Näcken of the River

by Liv Strom

My music—purer than any human’s—flows out from the bridge’s shade, seeking prey too young for caution and regret.


A treat bounces his ball under my overhang.

It’s here, the music calls.

“Viktor!” a mother shouts.

Hunger churns. Pace it right, and I’ll have both tonight.

Don’t fear…

I retreat, strumming my strings.


Water swirls around his calves. Waist. Neck.

Current and notes tear and ensnare.


The sun flashes on my sickly skin and sharp teeth, on a blond boy, mother and forgotten toy.

My claws pierce tender flesh, and, on the final note, we disappear.

Liv Strom

Liv Strom is a Swedish-Swiss writer of speculative and crime stories, often featuring mythology and twisted fairy tales. You can find her writing in Hexagon SF Magazine, Martian Magazine, and Mystery Magazine, among others. 

Website:  livstromwrites.com


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