I mentioned it on FB but I recently wrote another Brown story called Brown vs the Martians. Yes… Martains. It’s a 10,500 word story that will appear in Science Fiction Trails volume 10, to be released on July 1st! I’m super happy with how this story came out even though it is a little out of the ghost-hunting realm. I think everyone will be quite pleased with it.
I raced ahead, hackles up, on alert for any danger to my human. The shiny thing in the middle seemed to be buried partially in the dirt. I buried a bone in the dirt once when we lived back east, and couldn’t find it later. Though I suspected that a squirrel had stolen my bone after I’d left. Even though there weren’t any squirrels here it was probably good that the shiny thing wasn’t completely buried.
It made strange sounds, like the clicking I’d heard some of the desert beetles make.
“Brown, be careful.”
I stopped and sniffed again. Over the hot metal and other strange smells, I thought I smelled an animal, almost like a dog, except that didn’t smell quite right either. I stopped and waited for Elliott to catch up.
“What is that?”
The thing was shaped like a cow pie, although almost half of it was buried in the dirt. The part that stuck out of the ground went up into the air much further than Elliott could reach and made enough shade for us to get out of the sun. The ground wasn’t any cooler in the shade though. Black streaked the shiny metal and it looked like there were gashes, like claw marks where the black streaks were.
“It’s damaged,” Elliott said.
Elliott walked around until we climbed a pile of dirt and ended up standing over the strange metal cow pie.
He crept forward and hesitantly touched it. Then he laid his hand flat. “It’s cool. That’s strange.” He walked out onto the metal slowly and knelt where I could see some lines in the otherwise smooth surface. He touched one of the lines. “It almost looks like a….Ahh!”
Elliott jerked back and I barked in alarm when part of the cow pie moved. I jumped forward, trying to push myself between the danger and Elliott. The metal was smooth though and I ended up sliding.
I yelped as I slid into the hole.