Mojo in Moonlight
Mojo in Moonlight
by Lucy Newman
Mojo looked up at his master, Andy, as he slowly pushed himself out of the rocking chair and stood on the front porch. As he yawned, Andy stretched his arms out as far as they could go and stared at the cornfields for a few minutes and entered his aging and failing house.
Mojo let out a whimper as he watched Andy slowly walked into the house for the night. As the door slowly pulled itself towards the frame with all the strength it could muster in its old rusty springs, a cold draft rushed past Mojo and into the house.
Something deep within his old bones he knew it was almost time for Andy to go as the familiar pain weighed heavy in his chest. The same pain he felt with the lady of the house, Martha, died. Mojo scrambled to his feet and walked as fast as he could to the door but the mysterious wind that followed slammed it shut.
Raising his long ears and staring through the screen he could hear Andy’s bedsprings creak as he laid himself down for the evening. Perhaps it was nothing, the old hound dog thought to himself as he slowly lowered himself down to the porch for the night and laid his heavy head down on his paws.
Old memories of his puppy years began to slowly creep into his dreams of hunting. The first time he met Andy after Martha found him on the side of the road, the day their son moved out to find his fortune and the day Martha died. A tear slowly leaked from his eyes and down his soft muzzle.
His chest grew heavy as he watched Andy decay before his eyes, never leaving the porch and always watching the cornfields for Martha to come home. He and Andy were walking back to the house from a hunting trip through the woods when Andy found Martha laying in the cornstalks.
“She died of a heart attack Andy, there was nothing anyone could have done,” said Wallace, Andy and Martha’s doctor. He had been out to the house on several occasions that year to check on Andy and see if he needed anything. But after awhile, Andy quit talking to people and on occasion would say a something to Mojo. Earlier in the year, Andy began talking to Martha in his sleep.
“Mojo,” Martha’s voice called out. “Mojo dear, go get daddy out of bed.”
Mojo slowly opened his eyes and wagged his tail. Looking around to see where the voice was coming from, scanning the cornfields for signs of movement in hopes Martha had come back. “Go get daddy lazybones.”
As he scrambled to his feet a mysterious wind opened the screen door, allowing him to trot into the house and into the kitchen. Brightly lit as if it were morning. It was very familiar as the smell of bacon filled his snout, an old familiar scent since Andy wasn’t very good at cooking and stuck to canned foods that the local delivery boy brought him once a week.
“Hurry up, Mojo,” whispered Martha as an invisible hand smoothed the fur on his head back. “I can’t stay very long.” The smell of her old cherry almond scented lotion made his tail wag faster as he continued trotting to Andy’s room. As he managed to push past the slightly opened door, he could hear Andy snoring and mumbling in his sleep.
As he slowly approached the side of the bed, he could hear the snoring growing faint and the mysterious chill blowing past him again. Mojo pushed his nose into the back of Andy’s neck, but no response. After nudging him a few times he raised his front paws onto the bed and began shaking the bed.
When nothing worked he tried to jump onto the bed, but his worn body was too weak to try and had to try licking his ears. Something he knew Andy hated and would surely punish him for it. But he had to get him out of bed for Martha.
“It’s okay Mojo! Daddy’s ready!” Martha shouted. But how can this be? Mojo whimpered as he continued to shake the bed in panic. “Mojo! Come on!”
Mojo stopped shaking the bed and looked out into the empty house. The chill began creeping up his legs like wild vines crawling up the tree trunks in the woods. Standing there as he watched the moonbeams creep through the bedroom window.
“Mojo!” shouted Martha. “We’ve got to go you silly mutt!”
With new energy he turned and ran through the house and back onto the porch. The cornfield was lit in a sparkling blue light emanating from the moon and highlighting the early morning dew before sunrise.
“Come on Mojo!” a new voice screamed through the rustling cornstalks. Mojo peered into the cornfields and saw Martha and Andy waiting by the edge. Their faces glowing in the moonlight.
As he ran towards them a sudden pain filled his tired legs as he leapt off the porch and into the yard and collapsed in the moonlight. As suddenly as it came, the pain was gone and he rose to his feet again. Looking around he refocused his eyes back on Andy and Martha and continued running towards them.
“Good boy!” said Andy as he greeted his old friend with a hug, followed by Martha with hugs and kisses. As he started to follow them through the cornfield, he turned to look back and saw an old hound dog laying in the moonlight where he fell. No longer caring to find out who the other dog was, in his heart he knew and continued following Andy and Martha through the cornfield.