Dew made everything seem beautiful. I liked the way every morning the world would be covered in diamonds,making the world seem like a good, kind place. I slept behind the house where the shadows protected the dew from the greedy light of the sun, because I was always content to watch the ever changing colors swirl and know everything was going to be all right. Yes, the dew can do that to you. Fill your head with beautiful lies.
I was a beagle, born and bred to be man's best friend. My friend's name was Will. He lived in a wreck of a house at the edge of town. It would be an understatement to say that we depended on each other. As a pup I had been thrown in a sack and tossed in the river. Will saved me, but my legs have never worked properly so without him I would have starved. Will had his own problems too. The best word to describe him was average, with badly combed blond hair and sad brown eyes. All his clothes were old, and to be honest he looked like Tom Sawyer. Of course Tom Sawyer didn't have to skip school and work because his father was an alcoholic.
Every day Will would get up just as the moon was eaten by the mountains. We would walk to the rundown apple orchard, choked by weeds and ivy now that it was disused. It was peaceful there and I would have been happy to just sit and watch the bees ransack the flowers. Will never had time, though. We only went in there because one of his jobs was to trap the rodents, so we could sell their fur. I was never any help with his work because the fastest I could go was at a limp.
Will's father said I was a waste of space. He was always coming home late, and drunk. He even hurt Will, I saw the marks, but no one did anything. They were afraid of him. It was good that he was gone most of the day; I don't think I would have lasted as long as I did if he had been around all the time. Will was always there and that was good enough for me. He wouldn't go anywhere. He wouldn't leave me; his best friend. However, all good things must come to an end at some point.
It happened when Will turned sixteen. He was old enough to work in the
factories, where they toiled away in the fumes and machinery. Into this world Will was tossed by his father. Before I knew it, Will stopped waking every morning to go to the orchard. He came home exhausted, and didn't even look at me as he went inside. I didn't understand at the time. Was it my fault Will was ignoring me? It couldn't be, when he was angry he just said so. What was happening?
I guess now that, in his misery, Will must have forgotten me. It was depressing but liveable when he just didn't see me. Then something changed. Will only came home once a week. It was bad, very bad. I couldn't get my own food, I needed Will. I began to scratch at the door. Will's mother had tolerated me, so she would help. Right? I pleaded to her, and finally the door opened. I could have danced for joy, but wasn't given the time. Standing in front of me was Will's father.
Everything happened so fast, but I do remember being in the air, then hitting the ground hard. All I could do was lie there trying to breath, trying to do anything. He went back inside leaving me there, blood painting the grass where it dripped from my mouth. I felt bad, and it was hard to think but I knew that he had kicked me. My side was on fire; and my body wasn't responding. Why was this happening to me?
That question was never answered, though I asked several times. With great difficulty and excruciating pain I managed to move to the back of the house. There I collapsed. Now what? I was starving, weak, and now badly hurt. There was nothing here; nothing left for me. Except for one place. With the remainder of my already diminished strength I retreated to the one place I could be happy.
I have been abandoned. Left to waste away into a shadow. It's so lonely being here, with all these memories. So I made a new friend; one who can take me away. I will never be forgotten, never be hurt again. My new friend is sleep. My new friend is darkness. My new friend is death.
You are probably wondering what my name is, but I actually don't have one. It was the first day Will took me to the orchard. Spring was ending and the world was alive with noise and fragrance. I wanted to explore and began to limp away in search of adventure, but Will called me back. He called me Boy, but I was getting tired of being called that and didn't come back to him. When Will finally caught me, he gave me a hug and I wagged my tail. " I can't give you a name," he whispered into my ear. "because I'm not your owner. I'm your friend, and we will stay friends forever." I licked his nose and we were happy, best friends with nothing to separate us. The dew was beautiful that day.