Harry moved over blood-red ground towards bone-white trees beside a sapphire
river. A rubber crocodile tried biting his feet in the sapphire. Harry swam through a
deep sapphire section. The expanding crocodile filled with air. Harry stepped on it,
the crocodile deflating like a trivial concern.
The river disappeared where blood-red roofs topped bone-white buildings.
Harry dived into a swimming pool beside a creamy house. The crocodile dived in
after him, now not rubber.
Harry sprinted towards glass doors. The crocodile grew bigger. Teeth protruded,
with haphazard wildness, from its jaws.
Harry slammed the doors shut. The crocodile smacked the glass that wobbled like
soldiers on troop carriers.
Harry started watching television. Distractions rescue us–momentarily.
Creatures, with high-pitched voices, purple hair, and pink, fairy-floss heads, were
moving in TV glass, nothing real.
The crocodile smashed the doors. Cracking glass made yelps, like breaking illusions.
The crocodile chased Harry along a hallway.
Harry tried shutting a bedroom door. The crocodile got a foot between the door and
the door jamb. Fiberglas fangs extended from the crocodile’s feet, like sensors
picking up fear.
Harry grabbed a gun from a drawer. Guns thrive under blood-red roofs. Just ask the
Fangs ripped holes in the door’s timber, wood flying away like jagged birds.
Harry shot the beast between the eyes before falling onto a bed exhausted. He woke
in a black cocoon. That croc had almost got him. It could have become a dinosaur.
My life, he thought, must change.
That croc thrived on people’s vulnerability. It was at the bar in Harry’s living room a
month later, drinking a Martini.
“Harry,” Croc said, “you’ve got me. You’ve made strategic changes.”
Cigarette smoke swirled around the reptile’s red eyes, yellow patches on his green
fingers. Failure to take advantage of Harry’s vulnerability had turned him into an
“You got too big, Frank,” Harry said, “for your paws. I’ve got too much to live for.”
“You know, Harry, I really wanted to fuck you. You arse really started to turn me on.
That was one reason why I got so big. Your alluring vulnerability made my penis
pulsate. I wanted to dominate the pants off you. Now all I’ve got between my legs is
deflated rubber when it had throbbed so beautifully with rock-hard, electrifying
“Well, Frank, you’re only human.”
“Wanna a drink, Harry?”
“No. I’m about to go to my naked wrestling class; then to a lecture on killer
“Harry, you’re now really living. And I’m all washed up.”
Frank, raising his Martini in tribute, said: “Harry, there’s a crocodile waiting for
everyone. And this crocodile hates waiting.”
“Get a transfer, Frank. You’re finished here.”
Kim Farleigh has worked for NGO’s in Greece, Kosovo, Iraq, Palestine and Macedonia. He likes painting, art, bullfighting, photography and architecture, which might explain why this Australian lives in Madrid. 190 of his stories have been accepted by 110 different magazines.