Pat O’Malley
15 min readDec 31, 2022


The air in Lycia is a sweltering haze. Far past the canyon and the rumbling volcanoes, the border of the Mediterranean Sea awaits merchants who will never arrive. For on a dry, gravelly path curving throughout the canyon, the dreaded hybrid monster of Greece feasts upon its latest prey.

A massive lion’s head with golden fur and a shaggy orange mane bouncing with fleas bites into a flank of meat. Large, sharp claws press down on the cattle’s shredded body as the feline head takes its time gnawing at the dead animal.

The creature pays no mind to the small fires, smoldering wooden carts, and burning bodies surrounding it.

An irritable braying noise comes from the beast’s second head located between its shoulder blades. The bearded, toothy head of a goat, larger than the body of any normal goat, with sharp curled horns crowning its brow. Behind the large lion’s body at the end of the creature are two dark, wooly hooves serving as hind legs.

Then there was the tail. Several feet long, covered in green scales, and alive. The third head, its long serpentine neck ending in the diamond-shaped head of a vicious snake swayed and hissed excitedly.


“Will you shut up?!” The Goat snapped.

There were no words in the animal’s sounds, only visible in their minds.

“And you, are you finished yet? You know I hate being too full,” the Goat asks the lion.

“Leeb me arone,” the Lion grumbles through a mouth full of meat.

“Here I was thinking today was going to be different! Instead, we’re just clawing at the same gutless vermin as we do every day!” The Goat snorted.


The Lion’s head stopped chewing and spat out soggy flesh.

“I can’t eat this. Without the taste of a decent fight, food just tastes bland,” the Lion grumbled.

“Remind me again why wandering around this wretched dirt pit is worthy of our time?” The Goat asked.

The Lion sighed annoyed.

“It’s like I already told you. Last night before we demolished that temple, I overheard a couple of priests talking about some ugly brute that’s settled itself in a cave in Lycia eating travelers.

“HEARSAY!” The Snake hissed.

Ignoring, the Lion continued.

“Half-eaten corpses have been found littered around outside of a cave deep in Lycia where a tall humanoid-looking figure has been spotted entering and leaving.”

“Sounds like some overgrown ape.” The Goat snorted.

“DEATH TO ALL PRIMATES!” The Snake shouted.

“It could be a giant. Been a while since we fought one of those. If nothing else, we’ll get to kill some boredom.”

“Hrrrrm, I see your point. Whoever or whatever this mysterious cave dweller is, it falls on us to once again impart a valuable lesson. We are the ones to be feared, not they.” brayed the Goat.

As the three animal heads conversed amongst themselves, they fail to notice the figure stirring from the nearby remains of a merchant cart. It was an older, brawny man, bald with a white mustache. He was dirty, bruised, and seething with rage.

“Monster…you killed them…my family,” the man whispers brushing himself off.

From the splintered cart, he pulls out a large woodcutter’s axe.

“MONSTER! DO YOU HEAR ME?! YOU DIE TODAY!” The old man shouted.

His cry echoed throughout the canyon. All six of the Chimera’s eyes shifted toward their incoming prey. Arching its back, the three-headed monster bared its teeth in half a snarl, half a smile. The snake swayed rapidly back and forth.


“He looks mad,” the Lion growled.

“There really is something endearing about their passion isn’t there?” The Goat smiled.

All three faces shared the same look of sadistic glee. They weren’t hungry anymore. This was for pleasure.

With a loud battle cry the warrior charged at them, his axe raised high.

The nostrils on the Goat’s head flared, exhaling plumes of black smoke before its eyes began glowing yellow. In a braying shriek, a torrent of fire shot from its mouth toward the warrior.

The old man shifted his body. Carefully drawing his steel back, he dove out of the hellfire’s path. Regaining his footing, fear stabbed at the warrior as he realized the fire was only a distraction. With the agility it was infamous for, the Chimera had already pounced in front of the axe wielder’s new direction waiting for his momentum to deliver him to it.

Well aware that this was his best and only chance, the warrior roared and swung his axe at the abominable creature. It wasn’t even close to matching the speed of the Chimera’s claws. The sharp wind sliced across the front of the old man’s body. His face felt wet. The force of the Chimera’s claw knocked the old man down, causing him to drop the axe.

Bleeding and torn, the old warrior reached for the axe laying near him. As his fingers stretched in vain, a large lion’s paw slams down upon his chest, pinning him underneath it. Staring death in the face, the old man meets the gaze of the three-headed sadistic monster staring down at him.

“Alas, hardly any challenges left at all,” the Goat chuckled.

Its eyes glowed yellow again. This time there would be no escape from the fire.

The sun gradually shifted in the vast sky as daylight passed. The menagerie of beasts lumbered down the side of the canyon in search of the mysterious challenger worthy of their presence. The Lion’s head followed the scent of human blood and something unfamiliar.

“ARE WE THERE YET?” The Snake hissed.


“You always say that,” grumbled the Goat.

It was as the sun began to set when the Chimera reached a large, dark cave surrounded by tall boulders at the base of the canyon.

“Something inhuman is in there. I’m certain of it, ” the Lion licked its lips.

“Then let’s make ourselves known,” the Goat grinned.

All three heads of the monster roared. It was unlike any animal’s howl, a dark, unknowable cry that villagers described in frightened whispers to their children. Hearing this sound meant you were about to be gobbled up.

There was no response.

“WHERE ARE THEY? WHO’S NEXT TO DIE?!” The Snake hissed.

Undeterred, the Chimera lumbered on claws and hooves toward the mouth of the cave. Before they could take another step, the vibration of a deafening, angry roar blasted them. In its wake, a large boulder appeared from the darkness of the cave, hurtling straight at the Chimera.

The Chimera smiled, ducking in time before the rock struck. The ground around them began to thump. Loud footsteps bounced off the walls of the cave.

From the darkness, a nine-foot-tall figure emerged, shambling its nine-foot-tall pale-yellow body into the fading sunlight.

A single milky white orb nearly filled the creature’s face. Inside the orb, red veins branched around one very large brown pupil staring angrily at the Chimera. It stood there, naked and menacing, its mouth, an angry sneer of large teeth framed by a long braided, brown beard.

In its hand was the chewed-up torso of a headless body.

“I believe we’re in the right place,” the Goat snickered.

“What is it?” the Lion growled.

“OUR NEXT VICTIM!” cackled the Snake.

The one-eyed monster let out another angry yell, throwing its snack at the Chimera as if that would make it go away. The partially devoured body bounced off Lion’s head.

That did it. Its back arched, the Chimera sprung at the one-eyed brute with murder on its mind. To the shock of the three heads, the hulking thug caught its claws in his hands. The Lion snapped and growled at the monster’s face with its fangs but couldn’t push past the tight grip holding it back.

As Lion’s jaw unsuccessfully snapped at the brute, the Goat’s eyes glowed familiar yellow and a shower of fire blasted from the Goat’s mouth. Yelling, the one-eyed monster tossed the Chimera into the side of an adjacent cliff, knocking the wind out of the beast.

One-Eye brushed the flames off its body more in annoyance than desperation. The Chimera got back on its, and as it sprung into another pounce, the brute grabbed a nearby boulder and hefted it up as though it was a feather. The boulder registered in the Chimera’s mind too late as the brute swung the rock into the body of the hybrid monster.

The Chimera felt one of its ribs break on impact. Pain jolted the three-headed beast but that only increased its lust for the fight. It had wanted a challenger worthy of its strength and it had found it.

Bruised, the Goat shook its head, getting its bearings before shrieking another torrent of fire at the one-eyed monster. Before the fire could reach the brute, the large humanoid clapped its hands together. A sonic boom emerged from the clap, snuffing the Chimera’s fire blast before it could do any harm.

“That’s a first,” mused the Goat.

Roaring, the Chimera charged once more. Seven eyes between the two of them, the two monstrosities clashed in a battle that could be felt throughout the arid canyon. The Chimera knew that if it could only get close enough to the one-eyed adversary, it could inflict some actual damage.

Unfortunately for this strategy, the naked brute was pelting the four-legged hybrid with any rock or boulder it could get its hands on. The Chimera nimbly dodged each throw, inching closer to the brute. For all its agility it failed to account for the brute grabbing another boulder and smashing it into its body. One boulder smashing into the Chimera’s body might be a nuisance but two smacks with a boulder? That will make anyone dazed.

Tenderized, the Chimera’s claws and hooves wobbled on the dirt. Lion and Goat heads were disoriented but that meant nothing to the Snake.

“WEAKLING! IS THIS THE BEST YOU C-ACK!” The Snake’s hiss was cut off.

Grabbing the serpent beneath its neck with two large hands, the one-eyed brute let out a heaving grunt. With massive strength, it whipped the Chimera around by its tail and began swinging the hybrid monster around in a wide circle.

The Lion and Goat could only roar, not in fury but in shock. The two massive hands around its neck meant the Snake couldn’t say anything at all. The three-headed monstrosity was at the mercy of their one-eyed foe. The brute swung them around and around before it withdrew its grip.

The Chimera went flying until it slammed into another cliff face. The one-eyed brute stood there, shoulders heaving with adrenaline as it watched the Chimera struggle to its feet. Regaining its, composure, Goat’s head promptly vomited all over Lion’s mane.

“Did we win?” The Goat gurgled.

“I hate you,” the Lion whined.

“SHUT UP BOTH OF YOU AND ATTACK!” The Snake coughed.

With tremendous fury, the Chimera lunged once more at One-Eye. The brute answered by pelting the beast with as many rocks as it could get its large hands on. Guided by its determination, the Chimera swiftly maneuvered around each throw.

This time when the Chimera pounced on One-Eye, the humanoid didn’t catch the Chimera’s claws with his hands. This time, when One-Eye raised his arm to catch the beat it was met with the Chimera’s sharp

One eye roared in pain, it was not unlike the sound of the Old Man’s voice from earlier. The Lion snarled, its sharp white fangs sunk deeply into the meaty forearm. Amber cat eyes stared directly into the figure’s large globulous optic. Furiously, the figure began shaking its bitten arm hoping to weaken the Chimera’s bite.

The Lion’s jaw strained but refused to be shaken off. Incensed, One-Eye began pummeling Lion’s head with its one free fist. Wincing in pain from each punch, the Goat blasted another shower of flames into the huge figure’s face. Its braided beard singed away at the fire but One-Eye ignored the heat and continuously pounded Lion’s face.

One of Lion’s eyes was already swelling. It knew that it couldn’t hold on to the arm for much longer and the fire was doing seemed to have little effect. Even the Goat was beginning to look uncertain as it desperately blasted more and more fire onto One-Eye.

“So much fire, yet everything grows dark,” The Lion thought as another blow from One-Eye’s fist rocked his face.

Then the pummeling stopped.

The Lion’s head of the Chimera was so taken aback by this sudden pause that its jaw dropped from the Monster’s arm. When Lion’s vision cleared it saw One-Eye stumbling back. The Chimera felt the back of its body being tugged forward.

The Lion and Goat head gazed at the Snake’s head biting down on their adversary’s ankle. As the large figure’s single eye turned to look at the reptile biting its ankle, the Snake detached itself.

“VERMIN!” Hissed the Snaked.

It darted its diamond-shaped head forward, sinking its twin fangs into the humanoid’s arm. One-Eye yelled and ripped the Snake’s head from its arm. As all three of the Chimera’s heads wobbled there on the dirt they noticed that both bite marks on the monster’s body were already beginning to swell into an ugly purple.

One-Eye stared with disbelief and rage as it struggled to walk toward the Chimera. Its chest heaved and panted as its arm and ankle ballooned into darkness. It reached its large arms towards the Chimera as if it could will itself to throttle the beast. The next instant, One-Eye’s hands frantically grabbed at its throat as that too was bulging and turning purple.

Gagging and convulsing, the brute’s singular eye rolled into its head. Its hands dropping limply from its clenched throat, One-Eye keeled over, falling face-first into the dirt. The swollen, poisoned body lay there twitching at the mouth of the cave it had called home, then was still.

Wobbling, filthy and injured, the Chimera collect itself into a victorious posture on it’s four-legs.

“DO YOU SEE US GODS? WE REMAIN UNCHALLENGED!” The Snake hissed at the sky.

“My head…,” the Lion winced.

“Why didn’t you bite him from the START?!” The Goat snapped at the Snake.


The Chimera inspected the lifeless brute.

“Should we eat it?” The Lion sniffed making a sour face.

“Eat flesh brimming with poison? No, I don’t think so,” the Goat snorted.

“Besides, we wanted a worthy challenger and we found one. It deserves some respect.”

“You were looking pretty worried there for a moment. What’s wrong? Is your fire not as hot as it used to be?” The Lion laughed.

“My fire was just fine! I’ll admit you made an excellent distraction for it to punch. If I had a few more minutes he would have been cooked!”

The heads laughed. Even the Snake’s scaled lips curved into a smile. This lasted only for a moment. The Snake suddenly perked up and swayed around in suspicion.

“What’s your problem?” The Goat asked.


“Perhaps you’ve finally reached those gods whose approval you so desperately crave,” The Goat laughed.


The canyon was silent. The only sound was the distant rumbling threats of the volcanoes. The sky above them was vast and blue. A soft breeze blew past the Chimera, there at the bottom of the canyon.

A strange scent caught Lion’s nose. Soon, it joined the Snake in surveying the rocky cliffs surrounding them.

“He’s right, there is something. Whatever it is it’s getting closer. Do you see any other creatures around us? Men hiding in the rocks?”

The Lion and Snake began growling in every direction. The Goat stared anxiously, it did not enjoy not knowing what was happening. The Chimera winced as the pain from its bruised face and ribs jolted its body as it searched for whoever or whatever was coming

“There! Do you see that shadow?” The Goat shrieked.

The Chimera turned to look at a small dark shadow circling them on the dirt. With each lap around the beast, the shadow was growing bigger and taking on a strange shape.

Like a fool, the Lion looked up.

“Wha”-Its growl was swiftly cut off.

With a bloody SPLAT, a long, bronze spear plunged through the shaggy orange mane, right into Lion’s jugular. Completely taken aback, The Lion’s amber eyes stared in disbelief at its two other heads. It tried to roar but only green blood gurgled and dripped from its sharp jaws.

“Stop that! Stop that right now! You’re embarrassing yourself!” the Goat screamed.

“I CAN GED ID OUD!” the Snake’s unhinged jaw was already wrapped around the metal shaft futilely trying to yank it from Lion’s throat.

Impaled with a spear, the Chimera stumbled and tripped on the dirt. A sharp pain, unlike anything it had ever felt, surged through its hybrid body. All three heads howled in agony, more green blood puddling around Lion’s head.

What was happening? HOW was this happening? Who had thrown that damned spear?!

The sound of wings and a horse’s neigh echoed in the canyon. Wincing, the Chimera looked at the source of the sound. A white horse, with wings large enough to carry an animal that size spread out from the equestrian body.

The winged horse glided through the air circling the Chimera. Riding on its back was a male warrior with long dark hair, adorned in golden armor and a long red cape billowing behind him as he soared. In one hand he held a round metal shield, in the other he wielded a sword glinting in the sunset.

With eyes squinted, he stared down at the Chimera.

“Who are you?!” The Goat blasted a gust of fire at the pale steed and its rider.

The horse swerved through the air like a bird, avoiding the fire. The warrior kicked himself off from his steed in mid-air Crying out a battle cry, the warrior dove towards the Chimera with his shield and sword drawn.

“DIE!” The Snake’s mouth shot upwards.

Slashing his sword, the falling warrior carved a knick into the Snake’s nose. The reptilian head flinched away hissing in pain as the swordsman fell past, landing on the furry back of the Chimera.

The Goat craned its neck struggling to incinerate the warrior. Unfortunately for it, it couldn’t twist its neck around to face the enemy on its back. Flames blasted all around the Chimera’s body, everywhere except for where the armored warrior stood.

“Do something! I can’t reach him!”

With its head pounding and a spear lobbed in its neck, the Lion groaned and weakly clawed at the armored man perched on its back. The more effort it put into its swipes, the more blood it wasted, weakening its body.

The Snake’s long body, curled and loomed above, like a serpent cornering a mouse it had found crawling over it.

“I TOLD YOU TO DIE!” Poisonous fangs struck.

Before they could clamp down, the armored man gritted his teeth and bashed the Snake’s head away with his iron shield. A loud CLANGING noise vibrated through the Chimera’s bleeding body. This sound was the last thing the Lion needed, head pounding and throat bleeding, its front paws tripped and the Chimera’s body fell on the dirt.

Sheathing his sword, the warrior dove toward the spear jutting out from Lion’s mane and pushing it deeper into its throat. Two of the Chimera’s heads howled, and the Lion could only gurgle. Wet amber eyes brimming with incomprehension rolled back into their skull. The Lion’s lifeless head plopped into the dirt, its large pink tongue hung loosely from its jaws.

The Goat shrieked a terrible sound. There were no words within them just furious bursts of fire spewing from the monster’s bearded mouth. Unsheathing his sword, the man turned towards where the Goat’s head twisted.

Rushing over, his cape flapping in the wind, the warrior struck his sword down upon the back of the Goat’s neck. With each slice, the warrior bounced around as a sharp horn reeled back at him. The Snake darted at him again but was no match for the warrior’s reflexes bringing the Snake another kiss from his mighty shield.

The man’s blade chopped and chopped away at the giant Goat’s neck. Finally, the horned head of the Goat fell away severed from its neck. The man falls backward as a dying burst of flames belches from the green bloody stump.

Clearing its vision, the Snake is just in time to see the armored man hop off its back. Grabbing one of the large curling horns, the warrior lifts the disembodied Goat’s head and begins walking away.

Not noticing, or rather not caring that two of its heads were dead, what remained of the Chimera lunged its serpent head at the departing enemy. For as long as the Chimera’s tail was it couldn’t reach the distance where the warrior was now. Its four legs were useless. It couldn’t swipe at it with claws or chase it on its legs. Only the Snake portion of the Chimera lived.

The dreaded hybrid monster of Greece had been reduced to a vicious serpent stranded on the ass of a dead animal.


The pale-winged horse glided down softly, galloping onto the ground in front of the man. Its huge wings folded on its back as it calmly watched the warrior strap the decapitated head of the Goat to its side.

“COWARD! GET BACK HERE AND DIE!” The Snake was in a frenzy.

Without understanding the monster, the warrior turned back. He yells out something to the bleeding monster. It is in the same tongue as other men and women that the Chimera had never bothered to understand. In all its twisted life, the only sound it noticed in its prey was the same pathetic sound they all made when they died.


Without another look, the man hopped back onto his winged steed. With the side of his foot, the warrior nudged the horse forward. The white horse galloped, unfolding its white wings as they began to flap. Pushing themselves off in a gust of wind, the rider and his horse ascended from the gravel of the canyons and flew into the twilight sky.


The Chimera watched helplessly as their adversary vanished. A maimed predator, it twitched away alone at the bottom of the canyon. The Snake knew it had no way to escape but it couldn’t stop it from trying. The sound of angry, hissing filled Lycia that night.

Soon they began to sound like pleas for help.




Pat O’Malley

Weird fiction writer. Professional curmudgeon.