Welcome! This week we're writing to the prompt "number". I'm returning to Break My Heart this week. I hope you enjoy the story. Scroll down to return to the excellent Tuesday Tales authors and their stories. Thanks for stopping by.
Deserted by his adoring public, his friends, the three women he’d been sleeping with and even his mother, he had become a recluse. For a year, he hid out, until his face ceased to be news. The surgery had healed well, but he would never look the same. Sure, he still had the thick mop of black hair, piercing eyes the color of the Caribbean Sea, and a body sculpted by hours at the gym. None of that mattered.
He might as well have died in the fire. His life had crumbled like burnt toast. There was nothing left, not even his beloved pooch. After considering suicide, he allowed his dear cousin to talk him into returning to his roots, where he’d be near her and could find peace and quiet.
So here he was and had no clue what the next step would be. A sound coming from the long road that abutted his property alerted him. People were coming. He ducked behind a small grove of trees and waited.
The car came up to the edge of his property and stopped. A man got out from behind the wheel. Rick heard a scream from the backseat.
“Don’t! Poppa! Don’t!”
It was a child’s voice. The man leaned into the car and came out cradling a small dog.
“Sorry, son. We gotta. He needs doctoring and we ain’t got the cash.”
Rick watched the man put the dog down on the lawn and get back in the car. Another scream and a voice came from the backseat. Rick couldn’t distinguish the words.
“He’ll be fine here. Someone’ll take him in. Hell, son, he’s a dog. He can catch mice and eat ‘em. He’ll be okay.” The man got back in the car and slammed the door. He rolled down the window. “Bye, Sparky. You take care now.”
A young boy leaned out the back window, screaming the dog’s name. The vehicle lurched forward and took off down the road –zero to sixty in ten seconds. The boy continued to scream until the car was out of sight. The small dog ran after it. Rick set out after him.
Finally, the dog collapsed, panting. As Rick got closer, he could see the little animal was a pug. It lay on its side, chest heaving, tongue lolling. As Rick approached, the dog whirled around. He pushed up on his little legs and crouched, growling.
Rick stepped back. The dog held his ground, then turned, looking in the direction of a vague mist of dust, left by the departing car. The pooch twisted his head, trying to figure out where the car was, or at least that’s the way it looked.
“Sorry, boy. Your number's up. They’re gone,” Rick said.
The canine glanced back at him, then sank down, his legs splayed out behind him, his chin on the road.