"Walk", he said, barely above a whisper. The dog's ears perked up immediately. She bounced off the walls, bursting to stretch her cramped legs. The snap closed with a click, and off they went. She tugged and tugged with all her might for several minutes, but he wanted a leisurely walk, not a quick jog. She eventually gave in, stopping to smell the flowers in the most literal sense. It was late at night and nobody was outside at all. They were all inside, missing the beauty of the night at hand. The clouds drifted lazily across the moon, entrancing him until his furry companion got impatient. The two rounded a corner and walked down a dimly lit street, moving slowly past the houses. The weather was cool with a light breeze, the perfect night for a walk.

After several minutes enclosed in the wondrous night his hand moved towards his cell phone, but stopped short. He wished to call her, but he thought to himself that it was too late, that he'd just be a bother. He liked her, thought about her from time to time. She was smart as well as very pretty. But he didn't want to bother her, didn't want to disturb her, had no wish to be a burden.

By this time he was at the edge of the trail to the lake. He could see it from the trailhead, the moonlight glistening on the water, bathing the lake and its surrounding woods in silver, and the urge to call lulled to a dull throb of desire. He moved down the path into the shade of the trees. His stomach tensed slightly. He hadn't been in the woods at night for a very long time, not since his last ordeal. He moved further down the path, basking in the muted beauty of the night. The clouds swam slowly across the sky, giving the moon a hazed look, the light dancing across the water, and he was enraptured.

His desire to call crescendoed, but he beat it down. It was too late; she didn't want to speak to him. Besides, wanting to share a night with someone was an awkward thing to call about. It seemed like a very silly thing to him, so he put his hand back into his pocket and turned to leave.

Suddenly he felt a tug at the end of the leash. He had forgotten about the one who was attached to his arm. He softly spoke a command to her. She followed him obediently out of the woods and back onto the roads. He passed many houses on the way home, looking at the patterns that their windows cast upon their manicured lawns. He finally made it to his house, let himself in and released her. He collapsed into his chair, and almost immediately fell asleep.