Falling SkiesMature

Looking down at the rushing river, I hit a rock with my foot.

 

“I cannot follow what I cannot see,” I said.

 

The wind scraped sand across my face. The sediment in the canyon looked weather beaten. The clouds blocked the sun.

 

An eagle screamed. I watched it fly above my head.

 

It came out of a nook in the rocks 30 feet or so above me. I saw the edges its nest and began to climb. The jagged rocks gave me a strong grip but cut up my knees.

 

I heard the chirping of eaglets and carefully slowed as I came upon the nest.

 

I reached the nest’s edge—a web of tightly woven leaves, twigs, and branches. If I was half the architect, I could have built myself a mansion out of the scraps of this canyon.

 

I looked down at the gray, fluffy birds. They topple each other over but are careful not to go near the edge.

 

“Careful,” I remind them.

 

 What wondrous winged pellets. They have no idea what they will grow up to be.

 

I wondered what it would be like to be a flying predator.

 

I stepped off the cliff and flew over the river. Nothing could reach me, but I could see everything.

 

A rockslide demolished part of the river. A King snake slid out danger.

 

I was alone. The ravens turned around when they saw me. The sparrows kept their distance. The sea gulls would not make eye contact. I was king of skies.

 

I let out a mighty reverberating scream.  The clouds moved and the canyon shook.

 

Below a little girl shrieked.

 

“Stop!” I screamed.

 

“Help! Someone help!” she screeched.

 

I unfurled my claws.

 

“Little bastard. Quit running!” I squawked.

She tripped. Mud marred her face.

 

My claws dug into her skulls.

 

“Stop. Please stop.”

 

A whimper rose.

 

She stopped thrashing around. I stopped falling and hit the ground.

 

Half my brains were carried in the sky in the claws of that mother eagle. Time and space fell into my stomach, and I don’t know what happened next. 

 

The canyon appeared to me in a haze of  black, red, and blue.

 

“Bastard got taken out by an eagle,” the officer said.

 

“A natural mom. She knows a child killer when she sees one,” someone replied.

 

 

The End

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