Thursday, October 28, 2010
She Liked Dogs.
Each stray seemed to know where she lived and gravitated there, pulled by some unseen force that placed them in her yard and on her doorstep. She welcomed all and fed and cared for them as if they were her children since she had no children to call her own.
Things began to change as the marriage grew older. The dogs, the husband once thought were cute, now angered him. He would return home from work and any dog close was bound to be injured, one way or another. The wife did not like this but kept her own counsel and trained the dogs to leave the room when the husband came home in one of his terrible moods.
The husband watched. It seems his wife and the dogs could communicate with no movements, no words, as if they could read each other’s thoughts. She rarely spoke with her husband any more…she rarely spoke at all. This made him angry; the dogs were taking something from him.
One evening the husband came home. The dogs were wary; they could sense he was more angry than usual. As they curved away from him and moved aside, they seemed to group protectively, silently around the wife. As the husband approached they growled, one or two, just a low growl, just a small warning…no harm would come to their leader.
Infuriated by even a hint of aggression from the dogs, he did not react but chose to leave instead…and drink. Returning home, he found his wife in the bedroom alone and locked the door behind him. He wanted to discuss the disrespect she had shown. He punched her to make his point; he slapped her to make her believe…and did both, again and again.
She heard the dogs coming down the hall. They scratched at the door, trying to reach their leader, their queen. He laughed as he reached down to grab her hair and drag her to her feet. Slipping in the blood and tears that had pooled on the hard wood floor, he fell, striking his head against the bed. It dazed him and allowed her time to reach the door.
The husband heard his wife, as the door opened, speak softly, speaking the first word he had heard in months.
that command was…