Casey started screaming, trying to pull his hand out of the dog’s mouth. Herb stepped forward and clapped his hand over Casey’s mouth, while Kirk dropped the snacks in a pile on the ground, along with his flashlight. Cassandra grabbed the dog and tried to keep it from tearing Casey’s fingers off. It let him go and turned to snap at her. She threw it away from them and it landed heavily, then turned and raced back toward them.
Cassandra danced out of the way, tripping on the pickle jar and tumbling to the ground. Kirk grabbed her under the shoulders and started dragging her away from the advancing hellhound. The dog ignored them altogether, grabbed the bag of cheese slices and ran off.
But for Casey’s whimpering, the forest was quiet once more.

Herb had grabbed the bourbon and a bandana from his backpack.

“Take a sip of this.” He handed Casey the bottle. Casey drank, grimacing as it burned down his throat. “Kirk, cover his mouth.” Kirk helped Cassandra up and stepped over to where Casey and Herb were standing.

“Why does he need to cover my mou-” Herb poured some bourbon over the bite. Kirk covered Casey’s mouth just in time to muffle the scream. Then Herb wrapped Casey’s hand with the bandana and tied it tight.

“Okay I’m not feeling very pragmatic anymore. This might have been a bad idea.”

“You think? Yeah, you’re probably going into shock. This will help.” Cassandra held a piece of chocolate up to his mouth.

“Swallow this.”

Photo by Hello I’m Nik on Unsplash