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#143: Willow

#143: Willow
Odd Spot - The Age - 29/06/2022

Grace will admit she made a mistake. The day someone had robbed them, she took the kids to first buy new phones, but then went to the dog shelter.

Grace left the kids to play with some puppies, knowing it’ll be a fight she didn’t have the energy to deal with.

The manager whispered that he’d tell them they weren’t for sale. His name tag said Carl. He asked what type of dog she was after, as if he could produce whatever type she wanted.

A guard dog, she said and explained about the break-in. Had Tiggy been alive, it wouldn’t have happened. She’d have barked so loud the neighbours would have woken up.

Carl said he had just the dog for a family wanting protection.

Walking down the wet concrete corridor lined with mesh enclosures broke her heart. All these dogs being locked up for no fault of their own.

They stopped in front of a medium size dog who immediately began a low growl. The black fur bristled in anticipation and Grace reached for Carl’s forearm.

Carl explained Willow was like a hatchling. Whoever was nice to her would gain eternal protection. Carl knelt and placed a hand on the mesh.

Willow didn’t take her eyes off Grace.

Carl explained that they, her and the kids, would enter the cage and sit together. Willow would growl, but she’d concede some territory. After twenty minutes, Willow would fall asleep, accepting the new pack.

Everything went exactly to how Carl said it would. Until Peter came home.