You’re cold and hungry and drunk. You don’t particularly want to go home, there’s nothing to go home to, no warm fire or hot meal. Just an empty house and a dead dog. So why did she leave you? Maybe she’ll be there when you get home. Why did you shout at each other when you should have just talked. Even crying would have been better. He was 19, he was an old dog
It’s not fair she blamed you. What could you have done?
Your eyes are red and you can’t walk straight. You’d like to shout out but you don’t want those two men to turn back. It’s a long way home. Perhaps it’s all gone wrong because of the moon. It looks like a full moon. Maybe that’s what’s affected you – made you go off your rocker. You wonder if it’s affected those two men as well. Perhaps they were encouraged by its silver eeriness, wheedling them to come away. Perhaps they jumped over hospital walls or perhaps a prison. It’s as clear as day but the light frightens you and the shadows are ghostly.
Along the lane you traipse, looking over your shoulder expecting another man to start chasing the second or even to start chasing you.
You feel miserable and sad and the road goes on for ever. You need a pee and you stumble into the hedge, you fall and swear and as you pee you still look over your shoulder to see what ghosts are gathering or if those men are there. You feel steadier now so you break into a trot but the effect of the wine makes you stagger, it slows down your senses, so you start counting your steps instead.
At last the homeward straight is before you. You feel relief until you round the corner. The two men are there. They’re standing under the street light by your house and grinning.
You sidle past them looking at your feet but they look at you and start to laugh. You just want to get inside.
‘Good evening’ one says. You turn, you don’t want to appear rude. You greet them. One says, ‘We’ve come to take the dog’. ‘You can’t do that, I must bury him myself’ you gasp. The men bunch nearer, following you into the house. You feel terrified and sober. The men’s faces are caught in the moon’s rays they are silver and unworldly. ‘What do you want?’you whisper.
They smile at you and it’s only then that you feel your dead dog licking your fingers.
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