The dacrodrene (/ˈdækɹoʊˌdriːn/) is a stranger ... ... . characterized by the small seams running down the length of its body. Its surface feels like rubber, and its flesh inside, though appearing similar to heavily-corded muscle tissue in appearance, is composed of this same rubbery substance. Although it does not express fluid regardless of how firmly it is pressed, its inner tissue glistens as though wet.
... .. ... .. incredibly resilient .... ... .
... .... ..... . .. ..... shopping malls, convenience stores ... rows of products and fluorescent lights, tiles that don't affix to the floor ...
... ... . It spends an indeterminate amount of time in this juvenile stage, growing to full size ..... unpredictably1.
The dacrodrene's disposition is .... ... rather inert, with only subtle inclinations and responses to the world around it. It cocks its head at soft sounds, and becomes adverse to sudden stimulus. .. .... .. roams from landmark to landmark.
... ... ..... The dacrodrene meticulously cleans its body with its small claws, giving careful attention to the seams. ..... .. ....... ...
The dacrodrene, if given the chance, will crawl on top of a sensitive and envelop their body completely with its own, which it stretches to wrap around the sensitive2. Once it has made itself into a skin for a sensitive in this way, it does not move again3.
Other individuals will also approach and further envelop the original ... but, unlike the original, un-stretch themselves and return to their own individual wanders after several minutes.
Successful predation of a sensitive by envelopment allows the dacrodrene to live out its full lifespan. .... .. ..... only needs to feed once, and it does so without malice.
If the dacrodrene is unable to .... ... .... upon a sensitive, it dies early, its seams splitting apart and its inner muscles becoming a series of unconnected cable-like forms, which spill out and shrivel up ....
"I saw it...distended and with the leaves all around it. I saw the way its body was shaped...that it didn't move, even to look at me.
Someone had built a wooden fence across it...I couldn't read the names carved in the wood. Boundaries had once mattered...even in those afterthought days. We weren't all yet travelers...we were once 'we' at all."