Evelyn, the Modified Dog

 

The gunman was useless, the rocket launcher was a waste of time, even the tanks had little to no effect.  Slamming his video game controller down the angry youth stormed away from the new game console his parents had given him for his birthday.

 

“What are we going to do with him?” his mother nauseatingly asked after her spiked hair fourteen year old stormed through the kitchen slamming their weakly hung screen door behind him.

 

“I don’t know” announced her half interested husband over their pleading dog’s barking and scratching at the screen.

 

“Let her out, she needs to do her business.”

 

Reaching over he pushes the screen door slightly ajar, jubilantly their light brown Spaniel bolts towards the fenced in patch of artificial turf they call “The Yard”. After a quick squat her day’s business begins - running about, sniffing and barking at passersby. Sniffing near the trailer house’s covered trailer hitch she picks up her boys scent, instinctively she follows it to the gate that was left partially closed after the spoiled child ran out in disgust.  Nosing at the gate and pushing with her left front paw, it’s opening becomes large enough to squeeze through, leading to an eager romp around her neighborhood.

 

“Evelyn get back here!” came from the kitchen door as she ran out of sight ignoring the command. “Where did she go?” the housewife asked.

 

“I don’t know- hopefully away, that dog is more trouble than our kids.”

 

“Be nice, you love our kids both two and four leg.”

 

“Ya - well, how old is Evelyn getting to be?”

 

“Well, we got her about eight months ago, they told us she was six weeks old then, so nine and a half maybe ten months. You better go find her before she runs away for good, gets ran over or somebody calls the dog catcher on her.”

 

“I have things to do this morning, why don’t you go chase her down?”

 

“Cause silly, I still got my bathrobe on, my hair isn’t done and like you I have stuff to do too - like your laundry.”

 

“Nobody cares what you have on Plumpkins, I bet ole’ Charles W. down the street thinks you got too much on now as it is.”

 

 “Go on now you Silly Willy; I’ll get started on the stuff around here.”

 

“Alright, but this is starting to get old.” Slowly and ritualistically he puts on his shoes, changes to his sleeveless “Git-R-Done” T-shirt and dawns his favorite trucker style mesh light-green base ball cap that has a target over a girls buttocks with the words “Bootie Hunter” emblazed on the crown over the greasy fingerprinted red brim. Grabbing Evelyn’s leash he heads onto the street calling her by name, “EVELYN” no results.

 

Around the corner at the connecting mobile home park he sees his son who only a moment earlier was disgusted and angry. Now he is happy, rousing about and appears to be the center of attention of two sisters who live in the newly arrived double-wide. The older one is seventeen and the other is thirteen.  They carelessly play a seductive game of cat and mouse, “How old is he getting to be?” he thought to himself. 

 

“Hey, have you seen Evelyn?”

 

“No” the boy awkwardly answered, hoping the girls didn’t see Dad and that he doesn’t confront them and ask embarrassing questions; or God forbid he shows them the worn picture of him when he was a baby that’s been carried in his wallet since he was born.

 

“You sure?”

 

“Maybe I saw her going towards Jensen’s” he finally admits.

 

Jensen lives in a new modular three piece home that is adorned with stunning brick textured fiberglass, new covers on the wheels and Spanish themed terracotta planted bushes that surround a mosquito netted porch. On approach he sees three unfamiliar male canines running about on the freshly painted green concrete sniffing and marking their new found territory. Slight yelping and muffled whines are coming from near the porch, “This doesn’t sound good” he mumbles to himself as he looks towards the wheel covers, there he finds two dogs “Evelyn!” reaching over with his tennis shoe he gives the male suitor a solid kick in the haunches. “You slut” he scorns her, hearing his convincingly disdainful voice Evelyn sulks down moving her tail from the side to between her legs. Quickly grabbing her custom tagged collar he snaps her leash in place, “What in Sam Hill do you think you’re doing anyway?”  All she could do was look up mournfully with her big Spaniel eyes and beg forgiveness.

 

Walking back home Evelyn stayed at her master’s heel and enjoyed the spring day’s stroll. It’s a nice day to go out; many are out doing yard work, washing cars, sunbathing in lawn chairs and just enjoying the sunshine and light cool breeze, not like the sweltering months of August. Nearing home they pass her young male human and his companions they call out “Hi Evelyn” she lurches to the end of the leash only to be pulled back to walk at her masters heels.

 

“We’re going home, then we are going to fix this problem.” he told Evelyn, obediently she falls back into step and looks forward to an afternoon playing ball in the yard, “Dog, I just wish that some other problems could be fixed as easily as yours.”

 

Arriving home they go directly to the netted in laundry room/back porch; a happy familiar place where Evelyn spent her time as a puppy. Curling up on her doggy bed surrounded by her favorite toys, anxiously she watches and waits to be called for play. His surprised and embarrassed wife jumps down and away from the clothes washing machine that continues its floor banging spin cycle and breathlessly asks “You weren’t gone long, where you find her?"

        “In Jensen’s lot.”

 

“Really, that’s three rows over, what was she doing there?”

 

“I’ll give you three guesses and first two don’t count, she is getting to be the right age you know.”

 

“So what are we going to do, did you happen to see C-Dub’s 4 X 4 and boat in his drive-way?”

 

“It’s time to make an appointment with the Vet. I don’t want a bunch of stray dogs coming around here spraying on everything, getting in the garbage and soiling our pooch. All I saw was oil stains and empty beer cans, maybe he up and went to lake without you.”

 

“I’ll call Monday to see when we can take her in, it’s a shame though.”

 

“It’s a shame about the dog or C-Dub?”

 

“Evelyn silly, did you see the boy while you were out?”

 

“I saw him down the street, be sure you check with the vet and see if they have a family rate.”

 

"Arf" was Evelyn's only comment. 

 

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