by Michael S.
we can we have a dog?
Repeat it to
yourself ad nauseum. You know the moment. The
child is fine to stare at occasionally and for
passersby to stop and admire and congratulate you
on, but then it gets a year old and starts to
talk. Before long, it forms opinions, opinions
which contradict your own, and before you even
noticed the time passing, they are in school and
can argue their points better than you can.
Before you notice, they are smarter than you,
reader at a higher level and want a dream job
which would seem better paid than you. And
somewhere in better, they want a dog.
complicated enough, when you have 2.4 children
and live in a small quiet neighbourhood, just
south of Glasgow, or London, or an American
alternative. It is slightly more complicated,
when your children want a pet dog, and your
family are in fact monsters. You cant then
just enter a pet shop and ask how much is that
doggy in the window, for you will have the whole
town lynchmob upon you at any second. Such is the
price of infamy.
looking for a pet, subtler means are needed.
Children do not like subtle means though.
Can we have a dog? Can we have
a dog? And you cant turn to them, and
go: Im trying to get a dog for you,
but its a bit difficult, given were
monsters. Can you not give me a bit of peace and
quiet and Ill see what I can do? Nor
can you eat them. It would stop the persistent
chatter, but would be terribly unpopular, on the
whole, summing up both sides of the argument,
with their mother.
looking up the internet, to see if that would
help, but they dont seem to sell dogs on
the internet. Its not the done thing, I
hear. People tend to prefer selling dogs in more
legal ways, so they dont wind up being a
poor persons Christmas dinner.
Then a dog
turned up on the doorstep one day, when I was
least expecting it to. Not that I would have
expected it if it had arrived on another day or
time. It arriving in any shape or form was the
unexpected part. Hello it said.
Im a dog. I hear you have a
vacancy. This was the second surprise. I
was unaware that dogs spoke English, and told it
so. Im not speaking. I am telepathic
and you are hearing me inside your head, because
you are insane. In reality, all I am doing is
barking affectionately in the hope you will feed
me. Thats an order, by the way.
I fed the dog,
and tried to determine its breed. A terrier of
some sort. Im a mongrel, actually,
but if you call me that, Ill rip your
throat out. You dont see a very
friendly sort of dog, really. I said.
Friendly? Ill show you bloody
friendly he said. And he rolled over on his
side and barked happily while wagging his tail.
There. Friendly as a happy thing thats high,
indeed. Now watch it, buster.
At that point,
the kids came in the door. A dog! My
son screamed, and he ran over to the terrier. It
rolled over on its side and wagged its tail
furiously. I kept trying to warn them that the
dog was actually evil disguised as a fluffy being,
but they ignored me to hug the dog which seemed
to enjoy it. Yet every time it glanced in my
direction the phrase Watch it or else
formed in my mind.
The kids took
to the dog very quickly. It seemed to be peaceful
around them too. My wife adored it. It seemed the
only monster it didnt like was me, and
telepathically it kept reminding me of this. I
would be lying on the ceiling, trying to get a
good nights sleep, when his voice would appear in
my head saying: Just to remind you, I hate
think this situation could go on for much longer.
It was getting on my nerves, the continual death
threats from a creature that my kids seemed to
love so much. Love better than me. That hurt.
Especially given his repeated hatred.
Then one day I
woke up, and it was very dark. Darker than usual,
you see. I looked around, but realised that
wherever I was very small and cramped, and wet. A
distant voice was laughing, like a telepath
I finally made
out the words. Ive eaten you.
I was inside
the bloody dog. It must have digested me when I
wasnt looking. There was only one thing to
do. It had become an eat or be eaten situation.
Now, despite the fact I had already been eaten,
the situation wasnt entirely lost yet.
Indeed, I figured the dog had more to lose from
this point. So I bit into the nearest bit.
laughing turned to yelps of pain so quickly, and
before I knew it I was back in the living room,
all the while pieces of the dog gurgled a
Damn you as I had a drink to quench
my throat. Dogs dont taste all that great,
didnt even seem to notice the dog was gone.
Or at least they didnt seem to show that