I awoke from my, unfortunately, normal routine of torturous nightmares interrupted by brief moments of sleep, only to discover that in one of my aforementioned brief moments of sleep, I had transformed into a frog. My now slimy skin offered little traction on the smooth fabric of my furniture, as I began to slip and slide off of the only thing in this entire house I could liken to a comfort. As I slid down what appeared to be a massive crevasse, only to be revealed as a fold in my poorly stitched and beer-stained blanket, I heard a set of familiar gentle footsteps prance down the stairs immediately to my right. At any other time, I would have welcomed the owner of these footsteps with open arms, but now I fear a scream would be the only reaction to such an activity.
I attempted to run for the cover of what could pass for a banister, but in reality was nothing more than an upturned garbage can, only to discover that my meager arms could not lift what has now become a massive monolith before me. All I could do was clamber behind it, at an angle I pray no one would see. Against my better judgement, I peeked my slimy head out from behind what semblance of protection I had, only to discover that my fears has indeed manifested here before me.
The owner of the footsteps, and architect of my fear, was my daughter. Even as a vulgar and repulsive amphibian, I could appreciate her beauty. What few glimmers of light danced about from the many holes in our windows caught in her raven hair, giving it the appearance of flowing ink. In her slender frame I saw a beauty I could never attain in my already short and painful life, even more so now given my current situation. Even in my primitive brain, I understood that she was a rare beauty, one that would be tamed by no creature, man or amphibian. As these thoughts re-emerged in my brain, a new sensation began. At first it seemed to be the all too familiar warmth I felt in her presence, it soon became no less than a raging inferno. A literal firestorm quickly began to brew within me, and my goal now became finding something to cool this wretched pain, as opposed to not being discovered in my current form by my angelic daughter.
Carefully, I began to hop toward the veritable shack we dare call a kitchen, praying to a now obviously uncaring god that in this deplorable room would contain my salvation. I made sure not to wander into my angels point of view, knowing full well the ramifications of such an encounter. As I hopped toward what I hoped contain an oasis for staving off my pain, the aforementioned pain came back with an incredible ferocity. Every stretch and pull of my muscles lead to the heat spreading throughout my meager body. The sensation is almost comparable to having hot lead poured into your body, starting from your toes and rising onward. However, it quickly became obvious that the fire was not my only foe.
A low, humming vibration echoed throughout the room, and I believed it to be an earthquake. My first thought became protecting my daughter, and not to relieve the heat that threatened to consume me. I hopped toward her, abandoning every fear that she would notice my current form, only to notice that the earthquake had not affected her. In fact, as my entire world began to shake, she remained as still and calm as ever. As I pondered the cause of my peculiar situation, a massive shadow loomed over me. I craned my meager neck in an attempt to assess the cause of the shadow, only to become instantly terrified. The owner of the shadow was none other than my cat, or at least the creature that my daughter and I had made a habit of leaving a scrap or two of food behind for.
However, I could see the look in the felines eyes has changed from what I normally witness. Instead of a look of mere tolerance, I saw a look or predatory hunger. I quickly realized that what had once been a friend of myself and my daughter had now seen me as a mere morsel. I quickly began to hop in the direction of the kitchen still, still hoping that my salvation would lie there, but with the added incentive of not being eaten alive by a cat. Somehow, my daughter did not hear the commotion caused by the chase, as we hopped and leaped in a vain attempt to achieve our goals. As the doorway to our kitchen grew near, I felt an immense and sharp pain in my hip. As I craned my meager neck back once more, I observed that the cat had lodged one of its long and curved claws deep into my body. This only accelerated the fire within me, the raging inferno now drying my very skin.
I slumped down, ready to accept the horribly painful death that surely awaited me, only to feel my body collide with the floor. As I fell, I observed that the feline that once held me in its grasp now stood as a flaming tower of ash, a brief gust of wind sending what remained of my adversary off into the distance. I attempted to hop yet again toward the kitchen, only to be stopped by not only the literal flame brewing within me, cooking me from within, but the deep gouge in my hip. Before I slipped into shock, and surely the hell that awaited me, I noticed two things, both of which will haunt my soul for all eternity.
I was finally given the answer as to why my daughter was not alerted by the commotion caused by the chase between the cat and I, but the answer is not one I would have hoped for. A single tear trailed down my crackling skin, the cause of which being the horrid act of watching what had been the live of my life crumble into a pile of ashes, blown off into the distance along with that of the cat. The second thing I witnessed before becoming a pile of ash myself, was a card. A single card, which shimmered in the light as if it were trimmed in gold, and a single world littered its face, the last thing I saw before my flesh and bones erupted in a miniature firestorm of blood and smoke: