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February 27, 2014

Herpetophibia: A common specific phobia which consists of fear or aversion to reptiles, commonly lizards and snakes and similar vertebrates as amphibians. It is one of the most diffused animal phobias, very similar and related to ophidiophobia (fear of snakes). This condition causes slight to severe emotional reaction, as for example anxiety, panic attack or most commonly nausea.

“You’ve got to help me Doctor, you’re my last hope!” I said desperately. He sat behind an imposing desk in front of the window. I avoided his gaze, my face turned to the sidewall.

“Tell me about your problem Frederic.” His voice was mellow and soothing. Tremors racked my body. Sweat soaked my shirt.

“At first it was bearable, the Zards were scarce and easily avoided. But time passed, the economic and cultural ties increased as did the Zard presence. It got so that it started affecting my life. I couldn’t set foot outside of the house without running into some evidence of their existence. They were everywhere, on the streets, at work, and in the stores. A group of them even moved in next door. I couldn’t stand seeing them. I started staying inside all the time with the curtains tightly closed. I lost my job, my home and finally my family. It got so bad that I started contemplating suicide.” I gulped and held the scented handkerchief to my nose.

“The Zards are friendly, what is it about them that upsets you so much Frederick?”

“They’re just so, so scaly!” I burst out. “Their eyes are slits, they have forked tongues, they are cold-blooded, they smell musty, and they move, well, wrong!” I concentrated on breathing deeply and slowly, trying to calm the frantic beating of my heart.

“How do you react to them Frederick?”

“They give me the shivers. I can’t catch my breath. My heart pounds like crazy. I throw up all the time.”

“Have you tried treatment before Frederick?”

“No, I was too afraid to tell anyone what was wrong with me.”

“You did the right thing in coming to me. You have a condition called Herpetophobia.”

“Is it treatable Doctor?”

“There are proven therapies which have excellent results. I’m going to start you on a round of anti-anxiety medications and schedule you for biweekly psychiatric counseling.”

“Thank you Doctor Ssssahn, thank you so much.” I steeled myself, took his chilly clawed hand in mine and shook it gratefully.


In response to Multiverse Fiction Challenge: February 24th, 2014
Reptillian: The universe is run by a reptillian race of humanoids that are stronger and smarter than most humans. What happens in this world? I want to know your take on this universe.

  1. I like that. A fun take on the universe with a little twist at the end. Very well done.

    By the way you can say you were the official first challenge participant in the new Multiverse challenge. If it gets really huge you can always know you were the first. I was a bit worried but also prepared to not have any links for the first couple challenges. Thank you for making that not true.

    • emilykarn permalink

      I did have to think about the challenge for a couple of days before I finally came up with a story. I’m glad you liked it and my twist. I’m surprised that I’m the first.

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