I'm at a road-side coffee shop, in the middle of the woods. I go inside and watch two men talking to the waitress behind the counter.
One of the men is younger, skinny and sullen. He is the waitress's ex-husband. His friend is bigger and a bit older looking. His friend is hitting on the waitress and subtly putting down the skinny one. The skinny one responds in kind. I wonder why the hell these two are friends, when they both seem to despise each other.
There is a crackle on the police scanner, and the two men run outside to their pickup and grab rifles off the gun rack. It's a fugitive. A police cruiser pulls into the dirt parking lot, lights flashing, and the three men head into the woods behind the coffee shop, weapons ready. I can hear hounds in the distance.
I decide to find out what is going on, so I head up the hill behind the coffee shop. It's steep, jungly and foggy, with shafts of sunlight dappling the path in front of me. I break out into a big smile and thank God that I'm alive to see how beautiful it is.
My revery is broken by a hound dog racing past me, overtaking me, heading in the same direction. I run after it but stop suddenly as I hear shots ring out. I run to the top of the hill.
Below me, the three men are sprawled on the ground, and a dog is walking among them on its hind legs, carrying one of their rifles. I think to myself: this is a legendary creature. I throw myself on the ground and play dead, since that is the only way it will spare me--if I pretend that I can't see it, and it can't see me.
It walks to each of the men and fires a single shot into their hearts, making sure they are dead. Then it walks over to me and drinks from a pool of water. Its face is blurred out, out of focus. I remember that it is blind, and can only detect you through sense of smell and hearing. It sniffs my arm: I'm sure it knows I'm here. It's just waiting to see if I'll make a mistake.
Another man runs over the hill, saying "The Legend! Well, you're not going to get me without a fight!"; but it's already too late. He didn't play dead, and I listen, terrified, to the sounds of the dog tearing him to pieces. It's awful.
I feel the dog approaching, and he leans his muzzle in close to my ear and says to me in a low, pleasant voice "Kick a dog that's being humble. Kick two, if you have time."