Wake up and smell the carcass

-Unknown



Early the next morning, Dupres found himself sprawled
on the floor of Doc Holliday's room at the Delaware Hotel.
His head ached and the room reeked of fetid whiskey breath
and tobacco smoke.

He could have slept all day but this was the day he would
meet the young Ophelia in the nearby forest.
He slipped away into the morning chill while Leadville slumbered
and the lightly falling snow revived his senses.

The anticipation of meeting his old love was exciting.
But he could not shake the overriding sense of urgency he felt
as he climbed the tree that would accommodate their fateful encounter.

As he sat there, waiting for her arrival, he wondered, as he had
the first time he was there, if he were not immortal,
could he withstand this altitude?

And suddenly, just as it had happened before, she landed
on a branch directly in front of him and her startled eyes met his.
Love at first sight.
She leapt onto his branch and cautiously approached.
He marveled at her glistening black coat and athletic body,
her handsome tufted ears and those sharp intelligent eyes.
She was more beautiful than he had remembered.

From another tree there came a summons.
Without hesitation, she leapt back into the branches
to meet the other squirrel.

This did not happen the first time!
No, they had been inseparable from the time they met when
he was there before.
Dupres was alarmed, something had gone terribly wrong!

He chased after her until finally, he caught her high in the branches of a Spruce.
"Ophelia!" He said breathlessly.
She turned sharply, "How do you know my name?"
"I am…your true love." He explained.
"Really?" She laughed. "And what do I want with an old squirrel like you?"

Dupres froze in her cruelty. She had not thought him old before.

Another handsome abert squirrel appeared on a branch below them.
Ophelia climbed down to be at his side and together,
they went chasing down the trunk. They made an attractive couple.

Dupres remembered the young male from when he was there before.
Without even trying, he had stolen Ophelia from him
in the first moments of their relationship.
Now they were together and Dupres was alone.

His body was no older than when he had been there before.
But he was much, much older. And there would never be
a way for him to lose the maturity he'd gained over the years
while they were apart, and he thought to himself,
how very, very fragile love is.

He watched them disappear into the forest,
realizing that she would live a normal life and probably
have numerous litters.
He had effectively prevented the problem of 2002 that he came to fix.

Only now, there was a terrible loneliness in his heart.
To her, they had never been . . .
but for Dupres, there was the memory of when
there had only been room for him in her world.

To be continued . . .



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The opinions expressed by Stockton Dupres do not
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All squirrel animation and photo alterations by b.kee(c)1999
Original squirrel photo (c)Gregg Elovich


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