Short Story: A Day on the River

It was early morning on the Oconee River, the type of day that was perfect for fishing. A man and a woman sat in a canoe. They were holding fishing rods, but both were too distracted by all the alligators to make use of them.

“I’m not sure about this river anymore. It’s getting scary,” Missy said.

“I know. But don’t worry, they’re more scared of us than we are of them,” Jack said eyeing the long body drifting past. A bit of algae was growing on its side, and there were a couple of sticks hanging off, but it didn’t seem to care.

They waited until it was gone before speaking again.

“But they scare all the fish away. Or eat them,” Missy said.

“Nonsense, we still catch plenty,” Jack said. He sat still for a moment, “In fact, I’ve got a bite right now.”

A flurry of movement later and the fish was out of the water.

Missy was too distracted to care. She gasped and nodded her head, “There’s another one. And it’s got a baby with it!”

“Don’t get too close, they’re protective of their young.”

“You ever eaten any?” Missy asked.

“It tastes like chicken,” Jack half-joked. “But seriously, we don’t need to mess with them. They’re dangerous.”

“I’d climb a tree if they were after me.”

“Actually, it’s a little-known fact, but they can climb trees.”

Missy eyed the creatures warily, “Really?”

“Yeah. They don’t do it often, and it’s mostly the younger ones, but they can climb. Trees, fences, whatever.”

“Holy shit.”

“Holy shit is right. If any more kayakers come all us gators are gonna have to move.”

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