A silent serpent slithers down my spine and its tongue draws taunting patterns on my bare back. The cold animal warms my even colder body. It fills me with awe first. It is slow and deliberate, very cautious. The vibrant colours fill my dreams. It crawls up my neck. I feel accustomed to it, almost comfortable, even friendly. It can’t be that bad… right?

Air fills my lungs and escapes in a fit of short lived relief. The staccato of my heartbeat returns to a reasonable pace. My eyes close. My lips turn up. I feel accomplished. The vermin becomes the world that I have conquered. Little do I know that it is it that has conquered me. I stare into it’s eyes. They never blink. They shine. They reflect me. They understand my understanding of myself. It is relieving to be known like that. I let it crawl on my legs until it becomes a pest- slowing me down and draining my resources. It finally talks to me in hisses and lisps. It slowly whispers commands and I oblige. It feeds off of my brain and I let it. It caresses my cheek with the rest of its body resting gently around my stiff neck. I love it with all my heart, mostly because my heart will stop beating when I choke to my death- when not if. 

The hisses have increased in volume. It shouts now. It knows I will oblige. Its scales adorn my hand as it makes its way up my sleeve. I let out a chuckle at the irony. Mistake. Having warmed me enough, it moves swiftly, the forked tongue sending thunder down my spine. The green scales haunt my nightmares and the unseeing eyes- so shallow that they only reflect- make me shudder. I look into them again, and disgust kicks in with the venom.