by George T. Philibin
Today, John Deer and New Holland tractor are enjoying a rest day as
they show themselves off at the county fair with deep-polished fenders
and shiny-blackened tires, and a first place ribbon is searching for
the best-looking tractor. Farmers chat with other farmers, some in
groups and some in pairs, talking, and laughing as the summer day joins
in with its sunshine. Their parked trackers seem to be enjoying each
others company also, but now others join in the conversation. A few
years ago, all animals became intelligent, thanks to a virus released
by terrorists--a virus intent to kill--but through some quirk of
chemistry nobody died, but all animals can speak now--and many ask
"Why do you still pretend to be a workhorse?" Feasters, a groundhog
asked. "You just spend all your time in the fields talking with the
cows and other horses. You don't do anything else. Loaf all day long,
and then talk half the night away. I hear you, but you never talk to me
when I ask a question. Hell, you never even say hello when you see me
in the field."
The horse known as Johns looked down at Feasters. He didn't say
anything, just flashed his eyes as he brushed his dark tail from side
to side. Back and forth, the stares bounced between Feasters and Johns,
but no words came from either. Johns pawed at the ground a couple of
times. Finally, Kayla, Johns's grooming hand, came over, and Johns
raised his head and held it high. Kayla said, "You're a shoo-in to
"I've already won. Heard it from Chester. The judges are just going
through the formalities now, "Johns said. " I'm giving you half the
prize money. You deserve it because you did a fantastic job grooming
me; I really appreciate that."
"Thank you," Kayla said. Her brown eyes sparkled wide-eyed as she
adjusted her cowboy hat; then she leaned back on a handrail and crossed
her long legs, and said. "Are you sure?"
"Very sure," Johns said.
Kayla said, "We've become such good friends over the years. I like
you better than Karen. You know Karen, she used to be my best
friend--we still talk and laugh together and hang out at the mall, you
know, but I've gotten closer to you. You seem to understand me better
than Mom does!"
"I liked you before I could speak," Johns said. "Things weren't
clear to me then like they are now, but I remember your kindness."
A warm smile settled over Kayla until she saw Feasters. Then her
smile became a scowl and she crossed her arms. She stared at Feasters.
Then she moved slightly towards Johns. Johns turned his head and looked
down at Feasters, but didn't say a word. They both stared and stared at
Feasters until Feasters left. Feasters turned once, but saw the same
stares. He decided to leave the fair and return to his burrow near
Farmer Blough's garden. The warm sun felt good on Feasters's brownish
coat as he headed across a field towards his burrow. He stopped once,
stood up on his hind legs, and looked back at the county fair. He
* * *
After all the animals became intelligent, hunting or harming any animal became a felony.
Farm animals were paid a living allowance and the farmers were
compensated by the government for their loss of use of their animals.
Farm animals became free because all animals where awarded citizenship
with constitutional rights. The government additionally compensated
farmers by giving them money in accords with each wild animal that
lived on the farmer's property, and all wild animals were awarded a
The next morning after a good night's sleep and the memory of the
fair waning, Feasters read the morning paper on the front porch. He
skimmed over the ads after studying the news. Many issues in the
newspaper were strange to Feasters.
As he read on, he heard the front door creak open and Hannah, Farmer
Blough's daughter, and her sister, Jeri, stood there. Jeri looked up at
Hannah and said, "Mom needs our help in the kitchen." Then she looked
at Feasters and said, "I'll see you later when I pick some tomatoes in
the garden. I gotta tell you about Tommy Haynes. He got detention for
fighting in the gym with an eighth-grader--he actually won! Do you
believe that? An eighth-grader he beat." Jeri's warm smile lingered for
a moment, and then she returned to the kitchen, her flops keeping time
with each step.
Hannah brushed back her long-blond hair. Her eyes looked upwards as
Jeri walked back into the house and she slightly shook her head from
side to side. After Jeri entered the house, Hannah said, "Want me to
rub your back? Do you need anything? I could get some carrots--I know
you love them."
"Yeah, a carrot would be nice," Feasters said.
"You know we almost named you spot because of that white spot on your side," Hannah said.
"Jeri wanted to call you that, but Mom said Feasters suited you better."
"That's nice," Feasters said. "I think I like the name Feasters
better." Feasters heard that story before many times but he always
listened to it again.
Hannah returned from the kitchen with the carrots. She gave two to
Feasters and said, "Dad said you're okay. Ever since you bit that guy
that was trying to steal the battery from his truck--he's actually
starting to like you, I think."
"I hope so," Feasters said.
Hannah sat down, cross-legged next to Feasters. "My brother is
coming home from the army next month. I hope him and Dad get along
better now. The day he stormed outa the house, Mom pleaded with him to
try harder with Dad, but those two always bucked heads. I always
thought it was stupid of both of them, but..."
"Hannah--I need you!" Donna, Hannah's mom shouted from the Kitchen. "Tell Feasters I said Hello!"
"Sorry...gotta go. Mom's cooking for the church supper tonight and she really needs my help. Talk to you later," Hannah said.
Nice girls, Feasters thought. There must be millions upon million of
nice animals and people in this world, and I've only known the ones in
Feasters looked around the valley, and then he eyed the newspaper.
He read of distance places and looked at pictures showing very strange
animals. One picture of a camel kept Feasters's eyes locked onto it for
a few minutes, and others like an elephant did the same when he first
saw one. Occasionally giraffes or lions would appear in some article
about Africa, a distance place which Feasters now knew had all types of
strange animals. He asked Hannah one time about Africa--and he still
vividly remembers the dialogue between them.
"Where's Africa?" Feasters said.
"That's a far away place," Hannah said.
"How far is it?" Feasters said.
"Oh, very far. You have to cross the ocean to get to it," Hannah said. "It's zillions and zillions of miles away!"
The thoughts about Hannah and the ocean floated around in his mind,
and the more he tried to forget about the ocean, the more the vastness
of it intrigued him. That large? Feasters thought again. Then how small is this valley? Very small, it must be.
With a twitch of his nose and a look far into the horizon, Feasters
decided to explore beyond the valley, a thought that never entered his
mind before. Feasters dined on the carrots for they might be his last
meal for a while. When finished, he looked around the valley again and
decided on the direction he would take. He started his trek going east
and before long he reached the Main Line of Conrail and decided to
follow the tracks since the service road beside the tracks was level.
One train passed by. Feasters continued after it passed but he didn't
like the odor of diesel-fuel that came from the locomotives.
Finally, night approached and Feasters found an old-farm wagon in a
field next to the tracks. He nestled himself under it and slept.
The next morning he found some roots and had breakfast. As he ate, a
rabbit appeared suddenly and said, "You're not from around her, are
"No," Feasters said.
"I'm called Halfback," the rabbit said. Halfback hopped over and sat down next to Feasters.
"I live about three valleys over," Feasters said.
"What you doing here?" Halfback said.
The horn from a passing train echoed and both Feasters and Halfback
turned and watched the engine rumble by. Once the engine passed and the
sound of freight cars died down to an occasional high-pitched shrill,
Feasters answered: "Oh, just wandering, I guess, seeing what's over
here and there. Never been out of my valley before. Seen pictures of
things, and, well... I don't know. You know what I mean? None of the
farm animals want anything to do with me--those farm animals just stick
to themselves and ignore me, except Rambo the farmer's dog. We often
talk for hours in the backyard. In many ways, he's like me: The other
farm animals will have nothing to do with him! Isn't that something?"
"That's about the way it is with me," Halfback said. "Now, I just
keep to myself and a few close friends. One cow always says hello when
I meet her, but that's about all she says. Some say she's retarded. I
don't know, but she does say hello. In fact, that's all she says to
anybody--she even says 'Hello' to that tree over there!"
Twenty minutes later Halfback and Feasters said their goodbyes to
one another. The morning dew felt refreshing as Feasters slipped
through a small thicket. Once out of the ticket and back on the
railroad-service road, Feasters's stride quickened. For two days,
Feasters traveled along the road, and saw deer, another groundhog who
didn't want to talk, squirrels, chipmunks, farm animals, and a track
gang, working on the rails.
One railroad worker nodded his head, but the others kept working and
didn't say anything. Feasters and a raccoon exchanged hellos but the
raccoon remained distant and didn't utter another sound. Feasters
didn't look at the raccoon again, but the hair on the back of his neck
started standing up, and a strange-tingling feeling wrestled with him
until he was away from the raccoon.
Finally, after a two hours and the memory of the raccoon long past,
strange odors started washing over Feasters. He left the road and
followed the scent.
In a field not far, a circus was setting up. Feasters got closer. He
entered the circus area and watched humans and animals working
together, driving stakes in the ground, pulling large tents up,
aligning walkways with signs, and positioning ticket booths and candy
stands. Most didn't notice him and if some did, they gave him little
attention. Never before did he see animals and humans together like
this, laughing and slapping each other on the back, and--very, very
strange to Feasters--some animals were smoking! Chimpanzees
walked by, but to Feasters's surprise, he couldn't understand them, for
their speech sounded like gibberish. Then he remembered that when
animals became intelligent and endowed with language, they picked up
the language from their immediate environment. These
strange-looking-human-type animals must come from Africa or some other
faraway place. Then he heard more gibberish from other animals, and
again Feasters concluded they were from a faraway land.
Finally, after about fifteen minutes, he noticed one animal, a
gorilla, that sat up on a high chair. He was addressed as Chamberlain
by a human that brought him a paper to sign. Other humans and animals
would stop by Chamberlain then scamper away after a brief exchange of
words. Chamberlain was smoking a cigar, and he eyed everything that
happened in the circus. Feasters made his way over to the bottom of the
chair, but before he could ask a question, Chamberlain looked down and
said: "We aren't hiring! We don't need your kind. Spread the word
around--we don't need any groundhog, raccoons, deer, squirrels, or even
black bears. We could use a mean grizzle, but they want too much. So
spread the word around here--we aren't hiring."
Chamberlain's eyes returned to the circus. Feasters didn't move.
Silence shouted between the two until Feasters shot out another
question: "Do humans work for you?"
Chamberlain took the cigar out of his mouth and looked down at
Feasters. His eyes narrowed like snake eyes and his expression became
very dynamic. He finally said, "Everyone you see here works for me! JJ
over there used to take care of me before I could speak. Now, I take
care of him! So if you're a salesman then you know who I am now, and
I'm not buying today. See me Saturday after I get this circus up and
"I never would have believed this, but I can see it's true! You're
like the farmer I know, he owns a farm, you own this circus, but you
have many more humans working for you than he does," Feasters said.
"In this business I need labor, and I don't care who I hire as long as they work good!" Chamberlain said.
Within a blink of an eye, JJ was standing beside Chamberlain and he
scowled at Feasters. After a brief moment JJ said, "He giving you
trouble ?Want me to take care of him for ya?"
"No, that's okay," Chamberlain said. "This guy isn't pulling
anything on me. He really isn't. Don't want no job, don't want nothing.
You're not even a salesman, are ya?"
Before Feasters could answers, all eyes turned towards a lion that
meandered past which casts a dark-shadowy stare at Chamberlain.
Chamberlain's eyes followed the lion until the lion rounded a tent, but
Chamberlain didn't take his eyes away from that direction. After a puff
from his cigar, Chamberlain shot a glance at JJ then said, "Keep an eye
JJ slipped away like a ninja following a samurai.
"Ya look hungry," Chamberlain said. "I like ya honesty. Here... take
this meal ticket and get some food. We'll talk later. An honest guy
like you might be needed around here after all." Chamberlain's cool and
wide-eyed grin floated over Feasters. His took a slow puff from his
cigar and studied Feasters further for a moment; then that
cool-wide-eyed grin started to drill itself into Feasters.
Chamberlain's smile didn't change after Feasters grabbed the meal
Feasters felt a heavy weight upon his back as Chamberlain's stare
continued, and his legs started shaking and became weak. Finally,
Feasters said, "T-T-Thank you."
"No problem," Chamberlain said. "I always need--associates."
At the mess tent, Feasters enjoyed a supper of roots, carrots some
melons, apples, and a melon that he never tasted before. It felt good
to have a nice meal like this one. Traveling had its drawbacks like
finding food, but today Feasters gorged himself.
After supper, Feasters meandered around the circus but everybody was
too busy working to say anything. He stopped in front of a candy apple
stand. From behind the stand Feasters heard "Pssst." He looked and saw
a rat eyeing him with a grin that reminded him of Chamberlain's.
"Do you work here?" Feasters asked.
"They call me Peepers. You might say I work here and you might say I
don't. Ask anybody here and each will tell you something different. It
depends who you ask," Peepers said. "You don't work here. I know that.
What you doing here?"
"Nothing. I saw this place and I just came in to look around. That
Chamberlain is a nice one, isn't he? He talked to me and then said,
"Here's a meal ticket--go get some food, and we'll talk later. That was
nice of him to do, don't you think so? He even said something about a
job, but I don't want one."
Peepers dropped a crumb that he was nibbling on, then jumped up and
landed on all four legs. He turned his head to one side, then to the
other. His tail raised up and his eyes became wild, and after looking
Feasters up and down for a moment he said: "What!"
Feasters backed up a little, and then repeated what he said. When
finished, Peepers kept looking and didn't say a word. Finally he said,
"You're definitely not from around here, I can see that now!"
Peepers grabbed his crumb again and started slowly eating and he
kept both eyes on Feasters. His expression became very bland, and his
voice took on a sharp, quick tone when he spoke again. Feasters watched
for a moment then said, "What do you do around here?"
"Nothing, just hang around, pick through the garbage, sometimes get
a meal at the mess tent," Peepers said. "Been with this circus all my
life, even before I could speak. Things were different then. Cats hated
me. Dogs hated me. Humans hated me. Hell, they even tried to kill me
with those traps, you know the ones that were outlawed years ago, but
even then, I was too smart for them. Now it's illegal to set rattraps.
Chamberlain knows me, knew me before. I used to live under his cage and
he would stare at me for hours. I think he envied my freedom. I don't
know why but he never hassles me. Seems to think of me as part of the
circus, and I guess I am."
Before Feasters could utter another question, Chamberlain's voice boomed, "NO! NO! NO!--NO MORE MONEY!
You're paid more than the others as it is! Who the hell do you think
you are around here? You've been up my rear all year and I'll telling
you for the last time--NO. MORE. MONEY!"
"No more money? Come Saturday we're on strike! No more money for us, no show for you!" a lion said.
Peepers whispered, "That's King Caesar. They been arguing about
money all year. Chamberlain will not give in--and neither will King
Caesar." King Caesar started walking away but stopped, looked back at
Chamberlain, then said, "Think about what I said. Oh, by the way--the
elephants are on our side now! Just ask them!"
"What!" Chamberlain roared.
"You heard me! Just remember what I said," King Caesar added.
Chamberlain stood staring at King Caesar like a sumo wrestler
weighing in on an opponent. He spit out his cigar butt and didn't miss
one step that King Caesar took. After watching King Caesar round a
corner and disappear behind a tent, Chamberlain cast a sideways look
over at Peepers.
"I'll be back, Peepers said. "I have to get some... some money that a human owes me."
Peepers raced away. Feasters watched Peepers disappear behind a
small tent that advertised "Palm Readings" by Madam Renoire. Two humans
were finishing erecting the tent as Madam Renoire stood outside
supervising them. She saw Peepers scampering and watched him with a
frown developing on her forehead, and her eyes became darker and took
on the appearance of small-dark holes. She stepped out from the tent
and continued to watch Peepers, but Feasters couldn't see Peepers
anymore. Madam Renoire took another step out. She crossed her arms over
her chest then took a few more steps out until she was standing in the
middle of the main isle of the circus. She just stared.
King Caesar returned and strolled past Madam Renoire but didn't look
at her. His tail swished from side to side and every few moments he
looked around. Humans near him gave him the right of way, and two
leopards shook their heads in a disgusted gesture, then turned and
walked away without acknowledging him. King Caesar ignored them.
"Big trouble," Odeman said. Odeman was a young orangutan that had
been resting on top of the candy apple stand. He slid off the top and
landed next to Feasters.
"What's going on with Chamberlain and this King Caesar?" Feasters said.
"What's going on! Why, money! That's what's going on!" Odeman said.
"Don't you get an allowance from the government? I do and all the others do where I come from," Feasters said.
"Damn... that allowance from the government doesn't pay nothing.
I make ten times that! And King Caesar makes, well, they say one
hundred times that! Now, that's money," Odeman said.
"Oh my," Feasters said, "I didn't ever think about making that much
money. I don't know of any animal making that much money where I come
from. I don't think the humans make that kind of money where I come
from." Odeman sat down, brush his head with his hand. His face
transformed into a broad smile as he studied Feasters.
"What you want around here?" Odeman said.
"Nothing," Feasters said.
"You're not one of them missionaries that show up sometimes, the
ones that try to get us to join that church? Well, are you?" Odeman
"No," Feasters said. "I don't know anything about that stuff."
Odeman rubbed his chin with his fingers and continued to study
Feasters. A moment later Odeman said, "You pop-up here, walk around
like some King, and somehow get so close to Chamberlain that he gives
you a meal ticket! Is that what you want me to believe?
"I don't know. What you mean,?" Feasters said.
Odeman started waking around in tight circles. He looked like a pear
bobbing up and down in a water bowl as he wiped off his face with his
long-fingered hands. He shook his head like a dog would after a bath.
After this dance, he looked at Feasters and said, "Watch yourself
around here! I mean it! Don't try to pull anything. Whatever you are, I
don't know, but I think it would be healthy for ya to just leave--and
the sooner the better." Odeman's long arms waved over his head as he
looked up into the sky. Finally he sat down next to the food stand,
looked at Feasters for a moment then said, "I heard you and Peepers
talking." When Odeman was finished staring at Feasters, he lunged
upward, landed on top of the food stand then turned and disappeared
after he jumped towards the back. Feasters watched but didn't utter a
word. Feasters stood up on his hind legs and surveyed as much of the
circus as he could see.
Friday came. Feasters decided to leave after he finished his
breakfast at the meal tent. Feasters waited for two days to talk with
Chamberlain, but Chamberlain was too busy.
The early morning sun promised a bright-warm-summer day with little
chance of rain--a good day to travel, Feasters thought. Farther along
the railroad tracks, a city lay spread-out along a river. Feasters
heard about this place when Farmer Blough talked about some football
games he saw there. It must be bigger than the newspaper showed, and
there must be so much more to learn there than here.
In the mess tent, Feasters had breakfast with Clarence, a human who
was the chief clown of the circus, and Clarence loved to talk. During
the conversation with Feasters, Clarence interject with, "Before you
all became intelligent, Chamberlain would jump back in his cage
whenever I walked by. You see, he was so afraid of me with my clown
uniform on! Yes, he really did. One day as I walked past, I yelled, 'Boo!'
and he almost tore his cage apart while he screamed. Ever hear a
gorilla scream? Well, Chamberlain did that day. Never messed with him
again, in fact I started to bring him bananas. Yes sir, he loved those
bananas but to tell you the true, he always seemed scared of me. Even
today. He asked me to stay on when he bought the circus, gave me a good
raise, but he seems to avoid me unless he needs something or wants to
change my act. He treats me good."
Shouts sounded outside the mess tent. Then screams echoed around the
circus, and finally someone shouted, "King..., but the rest of the
sentence was garbled. Clarence said, "What the hell," under his breath.
Then after a second he said, "Better go see what's up!"
Both Feasters and Clarence raced out of the mess tent. Outside Madam
Renoire stood watching, and when she noticed Clarence coming near she
said, "King Caesar's dead. They found him this morning behind the big
top just lying in the grass. Nobody knows what happened--at least
nobody will say what happened." Madam Renoire shook her head, gave a
sign-of-the cross then turned and left for her tent. She looked down at
the ground as she walked and then started shaking her head from side to
side but her face remained composed.
An police vehicle and an ambulances were already behind the big top
when Feasters and Clarence got there. King Caesar was covered with a
white sheet, and the coroner stood next to him with a sheriff and three
paramedics. Feasters couldn't hear the conversation, but after a while,
Chamberlain put his long arm around the coroner, and they started to
Chamberlain and the coroner took a walk and Feasters noticed that
Chamberlain face started to take on a wide-eyed grin. As they walked,
Chamberlain spoke and the coroner listened with a friendly interest in
"What happened to him?" Clarence said. Some shrugged their shoulder,
other answered with "Who knows," while others just shook their heads,
not because of the tragedy, but apparently for some other reason that
Feasters couldn't understand. Feasters heard, "It's not fair," and
others said, "I knew this would happen," while others said, "I told you
so." Clarence frowned. He didn't say anything more except, "You better
leave," to Feasters. "I don't think you want to stay around here,
things have a way of... happening sometimes."
Clarence started to speak again, but before he could utter a single
word, Chamberlain was back and made an announcement: "Our poor, poor,
dear King Caesar...died of heart failure. He always took his job too
serious, we all knew that--he worried about his act, his friends, the
circus... I tried to get him to relax, but he never would. We had
differences, or course, but we always solved them intelligently and
honestly. He was my friend since the great awakening. Oh the tragedy of
it all! Why just yesterday he came to me and said, 'I'm terrible sorry
about the scene I caused--I--I was stressed out with the opening
day--so soon. Please understand that my act has been going bad, lately.
I'll have to work out a new routine.' Yes, King Caesar and me were
partners but more important then that--we were friends."
Feasters got close to the crime scene and looked up at the coroner. The
coroner stood beside Chamberlain. He looked down as Chamberlain spoke
and Feasters thought he saw a slight smile flash across the coroner's
face as Chamberlain lamented about King Caesar. Feasters looked at
Clarence and some others but they stood too high to see the coroner's
face fully, but Feasters knew what he saw!
The ambulance took King Caesar away. The sheriff mused around, gave
questionable looks at the coroner, and the coroner glared back at the
sheriff. Neither spoke to the other during the investigation in which
the coroner had the final say. Feasters watched, but when Chamberlain
wandered over near him, Feasters scampered under a bright-colored wagon
that had a caption which read, "Out of Africa."
Feasters stayed under the wagon until the crowd thinned out, which
was a long time. He walked the length of the wagon then waited until
nobody was in sight for a second or two. Then he scampeerd across the
way and hid behind a small tent. When things were clear, he maneuvered
himself behind tents, hot dog stands, ticket stands until he was at the
perimeter of the circus. Again, he waited until nobody was in sight;
then he cautiously crossed a small field until he found the thicket
next to the railroad tracks.
Once in the thicket he looked back at the circus; watched to see if
he were followed. Feasters watched for a long time, and studied every
movement seen in the circus. Nobody followed, he concluded, but JJ was
walking towards the railroad tracks. Feasters couldn't see any others
with him but the tall grass could hide another.
He turned and started towards the tracks and kept abreast of JJ at a
good distance, but after a minute, he heard two voices, one JJ and the
other Peepers. Feasters followed the voices until he saw JJ and
Peepers. JJ had a backpack, and Peepers stood upon a high-rock outcrop
and constantly surveyed the area as they spoke.
"Man that stuff killed the King in no time," Peepers said. He spoke
so softly that Feasters had to inch his way closer to hear.
Fortunately, Feasters's skills at moving silently in the wild were
still intact, and he made use of them until he was only a few feet away
and hiding behind a very large-dead-oak log. Slipping in under the
watchful eyes of Peepers took some effort, but Feasters managed.
"Nice job, Peep," JJ said. "I knew the King would like a steak dinner. You put enough in to kill ten King Caesars.
"Yep," Peepers said. "How long you going to be gone?"
"Two days at the most. Chamberlain said to get a least a hundred
miles away before I get rid of it. You sure you got all the strychnine
"Don't worry, you got the only batch I had," Peepers said. "Make sure you take the label off."
"Chamberlain sure as hell didn't like that sheriff asking
questions and still looking around even after the coroner got paid off.
He said the sheriff looked too dumb to take a bribe, but the coroner
wasn't," JJ said. "That's why he wants me to take it so far away that
if a trace of it is found, they'll never connect it back to the circus.
Feasters listened a while longer, then very stealthily withdrew. He
started towards the railroad tracks, and once there headed for home.
The trip back--a foggy haze when Feasters thinks about now but he can't
remember much about it. Trains passed by, but the odor of diesel fuel
didn't register with Feasters like the first time, and the raccoon and
other animals he encounter? If they did say anything, Feasters ignored
them and kept moving, and moving he did without resting or eating.
Finally, Blough's farm materialized before his eyes.
Feasters looked in his burrow and decided not to enter. He ate some
apples that Jeri left outside his burrow, but didn't think about them
as he ate. The same sounds, the same fragrances, the same warm sun, and
the same peaceful stillness greeted him as he ate the apples. Time
seemed to stop as he ate, and the more he ate, the more he looked at
Finally, Hannah and Jeri came running out with Rambo in the lead.
"Where've you been?" Hannah asked.
"Have you been sick or something?" Jeri asked. "We were so worried... even Dad and Mom were worried."
Rambo had tears in his eyes and the only thing he could utter was, "Thank God you're okay."
Rambo sobbed some as his ears hung down farther than Feasters ever saw them do before.
"Hannah stroked Feasters's back lightly then softened said, "Please,
Feasters, come live with us--in the house. We all want you to. You know
that. Come live with us! I will not take no for an answer. Mom wants
you and Dad doesn't care if you do. We'll be able to take real good
care of you--it's better than that hole in the ground that you live in
"In the winter it's nice and warm, and plenty of food, believe me, I know this," Rambo said.
Feasters looked at his burrow, and then turned his head towards the
girl. "Okay, I'll come in. I should have before this, but I just wasn't
sure about--things. Now, I am."
© 2015 George T. Philibin
Bio: In George's own words: "I've been writing for about fifteen years, occasionally, and
enjoy every strike on my keyboard. I'm not sure why I write--it's fun,
I'm sure about that--and I intend to continue and learn. I worked at a
generating station in Western Pennsylvania, and served in Viet-Nam.
I attended the University of Pittsburgh
for Mechanical Engineering, but had to quit after the Johnstown Flood
of 1977. I worked in a coal mine, a steel mill, and a dairy once. Now,
I'm retired. My last story: The Last War Dance, issue
122." [June, 2008]
E-mail: George T. Philibin
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