The Barn 19: Hippopotamus
Luna saw the enormous creature submerge just ahead in a pond. She smiled, happy that this wonderful moment had finally come true. After running her hand through her long blonde hair, she snapped a picture. Dreaming of seeing a wild Hippopotamus for years had her here in Africa, searching and living out her vivid dreams. She bounced along the road in a rented safari vehicle, watching the scene unfold. “Beautiful,” Luna said under her breath.
Across the African landscape were a variety of animals, including a giraffe, many coyotes, and a few elephants. Luna had seen a few lions and even a zebra, which had her elated. Having a camera, Luna snapped away, capturing memories. At times, she found driving and taking pictures challenging, so she would pull off on the side of the road and capture perfect moments of the animals.
Luna had been driving for most of the day and watched as the sun began to set beyond the horizon. With a big smile, she knew the stars would be out soon, and the bright moon would cast long shadows across the landscape. Suddenly, the truck began to sputter, emitting a loud whining sound. Luna turned it off before popping the steaming hood. “Well, shit,” she sighed. Even though Luna had experience working on cars, she knew she could only get the thing going by refilling the radiator. The damn thing overheated and burst a line. “God damnit!” Luna kicked the front tire with her leather boot. Seeing the sun dip beyond the horizon, Luna knew it would start to get dangerous out here soon. Considering staying in the truck, she decided against the idea because she was on a well-known animal path. A relatively large lake was just a short distance ahead. Luna remembered a nearby building she had seen during the day. Nodding to herself, she walked down the path until the dark shape of a manmade structure came into view against the dark sky. Finally, she stepped in front of the barn. One of the doors lay on the ground in splinters.