Blood dripped from her chin to her chest. Thanyalak ignored this, as she ignored the alien pavement under her bare feet, the city smell on her bare skin. She walked on with little regard for the man left screaming behind her. It hadn’t been smooth, but it was what they wanted, a deal she hadn’t given a moment’s thought going into. What was the point? Power was power.
Still, was this what she was now? Eating hands for hire? Eating when she wasn’t hungry, wasting the blood that spilled from the corners of her mouth? Using what she was to frighten people she had no interest in for reasons she’d already forgotten?
She was bored, and shook her head. The blood, now slowing to an ooze, trailed across the line of her throat, tickled her collarbone. People asked her to do things, and she no longer remembered why she did them.
Her chin was now slick with red. If she had any knowledge of movies, she might have realized she looked like something out of a bad horror flick, red from the mouth down, and horribly horribly humanoid. Naked, bloody, and indifferently padding along the dirty sidewalk. Nobody bothered her. But, then, nobody ever did. Why had she come to this city again? Was there some reason or just a whim?
It was that, like the Chinese men she had just eaten a man’s hand for. Whim or what seemed to be happening at the moment. But this was what humans did. At least, this is what they seemed to do, to her. Take jobs and … do things. For things. Even if it didn’t make you happy, even if it didn’t keep you full. She had wanted to understand, when she first crawled out of the jungle. She’d wanted to understand these creatures that wanted to destroy her world.
But now she simply didn’t care. She hadn’t cared for a long time.
Thanyalak didn’t often think about such things. Life for her was the moment. The prey ,the game, the people she sometimes called her friends. It was easy to live one minute at a time, and follow the instincts that had up until she left the trees served her well.
The pain was meaningless now, of course. Being shot, being stabbed, being blown up. Meaningless, and by now, quite boring.
A woman huddled against the dark on her way home happened to look up at the wrong moment, seeing the monstrosity of blood and skin that was Thanyalak, and her terrified squeal just made the Tigress growl. She could chase her, this woman who ran, because the tiger in her said she should, but the human part of her, the part that had become so confusing and boring lately, asked her what that would accomplish.
No, she wasn’t hungry, no need to hunt. Blood had left tracks between her breasts now, over her abdomen. A reminder, perhaps, of how well fed she was now, to eat men’s hands for gain. Still if that was all it took.
She shrugged to herself. Sarah would not approve of this. Time to go home.