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The Snake Killer



By



Perry Comer

Copyright (c) 2015 by Perry Comer



Warning: The unauthorized reproduction or distribution of this copyrighted work is illegal. Criminal copyright infringement, including infringement without monetary gain, is investigated by the FBI and is punishable by up to 5 (five) years in federal prison and a fine of $250,000.



Names, characters and incidents depicted in this book are products of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events, locales, organizations, or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental and beyond the intent of the author or the publisher.



No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher.



DEDICATION



TO THE GLORY OF GOD


I thank God every day for Faye, my wife and my love.



BOOKS BY PERRY COMER (Allan Brooks)


The Prize

(Naval Adventure)


The Messenger

(Donland and the Hornet)


Donland’s Ransom

Donland and the Hornet


No Chance

(Young Adult - Coming of Age)


The Snake Killer

(Juvenile Action/adventure)


God's Broken Man

(Allan Brooks) (Christian Fiction)


Myrtle Beach Murder

(Allan Brooks)(Christian Fiction)


Fall of Fort Fisher

(Juvenile action/adventure)

(Civil War)


Andrew's War

(Juvenile action/adventure)

(Civil War)


Myrtle Beach Stories (Allan Brooks)

(Young Adult - Coming of Age)

What Jesus Said

(Sermon Outlines)





















Chapter One

Josh Bledsoe stood outside the batter’s box. The count was two balls and one strike. The team was depending on him and he would never let his team down. He tapped his shoe with the end of the bat while scanning the outfield. The defense was playing up on him. He swiped a hand across his forehead pushing blond hair from his eyes. Stepping to the plate he griped the bat and prepared to swing like his father taught him. His steady green eyes locked onto the pitch. He measured it for the perfect moment. He saw, felt and heard the bat make contact in a single frozen glorious moment. The ball soared toward the centerfield fence. It was awesome! The crowd stood and roared. As he rounded first, they began to chant his name: “Josh! Josh! Josh!” Suddenly the ground jolted beneath his feet. The cheering crowd went silent. He rounded second and slowed. Something was not right. The ground should not be shaking.

He woke, blinked his eyes. In his ears was an unusual long, low rumble. The sound grew louder. Yellow flashes of lightning reflected on the bedroom walls. He blinked again thinking his eyes were playing tricks in the dark.

More lightning flashed and he knew it wasn’t his eyes. Sitting upright in bed, he listened. No thunder? But what is that sound? The steady rumbling grew louder. “What is that noise?”

He listened, tried to guess the source of the rumbling. It got louder just like a...

“Josh! Josh! Wake up Josh!” Mom shouted as she flicked on the bedroom light.

She was scared. His first thought was—a tornado is coming.

“What’s wrong Mom?” he asked.

“I don’t have time to explain. Get some clothes on and help Kenny get dressed. We have to go Grandma’s house,” she said in a rush. “Quick as you can get your clothes on. Be sure to put on your shoes, we may have to walk some.”

“Why? What’s wrong?” Josh asked as his mother turned down the hallway.

She didn’t answer.

The rumble was now a roar so loud it was like standing next to a jet plane taking off. Rain and wind pounded the metal roof of their mobile home. He didn’t understand, but he had seen fear in his mother’s eyes. He hopped off the top bunk.

Kenny was sitting up in his bed. “Come on, Kenny,” Josh said pulling Kenny’s covers back. “Mom said we got to get dressed.”

Kenny rubbed his eyes while Josh searched in Kenny’s drawer for jeans and a clean T-shirt. He chose Kenny’s favorite, the white t-shirt with Larry Boy on the front. Since the day Kenny was born, Josh felt responsible for his younger brother. The three years between their ages seemed more like ten because of the autism.

He went back to the chest, opened his drawer and pulled out a pair of jeans. The house moved! Josh felt it! He wasn’t quite sure what happened, but it happened again with a jolt causing him to hop on one foot as he slid on his jeans. Josh was sure the trailer moved. He tugged up the jeans, zipped them as he crossed to peer out the window. The yard-light showered everything in pale green light. To his amazement, water covered the ground. Garbage cans, toys, lawn chairs and other stuff floated lazily past the trailer. He could see his dog, Snoopy, a big black and white Border collie sitting on top of the doghouse. Beside the doghouse, the riding mower was covered by water except for the steering wheel.

“Wow, a flood!” And then he realized Snoopy was tied to the doghouse. Unless somebody untied him, Snoopy would drown. Since the day his dad brought the dog home he had been Josh’s responsibility. He turned from the window, found a T-shirt lying on the floor and pulled it on. Reaching under the bed he dragged out his shoes. He didn’t take time to tie them. The trailer shook violently as it shifted on its foundation. He knew why Mom wanted to hurry.

Josh tugged Kenny into the hall and to the living room. The television was on and the local news guy stood in front of a map. He paused to hear the man say, “Flooding has been reported along the Neuse River. Residents in the area are advised to evacuate to higher ground away from the river. Hurricane Floyd has dumped over two feet of water in Eastern North Carolina this week. Rain will continue to fall as the tropical storm stalls over our area. The National Weather Service estimates we could receive as much as another twelve inches of rain in the next forty-eight hours.”

Wind ripped the front door open. It banged the side of the trailer with a loud wham. Josh bolted to close the door. He saw Dad standing in water above his knees lifting suitcases into the back of the four-wheel drive truck. The doors of the truck were still above the water while the little pickup Dad drove to work was half-covered with water.

It was raining so hard he could barely see his dad. Gusts of heavy rain whipped by the wind stung his face as he stood in the open doorway.

“Stay right there, Josh!” Dad shouted above the howling wind. Josh didn’t dare move; the water would be up to his waist. He watched Dad struggle through the swift water toward the trailer.

His heart started to beat fast—he was scared. The water was getting higher and going faster while he stood watching his dad.

“Oooooo” Snoopy wailed from behind the house.

The dog’s mournful howl brought Josh from his trace. “Dad, Snoopy is still tied up. I need to go untie him.”

“For once Snoopy is going to have to take care of himself. I’m sorry, but we have to leave right now and there’s not time to get him!”

“But Dad, it won’t take a minute. He’s my responsibility, you always told me that.” Josh protested.

“No, Josh!” Dad shouted angrily.

Josh knew not to argue. But still, it wasn’t right to leave Snoopy tied to the doghouse. What if it floated away? He imagined Snoopy hanging onto his doghouse like the famous Peanuts dog in the comics.

“Come on, guys. Let’s get going,” Dad yelled.


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