“Mr. Savide, the operation was a complete success.”

My eyes fluttered open, sucking the light out of the room. Six new portals had appeared in front of my face. The first thing I noticed was that my mouth was drier than a desert caught in open sun. The second thing; the addition of four new stubby limbs on each side of my torso. The third; I was a bit peckish.

Reaching my arms behind my head, I stretched and cracked the sleep-stilled joints. My new nubs stretched alongside, waving in little circles. I tried to keep my excitement muted, but my face split open in a wide grin; I brought a hazy hand up to feel the rigid, jutting bones now forming my sharp chelicerae. Oozing with saliva, they flexed and retracted back into my jawbone. Stiff, short black hairs covered every visible inch of my skin; through them, I could see more of my surroundings than my eyes had ever shown. It was all I could to not spill silk right then and there.

Aftercare instructions given, I returned home. I felt like I was experiencing the world for the first time. I could taste a million notions on the wind and my infant limbs skittered happily underneath my coat.

Sleep came easily, drugs still coursing through my system, dropping hints of morphine at random intervals. However, when I awoke, I felt myself paralyzed by an unknown hand. My entire body was slick with sweat. Reaching my hand between my thighs, I found my spinneret a turgid mess of blood and silk. The doctor had said this might happen for a week or so. I swung my legs over the side of the bed, trying to hold in the rest of the web threatening to come out.

Then, I heard them.

Tiny, angry voices, barely over a harsh whisper, but a thousand strong.

“Murderer”

“Appropriator.”

“Abomination.”

The words flooded at me from all directions, tiny white-hot beads of anger bleeding into darkness. I spun in a circle, seeing nothing. Was I still feeling the drugs? I couldn’t be. Caught in the haze of confusion, I didn’t feel the tickle on the back of my hand until feathery touch became a needle’s sting. I subconsciously slapped at it, feeling a small, hard form crunch against my skin. Lifting my palm, I was greeted by a crushed black body and eight twitching, dying legs.

Like a storm, the whispers rose up, becoming a howling scream.

It was then that my newfound vision focused in on the shadows, that I saw past the dust motes clinging to my ceiling fan and between the slats in my closet and beneath my dresser; it was then that I saw, reflected back at me, thousands of glittering stygian jewels filled with visions of my bursting flesh and white fangs begging for the privilege.

The drooling womb between my legs popped and leaked as the cluster of my new kin swelled into a mass around me.