Full Moon

Full Moon

The time is twenty minutes past midnight. I make my way out of the house by my usual routes and slither round the house, to assure myself, and to note recent changes and happenings. The rat emerges from the hole near the orange tree, pauses to sniff the night air, and rushes to the trash heap in a corner of the compound. A few moments of scrabbling yield a prize: the head of a fish, which was thrown out only so recently.

This is the thrill of the hunt. With his meal in his jaws, he bounds a short distance away. He puts it down, and for a brief moment I am treated to a view of what a statue of a rat is like, so still does he stand, sniffing the air. Finally, sensing nothing, he settles down to enjoy his meal, little knowing that he is doing his own version of The Last Supper. I slither up to the unwary rodent, and inside my mouth, I make ready inch-long fangs. As he picks up the last of the entrails, his peripheral vision catches my movement, and suddenly he is staring death in the face.

Beady rodent eyes gaze into flat, expressionless ophidian eyes, and for the briefest of moments, I detect a flicker of confidence in the eyes. Could it be that he has a defensive strategy? Rather not, evasion is more the usual option, but just then, the full moon slips behind a dark cloud. All that is left is the glitter of eyeshine, two pairs of eyes, nocturnal animals, predator and prey, hunter and hunted. I flick out my tongue and taste the air. Yes, it is there; I can sense it. Among the forty-something other smells I can perceive, it still stands out. The rancid, sweaty taste of fear. I flare my nostrils ever so slightly, enabling the super sensitive heat pits on the sides of my head to picture him: sweet, warm blood, gushing through his veins, his hairs raised slightly, making him appear larger. I taste the air again. The fear is still there, but there is a grim determination underlying it. He will make a break for it, or die trying.

By the way, dear reader, if you can read this, then I’m probably dead. Then again, maybe you are dead, because it is only the dead, or my death, that can divulge this diary’s location, or the contents thereof. Science and scientists tell us of the evolution of species from the primitive life-forms in the primordial ‘cosmic soup’, yet they fail to give us valid or satisfactory explanations to such phenomena as vampires, ball lightning, or the origin of cancers. They claim to have conquered earth, and deem space the final frontier, yet medicine leaves more questions than answers, and they still will not explore the Bermuda Triangle.

This testament is true. I know it to be so. I think I will be dead long before any other living pair of eyes reads this, for I intend to carry my secret to my grave, but that does not detract in any way from the veracity of the account.
I have always known I was different, even as a child, I just knew. I was not very different physically from any other child, but I just knew I was not like them. My differences began to attain frightening proportions after I turned thirteen. There is something about that age, maybe it is because of the physical and psychological changes that occur at about that age, and the sense of navigating uncharted waters.

I remember it well .It was two weeks and five days after my thirteenth birthday, and I had been joyously counting the first non-downy strands of pubic hair. The time was three minutes before one pm, and I was in Jss 3. We were nearing the end of a particularly interesting English Language class, when suddenly the ceiling caved in, bringing tons of cement and concrete down, and burying more than half the class in an avalanche of cement and classroom furniture from the class above us. It was a mercy that the students from the class were out at the Chemistry laboratories, and the class was empty. The carnage would have been indescribable. Our English teacher, Mr Akinnifesi, was the worst affected, as he was at the blackboard in front of the class. A large slab of concrete from the ceiling fell on him, causing severe head injury from which he sadly never recovered. Students from the class above us, who were on their way back after their practical, on hearing the crash and seeing the scene, rushed in to help. An alarm was raised, and a crowd of volunteers soon gathered to rescue the buried students. I had been standing in class, having failed to answer a particular question satisfactorily, and as such, I was struck in the head by a large piece of concrete from the ceiling, and I went down.

Looking back, I do not remember any pain, shock or fear. My only recollection was of falling through a long, dark tunnel, with the wind screaming in my ears and my limbs flailing for balance. I woke up fourteen hours later in a hospital bed to find the anxious faces of my mother and several nurses staring down at me. I had been found wedged in a seemingly impossible space under most of the rubble, unconscious but alive, with bruises on my body and a large bump on my head being the full extent of the injuries I came away with. The doctors and nurses fussed over me (a given, since my father was a consultant at the state general hospital, and my mother was a well known business woman), and the next four days were a blur of tests, scans, and X-rays. More awkward, and more personally disturbing, were the appearance of scaly skin on my upper arms and back. My skin appeared to be flaking off, and the dermatologist could only attribute it to exfoliative dermatitis brought about by trauma and the hormonal changes associated with puberty. Medications were prescribed, which I took religiously. I was considered one of the more fortunate victims, as the sighting of a long black snake in the debris only helped to fuel the panic, and more people actually picked up injuries while in a mad dash to flee the serpent’s supposed location.

That was the first episode. Through this and a number of other events, I came to the horrifying conclusion. I was a snake! From time to time, I had sudden urges to swallow chunks of meat whole, to lie on my belly and crawl, and to crawl under doors and into crevices. I also began to find myself wondering about what it felt like to eat lizards, rats, and other rodents. By this time I was closer to fourteen than thirteen, and I was eager to experiment and learn more.

One fine night, at the time of the full moon, I prepared myself, and went early to bed, claiming tiredness. In truth, I could not sleep. I lay expectantly for hours, waiting for midnight. When the alarm clock on the bedside table began to beep, I grabbed it and silenced it before it woke the entire house. I crawled out through the window, and stood stark naked in the moonlight. I tried to focus myself on the urges, but after fifteen minutes of closing my eyes and trying to meditate, I was just a human being shivering in the humid night air. I then relaxed, and almost immediately had the same intense feeling of falling through the tunnel once again. I gave in to my impulses and soon found myself slithering around on the dew wet grass.

This new world was a wilderness of sensations. Again and again, I stuck out my tongue, tasting the air. With my serpentine nature came heightened sensory awareness, improved night vision, and a keener insight into the happenings around me. From my place on the ground, I watched with fascination as a large owl swept noiselessly to the ground, seizing a mouse and making off with it before the confused mouse could wonder why its predator had seemingly streaked out of nowhere.

I loved this new world. Speech was unnecessary, facial expressions irrelevant. Only perception mattered, and I had some of the sharpest sensory organs in the entire animal kingdom. I slithered around the compound, tasting the air almost every minute, and shivering in excitement from the sheer number of sensations I perceived. After a long time, I crawled back to the window, and suddenly I was there, naked and shivering in the chilly night air. That was the first episode. I soon found myself waiting for the full moon every month. I craved the wind tunnel experience, and the sheer, vivid joy of sensations beyond description. It was my own private world, a place where I could escape from the cares and stress of the world above. At a time when most teenagers were finding and experimenting with drugs, alcohol, and sex, I had this, this deeper and more bestial experience to find succour in.

Over time, I mastered my urges, to live with them, and finally, to control them rather than be subject to them. It was difficult at first, but time and practice helped a lot. On one occasion, I nearly let myself slip. I had gone out drinking with friends, and was midway into my third bottle, which was virgin territory, as opposed to my more experienced drinking buddies. Soon after, when I tried to rise, I found myself assailed by a curious inability to stay stable on my feet, or perhaps it was the ground that was suddenly uneven. Whichever it was, I sank to the ground under the table, and would have commenced trying to slither out of the room, was it not for one of my friends who promptly pulled me out from under. Little did he know that, only a few seconds later, he would have pulled out a long black snake.

Back to that night. As the moon emerged from behind the clouds, the air seemed to change. My tongue, dancing rapidly in and out between my lips, detected a new, yet familiar scent. Primordial instincts drew me, beckoned to a part of me that was previously dormant. The rat, thinking himself safe, bolted for safety. Too late, too late by a second and a half. Tightly bunched muscles sprang loose; inch long fangs struck the rodent in the small of his back, shooting venom into his system. Panicked, the rat abandoned all thought of skill or stealth, and bolted like a demon from hell. But it was enough. The accelerated heart rate due to the exertion would quicken the spread of the toxins through his system, and in no time at all, we were going to have ourselves a very dead rat. Moreover, the signature scent of my poison would be easy to trace.

That scent again, stronger this time. I lay flat on the ground, flaring my nostrils, tongue waving frantically, trying to locate the source of the scent. My senses pulled me towards a small hole in a corner of the compound. To my great surprise, a young female was moulting off the last vestiges of old scales, sloughing off the skin like a silken undergarment. It was indescribable, beyond sensation. No words can ever capture the essence of that moment. If I had been human, I’m very sure I would have caught my breath. Visualise a young man, suddenly finding himself in a boudoir, with the jewel of the sultan’s harem so unabashedly baring herself for his appreciation, and you would have understood a tiny part of what the experience was like.

So I crawled up to her, and thus began an elaborate courting ritual, that consisted of entwining and slithering over ourselves and each other. She was somewhat impressed by something I am not quite sure of, but since I am not altogether a bad looking human (in that form), it is safe to say I had at least a little of that nameless and elusive quality that intrigues and or excites females of a serpentine sort. So with the moon shining brightly in the sky, the cries of night birds ringing in the still air, and the chirping of crickets providing a steady baseline to their songs, and the gentle rustling of the leaves above and below, we mated.

I have had some experience of the sex act in humans, and it is extremely pleasurable. But this is sweeter yet. It is more than a mere joining of the sexes; it is more than a meeting of the sex organs, and it is not listless wrangling. The myriad sensations we reap from the mating ritual is more than what is humanly explicable, it is the apogee of sensations. So engrossed were we in our limbless lovemaking, that we were totally oblivious to the passage of time. At last, sated by the expenditure of our mutual passions, we parted. Communication, though devoid of speech, took place. We assured ourselves that propagation of the species was our prime responsibility, and that we had to do all we could to live up to it.

As I crawled slowly towards the house, I tasted the air casually. My earlier prey had succumbed to the toxins, and was now lying dead somewhere close by, but not within sight. It would have taken a bit of time for me to find him, but a glance at the house, where a light had suddenly come on, made me realise that I did not have such a commodity in excess. I followed my usual route, to the little used cluster of rooms at the rear of the house, and then in through a crack in the wall. I was going past the kitchen, when the lights suddenly went on, blinding me temporarily.

There, clad in pajamas, still mildly groggy from sleep, was my Uncle John, who had probably gotten up to do some reading. He took one look at me, on the kitchen floor, and yelled. Soon the house was agog with noises, doors opening and closing, feet clattering down stairs, and the like.
Let me provide a little background information. I live with my uncle, his wife, and their kids. It was a fairly large house, with four bedrooms upstairs, and one converted bedroom downstairs. My uncle is a doctor, and loves to wake at night to read. The children, the eldest of whom is seventeen, are three, namely, Adesuwa, Susan, and Moses.

I hastily ducked behind and under the refrigerator, when he screamed, then I surreptitiously made my way back to my room, and slid under the door, little knowing that Susan was coming to wake me. I was still lying on my room floor, stark naked, when she started knocking on the door. I knew she would not go beyond knocking. My room door is almost always locked, ostensibly due to the fact that I sleep in the nude because of the heat.

Osazuwa! Come quick! Papa says there’s a snake in the house. I hastily began to dress, while her knocking continued. I was just putting on a shirt when the knocking was replaced by a violent pounding.
I hastily opened the door. Glaring at me furiously, wearing his pajamas, glasses and an angry look was my uncle John.
‘What the hell is wrong with you?’ he queried. I sent Susan to get you long ago.
‘Sorry’, I mumbled, feigning a sleepy pose.
You sleep too deeply, there’s a snake in this house, and you well know that there are children here. My wife is pregnant, and in her condition we can’t have that kind of menace here.

I sleepily joined him in his search, which lasted until dawn, but I knew better. The snake was gone. Furious at not finding even a trace of the snake that he alone say, he retired upstairs, promising all who cared to listen (and I did not) that he would call in the exterminators as soon as it was daylight.
For all I care, he can call in two million exterminators, and they can take the house apart, brick by brick and shingle by shingle. They can strip the house down to its foundations, and spray it with enough chemicals to kill every snake in the world. But one thing I know: Come next month, at the time of the full moon, there will still be a snake in the house, and I will still be in a very deep …….”

The door slammed suddenly. Startled, the maid hurriedly closed the diary and dropped it in a drawer, then pushed it closed. Turning to the bed, she began to straighten the sheets, hoping that the occupant of the room would not notice her indiscretion. On hearing footsteps at the door, she turned, picked up her mop and bucket, and made to leave. He waved her on, saying, ‘Go on, finish up, take your time’, before making a beeline for the bathroom. He was tall, slim, and light-skinned. He moved gracefully, almost as if to a tune. He had a quick smile on his handsome face, and his eyebrows were thick and dark. Emerging from the bathroom, he walked to the dresser and opened a drawer. He froze when he saw the book, lying inside, next to his other books, instead of next to his underwear in the next drawer. With a smile that did not quite reach his eyes, he turned to the maid with the notebook in his hand.

‘Oh my God, I’m very sorry sir, please don’t report about this, I didn’t mean to pry, just that it was there, and….. open, please don’t…. She wrung her hands in frustration, and ran a hand through her thinning brown hair. He suddenly burst out laughing.
Please, I need the job, ‘cause my children need to eat, and there are bills to pay, and… ‘She tapered off, surprised by his laughter.

‘You still don’t get it, do you?’ he asked. She turned to look at him, and stared in shock.
He was standing by the door, the key in his hand, and a long black forked tongue was darting out from between his lips. She suddenly understood. With a scream, she fled from the room. His laughter rang out loud and long behind her as she entered the bedroom. Seeing nowhere to run to, she immediately ran to the bathroom and opened it. She locked the door, bolted it, and weighing her options, headed straight for the window, drew back the curtain, and froze.

There was a full moon up in the sky.

48 thoughts on “Full Moon” by eyekay (@eyekay)

  1. The story has the right amount of suspense…but there was no need for that abrupt departure shortly after you began. That slowed the story down…almost to distraction. And then, you managed to up it again at the end. Not bad.

    1. @Seun-Odukoya I have to disagree here. There was nothing out of place in this excellent piece of work.

      No distractions or speed bumps. But then again we all can agree to disagree.

      I even got my sister-in-law to read this (and she is loves reading), she was blown away!

      Your comments are valued here, unfortunately some do not have minds to think for themselves, hence once they read a negative comment or critique, they tend to jump on the bandwagon.

      Before you know it, every other comment that follows reflects and echoes comments coming from valued members such as yourself in our community.

      1. @aturmercy

        Do you have a problem with me?

        And you’re not even the author of this. How therefore; does the issue concern you?

        The purpose of the site is to; share Nigerian stories by Nigerians with the world and to help writers improve their art. What do you mean by ‘negative comment or critique’? I should only speak when I have something glowing/impressive/ass-kissing to say about the stories?

        Are you even serious?!

        So because ‘some do not have minds to think for themselves’ I should keep my observations to myself? That’s quite…er…laughable.

        Mind your lane, dear ‘sir’…and I will mind mine. And don’t try to soap me over with your ‘valued member such as yourself’ bullshit. EVERY ONE on this site is a valued member – commenting or not.

        Thank you for bothering.


        1. @Seun-Odukoya

          I don’t have a problem with you.

          But I have a problem with when someone whose opinion seems to be valued in a community does not have any regard for those who value their opinion.

          My observations from your some of comments on different posts or topics have often been discourteous, rude, crass, abrasive and down right arrogant.

          The fact that a writer has written what you consider crap does not give you the license to squash their spirit with your critique, responses or comments.

          You are not required to be ass-kissing, but decency requires and demands that you be courteous.

          This is a wonderful forum where some, if not most of us have come to hone our skills, and this we will accomplish with constructive criticisms that are not derogatory in any manner.


          1. @aturmercy

            Thank you for bothering to read through my comments (I have a fan) and ‘selecting’ those that are ‘discourteous’ ‘rude’ ‘crass’ abrasive’ and ‘down right arrogant’. And you say you don’t have a problem with me?
            There’s a lot of beef in your speech, my guy. I read anger and resentment. Well – I’m sorry I can’t help you with that.

            And you have come to this brilliant conclusion by reading how many of my comments exactly?

            You’re a typical fault-finder. If I have a problem with a story, I state it clearly with no rancor whatsoever. I have never allowed my opinion of a story color my opinion of a writer. Two different things, gentleman.

            You amuse me. I doubt if you know what you’re talking about. You haven’t even read some of the really nasty comments on this site.
            But seriously dude – you said in your first comment; ‘we agree to disagree’…and then you take the time to point out why you disagree with my opinion. If truly you believe we agree to disagree, why did you not just make your own comments and move on? So why did you have to reply to my post? It’s my opinion. I am entitled to it.

            And be clear when you speak. If my opinion is valued, is it not my responsibility to make sure that I only give my honest and sincere opinion to those who value it? I have every right to speak how I feel. And I try to be as polite as possible whenever I give my opinions.

            “The fact that a writer has written what you consider crap”

            And where did this come from? At what point did I call this crap? Guy…seriously?!
            This assures me that you definitely do have a problem with me. It’s a privilege. Thanks.

            And to add to Tola’s observation; you must be the writer in disguise…or at least his girlfriend or something. Just because you think the story is fantastic does not mean we all must agree with you. No common reader would take things so personal.

            Dude…take whatever you have on your mind somewhere else. I will not reply any further – because I refuse to see what your point is – that is even assuming you have any.

            1. @Seun-Odukoya

              Lol…It doesn’t take a brain surgeon to realize I was not referring to your comments on this piece of work as crap.

              I’m cool with your observations. The message I needed to get across has been understood.

              Not everyone has the spine to stand up for what is right or what they believe in.

              1. @aturmercy, your use of such words as “discourteous, rude, crass, abrasive and down right arrogant” to describe a fellow member or reviews is not acceptable. Unless you have proof to counter their critique, please go ahead to leave yours and move on.

                There are moderators always on this site and they would be the first to remove unnecessary or harrassing comments or reviews. You can also email or send a private massage to Admin anytime. There is no need for victims, vendattas or champions here. This is a level playing field where everyone can learn and exchange views.

                You may find some context on NS criticisms at these links





            2. bros, no be me oh, i no even know the person!

  2. Whoa!
    Story of the month.
    You are very good!
    This is not stuff for beginners.

  3. But the title is…

    1. @kaycee, don’t understand, kindly elucidate

  4. ….Nice, nice… U did good with this I must say. Might scare some people shitless, but at least it kept me interested. One thing I’ll say is, U know Ur snake behaviour. Well done.

    I’m guessing the window must have been too small for her to crawl through…
    Well done once again.

    1. raymond, thanks sir. the window was sma, in addition to being rather high.

  5. This is superb man. You did justice to this story, and those snake movements actually gave me goose bumps. Are you sure this is fiction? I love this. Good job.

  6. This was beautifully written, @Eyekay.

    Did he only change into a snake at the full moon? You implied this, but it was never made clear.

    Also, I felt the sex scene didn’t really add much to the story – take it out, and the story would still be as good as it was.

    But the descriptions were exquisitely crafted, and I liked the POV switch at the end too. I think the sense of danger would have been heightened even more if you had hinted that the MC not only ate rats but larger prey too.

    Please accept 20 points for a job well done.

    1. Na wah o Tola. Does everything need to be explicit? It was quite obvious the change usually takes place during full moon.

      So why is the sex scene in appropriate or doesn’t add much to the story? It is obnoxious, offensive, rude and impolite that you can state with authority that something should be taken out of what? Something you wrote or was written on your behalf?

      NS is a beautiful avenue for all of us to either showcase our talent (if we have any) or learn to become better at what we like to do, alternatively, those who don’t write can stick to reading and if reading, appreciate the good, bad and down right ugly. If nothing else, it gives a basis for comparison.

      All those critiquing the work of others, please do it with consideration. Constructive criticism is good, welcome and acceptable. Too much of anything is bad! Even moderation needs to be taken in moderation. Please critique with care and politeness.

      The writer is the one inspired with a story and the story should and must be told as inspired. Overtime we all learn how to craft, present and articulate whatever we have been inspired with.

      1. @Aturmercy, why are you so exercised by my comments?

        I don’t hear the writer complaining. Or are you the writer in disguise?

        1. Tola, you mean exorcised, right? If so, I guess you need to address my response to your earlier comment.

          1. I did mean exercised, @Aturmercy, as in ‘upset’. Personally, I saw nothing obnoxious or offensive in my comments. In fact, I liked the story so much I gave the writer 20 points.

            Now to your comments:

            It was not obvious to me that the snake’s change happened during the full moon. Not everything needs to be explicit in a story (and I could guess that this was the case), but this was a central part of the story; without knowing it, it wasn’t clear why the full moon at the end was significant. It felt like referring to a main character in a story without a proper introduction; that can lead the reader to wonder if he has missed out something.

            Like I said, I felt the sex scene didn’t add much to the story. I did not state with “authority”; as can be seen from the emphasis, this was my opinion. I don’t mind the addition of sex scenes, but are they just being added for the sake of addition, or do they tell me something about the characters or the events in the story that give it more meaning? I did not feel this – but if @Eyekay is reading this, he can explain.

  7. This was a really good piece of writing, you did the horror and suspense well. I just wished you were able to find an original way of having him turn to a snake. Full moons are too closely tied to werewolves.

    1. I second @Myne‘s comment here. Find an original way to flip to snake. I also note @Seun-Odukoya‘s point: the pivot was too quick, and it took a while to reconnect.

      Competent prose, nonetheless. I liked it.

      @Raymond, you know this dude?

      1. Lol, good question

  8. My oh My….what a story. Some fiction this is. You description of the snake movements were so explicit. My best part was when the uncle discoverd the snake.

    I wish it dint have to be a full moon to bring it out tho’.
    Good writing.

  9. i will read this two more times, and then go out to check if there is a full moon in the sky…..my own way of saying this is a nice piece

  10. Superb!!…

  11. Walahi, you betray such a good story with a common title!
    Well done EyeKay…you be @Raymond brother?
    Nice one. Here’s sending twenty-four points your way…Well done!!

  12. No b small tin.
    Finally i’ve seen a fantasy writer on Ns.

    1. @louis

      You must have come to NS last week. There are several fantasy writers on NS. And besides…this is NOT fantasy.

      1. Ha!



        1. hahahahahahahaha. @kaycee! @seun-odukoya, you guys are something else! hehehehehehehehe

  13. I’m wondering why this didn’t scare me… Not even the part where the reader was supposed to be dead to be reading it. This is a cool story you got though. I’ve always known you’re a good writer.

  14. This one got me…totally
    Its so scary how you are making snakes feel cool, but i still love it

  15. @weirdpile, thanks, it was actually inspired by a snake I killed in the compound one morning. maybe it was my own way of apologising to the serpent. did he/she/it get the apology? I leave that question for others to answer #winks#

  16. I like this story. Good job.
    You implied quite a few things, which were never made clear enough.
    But well written all the same.

  17. @eyekay, oya, say after me: This is good. Again! yes, this is truly is good. Kudos bro.

  18. something made some sound as i was reading this, and i dont need to tell u what happned next! scintillating…..

  19. OMG! Damn! This is too good! Eyekay, ya mama born you well, well. respect!

    I truly enjoyed reading this! Superb piece of work. Wow!

  20. Mhnn (2X)!
    Just trying to catch my breadth. @eyekay, what can I say that has not been said? You know you are a good writer right? Know this too, you are a great writer!
    Did that come out right? cos it sounds to me like an understatement.
    I kept looking at the floor and under my desk, close to my feet to be sure that… well, haba, I wasn’t scared o!
    Your description of the serpentine and nocturnal lives is too intense that it stirs up in me suspicion. Kidding!
    Hah, poor maid. Her own chapter is certainly closed.
    I like this!

  21. Others have said theirs, and I’ll say mine.

  22. Others have said a lot about this story.

    My only addition would be that there happened to be no genesis to the act of transforming into a snake.
    I believe there should…unless you mean that it all started when the school building collapsed.

    Is that the reason he became a changeling?

    This is where the story’s belivability is lacking…the snake dude has no history of his serpentine nature.

    1. Perhaps you should read it again, I think you’ll find no need for your question

      1. @dottaraphels Why? Did he make changes to the story?
        Tell me something I don’t know!

  23. Now this is truly superb.. kinda makes me feel warm all over, with appreciation for a really great story teller.

    1. thankee kindly, good lady, thankee kindly

  24. @afronuts, sorry for the long break, I’ve been away, just saw the comments, thanks a million to everyone for the constructive criticism. the guy is or shd I say was a changeling, end of story,. as for the bit about the moon…. the moon already stands accused of so much, does one more accusation really tip the balance all that much? dunno sha. thanks to all again, esp @aturmercy and @seunodukoya, who nearly donned boxing gloves to discuss my writing. hope one day twil all be worth it.

  25. my highly belated comment – this is interesting………

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