Brown and the End of the Line
By J. A. Campbell
Growling more loudly, I crouched to the floor and glared at him.
“Brown, easy. It’s all a misunderstanding.”
I continued to glare, but I quieted my growl.
“She won’t hurt you, and I’m not worshiping the devil.”
The sheriff slowly holstered his gun and grabbed Elliott’s arm. “We’ll just see about that.”
“Ask the conductor. I’m trying to stop the ghost. We got one in Miller, Colorado. Wire Sheriff Tolbert.” Elliott smelled afraid and sounded desperate.
I stifled another growl.
“Time enough for that. Let’s go.” The sheriff shoved Elliott in the back, making him stumble down the narrow hallway. The priest followed and I stayed behind them, not letting Elliott out of my sight but staying far enough away that they wouldn’t be able to grab me. A few passengers stared as we marched past, but no one said anything. Though I was more concerned about Elliott, I didn’t forget the reason we were on the train and I kept my nose alert for ghost smells.
“Sirs, please, I’m here to hunt the ghost. I must get back to my room. It could be here any minute.” Elliott stopped and turned toward the sheriff and the priest.
“Son, there’s no such thing as ghosts.”
I couldn’t understand why the sheriff called Elliott son. He wasn’t that much older than my human. The priest on the other hand looked very old, with thin white hair and lines on his face like humans got when they were older.
“Yes….” Elliott’s reply was drowned out by a sharp screech that would have set me to barking if I’d still been on my feet, but the train lurched at the same time and I went sprawling, hitting the back of the priest’s legs and knocking him into the sheriff.
Elliott stumbled into the wall but stayed on his feet. He stared at the fallen men in shock and I had to bark to get is attention.
Run! I would have shouted at him if I could.
“Of course.” He seemed to know what my bark meant and sprinted past the fallen men before they could regain their feet.
Running close behind him, I got a strange feeling and, even though I knew I shouldn’t, I darted forward and grabbed Elliott’s ankle with my teeth and sent him sprawling.
“Ow! Brown, what are you doing?”
Gunshots rang out behind us and an eerie howl rattled my teeth. Something white shot by overhead. It seemed brighter than the lights in the hallway and it rattled the glass as it raced past.
“Good girl, Brown. I should know better than to question you.”
Women screamed up ahead.
“Go, get the ghost. See if you can push it back to our room.”
I jumped over Elliott’s back and I heard him get to his feet and start running as I chased after the ghost. It had made it to the dining car where a few people were enjoying an evening snack. Well, they had been enjoying it, but I smelled musty-ozone everywhere and the walls dripped with ghost slime. One woman was having hysterics and I could smell the ghost all over her and she looked wet with slime too.
Despite all the slime, the ghost was not in the dining car anymore. I barked, seeing if it would come when I called. No luck, but screams from the next room down let me know the ghost was still there, and if I hurried….
Be sure to check out David Riley – http://sftrails.blogspot.com/ tomorrow for Part Five!
Intro – June 11th – J. A. Campbell – https://writerjacampbell.wordpress.com/blog/
Part 1- June 12th – Sam Knight – http://samknight.com/
Part 2 – June 13th – Bea’s Book Nook – http://beasbooknook.blogspot.com/
Part 3 – June 14th – Amaleen Ison – http://www.amaleenison.com/
Part 4 – June 15th – Jen Wylie – https://jlwylie.wordpress.com/
Part 5 – June 16th – David Riley – http://sftrails.blogspot.com/
Interview with Brown – June 17th – Anne Michaud – http://annecmichaud.wordpress.com/
Follow the link to enter a contest to win a copy of Science Fiction Trails 10 in which Brown battles Martians. US only I’ll send the winner a signed copy, the rest of the world, you have to take an unsigned copy, sorry. You gotta be willing to give me your address though Alternately the winner can chose a Kindle copy. Contest runs from June 11th through June 30th. I’ll pick three winners.
Brown – Brown is a Border Collie who hunts ghosts, and other things as it turns out, with her human, Elliott Gyles. You can find out more about her adventures here: https://writerjacampbell.wordpress.com/eye-of-the-dog/
Julie – Julie writes fantasy novels. When she’s not out riding her horse, she can usually be found sitting in front of her computer with a cat on her lap and her dog at her side. Read more about her other stories here: http://www.writerjacampbell.com
Excerpt from Brown Goes Full Steam Ahead in the Penny Dread Three Anthology:
I quickly grew used to the shrieking whistle and the rumble of the steam engines that vibrated my paws constantly. We stood in the front of the ship while it rumbled down the Mississippi. Occasionally water would splash my nose and the scents that filled the air kept me busy with all the stories they told. I was almost disappointed when Elliott told me it was time for our performance. The sun was low in the sky and the people who worked on the boat said the ghost, they referred to it as a she, usually came out during the performances or at night when the passengers would stroll on the decks.