"Oh, hello, I'm sorry. I didn't see ya' there."
"The story of my life."
"My husband's, ours, I mean he's the big outdoorsman."
"Well, seein' hows' we're gonna' be neighbors, Mr.?"
"Ben. Nice to meet you?"
"June, Juni. Everybody calls me Juni."
"We leave tomorrow."
"I leave tomorrow. And my dog."
"Ya' smell that?!"
"I dunno', sorta' smells like, oh nevermind."
"Okay. I think we'll walk down to registration." Paul said,
"Oh honey, this is Ben. He'll only be here another day."
"What the hell is that smell?!"
"Might be the sewer hook-up. I heard there's bin' some trouble in the park."
"Where ya' from?"
"Umm south a here. Down south."
"Well if you'll excuse us."
The smoke from the campfires reminded Juni of some sort of tribal ritual. She
looked at Paul who had fallen asleep after his tenth beer.
She picked up a handful of pebbles and tossed one. Then took aim at the empty
A light flashed from the rear of Ben's camper. Juni aimed at it. Another
flash. She looked at Paul who was snoring.
A can crunched under her foot. Paul jerked, his beery breath labored in the gritty air.
She tapped lightly on the door.
The knob in her hand turned easily. Then the odor she smelled earlier.
She heard multiple sucking sounds; each distinctive, methodical.
The crude head of a unicorn slumped on his shoulders. Juni peered over a
partition at three children nursing on a Rottweiler.
One looked up, a chevron of yellow milk wetted the hair above her lip. The
vacancy in her face spread, her eyes empty as cellophane wrappers.
Juni stepped back. The dog leaped onto Ben’s lap and dislodged the unicorn
head. He laughed as the dog lapped the sweat from his face.
The two other girls, swollen with milk crawled into adjoining crates.
Ben patted the cushion next to him.
Juni vomited over herself and fell through the door into the hands of
The headlights snapped on.
Paul flung Juni from his shoulders.
The engine jack-hammered and the motor-home lunged forward lifting Paul off
The vehicle caromed across a lane and through a rail fence before slamming
into a tree.
Juni watched the children run into the woods.
A fire erupted and traveled up the tree crackling and licking the sky.
In an instant she saw that girl looking back at her, freed.