Winter’s Chill

Your skin and hair and clothes are coated in frost. You are still wearing the hiking clothes you disappeared in last month.

I watch your approach through the scope of my rifle from my guard post in front of the gate. My breath whistles through my nose. My tongue tastes of metal. I don’t dare wipe the tears pricking at my eyes. It’s not you. It’s not you.

A quick blink clears my view through the scope. Your expression is stiff, frozen solid. And yet the recognition in your eyes is what sends the winter’s chill straight through me.

Nico VC is a Canadian writer whose favorite stories live in the spaces between magic, science, and reality. They are currently working on a long-form series exploring the boundaries of the human and alien. You can find them on Instagram @nic.oval and on Twitter @OvalNic. Blog: