Thursday, May 20, 2010Posted by Elizabeth Ludwig at 2:00 AM
Before another thing could keep him from Emmy, Diego fumbled Faron’s leads free from a young mesquite tree and led him a little farther down the road. Obviously sensing the storm ahead, Faron resisted, bobbing his head and dragging his feet. Giving in, Diego left him secured behind a larger tree and hurried toward the campsite.
The lightning, now constant and intense, lit the ground so brightly Diego wove among the scrub brush and cactus to prevent being spotted. He didn’t stop until he came alongside the camp on the left and slid into the high grass a few yards away.
Crawling closer, he spotted the two men Bertha Bloom had seen tied together in front of the fire. With no protection from the storm, they watched the erupting sky with terror on their faces.
Thunder crashed directly overhead with a noise like the heavens had split asunder. Diego ducked from the resulting explosion of light, the brightest he’d ever seen in his life, but not before the flash illuminated Cuddy tied to a wagon wheel.
Instinctively, Diego came up on his knees, then dropped again when a young man scurried past Cuddy and bailed into the covered wagon.
As Diego tried to decide what to do, the rumbling started again, this time moving the earth beneath him. Realizing the sound was roaring toward him from the left, he glanced up in time to roll out of the path of a madly dashing cow.
Two more sailed past, running right through the middle of the camp, dodging the fire so they missed the two wild-eyed men.
A scream rang out, coming from the direction of the charging herd. Diego flew to his feet and ran. He roared for Emmy, but she couldn’t have heard. The unending crash of thunder colliding with pounding hooves and frightened bellows was deafening.
The scene before him was the essence of a man’s nightmares. An endless sea of red cattle charged his direction, appearing then disappearing as jagged spikes of light exploded around them. Bodies of downed cattle scattered the ground, tripping the others, creating a mad game of falling dominoes.
Emmy, her hair unpinned and her dress torn from one shoulder, darted in front of the driving wall of terror. Her mouth opened in another scream as she ran blindly into the path of certain death. Without a moment’s hesitation, Diego hurtled toward her.
Marcia is giving away a copy of her book Emmy's Equal. Be sure to stop by The Borrowed Book on Friday for your chance to win!