The night I delivered Myrtle Patrick’s baby was the week of the full moon. I was driving my buggy back to the edge of town where my house sits, when I thought I heard an animal whimpering in pain. My horse, Clarence, had a fit, stepping all over the path, indicating that he’d prefer to run from whatever was out there.
“Settle down, old man,” I soothed him. He shook his head as if to disagree, but calmed enough for me to listen more closely.
Since I’ve never been accused of having an excess of common sense, I pulled up and hopped off the buggy-seat to see what was beside the trail.
Clarence snorted loudly to let me know his sentiments about my intent. But I ignored his advice, just as I’d ignored every other piece of male advice I’d been given, since I’d run away on my tenth birthday after my stepdad beat me black and blue.
Granted, in this instance, Clarence was right. The sound was coming from a big cat that had been chewed up pretty badly by something. I didn’t want to think about what was big and nasty enough to hurt a predator of that size, so I concentrated on easing the animal’s pain by attempting a healing.