I headed back with my pail of warm milk. Stopping at the hen house I gathered four brown eggs and stuffed them into my apron pockets. As I came from the hen house, I saw a sight that made me stop dead in my tracks. Not more than a few yards away, stood a coyote. I turned my head slowly from one side of the yard to the other to see if there were more. Coyotes usually run in packs at night, but strangely here he was in the morning sunlight. He snarled, showing his mouth full of sharp teeth. I slowly started inching my way back toward the hen house, where I could lock myself inside. The coyote lowered his head, but kept his dark eyes on me. White foam drooled from his mouth. He snarled again and staggered in my direction. My heart pounded in my throat and sweat started to form on my forehead. I wanted to yell for Ma, but I was afraid the beast would attack me if I made a sound. And I know that if I made a sudden move I will likely be his breakfast.
A blast echoed across the prairie that made me jump, sloshing the milk down my skirt and into my shoe. The coyote flew a good arm's length before dropping dead in the dry dirt. Ma stood in the doorway holding the long-gun, smoke oozing from the barrel.