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 Category:  General Flash Fiction
  Posted: June 19, 2022      Views: 67

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First, I am a romantic, married to the perfect woman for me, an imperfect man.
Further I am a patriot who cries with the playing of our anthem. I treasure our warriors, current and past, serving nautically for ten years.

I believe in God - more...

He is a top ranked author at the #29 position.

He is an accomplished poet and is currently at the #32 spot on this years rankings.

He is also an active reviewer and is holding the #20 spot on the top ranked reviewer list.

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This work has reached the exceptional level
my best pal left behind
"Avoiding the Void..." by Tom Horonzy

Thirteen years ago, our family began a journey with a pup, recently weaned from his mom. He sat in a kennel as Mariah Jean, my daughter, and I began to pass. Then, pausing, one of us asked, "Is that dog smiling?"

As you can see in the picture, it was. Later, we learned its breed, a Bearded Collie, was called 'Smiling Beardies' for a reason. His mug must have been related to Helen of Troy, whose face launched a thousand ships for he put our hearts to sea.

Nodding to each other in agreement, my daughter and I knew our family had grown by one. Within the hour, "Buddy" adopted us, fully vaccinated and micro-chipped, forever more. So, I thought. More on that later.

Somehow, he came home house-broken, as he never once did either number one or two indoors. Better yet, never in the yard either. He would simply go to a door or the gate as if to say, 'we' need to walk, and did 5-6-7 times a day for thirteen years.

"Buddy" was more than a bundle of fur. He was a ball of energy and quick as a fox. He could run a forty in a blink of an eye. And curious? We prayed, not as much as a cat, for we remembered that is what killed the feline.

Nose down, eyes and ears on alert, 'dog' saw and heard everything, and yet for the longest time, he wouldn't bark. It took him five years to find his voice. That is when the 'fat lady sung' and serenity left with her. Buddy became a vocal magpie, sounding off at whatever he saw or heard.

He was also an Alpha male. Quite a challenge for a dog that never weighed more than twenty-eight pounds, wet. Living on a gentleman's farm, he harassed our herd constantly, even though a fence restricted him. He and bulls often went head-to-head, snorting and scratching the ground
before them.

He only ate as needed, as a well-bred dog would, never gulping down more than required to satisfy his hunger, leaving the excess for later.

And he not only scheduled his life but ours as well. At sunrise, whether six a.m. or eight in winter, he would sit where I slept and softly whimper, "Hey dad, it's time to go," and off we'd walk to dispose of his constitutional. Mother walked him at ten, and after the Bold and the Beautiful left the air a 2 p.m., he would return to the master-at-arms, for both knew the time for nine holes of golf was at hand. Weather permitting. He hated thunder. He also got his paces in at six and eight p.m.

And then... he became ill. Seizures racked him violently. Our four thousand-seven hundred and sixteen days, were at an end. Watching the vet administer a sedative to stop his quaking he came to rest. She returned moments later to administer his final rites which was heartbreaking but necessary. He deserved relief from that which racked him from head through toenails.

Now gone, my pal will never be forgotten, leaving me asking, with tears running from my eyes, how do I 'avoid the void' my "best friend" left behind?

Tell Us About Your Pet(s) contest entry


Author Notes
This true story will be the cause for weepy eyes awhile I suspect. It was three days ago we played our final nine hole together. From there, it was all downhill.
Photos were taken by me. I'm glad for the memories.
Pays one point and 2 member cents.

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