Bam! I sat straight up in my narrow twin bed, my heart pounding in my chest, as the explosion reverberated through the house. The booming noise had awoken my sister from a sound sleep, just as it had me. We exchanged puzzled glances, not understanding what had caused the sound.
We jumped out of bed, hurrying toward the living room, which we assumed to be the source of the boom. In our small house it didn't take us long to reach our destination. At first, we weren't able to comprehend the scene of chaos and destruction that met our eyes.
Slowly, it came into focus. Mom was standing at the threshold between the kitchen and the living room, a damp dishtowel in her hands and her mouth agape. Dad was sitting ont the edge of the couch, his shotgun in his hand and a sheepish look on his face.
The living room floor was awash with dirty water, colorful gravel, and broken glass. Here and there, a small fish darted about nervously, quite probably shell-shocked. More than a few lifeless fish bodies floated amongst the debris. Occasionally, a piece of seaweed or a portion of a small fish body dropped from the ceiling into the mess below with a soft splash.
In spite of all the evidence before us, we were still having trouble making sense of what had transpired. Until, that is, our eyes were drawn to the gaping hole in the living room wall where the fish aquarium had stood until just a few minutes earlier, when Dad had decided to clean his shotgun in the living room.