's 2015 Horror Write-off:

" Lick Granuloma "

Submitted by J. Towne

It seemed to start as soon as I was born. I couldn’t see, of course, my eyelids still shut as if sewn with unyielding thread. But the sensation was unmistakable.


My mother took good care of me. She was always nearby, always there when I needed her. But not when the licking began.


It started off gently, even tenderly. The tongue’s softness belied its strength and firmness. It licked my ears until they were dripping wet. I cried out, but my mother was nowhere to be found. Unfortunately for me, that was only the beginning.


I came to dread the licking. I could never predict when it would start. Sometimes at dawn, sometimes in the dead of night. Each time that slimy appendage would cover my ears in thick, sticky mucus.


Although it began with licking only my ears, it quickly moved on to other parts of my body. My eyes, my throat, each of my feet in turn. It was deliberate, methodical, and utterly thorough. Where was my mother?


By now, the licking never stopped. It wasn’t long before my skin became hot and swollen. I tried to keep away from the tongue so I could rest, but it always found me. The relentless licking continued as my ears and throat filled with pus.


By the time my eyelids split open, my ears had been reduced to bloody stumps. Most of my hair had been stripped away by the loathsome tongue. Finally, I could blearily see my surroundings. And there she was, my beautiful mother. With her thick, purple-black tongue just inches from my lymph-encrusted eyes.