Blended Family

by Scott O’Neill

I awaken to paralysis. Blinding lights. Hospital smells.

I vaguely recall feeling dizzy at Mom’s wedding reception.

“You’re conscious.”

My new stepfather glides into view, wearing blood-spattered scrubs and a lunatic grin.


He tilts my head right. I see my new stepbrother, Caleb, unconscious on a gurney. Gleaming surgical staples circumscribe his upper arm, above a Celtic tattoo like mine.

Exactly like mine.

My head gets tilted left. More staples. I see Caleb’s arm grafted onto my shoulder.

The tectonic plates of my sanity shiver and buckle.

“Now you’re really part of our family, and we’re part of you.”


Scott O’Neill

Scott writes reports and memorandums by day and speculative fiction by night, with short works published by various presses. You can find him on the socials as @wererooster.

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