A HIT by NATURE
A SHORT STORY
A James Hindle
“Too often I suffer a lack of inspiration when I sit down to write. In an effort to get my brain more or less functioning, I’ll scribble out a bit of ‘Ridiculous’—a ramble of thoughts, written as they occur, usually non-sensicle and confusing, but thoughts non-the-less. At times, with a little touch-up here and there, the jumble of words form an ‘Almost Story’ — an addition for my “Files of the Ridiculous.”
Here’s a sample.”
There was a knock at the door. The dog barked — the cat meowed. When I went to the door and opened it, no one was there. I closed it—confused. I went back to whatever it was I was doing. There was another knock at the door. The dog barked, again. The cat meowed, and I once more went and opened the door. Still nobody. I wondered, ‘Were we being tricked’?
As I stood in the open doorway, a foul-smelling scent wafted past. The stench was horrible; nausea and shivers ran through my body, while the cat and dog shook, possibly in fear. Strangely, curiosity beckoned us, and together we left our safe, cozy cottage and ventured into the forest.
We were immediately cornered by a large wolf that had just burped, after apparently finishing a satiating meal. Bad breath? OMG! The same odor we’d witnessed in the doorway of the cabin. On the ground before him, lie a red cloak-n-hoody sort of thing. It tweaked my interest. Was this the cape of Little Bo Peep? Surely not! I knew that she was still in the hospital after giving birth to a little ba-a-a-a-stard after she was sexually assaulted by a rogue ram while tending her sheep in a meadow somewhere up the mountain. Sad story . . . , but getting back to this one . . . No! This must have been Little Rrrr . . . Little Rrrr. I couldn’t bring myself to say the name.
My thoughts were interrupted when the wolf, feeling comfortably full and not overly aggressive, asked if I happened to have a cigarette. I knew I didn’t, because I’m allergic to all tobacco products, alcohol, sex and vulgar words, ever since my mother told me as a boy that I was allergic to all tobacco products, alcohol, sex and vulgar words. She said if I ever were to use any of them, I’d turn into a dog or cat molester . . . Uh! . . . Never mind about that. Just because I love my dog and cat doesn’t mean I . . . . . . I really don’t want to talk about that, right now!
I knew I had to think fast, so I told the wolf about a stash of funny grass that the cat was hiding in her bed, back at the cabin, and that it could possibly be smoked if one were so inclined. I knew it was just dog hair because when I rolled it in paper and lit it there was a funny smell, kind of like when you roll dog hair in paper and light it.
You’re probably curious why there’s dog hair in my . . . , I mean, the cat’s bed. I’m not certain, but I think they’re having a kinky affair. But that’s another story.
Anyway, I thought if I told him about it—if he took the bait—it would give me a chance to come up with a better plan to save us from the wolf. We all walked back to the shack.
I’m sure my plan would have worked, but just as we were leaving the edge of the forest, heading back toward the shed, it happened . . . like ketchup from a bottle when you shake it —thinking the caps on tight but it’s not — and ketchup flies all over the room—well, kind of like that—blood was flying everywhere.
Like the blaze of fire and destruction from the barrel of a gun, the large birds attacked. Legs outstretched, mouths so big they could swallow a Cocker Spaniel whole . . . (Pause) . . . . . .
“Rex? Here Rex!” Where was Rex? Oh, my Gawd! He had been such a good dog.
They came from the treetops at the edge of the forest. Streaking down on us in a voracious fury; their fiery-emblazoned eyes locking on their prey; their ear-piercing screeches wreaking fear and horror over their intended victims. Razor-sharp talons and slashing beaks tore into their prey in a rampage of explosive, ravenous energy.
Then . . . , just as they had arrived, they were gone.
I was lying, cut and bruised on the ground — certain I had to be seriously injured because I was lying cut and bruised on the ground. I’m repeating myself, I know, but I was certain I’d been hurt.
It had happened so fast I wasn’t even sure where I was wounded. I looked around and noticed the wolf was dead—bits and pieces of him here and there: legs, chunks of fur, a big paw, a wolf head. That was the clincher: a severed, mutilated head. Yeah! He was dead all right. Somehow, it could have just been luck, but I was alive and I had all my parts.
I gathered what energy I had and lifted myself to my feet, surveying the area, turning slowly, soaking in the carnage that had just happened. Suddenly, a rush of pleasure overcame me. Well, not the kind of pleasure one would feel during some ‘rush-of-pleasure’ circumstances. Say no more.
Umm! Well, as I was saying . . .
More of a rush-of-happiness. There she was, Freckles the cat. I called her freckles because she was jet black with one little white spot between her eyes; kind of a freckle. Made me think of a target’s bulls-eye. Not that I’d ever . . . . Anyway, as I was about to say, Freckles was alive, hiding in a hole under a log, her hair standing straight up, looking like a large puffer fish with hair. She was staring up at me and I could tell she wanted to come out and leap into my arms, claws outstretched in a fit of excited relief and celebration.
‘Gads!’ I thought. ‘This could turn out almost as bad as the bird’s attack.’
Then, more elation shot through my traumatized body.There, gazing up at me was another set of eyes, sparkling in the darkness from behind Freckles. It was Rex! He was alive! Oh, glory days. The three of us had survived. Only the wolf had bought it, in that venomous wrath of assault and carnage.
Had it been a strange, ‘hit’ by nature? Could the wolf have been singled out for annihilation for killing and eating, the owner of the red cape? Was that person really, Little Rrrr . . . . Little Rrrr . . . ? I still couldn’t bring myself to say it. Perhaps she been coming on a visit to see us when the wolf . . . ? We all so enjoyed her visits. She so loved Freckles and Rex. And, she always brought such good cookies. Damn wolf; must have eaten the cookies too!
But, was it really her that had been devoured by the wolf? Or had he just had his lunch wrapped up in a red cape to keep it warm? I knew I would be pondering this for some time to come. At least until Little Red visited us again. If she could. We all headed back to the hut.
I couldn’t help thinking, ’who were those pecksey—get it, pecksey, not pic . . . oh, never mind—who were those pecksey birds?
What was their driving force . . . . , I mean besides their wings.’
Were they Special Agents of Creation?
Natures “Assassins of Control?”
But, that’s another tail . . . , ah . . . , tale . . . , no . . . , tail . . . .
But, that’s another story, when I get it all figured out.
The end . . . . . . . for now.