Author : Duncan Shields, Staff Writer

The best way to ensure the death of a neighbouring planet’s race is to start with the children.

Camouflage razor skin peeked out pink-eyed from underneath the dappled leaf shadows. Claws re-sheathed back and forth in anticipation. Huge incisors lay exposed over lips designed to widen wounds. The large aural receptors lay back along the body in the deathly stillness that surrounded each unit. Long back legs designed for speed and sharp turns quivered, taut, waiting for the order.

The rabbit-sized killers of children licked their big, pointy, teeth.

Little Suzy Jenkins had a problem with Easter. She was allergic to chocolate. Her parents had hidden boiled eggs to be collected and painted later at the party. Hundreds of tasty chocolate eggs were also spread far and wide around the property of her parent’s bushy ranch for the other children to find. If any of the other kids found a ‘special’ egg, they were to pocket it and bring it back to the egg-painting competition for a prize. They were told to feel free to eat whatever chocolate they found.

Poor Suzy Jenkins.

Suzy was pouting on the front porch and drawing idly in the dirt with a stick when she heard the first scream.

Peter Mooney stumbled around the corner of the house, eyes wide, futilely trying with his small fingers to keep the blue slippery ropes of his guts from sliding out of the open cavern of his stomach onto the dusty ground. It was a losing battle. A loop of bright mucus-wrapped intestine already dragged behind him, gathering leaves, sticks and, Suzy noted with concern, ants.

Several black blurs raced over the ground towards him like low-flying swallows. Rooster-tails of dust blossomed up behind them like miniature power-tool speedboats at full throttle across the lawn.

Several more screams echoed from the back of the house and a few from the neighbouring properties. Suzy could hear the parents talking inside the house, still oblivious to anything happening outside.

The black blurs converged on Peter Mooney’s ankles with a sizzling sound. He went down with a sigh onto his knees before falling forward.

Before he hit the ground, the black shapes stopped racing and pricked up two long ears each.

Suzy brushed long blonde hair out of her large eyes.

It was like the long-eared shapes were listening for directions.

Suzy heard her friend Alison shriek out in the field like nothing she’d ever heard, even during her tantrums in class. The shriek cut off suddenly.

Suzy stood up to take a closer look at the long-eared shapes standing immobile around Peter’s twitching body.

Bunnies! They black shapes were bunnies!

With a joyous shout that turned all of the long ears towards her, she clapped her hands and jumped up and down on the porch.

She was special after all. All the kids that ate chocolate were being punished!

The parents inside had gone quiet. She could hear a newscaster on television frantically telling the audience something about last night’s meteor storm and children.

With two hops, the rabbits that had punished Peter turned towards Suzy and put their ears back. Four more rabbits came tearing around the corner of the house. The other black rabbits joined the pack in sprinting towards her.

Death raced with abandon towards the last child left alive on the property.

Suzy crouched down with her arms outstretched. She smiled wide. This was the best Easter ever!

Suzy heard her mother scream behind her.

The rabbits leapt off the ground and into Suzy’s arms.


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