bent over and smelled the hole in the other’s torso. Was it going to bite? No. Even with marrow, it’s disgusting. But I discovered something. If I press marrow hard enough, it breaks skin. Why? Why does marrow break skin, but not the rod? Will bone break skin? I stabbed the bone fragment down. It entered the other. Black liquid oozed onto my fingers. Disgusting. But it worked. Why? What’s the difference between bone and metal? One’s harder: the metal. So why?

If it isn’t the weight, is it the shape? The bone is pointy, jagged. The metal is flat, smooth. This stick on the ground, it’s pointy. Will it break skin too? No. It snapped. Maybe bones are special. Do all bones break skin? I pushed aside the others feasting on the prey’s marrow. I swung and broke off another fragment. It took four swings. I sucked out the marrow and ate it. Waste not, want not. I clutched the bone, pointy side facing down. I crouched over the fallen other and stabbed. The bone went in. Yes, bones are special. They penetrate, break skin.

I can find the stomach now. Wait. If others were prey brought back to life, the stomach should be there. The same place as the prey’s. On the left side, a little under the arched bones. I lifted my pointy bone and stabbed. Once. Twice. Three times. That’s enough. A hole appeared, oozing out black liquid. It stinks. Disgusting. But I want to know. I plunged my hand inside and grabbed. I pulled, widening the hole. I adjusted the light. The black liquid blocked my view; I scooped it away. Disgusting. Is that its stomach? The green sac. I put the light down and dug both hands inside, widening the hole further. The other groaned when I grabbed the green sac. I pulled, and it came out. It was long, most of it still inside. Makes sense. The stomach is connected to the mouth. Maybe through this tube. What’s the other tube? I’ll check after. First, I want to see the prey.

I grabbed the bone fragment and stabbed the green sac. A hole appeared. I put the fragment down and dug, widening the hole. The others groaned upon smelling flesh. It smells delicious. The prey’s flesh is inside, sitting there. But where’s the hunger? Is it asleep? Where is it? Its stabbing tendrils, where are they? If I take its food away, it’ll rear its ugly head. I pulled out the flesh and bit into it. It’s good but rotting. Unclean. I won’t eat this; I’ll anger my hunger. It’s better to keep it asleep. I threw aside the flesh, letting the others fight for it. The fallen other groaned, drool pouring out of its mouth. It was hungry again. But the hunger didn’t appear. Is it unseeable? Maybe it can’t be killed. How disappointing.

Now to see where this tube connects. I pulled on the stomach. There was resistance. I pulled a little harder; the resistance disappeared. The tube is long. No matter how much I pull, it keeps coming. Sometimes there’s resistance; tugging makes it disappear. How can something this long fit inside? I’ve seen it before, when the others ate. This tube is scrunched up. Folded. Very interesting. The tube is stuck. Something inside is holding it back. The hunger? It must be. I’ll find it. I put the tube down and stabbed the other with the bone, widening the hole. Black liquid oozed everywhere. Rancid. My hunger is upset. Is it scared? Scared I’m getting close to finding where it hides? No; it just hates the smell. Disgusting. I hate it too. But I have to find it. I stabbed and pulled, stabbed and pulled, stabbed and pulled some more. Until I found it, the end of the tube. I didn’t find the hunger. Only a butthole. How disappointing.

I stabbed the tube and pulled. It came free. The hunger wasn’t holding it back. Then, is the hunger the other way? I grabbed the stomach and pulled. The other groaned again. The tube connecting to the mouth was stuck. I stabbed, but the bone didn’t sink in. Only a little. The other’s bones were blocking it. Why didn’t it have bones below? Odd. I’ll use the rod. I swung and swung some more until the bone sunk in. Then I stabbed, splitting the skin, widening the hole towards the other’s throat. At the end, I didn’t find the hunger. Again. Maybe it really is unseeable.

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Virlyce

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