My feet patter as I scurry through the Albertsons’ yard. So far so good. I stop at the edge and glance anxiously around, my jaws clamped tightly on my prize. I crawl under the Kerrys’ fence, set my bone down in the bushes, and sniff the air. All clear. The Kerrys have a Chihuahua named Gizmo. He wouldn’t take my bone. He’s too nice for that. But he’s loud and clumsy. He’d give me away for sure. I shoot across the yard and duck behind a pool. No sound. Cautiously I work my way through all the toys strewn about. A door opening! Quickly I run under a tarp and sit there panting, ears cocked. I sigh in relief. It was across the street. I poke my nose out and inhale, just to be sure. Nothing. I worm my way across the rest of the yard.
I pause behind a tree and look at the next yard. This will be difficult. Mrs. O’Connor owns four cats. They like to tease my scruffy coat. They think it looks trashy. Ha! Pompous windbags! They spend so much time washing and keeping their fur “rich and shiny” unlike so called scruffy dogs, that they never do anything else -except steal my bones! I don’t know why. They don’t eat them, just steal and hide them -especially Prince. He’s the worst.
One cat I can handle, maybe two. But four at once? Prince will distract me while the others close in. Then I drop the bone. Then they steal it. Then I never see it again. They’ve taken six bones in the past two months -and not just mine, but other dogs too. Old Skittles, the pug, said they got every bone he tried to sneak through. I can’t let them take this one. The butcher’s helper gave it to me. With bits of meat still on it!
I scan the yard and house carefully. No sign of them. I hug the garden at the edge of the property in case I need cover. Suddenly I freeze. A footstep behind me! I turn and see Prince watching me. He’s smirking. More footsteps. They’re closing in, but they won’t get it this time! I wheel around and run straight for the next yard. I cross it. And the next. And the next. I glance back and see them catching up. Only two more yards! I’m not going to make it. I collapse from exhaustion and the bone falls from my limp jaws. The cats slow and sidle towards me, snickering.
Suddenly a shadow covers me. I open my eyes and look up. It’s Conan, a huge German shepherd. He glares at the cats who back away hesitantly. “Get lost cats.” He bares his teeth and steps forward, sending them running home. “Cowards.”
He turns and looks at me. A sudden wave of panic flashes through me. What if he wants my bone? I can’t fight him! He’d run me down! Heck, I’m a Jack Russell! I’d be his chew toy!
He sniffs the bone. Then he pushes it toward me. “Here Ace. Anytime you need help with those furballs let me know.” Then he walks off. I sit there for a moment to catch my breath, then grab my bone and run next door. Home! I rush around back to my doghouse. I deposit the bone inside and head to the big house. I nose through the doggie-door and nudge my person, Susie.
She grins at me. “Are you hungry Ace? You want some dinner?”
I wag my tail as she gets up and dumps kibble in my bowl. I dig in. “When I’m finished,” I say to myself, “I’ll chew my bone for dessert. Then take a nap. Then take a piece to Conan as a thank you.”
(Assignment for Lesson #3 - Adjectives)
If you are between the ages of 12-18,
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