Primax’s vision swirled as she came to. Instead of the round Tupperware she was first captured in, she was placed on a patch of dirt, with a piece of cardboard in the middle. She shakily stood on her legs, examining her surroundings. A rock was placed behind her, but that and the piece of cardboard were the only landmarks. She turned to her right and began to walk, when her mandibles smacked into an invisible barrier. She stepped back, and her abdomen met the same barrier.
“No. This can’t be happening to me. This is just a nightmare.” Primax said, her voice cracking. The lights suddenly went out, leaving a black-light to be the only source of available light. A pair of hands quickly lifted the cardboard, revealing empty space.
“What is this place?” Primax asked herself aloud.
“Your arena of death.” A voice answered back. Primax instinctively swiveled her head to source of the voice. Her sharp eyes immediately caught the sight of the spider.
“Who are you?” Primax said, sliding her stinger out of its sheath.
“Morte.” The spider said as she dropped down from a spindle of thread. Primax caught a glimpse of the red hourglass shape on the spider’s belly, marking her as a black widow. “But you’ll only have a minute to say your last goodbyes to the specks of dust.” Morte said as she scuttled towards Primax.
Primax sidestepped, avoiding the spider in enough time to get ready to attack. Adrenaline rushed through her veins like it did whenever she and her group of workers brought down prey and enemies.
“You little sneak!” Morte hissed, her fangs dripping with venom. Primax made the second move, slowly stalking her enemy.
“You can’t win against me, ant. I kill everything that is dropped into my lair.” Morte laughed wickedly. “Even look at the display case on the wall.” Primax flicked a glance at the cases of dead insects. Flies, centipedes, other spiders, ants, dragonflies. The cases went along the whole wall.
“You’re wrong, Morte. I will kill you.” Primax said, charging towards the spider. She caught the widow off guard, slamming mandibles deep behind Morte’s eyes. Primax secured her with two of her legs as her stinger curved under, oiled with the venom she could’ve easily killed a person with. She inserted her stinger into Morte’s soft stomach, making the spider curse aloud. She stung her again and again, filling her with toxins. She released the spider, backing away.
“Is….Is that the best you can…do? I’m the Queen of Death…I can’t be...killed…” Morte shuddered her last words as her legs collapsed, leaving Primax the victor of the human’s sick game. Primax heard the human teenagers whoop and jeer at one another.
Morte’s owner began taking down the reminders of her reign of death, putting the dead specimens in plastic baggies and into a shoebox. A teen reached into the tank with some tweezers, pulling out Morte’s carcass. Primax watched as a pin nailed the spider into the corkboard in one of the display cases, and was hung on the wall.
Another hand reached down, plucking Primax from the glass cage. Adrenaline was replaced with anger as she readied herself for the attack, curving her stinger inward. She was dropped back into the tank, and given a piece of meat to eat.
“This is torture. I hope the colony is surviving.” Primax said with a slight sob, as she started to eat the small piece of food.
She finished, and started to burrow into the dirt, building a small lair for her to avoid the human’s gaze as she plotted her escape from the ‘Arena of Doom’.