page and Story created 10/13/08,
modified 10/15/08, 11/1/08, 11/2
Hi I’m Darma. I’m 7 and three quarters old years, almost 8!

I live in the city but lots of it is swamp. Some of the swamp is easy to see and I have to walk by it to get to school and some of it isn’t so
easy to see.

Once I flew over a lot that most people never get to see but that is in another story about The Chain. I’m pretty sure it was magic but I
guess I may never know.

Anyway, often on the way to school, I’d stop and play in the swamp that was right next to the school. No kidding. There was a big swamp
probably 10 acres right next to the school.

I was always getting wet and muddy and the teachers always were getting upset about the mud on the floor. I always tried to get it off my
shoes but it was never good enough and usually I got yelled at.

But back to the swamp. I used to catch tadpoles, frogs and crawdads. I was always taking them home and tried to grow them up to be my

Because my dad wouldn’t let me have a dog or a cat, I figured I could sort of hide a small frog or crawdad. By the way, in case you is from
the North, a crawdad is a crawfish. You know, like a small lobster!

The trouble was the things always seemed to die in the bottles I put them in. I’d take them home and usually the next morning they were
dead. I didn’t see why. It was the same water I caught them in.

Except this one time. I had a crawdad that was black. Usually they were brown but this one was a nice shiny black.

I woke up and he was alive and I was pretty sure he’d gotten bigger.  So I put him into a large bowl that I snuck from the kitchen when
mom wasn’t watching. I didn’t want her to know I had a pet or she’d probably make me let it go.

I went to school and was so excited; I skipped playing in the swamp.

When I went in to my school room, I noticed the teacher smiling at me. She was weird. Why was she smiling today? Usually she just
frowned at me. Sometimes, I don’t think she liked me at all!

Anyway, I was excited about the black crawdad and wanted to hurry home to see how he was doing. My cousin had a lizard but his
parents had bought it in a pet store and that wasn’t near as good as a pet you caught yourself in the dangerous swamps. A person could
get lost in the swamps if he was little and afraid!  I wasn’t! I was almost 8!

I ran into my bedroom and pulled out the bowl and yep, there was the big black crawdad. It was big. This time I was almost sure he’d
grown while I was gone.

I decided to solve this mystery and I got a piece of string and cut it so the string was just as long as Blackie. I named my crawdad
Blackie. He was really beautiful.

I had gotten some fish food at school from the teacher that kept the animals. She said crawdads could eat fish food or probably human

So I gave Blackie some fish food and a large piece of hot dog just to make sure he wasn’t hungry while I was out playing.

I went out and played with my little brother George. We met up with Johnny and his little brother Sam. We were all best friends.

I told them about Blackie and swore them all to secrecy not to tell any big people about Blackie. They all agreed. I asked them if they
wanted to see Blackie. They sure did, so we ran to the house.

It was about supper time. If you’s from the North, you’d call it dinner but mom called it supper.  

So we all went to my room and shut the door. I pulled the bowl with Blackie in it out from under the bed. He’d eaten the fish food and the
hot dog. And he looked bigger again. Well this time, I knew I could test it so I got the piece of string. Sure enough, he was bigger, a lot
bigger. That crawdad was sure growing fast! He was growing faster than my baby sister who was two years old!

I told the others about it and showed them the string and they didn’t believe me so we got a new piece of string and cut it so it was the
same size long as Blackie. Johnny is pretty smart so he said he would take the string home so it didn’t get lost. Well, I knew he wanted to
make sure the string was the same piece tomorrow and not another shorter piece I cut. Like I said, Johnny is smart!

It was okay with me.

They had to go home and George and I had to eat.

I kept some of my food and brought it in to Blackie. I also got a pan and put Blackie in the pan and put both in a big cardboard box.
Cause as I figured it, by tomorrow he’d be too big for the bowl and just walk out.

It was hard to go to sleep. I had a pet crawdad and it was growing fast. I wondered what I could do with it. Pretty soon it would be too big
to keep inside under the bed.

What to do? ...

The Conclusion is written.
To read it, contact me.

By Carl Watts


Stories by Carl
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