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#58: Alien

#58: Alien
Odd Spot - The Age - 2/3/2022

Peter watched Tiggy wade into the shallow water that still pooled at the river's edge. She was sniffing invisible trails, seemingly from the path the debris took to end up where it lay. The overnight rain and rising river weren't enough cause for her. She needed to smell the movement of each item; the scent lying like a memory.

There was no one else about, with only a slight chance of rain from the dull grey clouds that hung low over the parkland. Branches on the eucalypts dangled heavy with remnants of rain.

Peter's feet were already soaked through, but he was happy to experience it all. He felt it was like Noah must have felt after forty days of rain and seeing that first olive branch.

Tiggy submerged her snout, strangely still following the smell of something. She cocked her head and listened.

Her paws clawed at something.

She again bit into the water, this time pulling something out of the watery underworld.

Peter ambled as close as he could to where the water became deeper than his Blundstone boots would allow. Was it worth letting his socks get any wetter?

Tiggy pulled the drowned animal-free, its pelt thick and heavy. It was small, no bigger than a rat, but it was clear to both man and dog that it wasn't. She pulled gently on the claw of the dead animal. Each nail was over an inch long. Where there should have been eyes were the refracted bulb of a fly. The colour of the fur darker than night itself.

Tiggy pulled the alien-looking creature to the water's edge and smelled every nook.