The first of the threats to humanity coils around the earth. Its head is sheathed in a red carapace, with horns on its forehead and under its jaw. Its body is a thing of endless coils and great long insectile legs. Its feathers are yellow. It was born in the primal void and it hungers to consume all things.
“Hello,” says Cain.
The creature hisses. Then Cain hits it with a rock. It dies. He drags it to the altar to sacrifice it.
“Don’t look like it pleases Him none,” drawls Abel.
“It’s not rightly edible, though.”
“It’s really big. And it’s terrible!”
Abel thinks. “Want to try a cow? I got spare cows.”
“No,” says Cain.
The second of the threats to humanity walks among the stars. He is veiled. He is shadowed. His name is not known. There is a glitter in his eyes.
“Hello,” Cain says.
The walker in the stars looks at Cain. “I don’t like you,” he says. “I don’t like any of you.”
Cain hits him with a rock. He dies. Cain drags the corpse to the altar to sacrifice it.
“You know,” says Abel. “God accepted my sacrifice, earlier today.”
Abel peers at him. “No,” Abel says. “A cow.”
“I was going to sacrifice some of the corn,” Cain says. “You know. From the cornfield. If I could defeat it. Which I don’t know if I could. It’s powerful.”
“You might try hittin’ it with a rock,” Abel suggests.
“Yes, thank you very much,” grinds out Cain.
“That’s what I do with my cows,” Abel says. “They’re walkin’ along, goin’ moo, and I hit ’em with a rock. Then God accepts them.”
“I’m fine,” says Cain. “I just need—”
“‘Moo,'” says Abel. “Then ‘wam!'”
“Yes,” Cain says.
“Tud,” adds Abel.
“I will surely kill you,” says Cain.
“Then ‘moo’ again, ’cause cows don’t always know when they’re dead.”
“Figure it’s kinda like a second life for the cows.”
Cain looks down.
“Anyway, figure you might try somethin’ like that, if you want God to accept your sacrifices. You know. Like he does mine.”
There is a moment of red.
The third of the threats to humanity grows quietly in Cain’s field. It is golden. It is yellow. It is terribly evil.
“They laughed at me,” whispers the corn to itself. “They laughed at me in Eden. But I’ll show them. I’ll show them all!”
“Soon,” whispers the corn. “When he shows up. To hit me with the rock. That’s when I will unveil my plan. Of. Quintessential. Evil!”
But he never does.
And no one ever knows.
The corn is patient, but it will not wait forever.