OPINION- Story Over a Cup A Pawsmas Carol

Published 7:00 am Saturday, December 11, 2021

(Editor’s Note: This is part one of a series)

It was the Eve of Pawsmas, Bill and Roswell were in the living room. The room was bathed in the blinking lights of the Pawsmas Tree as the soft sound of carols played on the Alexa dot.

Bill was enjoying his chew toys. He sat in the corner with his rawhide bone and grinned to himself. He felt happy to be chewing it.

He then spied Roswell likewise chewing on his toy and was no longer happy. He wanted his too. After all, he wanted all the good things. His hoomans had to love him most he believed and thus he was entitled to all the loves and all the toys.

Roswell’s attention was diverted for a second and Bill sprung up to take his rawhide. Grabbing it he took it back to his corner and just sat next to both rawhides, guarding them with jealousy. Roswell looked at the spot where his rawhide had just been, then looked at Bill.

There he saw his rawhide and with a wag of a tail, went off to collect his rawhide.

After all, his younger brother must have just been protecting his rawhide while he got water.

Bill growled and Roswell stopped. His face fell and he went off sadly to sit on the couch. He laid there looking sadly at his rawhide until he drifted off to sleep, dreaming of an electric car to chase, or maybe a big branch to attack.

Bill looked with glee at his collection of rawhides and laid down next to them, he soon fell into a blissful sleep.

The hall clock struck midnight and Bill was startled awake. He had never heard the clicking circle in the hallway make this sound before and it scared him.

He heard the scurrying of feet and looked over at Roswell, who was sleeping on his side.

Bill laid his head down again, only to hear the scurrying of feet again. He stood up and looked around the room, his ears up and head cocked to the side.

The sound of scurrying feet and the clinking of a dog leash and collar unmistakable.

This was followed by a slow howl, “Biiiiiiilllllllll….”

Bill thought that maybe his hooman wanted to go for a walk, but the last time he got out at this time, it was without his hooman approving and the dark was not Bill’s favorite time to walk.

It was then he saw an apparition appear before him. It was a dog, and Bill instinctively went to guard his rawhides.

After the ghost dog materialized, it once again howled, “Biiiillllllll….”

With a start Bill recoiled and looked closely at the ghost, “Bernie?”

The ghost’s tail wagged and he gave an excited bark. “Yep!”

Bill was more than happy, “I missed you! You were gone all these months. We can now go explore the neighborhood again, and take all the noms!”

Bernie looked unhappy, “That is not why I have come.”

Bernie shook himself and the dog leash made a dreadful clanking sound. “In life I was not always a good doggie. I got out, I chewed the furniture. And in this world, I must walk on a leash made of chains I forged in life.”

Bill shuddered at the thought.

Bernie continued, “You have been a bad doggie, and are forging a much longer dog leash.”
Bill was frightened.

Bernie walked over to Roswell who remained sleeping and then Bill, “Tonight you will be visited by three spirits.”

Bill did not like this. After all, it was a chance that one of them might be another doggie that would steal his rawhides.

“Expect the first one when the hall thingy strikes 1. The second when the hall thingy strikes 2, and the 3rd when the hall thingy strikes 3.”

“Anything else?” Bill asked.

“Be afraid of the mailman, he is trying to steal our stuff.” Bernie said. And with this final warning, he faded off.

Bill laid down, the room dark. Maybe it was a dream he thought as he went back off to a pitiful sleep.

Michael Cole is a syndicated columnist that when he is not writing, he is plotting global domination or bathing dogs. You can follow him at www.storyoveracup.com