by R.A. Goli
The pirates spilled from the docks and into the village. They were after food, silk, and animal hides. Women, too.
Elizabeth ran back to her cottage, remembering the rough hands of the man who’d used her for his pleasure last time.
She released her familiars. By nightfall, a hundred rats invaded the ship and hid until the pirates set sail. Then they attacked.
These rats carried a disease new to these men. Soon their gums would bleed and teeth would fall out. Their bones would become brittle and pustules would burst from their skin.
The Red Fleet would never return.
R.A. Goli is an Australian writer of horror, fantasy, and speculative short stories, who enjoys reading, the occasional cemetery walk, and annoying her dog, two cats, and husband.