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Friday, June 10, 2011

dog days done

the small trail of cooking smells suddenly attacks me and the reality sets in. theres another one in that garage.its not far as the crow flies but i have to walk and the cover around the tumbledown structure is spotty at best. someone has cut down most of the trees and the bramble bushes and shrub are all to low to keep me hidden.all i have is the 4 inch blade with the tape wrapped handle thrust into a cardboard cover to keep it from ripping out my worn pocket.i choose to sit here at a distance behind this overgrown hedge and wait out the mysterious chef du jour across the way.a dog barks with a eager sound, and i can almost hear a sudden hush command. the emptiness is unbroken except by an occasional flitter of a small bird or the skitter of some falling roof pieces blowing in the morning breeze. the small structure is windowless on this side and i decide to chance approaching to a closer inspection. the smoke from the fire is well masked but the odor of some unknown meat cooking is unmistakable. it reminds me of some venison i once had, but i havent seen a deer since last september. from a block closer theres still only the faded green wooden walls and the smell thats drawing applause from my salivary glands. my taste buds get the better of me and i crawl forward until i can hear some movement inside and a low growl. i back away to the side street and listen. i hear the door scrape open from the unseen side and then im surprised to see a small girl holding her dog around the neck. even at this distance i can see she is sightless in one eye and her left leg is twisted from some deformity. her blond hair hangs over her empty eye socket and she looks momentarily ordinary. i quickly stand up and announce myself.
Hey, I'm a friend, really. I don't want to have to fight your dog. can you hold him?
i hold out my empty hands as a peace gesture and she backs away quickly screaming a command and letting the dog go. well what did i expect, friendship? the dog exploded towards me, almost as fast as i could draw my blade. i figured it would be dog for dinner if not the venison. i heard the door slam and uneven footsteps clambering away from behind the garage. then it was all fur and fangs and i was too preoccupied with slashing the mongrels throat to follow where she went.

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