Sunday, December 23, 2012

The Shy Boy - Vignettes 11 and 12

These vignettes are short, and not as detailed as the script might be, but it does reflect my feelings toward my first pet. A year has passed from the last vignette, more or less.

Vignette 11
Jake came home from 2nd grade one day to the sound of barking in the back yard. Jerry, who walked with him, though not on purpose, raced into the house and then out the back. Jake followed him a bit slower and looked out the back window. He saw his stepfather and mother bending over and petting a black puppy. He went through the door Jerry left open and stepped out.
His mother waved. “Jake! Look what we have now. A new member of our family. A sweet buppy!”
His mother always used that word around dogs and he just rolled his eyes. He came up to the puppy, who was tied to a tree in the middle of a yard. The dog was licking Jerry, then saw Jake and jumped up with its paws on his chest and licked his face. He giggled slightly, but moved out of her reach after a moment..
Oh look, she loves you already,” said his mom. “Her name is Cleopatra and she's a Labrador Retriever. She's purebred!”
The dog was bounding back and forth on her leash, letting out a bark every now and then.
Jerry came to his mother and hugged her. “Thanks Mom!”
Jake sighed quietly. “Yeah, thanks, Mom!”
Jake found his way back into the house and put his homework on the desk. Gradually the rest of the family came home from school and made a giant fuss over the 'buppy.' He heard that word so many times that day that when night came he covered his ears to block out the sound – of that and the dog barking.
Vignette 12
Over the next two months several things happened to Jake. Thanksgiving came and went. Christmas was on the way. Cleo had grown, both physically and on him. The dog showed great enthusiasm for both him and Jerry and greeted them when they got home from school.
The dog was kept in the back yard for the most part. She refused to be paper-trained and was not let in the house very often. Jake's step-father and Jack had started to build a doghouse for her, and she was often chained to the tree.
Sometime after his birthday, but before Christmas, Jake and Jerry walked to where the school bus would meet them, a few blocks from their house. They heard a barking behind them and turned to see Cleo running after them. She jumped at Jake's chest and slobbered all over him.
Cleo! You shouldn't be here! Go home!”
Jerry turned and continued to walk toward the bus stop. “Take her back home!”
But I'll miss the bus! Cleo, go home, please!”
The dog kept following them, though, wagging her tail
They reached the bus stop and Cleo stayed with them. Jake was worried that Cleo would try to get on the bus. He made her sit down as the bus approached and looked her in the eye. “Stay. Go home when we get on the bus, okay?”
The dog let out a woof. Jake held out his hand to her in a 'stay' position as the bus came up and kept it out until he was aboard the bus. The dog stayed where she was until the bus door closed, then got up and barked. Jake looked down at her and tried to tell her to stay. As the bus passed her, he heard a 'thump.'
Wait! Stop the bus!” he cried.
The driver ignored him and the bus went forward. Jerry and Jake both tried to look out the windows but Jake could not see anything through the other kids.
He spent the entire day in class worried about Cleo. Jerry said nothing to him.
When the bus let them off late in the afternoon, Jake could not see Cleo at the bus stop. He ran all the way home. He burst through the front door and saw his mother. She was on the phone. Her eyes were red.
Cleo?” Jake mouthed.
His mother put her hand over the mouthpiece of the phone. She hesitated for a moment, then shook her head.
Jake went to the backyard and the half-built doghouse stood empty. Tears began to well up and he ran to his room.