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Presented by State Library Victoria



Harvey starts doubling in size, going from 5’5 to almost 8 feet in a matter of seconds, from average looking teenager to a hulking yet lithe figure. His hair has grown too, becoming long and thick and matted, spreading all over his body. His skin becomes pale brown, and upon closer look, his veins have started pulsating a rich nicotine yellow, along with his eyes.
Then his bones begin changing, shifting and molding themselves beneath his skin, snapping and reattaching themselves. His ears start pointing up. His mouth and nose elongate into a snout filled with teeth. Limbs grow into lanky and bent monstrosities, the fingers and toes curling down into claws, with sharp, broken nails set upon them.
The class watches on in silent terror. What was once Harvey now looms over a horrified Mr Keller, a giant monster of muscles and fur. Then the first shriek is let out.
Everyone is sent into riot, leaping out of and over desks, pushing and shoving each other, trying to get through the locked door, all under a chorus of screaming, swearing, and pleading.
I sit still in my seat among the frenzy, frozen in shock and awe. Slowly, I inch out of my seat, then towards the real part of the classroom to worry about.
Mr Keller is now a sick shade of white, as if he’d seen a ghost, or rather the thing right in front of him. Harvey starts sauntering towards him, getting down on all fours, driving Mr Keller back a few steps.
“H-Harvey…” Mr Keller mumbles, mustering up as much courage as the situation will allow him. “Sta-stand down… Right now.”
Harvey replies with a deep, guttural growl.
“P-please, stand down… please,” He says on the verge of tears.
A garish, fear-inducing roar of a bark rips out of Harvey’s throat, sending Mr Keller to go stumbling back onto his ass, crying and screaming.
“Hey,” I croak.
Harvey whips his head around to look at me.
“Hey,” I say, trying to keep my voice as level as possible. “Hey, it’s me, Cal. Hey, you don’t want to do this, a’right chief?”
Harvey stares me down. I feel a knot twist in my stomach. We lock eyes, and I feel my heart skip a beat, then give another ten to compensate. We continue staring at each other for a good thirty seconds, and I begin to feel the knot untwist when I remember.
Never make direct eye contact with dog, I think.
Harvey begins sauntering my way, as I begin backing up. The class is now pressed all along the walls, watching in silent fear as I slowly weave among the desks, making sure to keep my eyes on Harvey.
Suddenly, Mr Keller is running at Harvey with one of the desks chairs from across the room, yelling gibberish in his absurd accent.
Harvey turns around just in time to catch chair full on the face, the wood splintering against his thick new skull, shards flying all across the floor.
I don’t even get a second to react, as no less than a second afterwards, Harvey is tearing into Mr Keller.
Mr Keller lets out a scream of pure terror and panic as Harvey begins clawing away at him, eventually getting up to his throat, at which point he decides to end it all.
Harvey dug his teeth into Mr Keller’s throat, warm blood splattering onto the ground and matting his fur. Mr Keller’s scream becomes a drawn out, half-shriek, half-gurgle, before ending in a choked off gasp, as blood begins clogging up his vocals, before getting ripped out by the monster kneeling over him.
Mr Keller stops struggling, as Harvey continues to rip him apart. The rest of the class is now taking the opportunity to either throw up or try breaking down the door. I remain frozen, just twenty feet away from the unfolding carnage. My mind begins racing; What should I do? What can I do?
Harvey pivots around to look at me. I feel small, icy needles go up my spine. I looking over his shoulder to see the mangled corpse of Mr Keller. The needles on my back send a shiver up my spine as I tear my eyes away from the gore, and focus on the advancing Harvey.
I try to move my feet but it’s as if they’re stuck to the ground. Harvey keeps moving towards me, a snarl playing on his lips as he. He then breaks into a full on sprint, lunging at me with teeth and talons bared.
Every other thought in my mind disappears, as adrenaline goes shooting through my veins, as instinct takes over. Just as I feel his claws graze my skin, I throw a punch right into the jaw of Harvey’s snout.
Instead of my knuckles cracking against teeth though, a black fist comes out of nowhere, knocking Harvey off course in mid-air.
My eyes widen as I look at the fist protruding out of the shadow’s on the wall, but only for a second, before dissolves into nothing. My mind floods with questions of all kinds, one after the other; What is this? What’s happening? How is this happening? How do I control this? Can I use this?
I look back to Harvey who’s now back on his feet, shaking off the initial confusion, and twice of blood-hungry.
He lunges at me again. I swing my arm in a wide arc, sending a tidal wave of the same black shadows jumping out of the walls and crashing into him, sending him flying into the wall.
Everyone else has fled the scene through the now broken door, scrambling over each other to get out of the classroom turned war zone.
I hear my name being called from out in the hallway. I turn to run, but before I can even reach the busted door, I’m pushed out of it, slamming into the grey metal lockers outside. I feel the distinct crack of bones breaking, and the warm trickle of blood running from my shirt.
Grimacing against the pain, I pull myself off the ground, leaning against the lockers, now dented and tainted red in some places. Breathing heavily, I look up to the doorway. Harvey’s hulking frame looks almost too big to fit though, but he keeps going, a malicious determination in his bloodshot yellow eyes.
He stands there just outside the door, waiting for me to make my move. I start getting my breathing back under control as I run my hand along the lockers, looking for some purchase. Once found on a locker hinge, I steady myself, getting ready to run. I look Harvey dead in the eye, and hear the low grumbling growl echo in his throat.
I throw a wave of shadows out of the wall and push off of the lockers, breaking into a sprint. Harvey staggers back through the classroom door, before ripping back out and chasing after me. I race down the length of the hallway, throwing shadows over my shoulder. I can see the bleak winter’s light shining through the double-doors at the front of the school as I hurtle towards them.
Then out of nowhere, Harvey’s jumping out of one other hallway, and sinking his claws into my torso. The pain explodes through my shoulders and chest as the blood leaks out. I cry out as he digs the talons dipper, scraping them against the bone. Tears roll down my face as I look up at him.
My vision begins to cloud over as I look up at the flickering light fixtures on the ceiling. The noises around me slowly fade out into obscurity, and I feel my fingers go numb.
No, I think, my thoughts more like whispers. Not like this. Please, God.
Harvey snarls, and opens his elongated mouth, the bones in the jaw snapping and unlocking until it seems my whole head could fit inside. Then I see my opening.
Using whatever last ounce of strength I have, I ram my forehead into Harvey’s mouth, sending staggering back, clutching his now bleeding lip and teeth.
Sensation floods back through my body; Ringing in my ears, needles at my fingertips, blood in my mouth. Shock, pain, relief, and anger.
Panting, I lift myself up off the ground. I look over towards Harvey, who’s now regained his footing. Dark red blood runs from his nostrils, and through broken teeth. The low, guttural growl turns into short, sharp barks as gets into a fighting stance.
I feel the rage course through my veins, not in a wild, crazy rampage, but a cool, steely flood.
Harvey rushes forward, as I swing my hand down in a cutting motion.
And then his arm falls to the ground.
Harvey stops. He stares down at the stump that was no less than a second ago his left arm. He stares long and hard, in complete and utter disbelief. He then lets out a blood-curdling scream, one of anguish and terror, one that sounds as though its destroying his vocal cords.
All the while, I stand and watch, unflinching.
Harvey lets out a final scream, then tilts his head up to face me. Tears streak the sides of his face. His left forearm lays by his side, still leaking black red blood.
Slowly, he rises, standing on his hind-legs. He looks down at his fallen limb then back to me. There’s a long pause as we stare each other down.
“This will not be the last time we will do battle,” He says, in a deep, ominous, voice. “But next time, it will end with your blood spilt.”
He then turns, and walks out the doors into the brisk midday cold. Once he had left, I looked around the hallway. Lockers were dented and red. One of the classrooms was missing its door. The floor scratched and in some places cracked. I then looked at myself. My shirt had ten large holes in its chest, all soaked with my blood. My jeans were torn. At least two of my ribs were broken. My skin a collage of and bruises.
Even so, I limp through the school to the classroom, then to my locker, collecting my things. I make my way towards the front entrance. Once outside, I wrap myself in my leather jacket, and sling my backpack over my shoulders. Just as I’m leaving the school grounds, I hear the bell ring. I make my way through the town, keeping my head low. Eventually I get to the train station.
Just as I’ve done countless times, I loop around back towards the small area of woods, waiting for a train. After a minute, one appears; A big black and red steam train. I wait for the first few cars to pass, getting ready. The train begins picking up speed. The first cargo carriage goes by. I follow it down the tracks, walking then sprinting. The train keeps chugging along, still picking up speed. I sprint to keep up, waiting for the right opportunity.
I then jump, grabbing onto the door handles. I swing myself inside the carriage, stumbling to the ground. From the floor, I look around the carriage. Some crates, tools, hay, and a blanket.
I get up to grab the blanket before moving over to one of the less crowded corners. As I nestle myself in, I feel sleep tug at the ends of my consciousness. After a while, I nod off to the low rumblings of the train, sinking deeper and deeper into the black abyss of my subconscious.


inky State Library Victoria

Brilliant! So many great visuals! So many great lines! I'm gasping!

7th Nov, 19

Thank you! Exactly what I was aiming for!

7th Nov, 19