This teaser is a guest post from Jean Lee. I hope you enjoy reading the story as much as I did.
I have to vent! Bark out!
My name is Lexi Lee and I’m stressed beyond the point of nervous licking. I need support before I start chewing shoes or worse——the couch cushions.
It’s 4:00 a.m. I’m stuck, with no one to talk to. I’ve tried heart-to-hearts with Riley Cat, but she’s not spoken to me in the five years since Mom and Dad brought me home, except to hiss and bat in a jealous rage.
Tonight, in a rare moment when everyone was asleep, I snuck out of Mom and Dad’s bed, not an easy thing to do at 70-pounds of big-buttedness.
Reaching with my front paws, I planned to jump my hindquarters down, but couldn’t risk the noise. At the last moment I turned and slid my bottom half to the floor, reaching with tippy-toes, holding my breath hoping the bed wouldn’t squeak. I’d be in huge trouble if I woke anyone.
I padded past Gray Granny, shut behind the guestroom door.
She doesn’t like me. I wish she’d go home.
The sound of her snoring drowned out the creaking stairway and my uncontrollable, banging tail.
I braved my way down the basement steps gritty with cat litter. I hate the basement as much as Riley Cat hates me.
Since we fight like cats and dogs, I’m forced to find cyber doggie friends by building my own device from cords, cables, modems, and motherboards stolen from Dad’s computer graveyard strewn about the cellar.
I’m spooked, afraid of being caught.
But, I can assemble, connect, upload a profile picture, and begin blogging in under an hour. Plus, I’ve claimed the empty space under an old desk as my work area, the bottom drawer perfectly sized for secret storage of my not-too-shabby doggy-built computer.
Now, let me circle round to tell you how my world began to crumble.
A few months back I, the beloved house pet, guarded our little castle while Mom and Dad went to work. I took my security job seriously, always on keen alert for the mail carrier.
The guy liked me so much he started leaving me Milkbones.
In between times I have to admit, the couch was my own and I napped, but those were the perks of a job well done.
After work, Dad played fetch and Frisbee with me in our fenced yard. On sunny evenings, Mom, Dad, and I grilled supper and ate among the roses.
Gradually I noticed Mom’s belly growing. She stopped going to work and groaned each time she changed positions on the couch. She would cuddle me even when her stomach, stretched huge with so much writhing, seemed to kick me.
I didn’t mind; we’d never been closer.
Grandma Strawberry and Gray Granny took turns staying, invading. They fretted every time Mom stood. Maybe they worried her belly would pull her off balance, or worse, burst.
All furniture was occupied with people. They shooed me off my own couch cushions. Grandma Strawberry and Gray Granny brought Mom things to eat, but forgot me. I had to beg, my hot breath panting on their knees. I was reduced to slobbering.
I’ve lost a couple of pounds. I think my vet would be pleased, but I’m terrified I could starve.
Two weeks ago, Dad helped Mom waddle out of the house, but only Dad returned. I panicked. Dad, Grandma, and Granny rushed in and out of the house at odd hours. No one spoke to me. I jumped and yipped to remind them to let me out as they hurried through. Once the door was closed with me stuck in the house, I paced. Nobody told me anything.
I choked back tears.
I missed Mom. Dad always wore a concerned scowl.
About a week ago I overheard the words “cesarean,” “intensive care” “premature birth” and the names, “Hunter,” “Ava,” and “Maxwell.” Grandma Strawberry nicknamed the trio “HAMs.”
I licked my chops; finally, I thought, a good dinner.
Then last night, while I worry-wart-patrolled at the window, Dad’s car pulled in the driveway. He stepped from the driver’s door. Mom slowly scooted out of the passenger’s side. I was overjoyed to see her. My heart thumping, I leaped and barked at the window.
Mom, Mom, why aren’t you looking at me?
She and Dad didn’t rush to greet me. Instead, they opened the doors of the backseat and removed three little padded chairs. When they pushed me aside to come in the front door, I saw a tiny, squirming, living being strapped into each seat.
O.M.G. have they brought me three hairless puppies to take care of? I’m already overworked. TAKE THEM BACK.
I sniffed. They didn’t smell like dogs.
Mom finally bent down to snuggle me and I realized her tummy wasn’t big anymore. Did these creatures come out of her? They smelled human, but they were not even as long as my tail, and much lighter than the leather purse I chewed last Christmas.
Mom and Dad call these things “triplets.”
Mom snapped this picture before taking the critters out of their seats.
Do I look petrified? Well, I am!
Mom and Dad seemed near tears too, wringing their hands as they stood looking down at the little ones.
As a bright spot in the chaos Gray Granny brought dinner——turkey, not ham——which Mom and Dad devoured while the itty ones slept in their seats. I was thrown a few scraps. But, I couldn’t eat. I’ve heard people say they feel sick as a dog. I don’t understand what that means, but I felt sick as a human.
Oh, no, I hear whimpering and Mom and Dad’s feet rushing around the kitchen upstairs. Cut short, that’s all I have time to post tonight, or should I say this morning, since through the basement window, black night is tinged with gray dawn. I’d better traipse back upstairs, trying to quiet my nervous nails from clicking. I don’t want Mom and Dad to get suspicious and find my computer. But some attention——even if I got scolded——would be better than none at all.
Before I log out, I’ve got to be honest, I’m worried. Am I being replaced?
Neither Riley Cat nor I came out of Mom’s tummy. I tear up remembering the day I felt like the world’s luckiest dog when Mom and Dad chose me out of the lineup at the animal shelter.
But now I can’t shake the uneasy feeling I’m slipping a notch lower on the family food chain.
After all, here I am sitting in the basement with Riley who was downgraded when I replaced her. Now she skitters through a tiny cat door to and from the dungeon so she doesn’t sneeze and cough up hairballs all over the place.
Thankfully, Mom and Dad don’t have to put up with disgusting behaviors like that from me.
Mom and Dad, will you still love me? Will you keep me forever? How long do we have to keep the bald ones?
Doggies, please follow me at lexitriplets.blogspot.com.
I’m about to lose it. Share and forward this post to your friends. Perhaps some of you have been through similar anxieties and can help calm my fears.
I’m too jumpy to sleep, but if the house ever quiets down again, I’ll brave my way past Riley the recluse to give status updates on my miserable life.
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