Short Story - Dead Burro Wash

Dead Burro Wash



She was scared.

She had violated every rule, and she knew it. She had ventured into the desert in mid-summer without water and without telling anyone where she was going or when she expected to be home. Pete was going to be furious…if she lived.

She had spotted the saguaro skeleton on their last venture into the Sonoran Desert, several weeks ago, and she made a mental note to retrieve some of the ribs on the next outing. However, earlier that morning, a local retailer and a solid client had called, needing a desert themed display by the weekend for a sidewalk sale, so here she was, mired in the sand of a dry wash.

The brush covered, small road off the main highway was sparsely traveled, and only the locals and explorers like Pete even knew it was there. The fork which led to the wash and her saguaro skeleton was partially overgrown from years of non-use, and was more of a game trail, than a road. But her Suburban was fully capable of negotiating such a rocky path, so she eased it down to her quarry, and loaded half a dozen ribs into the cavernous rear. All went according to plan, until she was ready to leave, and needed to turn around.

The trail was too narrow to turn around, and too long to back out, so she drove on down to the wash, where there was room to maneuver. At first, all went well, and she succeeded in turning around, but when she tried driving back up out of the wash, she realized that her rear wheels were spinning in the deep, soft sand and sinking in, and the first cold fingers of fear sent a shiver down her spine.

She paused to calm herself and then shifted the lever into four wheel drive. For a moment, the big vehicle moved forward slightly, but then halted, as the front wheels also sank into the sand in a vain attempt the free the mired rear wheels. Fearful of sinking further in, she shut the Suburban off, and climbed out to survey her situation. Both axles were barely off the sand, and she knew that any further attempt would result in making the situation worse. And what had Pete told her, time and again? “Put it in four wheel drive before you get into trouble, not after!”

It was late morning, and already well over one hundred degrees. The monsoon winds were bringing moisture up out of Mexico, and the increased humidity made the atmosphere feel like a hot, stifling blanket. To the south, menacing, gray storm clouds were already building, as predicted by on the morning weather report. “Oh great”, she thought, “I have the car stuck in a large wash, and it looks like rain. Pete will never let me forget this.”

The last time they had been here, they had been unable to make any calls. On the off chance that it might work now, she pulled out her cell phone and dialed Pete, holding her breath. To her despair, the phone beeped a warning that she was out of range. Then she tried dialing 911, with the same results.

The fact that she had no water was already making her thirsty, and the silence of the deadly desert had her close to panic as she tried to remember what Pete had told her to do should she ever find herself stranded like this. Of course his first advice was to never put herself in such peril, but it was far too late to worry about that. She sought the relative shade and coolness of a nearby mesquite, and sat down to ponder her situation.

She was wearing shorts and a light, sleeveless blouse, so she was badly exposed to the sun. She had no headgear of any kind, and she was wearing flip flops. She had been drinking coffee on the way, but that was long gone. She realized that she was in real trouble, and that she had few choices. She could try climbing one of the steep hills in hopes that the altitude might put her in cell phone range, or she could try walking back to the highway, several miles away. Without water, she had small chance of succeeding, no matter what she did, and she knew it.

She decided to try climbing the hill, and was just rising when she heard the rumble of a vehicle, probably on the larger road, perhaps a quarter of a mile away. She rose and began a desperate run up the rocky path, in hopes of flagging down the driver. She barely ran fifty feet before the grill of an older Ford Bronco bounced over a rise, and drove down the trail to meet her. It was covered in mud, and looked recently wet, so she supposed that he had just driven through a creek somewhere.

Barely visible through the mud, the driver’s door was emblazoned with the logo of the Pima County Sheriff’s office, and the tall, young man who climbed out was in uniform. The embroidered lettering on his pocket read, “Morgan”, and he wore a Deputy Sheriff’s badge.

“Saw your tracks going down here, and thought I’d better have a look-see. Folks get back in here and sometimes get stuck.” He looked over her shoulder at the Suburban, and smiled, shaking his head.

“Reckon it’s a good thing I did come down here. You stuck over there?”

She nodded, suddenly ashamed at her foolishness. As if reading her mind, he smiled again.

“I’ve seen folks who have lived in the desert all their lives make the same sort of mistake. You need any water?”

She nodded, and he walked to the back of the Bronco, and lifted the rear window. In a moment, he returned with an ice cold bottle of water. She took a grateful swallow, and thought it was the best drink she had ever tasted.

“Let’s see about getting you out of there.” He reached into the Bronco and pulled out a small tire gauge, and a short handled shovel.

“What’s that for?”

He grinned. “I’m going to let some air out of your tires, so they can help pull themselves out of the sand. It’s an old desert trick. The shovel is in case any of the valve stems are buried in the sand.”

Twenty minutes later, she was behind the wheel of her suburban, and the deputy had a tow strap attached to her front end. He had turned the Bronco around in a space she had not thought possible, and was taking up the slack. He had told her what was going to happen next.

“When I wave my arm, you apply some throttle, and between your deflated tires and the tow rope, we should pop you out of there like a cork.”

She watched as the strap came off the ground with a snap, and she felt the jolt. Then she saw him wave his arm out the window and she stepped on the throttle. Like a cow lifting its foot out of mud, the big Suburban jolted up out of the ruts and bounced forward. Seconds later, she was on the rocky trail, and out of the sandy wash. Overhead, the lowering clouds were dark and menacing, and she heard thunder from somewhere. She took a breath, suddenly realizing she had been holding it.

The deputy halted his Bronco and backed up slightly. He got out and unhooked the tow strap from both vehicles, stowing it in the Bronco. Then he waved for her to follow him. They crawled up the narrow trail, and stopped when they reached the small road. The deputy got out and walked back to her car. She lowered the window, just as the first few spatters of rain hit her windshield.

“I know by your tracks that you came in from the right, but I want you to go left to where this road runs into the county road. Then go right at that intersection to Kitchen’s Corners. It's only two or three miles, at most. Bob Kitchen will air up those tires so it’s safe to drive. Until then, don’t drive over twenty miles an hour. Got it?”

She nodded her agreement.

He looked up at the sky, and watched the clouds for a moment.

“Looks like we got you out of there just in time. That wash has been known to run bank full from flash floods during the monsoon. You be careful now, you hear?”

She nodded, and he patted her arm, with a smile on his face. It sent an unexpected shock through her body, and her mouth dropped open, but he had already turned and was walking back to his Bronco. Then he waved her on, and she drove by him, turning to the left to go get her tires aired up. The spattering of rain suddenly increased to a downpour, and she was glad to be back on a solid roadbed again. When she looked back through her rear view mirror, the deputy and his Bronco had disappeared in the rain.

Old Bob Kitchen patiently aired her tires up as he listened to her tale, nodding now and again. Under the canopy, they were dry enough, but beyond that, the rain was now coming down in sheets. Twice, lightning struck so close that there was almost no time between the flash and the clap of thunder.

“Deputy Steve Morgan, eh? Did he tell you about the time there was another storm like this? It was a real humdinger, and a flash flood came down that same wash and it tore out the bridge on the county road, just up the highway, maybe two miles.”

He put the cap back on the tire's valve stem, and stood up, arching his back.

“That time, Steve was responding to a call, and in the rain, he failed to see the bridge was gone until it was too late. He hit it at full speed.”

She stared at the old man. “Good Lord! It’s a wonder he survived!”

The old man nodded, wiping his hands on a red shop rag.

“Well see, that there’s the thing. He didn’t make it. Neither him nor the Bronco he was driving were ever recovered.”

He looked at her for a long moment. “You have yourself a nice day, ma’am.”



More by this Author


Comments 132 comments

MaribelsWords profile image

MaribelsWords 5 years ago from NYC

Well written. Very interesting story!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Thank you, MaribelsWords.


femmeflashpoint 5 years ago

Bravo, bravo!

This was great, Will! Loved it!


Cardisa profile image

Cardisa 5 years ago from Jamaica

I really missed this Will. Another masterpiece.


Hyphenbird profile image

Hyphenbird 5 years ago from America-Broken But Still Beautiful

Oh my! What a perfect story, whew.

This needs to be in the Fascinating Fiction podcast. WillStarr, you have written a mesmerizing and great tale. I love it.


Rosemay50 profile image

Rosemay50 5 years ago from Hawkes Bay - NewZealand

Wow what a story, angels really do exist.

I agree with Hyphen this should be in the podcast.


Sueswan 5 years ago

An angel at work.

Awesome story Will.

Voted up and awesome.


Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 5 years ago from Rural Arizona

Just walked in the door from a long weekend trip, and much to my liking there was a new short story from one of my most favorite authors. This was outstanding Will. Other than the ghost officer, this scenario happens here around Tucson more than you might think.


Becky Katz profile image

Becky Katz 5 years ago from Hereford, AZ

I am totally spooked now. This is a great story Will. I almost missed it, I thought I was following you but I didn't get notified about this. I saw a comment by Rosemary and went looking.


writer20 profile image

writer20 5 years ago from Southern Nevada

Great to see you writing again. This one is very good with ghost. Loved it.


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 5 years ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

Hello Will. This is yet another story full of suspense and surprise. Well done. Surely you have enough for an anthology.


Alastar Packer profile image

Alastar Packer 5 years ago from North Carolina

Superlative short story Will.This tales got all the right ingredients and came out very well done. Thoroughly enjoyed.


Rosie2010 profile image

Rosie2010 5 years ago from Toronto, Canada

Hiya Will, another hit from the great WillStarr. I was captivated from the beginning to end.. fascinating story with a spooky ending. Great for Halloween!

Have a nice day,

Rosie


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 5 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

A totally endearing desert ghost story! I hope you are planning to write some more soon for the contest. I'll vote for you.


Frannie Dee profile image

Frannie Dee 5 years ago from Chicago Northwest Suburb

Will, I've never been in the desert but I felt I was there making all the same mistakes with your character.

Very realistic and suspenseful and the ending quite apropo for the season. Up and awsome.


thumbi7 profile image

thumbi7 5 years ago from India

Oh my! Wonderful story. Nice ending, but little bit scary.


homesteadbound profile image

homesteadbound 5 years ago from Texas

It gave me chill bumps at the end. A very good story. I'm glad i didn't have to wait for another installment before I could finish it. You did such a good job of setting the scene and building your character. voting up and awesome.


bethperry profile image

bethperry 5 years ago from Tennesee

Will, you are an excellent author. Your descriptive prowess is technically flawless. If I've not said this before, you should think of submitting your work to a pro publisher or Smashwords.


feenix profile image

feenix 5 years ago

Hello, Will,

Wow, what a great story! You are a very talented and skilled storyteller and you really do have a knack for coming up with surprise endings. I love your writing.


50 Caliber profile image

50 Caliber 5 years ago from Arizona

Will, absolutely great, spun like a star at an awards meeting, enjoyed it great angle for a hub, I'd never thought it up and live it every year, dust


breakfastpop profile image

breakfastpop 5 years ago

Will, once again you amaze me with your talent. I loved this story and it is voted oh so awesome.


SubRon7 profile image

SubRon7 5 years ago from eastern North Dakota

There were 4 lines left to your story when the goosepimples hit. You do it every time, Will, with that twist at the end. Good job, my friend!


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 5 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

I just found out why we're not getting notices about updates on the hubs. You now have to deliberately check the "follow" button underneath the vote up buttons.

I was wondering why I wasn't getting notices too. Weird.

Write on, Will


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, femmeflashpoint!

I'm happy you liked it!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Thank you, Cardisa!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Hyphenbird!

Maybe someone will read it for a podcast.

Thank you!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Rosemay50,

This story was inspired by an Arizona officer who did die as described on the highway to Payson, many years ago.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Sueswan, and thank you!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Old Poolman,

I used to live west of Tucson, and I was there for the flood of '83. That took out the Ina Road bridge, adding nearly 20 miles to my trip from home to town!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Becky Katz!

I'm glad you found me!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, writer20, and thank you!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, mckbirdbks!

That's a great idea! Maybe I will.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Alastar Packer!

I have to keep up with great writers like you!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Rosie2010!

I guess it is a Halloween story, isn't it?


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Lela!

In fact, I do have a story ready to go, but I think it's up to judges isn't it?


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Frannie Dee,

The Arizona desert is beautiful, and teeming with life, but sadly, we lose several people every year due to carelessness.


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 5 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

Well, I think they usually choose four or so and put them up to a "peoples choice" vote. Hard to say.

I find it hard to write for something so far in advance, but I do have a couple ready to go too.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, thumbi7, and thank you for reading!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, homesteadbound, and thank you for the kind words!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, bethperry,

Publishers are hard to find! Maybe I'll look into Smashwords.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, feenix!

Thank you, my friend!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Dusty, and I caught your drift!

You live right in the middle of this story every day.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Pop, and thank you! What's for breakfast?


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, SubRon7!

I try to please!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Lela!

I don't know why they changed the automatic 'follow' after a comment to an opt in follow. If we forget to check it, we get no notification. If it ain't broke, why do they insist on fixin' it?

I hope you're a winner in the short story contest. You are a superb wordsmith!


drbj profile image

drbj 5 years ago from south Florida

One of your very best, Will, enjoyed every fascinating moment.


RealHousewife profile image

RealHousewife 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

Up and super awesome Will! I did enjoy this with my coffee this morning so much! Thank you!


Just Ask Susan profile image

Just Ask Susan 5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

Awesome story Bill! I think I have a new favorite by you.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 5 years ago from Southern Illinois

I'm almost speechless! What a surprise ending. This is the kind of story that will stay with me all day. I loved it..Thank you...


diogenes profile image

diogenes 5 years ago from UK and Mexico

Hi Will. I guessed the ending, but it was no less an absorbing little tale for all that. That theme always goes down a treat! Bob


50 Caliber profile image

50 Caliber 5 years ago from Arizona

Will, I caught your comment on follow, I've been trying for a month or more to get it fixed they say they are working on it, but I have seen zero results and checking the box don't always work either, so I figured out that at the area you cast your votes the right lower has a green area that reads "follow" and I click it and then it reads "unfollow" and that is a 100 percent good to go, I used to check the box, reload the page to find it didn't work. Three years ago they had nothing so I made a option in my mail called "read-comment" and moved them there and would check back daily until the author got to it then I could read following comments, it was a hassle,

this system doesn't work. I'd think that an automatic follow with an "opt out" in our profile and settings would be good, I think most everyone who comments wants to follow up on their comment to at a minimum find that it was taken well. Just recently I made a comment and an important word in it was "lives" I missed the "V" and it read "lies" the author responded back defensive that I had accused him of "lies" in a true story. We got it squared away but had it not been "followed" it would have remained an offensive comment. I don't make that type of comment on purpose so following is important in that respect and there is the ongoing conversations that are fun as well.

So everybody needs to get to the staff and let them know that there are more than just me having these problems.

email

http://hubpages.com/@simonesmith

She is staff and editor and sends the problems to the tech person who can make the changes needed. It is better than it was in 2008 and if they get that straightened out it would be great!

dusty


G-Ma Johnson profile image

G-Ma Johnson 5 years ago from NW in the land of the Free

chilled me from beginning to end...with you one just never knows what is next..great story...LOL :O) Hugs G-Ma


b. Malin profile image

b. Malin 5 years ago

I didn't see that ending coming Will, good one...Makes you sometimes wonder and believe... Very Good Read my friend.


thougtforce profile image

thougtforce 5 years ago from Sweden

This is another awesome story from you Will. I loved it, and read it with interest from the first sentence to the great end that made it even better! You are my favorite short story writer,

Tina


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, drbj!

I'm so glad you like it!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, RealHousewife, and thank you!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, always exploring, and I hope you are not speechless for long!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Just Ask Susan, and I'm glad it's your favorite!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Bob, and you must stop guessing the ending, my friend!

^_^


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

i, Dusty,

Yeah, I too have learned to use the green 'follow' button, but it used to be automatic.

Simone is a sweet lady, so maybe I will contact her.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, G-Ma Johnson,

I enjoy deceiving you!


CMerritt profile image

CMerritt 5 years ago from Pendleton, Indiana

Just what the doctor ordered....a WillStarr fix!

That did the job! Thanks, AGAIN Will... :)


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, b. Malin,

If you listen carefully to the stillness of the desert, you can sometimes hear the faraway murmuring of those who walk it unseen. And sometimes, just as the sun sets, you can almost feel the presence of the old ones.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, thougtforce, (Why are Swedish ladies so pretty?)

Thank you for your kind words!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Chris!

Happy to supply your fix!


MartieCoetser profile image

MartieCoetser 5 years ago from South Africa

Well-written, interesting, captivating and what a tear-puller surprise at the end - WillStarr's forte! Voted up and fabulous.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Martie!

Thank you for the nice comment.


dahoglund profile image

dahoglund 5 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

No reason a ghost shouldn't make himself useful. Great story.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Thanks, dahoglund!


FitnezzJim profile image

FitnezzJim 5 years ago from Fredericksburg, Virginia

That story gave me chills. Well done.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Jim!

Thank you.


Storytellersrus profile image

Storytellersrus 5 years ago from Stepping past clutter

Great Halloween mood generator! Thanks, Will.


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 5 years ago from Reno, Nevada

Will...

Excellent job! I was fully expecting something else and you led me nicely right where you wanted me to go. True writing talent!

Thanks,

Thomas


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Barbie,

If I can please you, I can please anyone!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Thomas, and thank you!


thelyricwriter profile image

thelyricwriter 5 years ago from West Virginia

Impressive Will. I was trying to figure out the ending before I got there. Once again, I was stumped. I had figured Morgan would take her off or something to that nature. I like this ending much better. Votes across but funny Will. Another great read and always a pleasure.


Sunnie Day 5 years ago

Will you get me everytime..I just loved this..The suspense and twist at the end made me have chills..I am always running behind but so happy I back tracked and found your story..Thanks so much..as always the best..

Sunnie


Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 5 years ago from United States

Outstanding story with a fantastic ending! Rated awesome and up, up up!


marcoujor profile image

marcoujor 5 years ago from Jeffersonville PA

Will,

I found this story to be spooky but, ever so heartwarming. We all need a guardian angel.

Amazing- Voted UP & AB, mar.


Dexter Yarbrough profile image

Dexter Yarbrough 5 years ago from United States

Will Starr! Another great story from the master storyteller and Distinguished Professor of Writing. Voted up, up and away!


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 5 years ago from United Kingdom

I knew there would be a twist, but you kept me guessing right to the end, fantastic story loved it.

Voting up, best wishes MM


attemptedhumour profile image

attemptedhumour 5 years ago from Australia

Hi Will, as always you have crafted an interesting story about an event that often doesn't end as happily. I delivered a window and some furniture to our weekender yesterday. It's on a steepish block and I got stuck with the wheels spinning. I jumped out the truck and went to look for help from the neighbours who have a massive four wheel drive, but they were out. I went back and realised that the wheels were on full lock and i could straighten up quite a bit. I got just enough traction to spin my way up the gravel drive. On the journey back my nephew told me about a Canadian guy up in northern Australia who decided to ride a rickety bike 150 miles to another town. He had sandals for footwear, and zero knowledge. The Aboriginal trackers who found his corpse discovered that he had walked along a dry river bed, gone into the scrub and tried digging holes with his bare hands, and failing of course. So your tale is quite a coincidence considering yesterday's events. I loved your tale Cheers


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, thelyricwriter, and thank you!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Sunnie Day, and thanks for looking me up!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Pamela99, and thanks for the rating!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, marcoujor,

We all need someone to keep us safe from our own foolishness.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Dex,

Thanks for the high praise!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Movie Master, and thanks for the kind words.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, attemptedhumour,

We have deaths every year here in the desert. They're usually visitors who don't realize the danger or locals who take chances.

We also lose a lot of illegals, most of whom are treated like cattle by those who are supposed to guide them.

Unfortunately, many illegals die because they know that American sympathizers have placed water barrels for them to use. But the desert is vast, and water barrels are hard to find, so the intended kindness often lures them to their death.


suziecat7 profile image

suziecat7 5 years ago from Asheville, NC

You did it again - great story. If only angels like Mr. Morgan were really there to rescue us all from our foolish mistakes. Rated up and awesome!!


suziecat7 profile image

suziecat7 5 years ago from Asheville, NC

Really love that photo, btw.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, suziecat!

Thank you my friend!

Maybe they really are there...who's to say?


steelerfutball57 5 years ago

NICE!! Superbly written with an ending you don't really see coming..kudos!!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, steelerfutball57, and thanks for the visit!


Amanda Storm profile image

Amanda Storm 5 years ago

Fun story. As I neared the end I wondered how you were going to wrap up the ending. "Ok, so the woman got out of trouble, now what?" I said to myself. Then the surprising (to me) ending that made me smile.

My husband likes ghost stories, I think I'll forward it on to him.


september girl 5 years ago

Very cool story, Will! Wow, I didn't expect that ending. : ) I was mesmerized from the beginning. Feeling the panic, the heat and the rain. All so life-like and real in my imagination. I felt as if I was holding my breath too! ;) Voted up and awesome...like so many before me.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Amanda Storm,

Sadly, I have a reputation for twists. Thanks for reading me.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, september girl, and coming from a fine writer like you, I appreciate that!


Diane 5 years ago

YOU JUST KEEP THEM COMING. I'VE RUN OUT OF WAYS TO EXPRESS HOW MUCH YOUR STORIES ARE APPRECIATED!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Diane and Doug!

Thank you.


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 5 years ago from Texas

That's about what I figured, Will! LOL! You rascal, you and Rod Serling have a lot in common. WB


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Wayne,

In fact, I talk to Mr. Serling all the time!

^_*


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 5 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

The very definition of a short story is that it ends in a twist! And Will does the twist very well.

Long live Rod Serling!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Lela!

Coming from you, that is high praise indeed! Thank you.


Genna East profile image

Genna East 5 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

Once again, your words literally take us there. I was in the Sonoma desert once during the summer; beautiful yet fierce and unrelenting in its uncompromising heat. I knew her fear instantly, and couldn’t imagine anyone trekking into such an area, unprepared, with no water. I wanted to mentally shake her, but like much of your writing, we become so emotionally invested in your characters (we genuinely care about them) early on. I thought Morgan appearing out of nowhere was fortuitous; I loved the ending, Will, and the lessons learned. “She” could have been any one of us, and I am a firm believer in mystical events that represent the best of who we are and who Morgan was, and what we can and should do to help others. Up and awesome.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Genna East,

We have lots of people who live here and certainly know better, venturing into the desert without water or telling anyone. Cars today are so dependable that we fail to take precautions and fail to acknowledge the danger.

Thank you for your kind comments!


marshacanada profile image

marshacanada 5 years ago from Vancouver BC

Thanks Will for another intense short story beautifull told. Also thanks to your vivid descriptions I have some desert survival skills, though I don't need them at present here in the BC rainforest.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, marshacanada,

Everyone should know survival skills. It should a requirement in schools. I recently showed a nephew how to create a fire using sparks and commonly found tinder. He was amazed.


caltex profile image

caltex 5 years ago

Will, I had goosebumps as I got to the end! Don't do that again! :D Thanks for a great story!


Genna East profile image

Genna East 5 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

Hi again Will;

I just wanted to say kudos on your comments about teaching survival skills. There is so much we don’t know. My dad was a research biologist, and loved nature and the outdoors. “This is my church,” he would say -- actually, he was one of the most Christian men I have ever known. He not only loved nature, but understood it. He often remarked the very same thing; people do not know how to survive and that this should be taught; it would also give people a better understanding and appreciation of nature as well.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, caltex,

Goosebumps are a compliment!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Genna,

Your Dad sounds like someone I would have liked and understood.


Linda Myshrall 5 years ago

You always "gotcha" me at the end! I love these little stories of yours - Linda


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Linda Myshrall, and thank you!


Hillbilly Zen profile image

Hillbilly Zen 5 years ago from Kentucky

Whew! Glad I read this in broad daylight! Up and awesome.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Hillbilly Zen, and thanks for reading me!


Nell Rose profile image

Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

Hi, Wow! great twist at the end! sent a chill down my spine! rated up! cheers nell


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Nell, and thank you!


SilverGenes 5 years ago

Will, once I start your stories I can't stop - not until the last word and then I go looking for more. One of these days we are going to see your work on the screen. Awesome!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, SilverGenes, and what a nice comment! Thank you!


Maggie-May profile image

Maggie-May 5 years ago from the Island of Cape Breton to the Eastern Shores near Halifax, NS

Greatness Will!!! Goosebumps!!!!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, Maggie-May!

Happy to chill you.


gailalovesbijou profile image

gailalovesbijou 5 years ago from Wyomissing, PA

Another good one! Keep 'em coming. This is my kind of story. Voted up! You are an excellent writer. Thank you!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, gailalovesbijou, and thanks for reading!


quester.ltd profile image

quester.ltd 5 years ago

I have met a few desert angels or two - nice story

q


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, quester.ltd!

They're out there!


PDXKaraokeGuy profile image

PDXKaraokeGuy 5 years ago from Portland, Oregon

another nice twist! Well done. Voted up. I lived in Las Vegas for several years, and I remember the monsoons. This story also reminds me why I don't like nature or the outdoors :-)


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Thank you, PDXKaraokeGuy!


mquee profile image

mquee 5 years ago from Columbia, SC

Very nice twist at the end Will, but even more interesting was how your character was assessing the urgency of her predicament and the range of thoughts she went through. Very Good, Will!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Thank you, mquee! Good to see you again!


phoenixarizona profile image

phoenixarizona 5 years ago from Australia

WOW. I mean wow. That was incredible. Loved it! The twist at the end too! I did not see that coming! Wow! You should definitely enter the contest! Wow! Voted up by the way!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona Author

Hi, phoenixarizona!

I did enter, with J. P. Wentworth:

http://hubpages.com/literature/Short-Story-Creativ...

Thanks for the great comment.

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