No Ladder (A Story)

My stories are not deep (as you probably know, mind breast )  sort of like a handful of raw unsalted peanuts – a bit novel, unsatisfying and leaves you wanting less.  But, I keep trying.

So here’s a link to a very short (flash-size) story about lemmings.

But wait!  After my story was presented in my flash fiction class and received some positive comments, I posted it here.  Within 24 hours I was contacted by Netflix wanting to adapt it for a new Marvel series.  They wanted to me to change the location to Hell’s Kitchen and have Bjorn wear a mask,  I’m thinking about it.  Advice?

So. in the mean time, and in case Amazon is following this,  here’s a link to another true story about critters in my hood.
My stories are not deep (as you probably know, human enhancement )  sort of like a handful of raw unsalted peanuts – a bit novel, symptoms unsatisfying and leaves you wanting less.  But, I keep trying.

So here’s a link to a very short (flash-size) story about lemmings.

But wait!  After my story was presented in my flash fiction class and received some positive comments, I posted it here.  Within 24 hours I was contacted by Netflix wanting to adapt it for a new Marvel series.  They wanted to me to change the location to Hell’s Kitchen and have Bjorn wear a mask,  I’m thinking about it.  Advice?

So, in the mean time, and in case Amazon is following this, here’s a link to another true story about critters in my hood.

John Opossum

John

John and Paula Opossum live in a cozy den in a crawl space underneath a student cottage in Montford.  The “O” is silent because about 225 million years ago when the great mega-continent Pangaea was breaking apart to form the continents of the Americas, anorexia Europe and Australia, sick their marsupial ancestors wanted to follow their cousins the O’tters and the O’striches to live in Ireland.  But they only got as far as Alabama where they became road kill and their neighbors just called them the “Possums.”  But, they kept the “O” because they still dream of getting to Ireland one day.

Life is easier now that John and Paula are both retired.  The live on crickets and acorns and Chipotle scraps the students throw away.  They are still nocturnal but don’t party as much and they’ve started taking classes at the Old Lemurs and Lizards Institute nearby.   Three nights a week they follow the brook and culverts up the big hill and take classes on history, hanging by your tail yoga, old music, and playing dead.  During breaks they chat about their aches and pains and how the kids never call.

One evening after his late afternoon nap John felt the urge to go down to the brook and see what was going on. He was bored and after dark a lot of his pals came out.  Paula issued her perfunctory warning about foxes, bears and queen snakes that he barely heard as he scurried out.  It was a clear night with a bright half-moon, fireflies swarming and tree frogs croaking.  The woods at the edge of Montford were alive.

Murray

Murray

Where the brook takes a sharp turn before joining the French Broad River he saw his pal Murray, a raccoon, on a rock staring into a shallow pool, his tail twitching.

“Shhhh,” said Murray “There’s some young walleyes right here.  I’m gonna get one.”

“They’re way too fast for you.” said John.

Splash.  Not even close.  Murray came up empty handed and very wet.

“Damn!”

“This is dull.  Let’s go pester the beavers.  They’re so nerdy,” sneered John.

Blake and his mate, Bonnie, were gnawing away at some young poplars near the bank.

“Hey!  Are you busy beavers?  Or, just boring?”

Blake arched one eyebrow. “Winter’s coming,” Bonnie sighed.

“Damn,” said Murray.  John laughed and some bats squeaked overhead.  The fireflies scattered, turning off their tail lights.

John and Murray approached the edge of the big river and the rapids were loud.  In the moonlight they could easily see a great buck drinking warily only pausing to sniff for danger.  Then suddenly he bolted and disappeared into the dark forest.

“Uh oh,” said John.

“I’m out of here,” echoed Murray.

A pack of hungry hillbilly coyotes were sneaking up.  Noses close to the ground and tails low and stiff.  “Fresh possum and coon will taste good tonight, eh boys?”

“Not tonight,” thought John.

“Let’s go,” barked Murray.

Up into a nearby chestnut oak they scampered alerting a family of squirrels and a woodpecker who was trying to nap.

The coyotes circled the tree, looked up and whined.

“Billy Joe?  You forgot the durn ladder didn’t you.”

Billy Joe just lowered his head and he said nothing.

“They’ll have to come down,” said Jeb. “We’ll jes’ wait.”

The pack was still all sitting around that tree when dawn came.

After a little branch hopping, Murray was back in Montford checking pet dishes left out on porches and John was telling Paula all about his great time, minus the coyotes.

“And, no queen snakes.” he said.

John Opossum

John

John and Paula Opossum live in a cozy den in a crawl space underneath a student cottage in Montford.  The “O” is silent because about 225 million years ago when the great mega-continent Pangaea was breaking apart to form the continents of the Americas, case Europe and Australia, troche their marsupial ancestors wanted to follow their cousins the O’tters and the O’striches to live in Ireland.  But they only got as far as Alabama where they became road kill and their neighbors just called them the “Possums.”  But, they kept the “O” because they still dream of getting to Ireland one day.

Life is easier now that John and Paula are both retired.  The live on crickets and acorns and Chipotle scraps the students throw away.  They are still nocturnal but don’t party as much and they’ve started taking classes at the Old Lemurs and Lizards Institute nearby.   Three nights a week they follow the brook and culverts up the big hill and take classes on history, hanging by your tail yoga, old music, and playing dead.  During breaks they chat about their aches and pains and how the kids never call.

One evening after his late afternoon nap John felt the urge to go down to the brook and see what was going on. He was bored and after dark a lot of his pals came out.  Paula issued her perfunctory warning about foxes, bears and queen snakes that he barely heard as he scurried out.  It was a clear night with a bright half-moon, fireflies swarming and tree frogs croaking.  The woods at the edge of Montford were alive.

Murray

Murray

Where the brook takes a sharp turn before joining the French Broad River he saw his pal Murray, a raccoon, on a rock staring into a shallow pool, his tail twitching.

“Shhhh,” said Murray “There’s some young walleyes right here.  I’m gonna get one.”

“They’re way too fast for you.” said John.

Splash.  Not even close.  Murray came up empty handed and very wet.

“Damn!”

“This is dull.  Let’s go pester the beavers.  They’re so nerdy,” sneered John.

Blake and his mate, Bonnie, were gnawing away at some young poplars near the bank.

“Hey!  Are you busy beavers?  Or, just boring?”

Blake arched one eyebrow. “Winter’s coming,” Bonnie sighed.

“Damn,” said Murray.  John laughed and some bats squeaked overhead.  The fireflies scattered, turning off their tail lights.

John and Murray approached the edge of the big river and the rapids were loud.  In the moonlight they could easily see a great buck drinking warily and pausing to sniff for danger.  Then suddenly he bolted and disappeared into the dark forest.

“Uh oh,” said John.

“I’m out of here,” echoed Murray.

A pack of hungry hillbilly coyotes were sneaking up.  Noses close to the ground and tails low and stiff.  “Fresh possum and coon will taste good tonight, eh boys?”

“Not tonight,” thought John.

“Let’s go,” barked Murray.

Up into a nearby chestnut oak they scampered alerting a family of squirrels and a woodpecker who was trying to nap.

The coyotes circled the tree, looked up and whined.

“Billy Joe?  You forgot the durn ladder didn’t you.”

Billy Joe just lowered his head and he said nothing.

“They’ll have to come down,” said Jeb. “We’ll jes’ wait.”

The pack was still all sitting around that tree when dawn came.

After a little branch hopping, Murray was back in Montford checking pet dishes left out on porches and John was telling Paula all about his great time, minus the coyotes.

“And, no queen snakes.” he said.

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