Coyote Breathing – I Believe

Reason to Believe   Inspired by the WordPress Daily prompt

At the end of every day, sometimes in the middle, I go to the stats of this blog and check it see if anyone is listening. Everyday my reason to believe is that my novel is good, and that others will be purchasing it to see why I believe so much in the story, and it’s goodness, and it’s positive outcome. Some days my belief is rewarded, other days… well not so much. Maybe today will be a good day!

In the novel there is a chapter that opens where the main character has been taken out into the Arizona desert to camp. She’s a city girl relocated, and she doesn’t know what to think of the silence, the dense dark of wilderness, and of her new life in Arizona. Especially when a wild coyote tries to break into the camper.

Here is an excerpt:

Chapter 7:

The Coyote’s Breath was Hot

Utah border, northern Arizona

The dark, silent night seemed to close in on the truck like a black scourge. Holding her hand up before her face, close enough that she could feel the warmth from her palm, Jessica realized she couldn’t even see it, and that really unnerved her.

She was lying on her back, fully dressed and trussed up in a sleeping bag. Next to her, Alex was breathing the slow, easy in-and-out of someone asleep. They were camping out on the Navajo Reservation, and after finishing the dinner dishes from their meager meal, Alex casually turned off the lantern. They climbed into the back of the truck’s camper shell to lie on a soft futon designed for just such an occasion as this, and he promptly fell asleep.

Jessica, on the other hand, laid stiff and holding her breath. From the first moment they’d arrived in this isolated place, Jessica had felt uncomfortable. It was like sensory depravation for her. There was absolutely no sound except the light breeze blowing through the small bushes speckling the ground. No traffic, no people, no engines, no nothing. At one point it was so quiet she could hear the sound of her own blood in her ears, like when you put a seashell up to your ear and hear the ocean. She was a city girl in a place she could not comprehend. All around her was spooky silence, and Jessica felt displaced and nervous. The more she tried to relax, the tenser she became.

She held her breath and tried to listen for sounds outside the truck, but could only hear Alex’s steady breathing. Damn, why couldn’t she sleep like that? She tried to relax her body, but the more she tried to let go, the more she tensed up. Her eyes were adjusting to the dark, and indistinct shapes showed in her peripheral sight. All right. Think it through. What are you afraid of? The only large animals around are coyotes, and they’re actually afraid of man. Alex says they’ll run if they see you.

“Ahh…” another thought rose up in her mind, “…but what if the coyote was rabid?”

She looked to her right at the camper window, half opened, leaving only a screen between her and the outside. She began to get dizzy with holding her breath.

Oh, my, God, Jessica thought, I have to get my fear under control. This is awful.

She began to apply a technique she’d learned in Buddhism. Calming the mind, keeping it focused on one thing – her breathing. The idea was to get her breathing to slow, her mind to relax, and the fear to dissolve.

Suddenly, to her utter astonishment, a real coyote lunged through the screen of the window and was attempting to jump into the camper shell. The coyote wasn’t able to get his whole body through the window on his first leap, but it was obvious that he was determined to reach his prey. He dangled awkwardly over her, riotously yelping and barking, all the time slinging flecks of rabid foam all over her hair and face. She could hear the sound of his back claws frantically scratching the metal of the truck’s body.  She knew he was trying to get a good foothold so he could make it the rest of the way into the camper to attack them. Jessica was frozen with fear. The coyote’s breath was hot and stank of something wild and foul, and his sharp teeth seemed to get closer to her exposed head with each jerk.

Jessica sat straight up, jerking away from the animal. She couldn’t stop the scream that billowed up out of her chest, and it woke Alex with a start.

“What?” he asked, bleary eyed. “What happened? Are you OK?”

Buy the novel and find out why her faith and love wins out in the end.

I hope you enjoyed the excerpt. To read the novel you can download it on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and the iBookstore. The third edition is soon to be released. I can finally afford a professional editor! Blue Moon Bench by D L Blanchard

So, I believe my novel is a good book, and at the end of the day, I just know if I stick with it, others will believe that too.

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One thought on “Coyote Breathing – I Believe

  1. I am most intrigued by your excerpt! But is she not dreaming, methinks? Believing in your own work is highly commendable. I would find myself ultra-self-critical and that would [and has!] stopped me dead in my tracks of tackling such a project as novel-writing. Bravo to you!

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