A Dog's Last Request
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"A Dog's Last Request”

It was sudden — we were outside on a walk, and the next moment we had fallen into a pale yellow building. I screamed at the walls, hoping someone would find us, but you had already collapsed on the floor gasping for breath.


Nobody came. I curled up next to you — that always made you smile when I tried to do it on the bed, after all. You'd laugh and push me to the end to have more space. "You're too big now," you said. It feels like an eternity since we last slept.

You eventually found your breath and pet me while chuckling, grabbing my leash from the floor. I think we went on a walk after that, through this strange path that smelled familiar. My fur was starting to shed a lot, your checkered sweater looking more like a mess because of me.


I forget when, but you started to talk less and less. I guess you got lost in your thoughts, or you decided it wasn't worth the effort when your only companion couldn't speak. The only others we ever saw weren't people, but people-things. They looked somewhat like you, but didn't smell like humans. They smelled more like that waxy stuff you always burned to mark a certain scent on the house — not the scents themselves, the paraffin undertone they all had in common.

Or, wait… was it you who started to smell that way? I don't…

—it doesn't matter which way around it was.


Eventually you just held me in your arms while sobbing. I could feel that you were jerking and sobbing, but it took ages for a single tear to hit my nose, filling it with the sweet stench of nuts. Was I crying, too? And this strange fur that cushioned me on the rough carpet, was it mine?

I don't get it. Why didn't you let go of my leash, then? I couldn't see well and my even my sense of smell started to go. I just kept whining and barking, which echoed as far as these halls seemed to go. I collapsed on the floor like you once had, still dragged by the collar as you marched. But you didn't keep marching, not once you noticed what had happened. You comforted me instead.

I can still feel you now, you're still holding onto my leash. Even with my fading sight, all I see is you. All your empty face sees is me. Blank.

My only relief is the slowing of your sobs, like the last few whirs of the engine as your car parks into the driveway. But with it, your petting stops too. I don't understand.

I want to comfort you too! Please hold me again… I miss you.

praetorbeststaff
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