This is not an official Hallmark thing, but today is the first, and hopefully annual, day to celebrate those of us who toil in the sci-fi/fantasy and subgenres of the writing world. I will celebrate with a short excerpt of my novel in progress which is now going under the working title of Sundogged.
We killed the first one with the Chevy Avalanche, sunburst orange metallic. Remy drove. I was shotgun. The radio tanned our eardrums with a blast of 80’s metal rock to such a degree that if it hadn’t broad-sided the truck bed with force enough to rock the vehicle, we’d have never known we’d made first contact.
Remy fought the wheel as the truck veered wide, hauling us back over the centerline before slowing to a complete stop on the sloping shoulder. White knuckles gripped the steering wheel as the other hand reached over and turned the music down. It was CCR now, Bad Moon on the Rise.
“What the hell was that?”
I opened my door, leaned out as far as I could without tumbling to the gravel below and peered back down the dark road. I couldn’t make out anything with clarity. In late June, between moonlight and perpetual sunglow on the horizon, the lack of streetlights on the old range road wasn’t a problem. But a storm threatened from the northeast and even the intermittent cracks of lightning couldn’t slice the darkness.
“No, back up a bit,” I told him. I hung out a bit farther, one hand gripping the headrest and the other firmly planted on the door.
Remy put it in reverse and inched backwards, but that section of the road was thickly lined with tentacled trees and swollen bushes that swallowed the headlights like a leafy black-hole.
He was worried we’d hit a dog. Remy was always in a twist about the dogs and cats that roamed this stretch of road. Strays that people from the city dumped near our little hamlet. The coyotes took in the dogs they didn’t kill, and the foxes were partial to cat, but neither could thin the herd.
“It might’ve got up and run off if it was just stunned,” I said.
And then we ran it over.
The squish was one of the juiciest I can remember hearing. Normally there is a fair amount of crunch and a bit of skidding, but this was all entrails and soft, spongy flesh.
*This is an original piece of fiction. All rights are reserved by the author – ME.