Daniel was deciding just how much damage a small kitten could do to him, even if it were an anomaly, when frantic barking came from the other entrance to the barn. Towser, the large golden retriever, charged in racing at the strange pink cat. The feline immediately ran away, ducking behind bales of hay.
The dog followed growling, which was really unusual for Towser since he normally got along with the farm cats. After a few moments, he started whining and looking around, unable to find the object of his interest.
“C’mere, Towser.” Daniel was still shaken by his odd experience. The dog obeyed and ran over to the boy. Daniel generally preferred cats to dogs, but in this case, he was much happier to see Towser just now.
The canine licked the child’s face as Daniel stroked his thick fur.
“I’m glad you came along when you did.” The boy felt kind of silly being afraid of a kitten, but as small as it was, there was something dangerously malevolent about the tiny cat, which had now apparently vanished.
Daniel held onto Towser for a little bit and then let go. He looked around the inside of the barn. Not a cat in sight, but it was his sight Daniel was beginning to question. Everything seemed to be slightly off color, as if he were looking at the world through tinted glasses.
He’d had this strange sight, which enabled him to see anomalies, for as long as he could remember, but the anomalies had always been people. Daniel had never worried about animals before. Now it was as if everything around him, even the air itself, was an anomaly.
“There you are.”
Daniel jumped at his uncle’s voice.
“Hey, it’s just me.”
The boy stood and turned to face Uncle Ethan as Towser ran over to the farmer demanding to be petted.
“Hi Uncle Ethan. I was just lost in thought.” Daniel considered asking his uncle about the kittens, but realized that to his aunt and uncle, all three of them probably looked and acted ordinary.
“That’s okay, Danny. I just came by to ask if you wanted to go look at the new horses. I’ve got them grazing in the pasture.”
Daniel was grateful for the distraction. He looked around again and the color of the world was back to normal. The child followed his uncle over to his battered Chevy pickup and Towser ran after them.
“Yes, Towser,” the old man chuckled. “You can come too.”
As the two people climbed into the truck’s cab, Towser stopped, looked back at the barn and spied two green eyes glaring at them from the shadows. He turned and growled at the menacing visage.
“C’mon boy. What’s eating you?”
After a moment, the dog obeyed his master and climbed into the truck. While they were pulling away, Towser kept gazing back, as if he were afraid of what would happen if he took his eyes off the barn.
This concept is loosely based on Iain Kelly’s recent A to Z Challenge 2017 story series. Every day, Iain crafted another puzzle piece to his murder mystery that had me and his other readers spellbound. I doubt I can create the suspense he conjured up, but when my wife got a giant A to Z jigsaw puzzle for our two-year-old granddaughter, I thought I’d give it a whirl.
I don’t have a lot of time, so I think each “letter” will be shorter and I’m not sure I can write one every day, but I’ll do my best.
The previous story is C is for Cat.
The next story in the series is E is for Egg.
Let me know what you think.