The Spot was a beautiful stone outcropping that jutted up from the fairly flat desert in the middle of nowhere. My friend, Adam, would spend hours driving around looking for the best places to camp. To get to the Spot, you had to drive out of town through miles of farmland until you came to the last house, then you made a left and drove through sand dunes and empty nothingness until the Spot rose out of the dust before you. It really was a great place to camp, do bonfires, and hang out thinking deep teenage thoughts, you know about like life and like stuff.
Did I want to hit the bunny? No. I don't like killing things, it's not in my nature. If you ever spot me walking down the sidewalk when a colony of ants happen to cross at the same time, you will see me break out into a strange game of hopscotch as I jump, skip, and ninja/twister my way past without stepping on a single one. I like ants. I used to feed them when I was a kid, crumbs of doritos, drips from my popsicle. They discover the prize, call their friends, and seconds later nothing is left as they trundle the gift home. Amazing to me still. But, this is not about that...back to the bunny. I caved to peer preasure and hit the gas, knowing that my chances of hitting the bunny were still slim.
Bunnies are fast, dodgy little things. I had never hit one before this and I have never hit one since. Don't worry. I didn't hit this one either. As we sped toward the furry thing, it mutated.
It was an owl. We laughed, pretending the initial screams hadn't happened.
A few minutes later "another" bunny dodged out in front of my car, this time a real one, no owl. I locked up my brakes, skidding to a sliding halt in the sand.
Adam mocked me. "I can't believe you locked up your brakes for a jack rabbit!"
I turned to him and very seriously explained. "The last one had WINGS!" We then laughed until we cried.
That was the good part of the trip, then we made it to the Spot. Other friends had already made it out there. A few more showed up shortly after us. We had a decent gathering. We built a fire and then climbed to the top of the rock overhang by firelight and dim flashlights.
That was the wrong thing to say. It just piqued their interest and everyone began jumping up and down, begging and pleading me to share them. I caved again.
Something you should know about me, I do not scare easily. I will walk through a haunted house giggling. I laugh hysterically through scary movies, making comments like, "Really. I am sooooo scared. The tooth fairy is gonna get me. Ha haahaahhaa!" or "When a creepy dead girl crawls out of your tv, you grab a baseball bat and knock her butt back in. When she tries it again, you knock her butt back in and say 'Keep trying, chick, I can keep this up all night.'" I walk through supposedly haunted cemeteries and lay down on the ground in order to figure out the mysterious ghost light (a neat trick of the light due to trees, landscaping, and a pefectly shaped hill that sends blue light from passing cars to bend and crawl across the grass without any obvious source). I DO NOT scare easy, but I have seen things that scare me. My ghost stories are not about some man with a claw for a hand who attacks unwary campers. My stories are REAL!
Don't ask me to share them. I won't. The idea of committing some of the things I've seen and heard to the hard lines of our written language gives me chills. It is not going to happen.
Anyway. I shared them that night. I started small, talking about the UFO's I've seen. I don't think they were aliens. I'm weird. I'm not a crackpot. I'm pretty sure the first one I saw was my childlike imagination turning a low flying plane into the ship from The Flight of the Navigator. The second one looked very much like some early military testing of the stealth bomber. The last one I saw might have been an actual weather balloon as it fell back to earth, silver disk flip flopping in the sunlight. Then I moved on to stories I've gained from others, things that may or may not be true. Then, I moved on to my own stories from houses I've lived in, places I've been, things that stick with me. The group fell silent, stopped asking questions as I went into details about the sound a light made or the...wait...no, not gonna talk about that.
I finished my tales and this is what happened.
The last little group of friends looked at one another and didn't even have to say it. No one would be camping in the dark desert that night, especially as our group had dwindled down to nothing. My friend, Adam, made me give him my keys. "Don't want any bunnies getting us killed." I handed them over.
The trip home took half the regular amount of time...and we were followed by a blue ghost light.