General Fiction posted July 17, 2010


Exceptional
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finding a good life together

Jack and Chloe

by Connie C

This Sentence Starts The Story Contest Winner 
"Have we met before?"

I gaze across the way at a scraggly-looking fellow with matted brown hair who is staring at me.

"You speaking to me?" I ask.

"Yeah, you," he says. "Don't I know you from somewhere?"

"No, I don't think so," I reply rather curtly. I tell myself that I'm sure I would never have associated with the likes of someone with such a disagreeable appearance.

"Well, anyway, I'm Jack. What's your name, Sweetie?"

"I'm Chloe, and I don't appreciate your being so personal when you address me. So please don't call me Sweetie," I reply. Pointing my head upward, I turn my back on him and decide to look the other way. That should end our conversation. Classy ladies like myself don't usually associate with the likes of individuals such as Jack.

Besides, I am very tired and very hurt after such an emotional morning of being rejected by Brad, the one person I have loved more than anyone in the whole world. I have been so devoted to Brad, giving him my heart and putting up with all of his traveling that often left me alone for days at a time. I should have known when he started telling me about that stupid girl Lizzie, his new co-worker, that I was about to lose him forever to her. Once she came into his life, I had to go. Even though I'm the one Brad has sent away, I know he'll never have the special relationship with her that he has had with me. Life was good for Brad and me while it lasted.

As I sit here reflecting on all that has happened to me and how I've been rejected for another female, I hear that annoying Jack laughing along with another fellow standing near him.

"She's a cutie, don't you think?" Jack says to his buddy. I turn my head slightly and see out of the corner of my eye that he is looking in my direction. Why can't he just flirt with some other girl? There are certainly plenty of good-looking females in this establishment from which to choose. Of course, from what I observe around me, most of them aren't as petite and cute as I. I must admit that people often turn their heads when they see me walking down the street. Being cute has had its advantages at times when I've wanted something special; relying on my looks and good nature often seems to do the trick for me.

I have just ten days to hope that someone else will love me the way Brad did. If I don't have a new relationship by that time, I will surely die. I am not one to be unattached for too long.

"Hey, Chloe, look over here," I hear Jack yell above all the noise in the room.

I turn to look and see that Jack is wearing a silly grin that stretches from one of his big ears to the other. Yes, he does indeed have big ears. I notice also that he is drooling somewhat, a real turnoff for me.

"What is it, Jack?" I ask.

"Nothing, really," he says. "I just thought I'd give you one of my charming smiles and your heart would then melt and you'd want to talk to me more. You look so sad, little girl, that I thought I could cheer you up. If we were outdoors, I would do somersaults to impress you and maybe even make you smile."

In spite of his shabbiness, there is a certain charm to this guy. Perhaps it is his persistence, but I find myself turning around completely to face him. As I do so, he points his nose to the ceiling and lets out a loud howling sound. Everyone in the room stops what they're doing to look at him.

"What are you doing?" I ask.

"I'm singing to you our very first love song," he says rather proudly.

"How can you sing me a love song? You don't even know me. You know nothing at all about me."

"I know your name is Chloe. I can tell you feel abandoned and you are sad. And I want to be the one to make you happy." He seems sincere when he says this, and, yes, my heart begins to melt just a little.

"Look, I only have one more day here, and then I'm checkin' out," he says.

"By checking out, you mean . . .?" I ask.

"Yep, that's right," he interrupts. "So how about giving this old guy a smile or two and maybe a little attention?" I can't help then but to smile and wish that there weren't so many obstacles between us so I could give him a little hug even though he looks like he could use a bath.

About this time, a family of four walks up to me.

"She is so cute, Mommy," the little girl says, pointing at me. "She's the one I want."

"Are you sure, Honey?" her mom asks. "There are plenty of others here to see first."

"No, I know I want her." The little girl is adamant.

I am thrilled that someone wants me so soon, but, like I said before, when you are cute and blonde, you can often get your way. They open my cage, reach in for me, and I give them my sweetest smile. I guess I look especially cute with my special grooming and the little lavender bow in my hair. Brad had lovingly brushed my blonde coat this morning while he also appeared to be fighting back tears. It's all Lizzie's fault; she says that she is allergic to dogs and wants me out of the house. None of Brad's friends could take me, so here I am, a cute little Pomeranian, abandoned at the animal shelter.

But not abandoned for long! The little girl has convinced her parents to fill out the paperwork to take me to my new home. In the meantime, while I am waiting for them in my cage, I look over at Jack, who is very sullen and with the saddest doggy eyes ever.

"Sorry, Jack," I say softly.

"It's okay, Sweetie, who wants an old dog like me anyway?" he says sullenly.

With those words, I realize that I don't want to leave Jack behind. If he is not adopted by tomorrow, he will be put to sleep. His ten days at the shelter here will end. I can't let that happen. As the new family reaches in to take me home, I jump out of their arms and run to Jack's cage barking louder than I've ever barked in my entire three years of life. I look up at Jack in the cage, who is standing alert and looking surprised at my behavior.

"Hey, look at that dog," the family's little boy says, pointing at Jack. "He looks just like Sparky, our old dog. Can we take him outside and see how he behaves?" the boy asks.

The dad agrees, but Mom and Sis just want to go.

"We already have our dog now," Mom insists. I, on the other hand, don't want to go until they give Jack a chance to show them how funny and charming he can be.

Finally, Mom agrees, and Jack is taken out to the shelter's yard. I accompany the family. As soon as we get out there, Jack does somersaults three times in a row and then stops and looks at me panting. I smile demurely. I am falling in love with this guy.

Jack is in pure form as he demonstrates for them the many tricks he knows and how well he follows commands. Even Mom and Sis seem impressed with his show.

Two hours later, Mom, Dad, Sis, and Brother are driving home in their SUV. In the very back looking out the back window are Jack and I. Every now and then Jack looks over at me, licks my face and sighs.

Life is good once again.


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Thank you to VMarguarite for the family picture. All that's needed to make it complete are two dogs! Approximately 1350 words
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Artwork by VMarguarite at FanArtReview.com

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