Novel 4 Progress: 3,270 of 65,000
Queries sent: 50
Requests for pages: 2
[Note, Amber commentary will be inserted to ensure historical accuracy. No animals were harmed in the writing of this post, though Dustin may have wanted to do some damage.]
So there I was, chilling in my newly stained garden bench, sipping that good ole’ morning Oklahoma air, petting my dog, listening to the birds chirp and the water gush from my outdoor fountain.
And a dog starts barking.
You see, when one dog barks, that urge to call back overcomes any dog within 100 miles. It’s impossible to resist that urge, like Toothless defying the alpha in the second How to Train Your Dragon Movie.
Yeah, it was alpha-induced barking time.
Yip, yip. Yip-yip-yip.
“Shut it,” I say.
But no, the runt keeps barking.
Yip, yip. Y-y-y-y-y-y-yipppp.
He bolts toward the fence.
Here’s the problem–my house backs into
the busiest street in Norman [Amber: There’s maybe one car a minute. It’s not that busy. Dustin: Hello, it has two lanes!]
(And by the way, I just happened to take a picture during the one millisecond there were no cars driving by.) [Amber: Riiiiiiiight. Then why not wait for a millisecond for another car to drive by? Dustin: I won’t even dignify that with a response.]
Good thing there’s a fence, right? A fence will keep a chihuahua out of that death trap.
See, there’s a gap in the fence–one just big enough for a bug, an atom, or microscopic fairy to fit in. [Amber: And, apparently, a dog. Dustin: Obviously.]
And here’s my hand so you can see the scale of the hole
I see him running for the hole. No biggie, I thought. He’d require a trash compactor to fit in that thing.
Then he disappeared.
Oh no. All I could think of was my tiny dog playing fetch with an SUV’s front tire.
I leaped to my feet and sprinted a quarter mile across our yard [Amber: Right. More like 10 feet.] In a single bound, I jumped over the fence [Amber: Did you bring your cape, superman?] and dashed into traffic, dodging sedans and sliding across the hoods of cars. Horns blared, people shouted, glass shattered as car after car collided. [Amber: I’m speechless. Dustin: Thank you! Amber: That wasn’t a compliment.]
I had only one thought on my mind–bring my dog Tuki home. I rolled beneath a truck and reached across the median, grabbing my dog within millimeters of colliding with a semi-truck. [Dustin: Why are you rolling your eyes? Amber: I, uh, had an eyelash or something. Go on, I’d hate to stop you.]
Panting, I stood and studied the shrapnel around me. Soot-stained men and women emerged from their cars, glass crunching beneath their feet as they walked to me. Sirens blared in the distance. A child coughed and sniffled.
“Good people of Norman,” I said. “Forgive the intrusion, but an innocent dog was in danger.”
A man removed his hat and placed it across his chest. Another bowed in silence.
And I left. [Amber: Ok….so what really happened? Dustin: What do you mean? Amber: * “this stops now” glare*. Dustin: Fine…Tuki never ended up crossing the street. He approached a couple walking their dogs and sniffed their rears. Amber: Let’s go from there.]
So I was on the other side of the fence, but how could I get back? The incline on that side of the fence was too steep. [Amber: Why not do that superman-jumpy thingy? Dustin: Cryptonite, okay?]
So, what could I do? I couldn’t climb the fence and the walk back home was at least 100 miles [Amber: more like a quarter mile. Dustin: At least a mile. Amber: Nope. Just looked it up–less than a half mile.]
And I didn’t have a leash, so I carried him–all 88 pounds of him. [Amber: An 88 pound chihuahua? Dustin: He’s a mixed dog. Amber: Mixed with what? A dinosaur?]
Walking uphill [Amber: both ways?], barefooted, with stones stabbing my soles, with bedhead as bad as Einstein [Amber: That I believe], I marched in the solitude of my thoughts with the wind as my companion and time as my enemy. After four grueling hours, [Amber: ten minutes, perhaps?] I arrived at home, dripping with sweat and ready to collapse.
My dog licked my face, a token of his deep and abiding gratitude [Amber: I’m sure that’s what it was], never again to be the same [Amber: I wouldn’t count on that].
And nor was I.
And that’s how I almost lost my dog–and avoided empathizing with a country song.