Spegg brought me a hotplate, a steak knife, and another bowl of snow this morning. No words, no explanation. He gestured to the cord and then an outlet on the wall next to the cage, and walked away. I immediately drank from the bowl and slumped back against the cage bars. Taking a small clump of snow, I touched my eyes and temples, my forehead, and exhaled deeply before swallowing the rest.

I dropped my gaze to the hotplate. It was from the kitchen. “What the hell am I supposed to do with this?” I said, kicking it with my heel.

“Eat,” he sniffed.

“Eat what?”

“You have food,” he said, examining the disgusting, throbbing womb on the counter top.

“Are you blind, you bastard?!” I screamed, grabbing the knife. “There’s nothing here!”

Spegg bolted across the room, grabbed my hand through the bars, loosed the knife from my grip, and stabbed it into the seal’s carcass.

“Eat!” He demanded, his long, translucent neck bulging with purple veins. He sliced off a chunk of the seal’s flesh, showed it to me, then shoveled it into his mouth.

“You’ve got to be fucking kidding me,” I scowled.

Spegg sniffed, buried the knife in the seal’s back, and turned away.

“You psycho!” I reached through the bars, yanked the knife out, and lobbed it at him pathetically.

Spegg twisted around as the knife clattered harmlessly on the floor. “Chikushou,” he breathed. “Use your hands, then.”