'He's too big'
'We could use a challenge'
I stared at him in his new tank.
'He was in that shop for so long'
Mum said, not noticing his water bowl
'His name is Frank'
I said, holding him at arm's length.
His long, scaly body felt dry.
I check his humidity.
Mum doesn't look up from the TV.
'I don't know why we got him'
I said, cleaning out his poop.
'I just felt so sorry for him'
she said, watching me.
I cleaned his newspaper bedding.
I changed his water.
Mum had lost interest.
'He looked so sad in that shop'
'I know, you've said'
I tried to tempt Frank with his food.
Mum clicks through the channels.
I tap his thermostat,
the 'on' light flickering back to life.
'He's so cold!'
'His heat was off'
I said, immediately going to the faulty thermostat.
I took him in my arms.
Warmed him with my body.
'Well turn it back on then!'
I said, impatient.
'Someone must have left it open'
I stared at the empty tank.
I said nothing.
It was too cold for him outside.
A shame, a waste.
I never wanted him but
I loved him.
She only wanted him for his story.