Creak returns home to sunny environs -- only to have his family dinner interrupted.
Might I just say how happy I am to have left the snowy North and returned to my homeland? I can appreciate that my Two-Legged Pets want to spend time with other members of their litter -- sometimes even I'm nostalgic for the days of old, my twelve brothers, sisters and I all huddled together as mom told us doggybedtime stories.
But the bitter cold, disappearing ground (damn you, "snow"!) and perpetual state of inactivity (see my last correspondence) were driving this here of the Noble Canine Family bonkers.
The Southwest -- it's a serene, barren place. Nice and warm, dry weather. Beautiful vistas.
And as long as my doggy water bowl continues to be filled, I'll remain in bliss forever. (Though on that score, I've heard talk from my pets the water is disappearing. Can it be? More than marrow-less steak bones, this scenario plagues my night visions.)
What better way to celebrate our return home? Dinner at an outdoor cafe, of course. (I know, it's now near or is January. And, according to the round dial above Papa Pet, we're relaxing in 72-degree Fahrenheiters. If you're anywhere not in the South, you probably hate me right now. Then again, you do have water ...)
Strictly speaking, I'm not usually allowed to eat at the restaurants with my pets (silly "health inspectors," I've been told). Though on account of my always good behavior, I am allowed to sit beneath the table.
Which brings me to the unintelligent villains of my story.
My pets were sitting there, enjoying a good meal and recounting various fun stories from the holidays (I particularly loved hearing once again how, because of losing their luggage on an airplane, one of the "New Yawk" litter actually fainted at the prospect of wearing non-form-fitting, lighter-shaded clothing).
And what should happen but two very shifty, shady young women with gelatinous bellies, thin, strung-out, excessively curly light hair, and protruding overbites sauntered in and sat at a table across the aisle. They emanated a strange, demonic attitude.
And, to what would have been the "New Yawk" breed's horror, they were wearing sweatpants. In public.
Almost immediately I could sense my pets' attitudes changing -- their joy dimming.
I peeked across the way to see the Evil Urchin Twins looking maliciously toward my family. Listening in, I realized they were mimicking my pets' conversation in strange voices and then ... laughing.
My pets' auras worsened.
I was confused -- they never seemed this discomfited. And the Squid Women -- their auras grew ever more malevolent. The fur on my back stood straight.
It seemed my family was under attack ... but unable or refusing to do something about it. The impulse to defend was mounting.
I felt a light pull on my pets' leash and realized we were leaving. One of the Platypus Sisters stood up smiling, revealing several dark teeth and a hellacious gust of breath even the Two-Leggers must have noticed. She sneered at Papa Pet, "Don't forget your purse!"
My teeth were digging into her heavily-volumed (if oddly structureless) rump. Squeals of pain erupted. Shouts of anger from Dim Henchwoman #2. A strange, potent gust of wind from my victim's other end.
Calm instructions from my family: "Creak, let go. Creak, she's not worth the attention for which her disgusting attitude pleads."
I bit tighter. I was pissed.
No one messes with my family.
I could taste the fear in her sweat.
And what a bitch, too. Now my OA was definitely going to flare up.
"Creak, my boy, bite any tighter and she could infect you with something."
I released and looked pleadingly at my pets -- the last time I inadvertently said hello a little too well to a new friend at the park I had a metropolis of fleas devouring my nose.
"Good boy," The Mother Pet said. "Everyone, we're leaving now."
That night I received a full steak bone all my own.
Beautiful, delicious marrow included.