Monday, August 22, 2011

Alligator

School was out and Kris and I were bored. To top it off, we were home alone in the middle of nowhere. Some days life seemed to drag on. Especially this day. The air was hot, the trailer hotter. We couldn’t bear to be indoors any longer, so we decided to go fishing.

Bait was easy; we dug in the mud around the pond until we came up with hands full of mudpuppies. I left it to Kris to secure the squiggly little creatures to our hooks. After attaching my bobber and weight, I cast my line.

My competitive spirit had me jittering from head to toe. I wanted to catch the most fish. Pull them out one right after the other. Say nah nah nah nah nah to my brother every time I had to beg for him to hurry the fish off my hook. My head was full of ideas, but all I got was more . . .

boredom.

The sun bore down on the still waters. Not a single ripple moved on the surface. Sitting down on the bank, my hopes faded away.

“You wanna go in?” Kris asked.

“No, I just want . . . .”

I didn’t know what I wanted. Something? Something exciting, cool, entertaining—

Something was in the middle of the pond. That something was of monstrous proportions. Six-feet long and scaly, this mysterious beast rolled over and over again on the surface of the water, but never once did the thing show it’s human-eating head.

“K-K-risss, l-look at t-that,” I screamed, pointing toward the center of the pond.

His face paled and he reeled his line with lightning speed, which only made me want to run away as fast as I could—faster would have been nice.

“W-what is it?” I asked, abandoning my pole and jogging away.

“Alligator, it has to be.” He grabbed my things and followed me.

I heard alligator and made a decision: I was never going near that pond again.

Pushing through the back door, I asked, “Alligator?”

“I’m going to get my gun. Stay inside.” Kris ran through the trailer, floors shaking with his weight.

He didn’t need to tell me twice. Wait here, stay here forever . . . whatever, I wasn’t going back outside. I turned on the television and watched Duck Tales or something like that, but a few minutes later I heard pop pop.

My brother had taken care of the scary creature—or it ate him.

With legs bouncing wild and out of control, I couldn’t take the stress any longer. I ventured out of the safety of our home and made my way toward the pond. Heart racing, nerves making me wobbly, but I would not allow my brother to be killed by a stray alligator.

Pop pop
.

I stopped. Kris wasn’t dead, but the second round of shots meant kid killer wasn’t either. Abandoning my rescue plan, I bolted toward the house.

Mom and Dad arrived home a few minutes later. The familiar sounds of rocks crunching under our truck were a relief. Dad would fix this, he would make everything safe again.

I met them at the back door. “Kris said there’s an alligator in the pond.”

My dad laughed. “Did he?”

“Why are you laughing? What if it gets out and eats us—or the dog?”

“There aren’t any alligators in our pond, Krystal,” Mom said.

I crossed my arms over my chest. “Yes there are! I saw it, it was big and had spikes on it’s back.”

Dad ran in the house and grabbed his shotgun. “It’s an alligator snapping turtle and the reason our fish are disappearing.”

Staying with my mom inside, I felt like a complete idiot. What did I know? I was just a kid, but my brother could have said the rest of the creature’s name.

A few hours later, Dad and Kris came back in the house with pride on their faces. Together they’d gotten a few of the little monsters and soon we’d be eating turtle stew.

14 comments:

  1. Thanks for making me smile Krystal

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  2. I absolutely loved this! So witty and fun. You're a great writer.

    I'm following.
    ecwrites.com

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  3. That was fun! I remember when my oldest son was in kindergarten we lived in SC and he came home from school one day and said the teacher had taught them how to get away from an alligator. I knew at that point it was time to move.

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  4. Great story Krystal! It just so happens I'll be fishing on vacation this week. I'll be sure to watch for those alligators!

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  5. Very good story, I wouldn't have to be told twice I would be running for the hills lol
    You didn't really eat it, did you?

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  6. Cray-ZEE! Was thinking of building a pond here at our place. Now I'll have to think about THIS. Thanks A LOT, Krystal. ;)

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  7. Sorry Jason!

    @tattoodevil - Yes, we did eat it. But that was the last turtle stew I ever ate. ;-)

    LJ - let's hope they aren't where you're going or there may not be any fish.

    Elisabeth - thank you so much for visiting and commenting. :-)

    You're welcome, Joe.

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  8. Ew, ew, ew!! Heaven knows we've dragged some crazy stuff out of ponds, but I draw the line at eating any of it! (My husband and kids will, though.)

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  9. Turtle stew!!! i never even knew of such a thing....you see that is why I come here! I learn something so new ever time.

    Loved it Krystal

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  10. It's the small details which make all the difference - laughing out loud about you watching duck tales whilst big bro goes a hunting!!

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  11. Awesome!! You had me going with your teasers! :-) And once again forced me from work, out to my car, to read your adventures. Well done, as usual! :-)

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  12. Lovely story, Krystal. It really made me smile.x

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  13. First of all, what in the world are Mudpuppies?

    Some of your lines really crack me up, Krystal! “My brother had taken care of the scary creature—or it ate him” and “Kris wasn’t dead, but the second round of shots meant kid killer wasn’t either.”

    I love reading about these slices of your childhood. I can’t wait for more.

    Mel

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  14. Unfortunately it is kind of in a big brother's job description, while protecting his little sister, also to scare her once in awhile. :) Great story, Krystal.

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