Catherine Mulvany’s life is a fairy tale. Okay, a fractured
fairy tale. At age eleven she fell hopelessly in love with a
little town in eastern Oregon. With a population under fifty—counting
the cats and dogs—the town didn’t even qualify as
one-horse, but the place had character. Character and an abundance
Never heard of an arkayess? Neither had Catherine. But on
the first day of her visit, she became intimately acquainted
with one particularly gruesome member of this species—also
known as the road-killed snake. Arkayess. RKS. Road-killed
snake. Get it?
She did. The hard way.
Catherine was walking along a side street, minding her own
business, when the orneriest boy in town came riding down the
road on his bike, swinging a dead snake like a lariat. “You’d
better run, kid,” he yelled. “I’m gonna wrap
this arkayess around your leg!”
He followed. (Are you getting that whole fairy tale connection?
Knight on a white charger equals boy on a bike?)
When he got close enough, he took aim, then let that snake
fly. It cartwheeled through the air with deadly accuracy to
coil itself around her bare leg.
The boy was almost as shocked as Catherine; he hadn’t
expected to hit his target. So to make it up to her, he proposed...and
it only took him nine years to do it. She accepted, of course,
and they’ve lived happily ever after in their very own
All right. So it’s really a three-bedroom ranch house,
but it has an irrigation ditch out back, and that’s practically
a moat, right?