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Published 1 year ago with 3 Comments

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  • Appaloosa

    This picture, this story, is the thing of nightmares.

    • Appaloosa (edited 1 year ago)

      Our family, we have dogs. We have them for a reason, they hunt, that is their reason to be with us. Once they are trained, they are an essential part of living. We had this special one though, seemed to be apart from the rest, real smart, independent, but still part of the family, as we liked it. Deferential. That's how we like them.

      But this one was special for sure, she'd wonder off and come back different, different some how.

      Anyway. She'd hunt, not gun scared or nothing like that.

      Then she'd start bringing things back, strange things...oh lost caps and boots and stuff, those are usual, but strange things, like glasses you use to watch stage shows, tubes with rolled up ship maps or coins with weird faces, like something from a carni show. Dogs bring back things, but not these things, not from these parts...and now this...what is this?

      She's been gone 3 years now, we miss her, even those weird things she'd bring home. She loved thunderstorms, got excited at the first whiff of rain...that smell we all know, she'd get excited and such. So would we. Maybe something in common, who knows.

      But now, now, it's not the same, we get scared when we hear a distant thunder. We know that old familiar smell is coming, the one that used to bring excitement and comfort. Oh no, this brings something not like us. Something we used to welcome and invite into our lives. When we were together.

      A rustling, like old dried branches put together to sweep up dreams and aspirations, beckoning to join in the hunt, the tree where the treasure is.

      We hear the scratching outside, we know she's here again, the dog we took in and nurtured. We set her out to hunt, and she did, but she got trapped. Everyone looked and looked for the obvious places to find a trapped family member, even the sniffers in the family, the dogs. We never found her and she never came home.

      We hear the dry and dead branches scratching for a way back in. That dog can hunt.

      She is here now. Just outside.

      Home now.

      What is home?

      I opened the door with shotgun in hand as my family screams nooo...I opened the door.

      And see or feel nothing, I think I was supposed to, yet there is nothing there, no pounce, no biting teeth, nothing at all.

      The porch is lit, the chairs are all there...the distant lights across the lake, as they should be.

      Where then is the horror.

      I know it is out there.

      It is not a she any longer, not anything we recognize or know any more.

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