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"Bread", Riley

"Get the bread, Riley," is what I do. Didn't know that when she first brought me here. Too jumpy. She said 'frisky.' Then I got taller, slowed down some and memorized a few of her words. First, it was 'sit.' Easy. Just put your ass on the ground. Don't know why she likes 'sit'. But hey, it makes for life. Later, she started walking me down to the glass front place with the warm seed smell. She said 'bakery'. Love that smell. Then, she wanted me to 'shake' and let this fat bald guy move my paw around. He puts this stick of soft brown bakery in my mouth. Love that smell, so I ate it. 'No' was next. 'No' is important.

It took a while for us to agree. I carried the bread but 'no' to eating it. That was hard. We would bring it back to her place and she'd give me a small piece and say 'not too much.' That went on for a while. Before long I didn't need her. I could do it by myself. She likes when I do it right. Scratches my ears. Gives me treats.

It's good here in the tiny house with the little courtyard. Neighbors know my name. Kids feed me bones. But, I must have gotten her fuming angry. She just left, and she took all the people with her. What did I do? Nobody said 'No'. The last word I heard her say was 'Katrina.'

Story by:

Edward Gauthier

25 October 2013