Erinyes, by Chad A. Clark
Rex had laughed it off at first, the sniveling idiot and his pitiful begging. It was his life savings and now he wouldn’t be able to support his family. Please. Well, maybe the little twerp would be more careful about who he gave his money to from now on. All it had taken was a little sweet talk, and Rex had gotten his hands on all of it. If the moron was going to make it that easy, didn’t he deserve to be swindled? He paid no attention to the pathetic threats. You’re going to pay for this. There’s gonna be a reckoning. Straight out of a shitty B-movie.
Now, as he stood in the alley, looking up into the darkening sky and feeling the grumble of thunder in his bones, he started to doubt that bravado. The weather had called for clear skies, but the expanse of thunderheads, combined with the flashes of lightening had once again proven the weatherman to be fallible.
The sound of the wind increased and he paused, thinking for just a moment that he had heard the sound of something beating against the air, like giant wings. He looked up, just as the dark shape swooped down and grabbed him, pulling him off his feet and straight up towards the storm clouds above.
It was a woman, except for the wings of course, and the claws, which were now breaking skin and digging into his arms. The thing screamed at him with an unearthly rage that he had never heard or felt before. It reverberated in his head with the anger of every person he had ever ripped off in any number of bad business deals over the years. He couldn’t explain why he made the connection, but there it was. He didn’t know where this avenging creature had come from or how it had found him, but he had built a life on his ability to talk himself out of trouble.
“Wait, I can fix whatever—” A hand snaked down and darted into his mouth, mid-sentence and pulled. He screamed as his mouth filled with blood and he watched his tongue tumbling off into open space.
Arms and claws flashed around him, ripping and pulling. Through his pain, he struggled to draw in breath from the rapidly thinning air and then, just as he was starting to feel his eyes bulge out, the hold on him was gone and he was in free fall. He watched as the ground below, littered with distant specks of buildings grew larger. He writhed around in his descent, trying desperately to wave arms and legs that, he discovered, were no longer even there.
For more short fiction, check out Chad’s books : A SHADE FOR EVERY SEASON (available in paperback, eBook and audiobook) and TWO BELLS AT DAWN (available in paperback and eBook)