He waddled across the concrete. It was anunfamiliar feeling, having the foreign substance beneath his feet. He hadnever encountered any-thing man-made before, having spent all of his lifefurther back in the woods, but he had wandered out of familiar territoryin search of water. Texas was in the middle of a drought, and the armadilloeswere suffering because of it.

As he began to cross the expanse of unfamiliar material, he senses some-thingelse; a rumbling of the earth beneath his feet. He knows not what he isfeeling, but feels that animal instinct of fear of the unknown. In thedistance, he sees lights flickering. The sound of rumbling is getting stronger,and the lights are rapidly closer. He knew now that something was realwrong, and if he hadn't been just a stupid fucking armadillo, he wouldhave gotten the hell away from the road. But here he was, and the concretefelt cool beneath his feet, so he sat and waited.

The car was approaching fast now. It was 2 turns down the road, going70 on the twisting highway, and the driver was drinking a can of cold beer,savoring the buzz of the joint he had just smoked. The armadillo was, ofcourse, unaware of all this. But he could see the lights almost on topof him, and escape suddenly became a priority. He was going to brazen itas far as he could, but if the bright-eyed monster got much closer, hewas going to make a break for it.

The rumbling was becoming unnerving, and the lights were almost on topof it now. Just as the monster had nearly covered the scared creature,it jumped. Straight up.

Its head made the first contact, with the front bumper. The force ofthat collision sent him back to the pavement, and then he bounced backup, just in time for him to get snagged on the tailpipe. Blood gushed froma wound on his head, and the blow would have rendered it unconscious wereit not for the horrendous pain thew creature was in from being draggedalong the pavement at 70 mph by a car driven by a man who was not evenaware that he was dragging one of God's creations by the middle of it'sbody, hooked onto his rusty tailpipe.

The pain was excruciating as the road wore through the tough skin ofthe armadillo and into the much more tender skin underneath. It screamedin pain, but the driver was unaware of this also, since he had the tunesblar-ing in the car. Finally, he hit a bump that tore the animal loosefrom the tailpipe. It rolled over and over and came to rest about 3 feetoff the side of the road. It was bleeding profusely from its abdomen, whereit had been hooked to the monster and subsequently torn away from it. Also,it bled severely from the gash in its head, where it had made the initialcontact with the bumper.

It lay there in the most extreme pain for hours, until the sun cameup over the ridge. It was spotted by a passing buzzard, who circled overand over, descending with each pass. All outward indications were thathe was dead, but it was still alive, with every nerve ending in its bodyscreaming at the intense pain.

Another bird joined the first, but they weren't the first to feed onthe dying beast. Ants, seemingly by the millions, were swarming towardthe pool of drying blood, and the 'dillo could only lay helplessly as theymade nearly a blanket over its body. They chewed and chewed tiny littleant bites, as they slowly recycled the dying animal.

Mercifully, it died before the birds had landed.


"Look both ways before you cross the street!"  --My Mom