The Beast of Montenegro

Life at the Crane’s home was getting increasingly overbearing. Mina at times was inure to the violence, other times she broke down from the pain. It was during this time Mina began to have dizzy spells. For no reason, her mind became still, blacking out in a torpor, not awakening until hours later.

Mina was unaware of having these spells. To her, it was like falling asleep with no memory of what she was feeling or thinking. During one of her spells, she was in her room sitting on the bed. From a distance, she could hear Alena talking to her.

When she came to, she heard the angry voice of her father on the other side of the door, shaking it with his banging. Her vanity had been pushed against it to keep him from coming in. Mina couldn’t recall if she had placed it there.

“Atidaryk duris!” he yelled. “Atidaryk duris!”

Mina couldn’t discern the dialect. She’s never heard her father speak in another language.

“He wants you to open the door,” Alena calmly explains to her. “He won’t be able to come in. At least for now.”

Natalia was absent from the room. Before Mina, could ask about her, Alena kept talking.

“It’s the language of his ancestors,” Alena said. “He speaks it when—when he becomes like this…”

“He’s getting worse,” Mina whispered.

“Don’t worry about him,” Alena said. “He won’t come in.”