Book Spotlight: Duck Squad by John Arnold
Three ducks escape from a university lab experiment and find sanctuary in a fraternity house. They discover human beings can be their friends – and enemies. Their adventures begin righting wrongs – and getting even.
The humans in the lab coats turned off the lights and left the room, shutting the door behind them. Quock listened carefully so he could hear them walk down the hallway and out through another doorway to the outside world.
Quock waited until there was no other sound in the building and he quacked at Guk who he could see in the cage next to him in the dim evening light from the lab windows.
“Guk? Are you sleeping?”
Guk wearily lifted his head from under his wing and quacked, “I was.”
“Is Op asleep?” Quock asked.
Guk looked over at Op’s plump, feathery figure in the cage next to him and then at all the sleeping Pekin ducks in all the other cages. He said, “Everybody’s asleep. Those drugs they give us make us sleepy. Why aren’t you asleep?”
Quock looked around apprehensively. “Something’s happened to me.”
Guk was wide awake by now. He stared at Quock. “Like what?”
“It’s like a cloud was lifted from my head,” Quock explained. “Suddenly I can understand.”
Guk almost laughed. “Understand what? It’s the drugs they give us. They can make you think all kinds of crazy things.”
Quock stared back at Guk. “No, I mean it. I can understand them. I know what they are saying.”
“You mean – the humans in the white coats?”
“Yes. The humans in the white coats. I can understand them now. And I can read what they write.”
Guk shook his head. “There’s no way. It’s just gobbledygook.”
“Oh, no it’s not,” Quock shook his head. “It’s serious.”
Guk looked around at all the sleeping ducks in the room.
Quock took a breath and whispered. “They are going to eat us.”
John Arnold has had his work presented in either a reading or production at American Conservatory Theater (San Francisco) playreading series; California Playwrights Festival, Sacramento; Out and About Theater, Minneapolis; Playwrights Center, San Francisco; Sacramento Theater Company; West Coat Ensemble, Hollywood; Aloha Theater, Kainaliu, Hawaii; Moving Arts, Los Angeles; Mercury Cafe, Denver; First Stage, Los Angeles; The Theater-Studio, New York, Prince William Sound Community College, Valdez, Alaska; Theater of Western Springs, Illinois; and others. His monologue “Bit” is featured on Fourth Wall Review.com. His screenplays have been finalists in the Art Color “Digital Cinema International Film Festival, Montreal, the San Francisco Global Movie Fest, Indie Film Fest, Switzerland and the Swedish International Film Festival.
His play “Saint George” was winner of the 2016 Play Competition – Thistle Dew Theater, Sacramento. His monologue “Aunt Velma Considers Changing Religion” was part of the 2016 One Act Play Festival, Phoenix Stage Company, Connecticut.
He is author of “Duck Squad,” “Autobiography of a Duck” and “Going Home” - available via Amazon.com.
You can visit John’s blog at http://johnharnold.wordpress.com.