They moved fluidly through the morning mist. The six nuns gliding smoothly, almost frictionless and devoid of sound as they crossed Kensington Gardens, seemed to attract no attention in the early morning murk. Only the gentle riffling of their wimples gave a clue as to the pace of their transit.
They were a contradiction of images at once serene and malevolent; the peaceful expectation fostered by their religious garb juxtaposed with the unnatural silence and speed of their passing.
As the nuns neared the Italian Gardens they sighted a lone woman in the distance by the Pavilion and changed course as if to encounter her. The woman, on sighting the group's approach, smiled as if to greet them but they did not acknowledge her presence or slow their pace.
The lone woman smiled again, slightly nervous now. She again received no response from the approaching group, as they came closer and fanned out to present themselves as a line abreast still heading directly for the lone woman.
'Jack, Jack', called the now frightened woman, as she looked quickly behind her.
The nuns stopped momentarily as if to silently consult each other and then, as one, quickened their pace. From there it all happened very quickly: Jack, a huge grey Irish wolfhound bounded to his mistress and interposed himself between her and the nuns. His hackles high and fangs bared, he snarled at the assembly.
The nuns now, only feet away from the dog and his owner, stopped. The lone woman for the first time noticed that the nuns wor no crucifix or ring, no discernable religious regalia apart from the nun's garb. Also, they had no faces. She looked but there were no features that she could readily recognise. Their features seemed to be in a continuous state of turbulent change, never settling on one shape or another. Her mind could not make sense of this what she saw so she gave in to terror and shrieked. The nuns seemed to melt, that was the only way she could describe it. They melted and morphed until they assembled themselve into ghastly, slavering, fanged beasts and returned Jack's snarls. The wolfhound edged cautiously back, still at bay and snarling, while his owner shrieked hysterically for help. For their part the beasts swiftly returned to their nun form, turned about and retraced their previous course to pass quickly through the still mist shrouded gates of Kensington Park and melt into the traffic.