Novel Excerpt – “Eight Days on Planet Earth” by Cat Jordan ( VO by Miles Carr)


out in the empty field something catches my eye the spacefield a flash of gold has to be my dog ginger ginger I can just about see the white of her tail flicking in the light of the moon damn dog the field isn’t far just about 50 yards away but I have to cross a stream to get there my dad and his crappy Pennsylvania accent calls it a creek a tangle of weeping willow branches drip across the surface I carefully hopped from rock to rock pushing aside the soft branches until I reach the other side the field is not empty there’s my dog and a girl I blink a few times to make sure it’s not a trick of the moonlight but no gingers sitting at the feet of a girl according to my dad people used to travel up and down the coast to check out the space field to feel its energy he said but that was 40 years ago since I’ve been alive maybe a couple dozen or 30 visitors have dropped in and taken pictures but no one came in the middle of the night there’s quite literally nothing to see this is really weird the shiver runs down my back even though the air is still and warm hello I call as I approach it is my dog bothering you I don’t want to scare her strange guy strange dog strange night she turns to me and her body is in silhouette long slim legs and a slender figure awkwardly skinny her arms dangled by her sides from her shoulders as if they’re pinned to a clothesline and her shoulder length hair looks white under the light of the moon not blond but stark flat white I raised my hand in a wave expecting her to lift her zin return but she just stands there unmoving I know she sees me whatever I’m here to get the dog and go home ginger come on girl let’s go ginger that disloyal canine stares up at the girl completely ignoring me treats ginger come on treat time not even that contempt er I wish I had a biscuit with me or even a chunk of that old KFC but I’m empty-handed out of nowhere a wind kicks up around us lifting leaves and bits of paper from the ground and a whirling them in the air the hairs on my arms and neck stand up the help the girls arms lift from her sides as if she were about to take flight but instead she waves her hands and fingers like the air itself is tangible touchable her long fingers grasped for a leaf for a candy wrapper but each twirls out of her reach teasing her and then escaping I hear a twinkle of delight but then whisper of a laugh when her hand finally plucks a leaf from the air both hands hold the leaf reverently as if it were a communion wafer in her palms and she brings it closer to her face is she gonna eat it no that would be crazy my feet find their way closer to her until I’m just a yard away i watch entranced as she brings the leaf to her nose to snip it suddenly her tongue darts out don’t I yell my dog probably peed on that my dog probably peed on that did I really shout that oh yes yes I did the wind dies down just as quickly as it started almost as if my shout disturbed something the girl glances up at me her eyes narrowing hi I say again her gaze on me is so intense boring into me as if she were studying me I bend down to gingers level and Pat the dog on her stupid fat head okay ginger let’s go see once again ignores me but this time I grab hold of her collar and begin to pull her up come on girl I urge but she doesn’t budge sixty pounds of stubborn ginger let’s go I feel like an idiot in front of this girl she was already scrutinizing me and now I can’t even get my own dog to come when I call her this happens sometimes she gets in moods you know there’s a long pause before the girl responds she’s a dog yes did I hear that right gingers big but she still looks like a dog she’s not a horse or a goat or anything she’s a lab a retriever I clarify when I see the girl tilt her head to one side you know like if I throw a ball or something she’ll fetch it and bring it back to me the girl picks up a soft black bag from the ground next to ginger a half expect her to take out a tennis ball and test my theory but instead she pulls out a small notebook wrapped in a thick rubber band turning for me and shielding the notebook from my eyes she jot something with a quick hand does she seriously not know ginger as a dog I shake my head to myself nah couldn’t be she probably just doesn’t recognize a Labrador Retriever speaking of come on gender you lazy piece of let’s go home but the dog has planted her haunches into the earth and won’t move is this your home I hear the girl asked ya over there I wave my hand towards the weeping willows as she gasps the tree is your home I laugh uh-huh no the house past the creek I mean Creek I gaze beyond the small stream to my house the kitchen light is still on as is the light in my mother’s room you uh you live around here – I asked the girl I’m pretty sure I’ve never seen her and our town is small like super small everyone knows everyone I’m totally not surprised when she shakes her head I’m totally not surprised she’s a visitor one of those people naturally there’s no way a girl standing in an empty field in rural Pennsylvania in the middle of the night is going to be normal why would I think otherwise you

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