The Daemon Sisters and Things That Go Splash In the Night

Robert Denlinger - Sept 29, 1998
Hi All: Last night I was pleased to be able to get to bed early. The past two or three nights have seen me both hit the sack late as well as get up in the night to check on either Kuv's or equines. So I learned a neat little lesson. Don't bother to go to bed early, you'll just get up even more often to compensate for the initial sleep gain.

I worked out a better plan. If I stay dressed, put my rubber boots on to thwart the deep and dew covered grass at that time of night, put my strong spotlight in my lap and lean the shotgun against my leg, then I can rock in the chair on the deck till I am called.

Somewhere around or shortly after midnight, Capella's shrill voice echoed the nearly half mile back to my recumbent ears. I thought that the sound didn't sound right. And I am certain I hadn't heard that tone before. She had, in the past, made shrill, what I call, "Yips" when she is adamant about getting Callisto's attention to come and help. Often Callisto is indifferent, or perhaps knows there really isn't a threat. However, this was a piercing, chilling call.

I dozed, waiting to hear another. Sure enough, it came. This one got me out of the bed and hurrying to get dressed. I jumped off he back deck, which faces the, all to close, creek. As I passed the garden, doing my best "quick step", Callisto joined me. "Oh boy", I thought, "Real protection". Callisto bounced ahead of me, only now interested and alerted on her sister.

Capella remains overnight in something a little larger than a half acre of electric netting, amongst the ewes. Three quarters of he way there, and seemingly in my face, I heard a v-e-r-y loud "splash" to my right. I instinctively doused the spotlight. Instincts from another era ...I realized I couldn't see a blasted thing and fumbled to turn the idiot light back on. It has one of those "just handy dandy" recessed, flat as all heck, "sealed" buttons, one can never find in the dark.

Meanwhile Callisto was going crazy "over there" somewhere in front of me. Capella was too, but we hadn't gotten to her yet. "Wow, that w-a-s big sounding", I muttered. "Where's the Uzi, when I need it? No, maybe some grenades ...better yet ..a Laser Cannon". Well, I looked down in the river. No ripples. Nothing slithering out of the other side's bank either. So we trundled of to Capella.

Once there, Capella seemed whiney and at the same time, intensely alert. The corner of the square we were in was about 5 feet from the embankment that leads down another ten feet to the water. A huge "somethingorother" type tree was in front of us, and had a partially eroded root system. I shined the light into the water there and onto the other bank because both sisters were still barking and hopping around. Nothing. Nada. No ripples. So Callisto decided what I did, no problem. Capella wasn't sure we were sane, but couldn't get out of the nets to point the way.

Callisto walked down to a postage-stamp sized sand spit for a cool drink. I had the light covering her, just out of curiosity. The water was still. Suddenly Callisto stopped drinking. Very, very slowly, she raised her weapons, water still running out from her attempted drink. She took a slight jump backwards. And Voila!!! Another very loud splash! I still could not see any ripples.

Now I was really confused. Capella and Callisto were really going bonkers now. Callisto was trying to search the water, above and below. I, too, searched. Finally, I saw a softball sized head peering up stealthily followed by a rather long body and a BIG FLAT TAIL !! "SPLASH" or rather "SLAP".

Well, I am from Nevada, don't hunt or trap, and can't therefore say if it was a beaver, a weasel, a muskrat or some other member of Clinton's cabinet. I headed back. Soon Callisto joined me. Capella was irate that we left and continued to bark. In fact, this went on until about a half hour ago. Occasionally, Callisto would go down there. I could tell by the distance and echo of her barks.

So, I guess the girls saved my flock from being chewed down and used as a river dam. Anyway, there are enough fallen trees blocking river flow as it is. The Feds claim they haven't enough money to restore the natural flow of Tygarts, so we poor obnoxious shepherds must contend with frequent pasture erosion and flooding.