Ra-ool Even in the Lonely

Once upon a time, there was a dog named Ra-ool. These days, dogs are bought and sold in pet-shops and by breeders who raise dogs at home or in their farms. But back in the day, not too long ago, Ra-ool was born and he lived in the wilderness of Texas, U.S.A. with all the rest of God’s wild creatures. Of all the dogs in his pack he was the most special. No, he wasn’t the strongest nor the fastest. In fact, he was a bit ugly.

If you were to look at him you’d think that he’d just been splattered with mud from a carriage horse trotting by. So why was he the most special one in the pack, the one dog that all the other dogs had extreme respect and loyalty towards? Ra-ool knew how to catch food. He was the slinky sly quiet and nearly invisible dog that no one ever saw. One by one the townsfolk started to catch these dogs from his pack. Ra-ool grew worried that his tribe was disappearing.

Still, he had to eat. Rachish, his best mate, had been captured. There was no more. Ra-ool became slick and mean with hunger. He ravaged the human dwellings for the cured meats and chickens that he could grab off. Ra-ool never gave away that he took food from them. He was so good at eating other people’s food that they actually began fighting with each other, accusing one another of thievery and dishonesty. One family even had a row with their cousin who lived down the street and judged him to an eternal life of Satanic damnation in hellfire for continuously taking all their food. Ra-ool didn’t understand what all the yelling and anger was about but he wasn’t about to get kicked out of his meals.

Then, one day, the wealthy family moved out of town. Along with them went all their delicious hams and chickens and lip-lick’n good food. Ra-ool prowled the forest but without his tribe he found it very difficult to hound a good meal. Underneath a thick grove of trees Ra-ool plopped down into the dry dirt and looked out in the direction of the houses. Longing filled his eyes, he just about looked as cute as a silly little puppy dog. Then, he heard it. It was the rat-a-tat-tat of a manual engine pick-up truck just honky-tonkin’ down the road. He heard laughter. He smelled, the good fresh smell of meat.

Ra-ool was caving in with hunger by that time. He just had to have a look. Carefully, ever so slowly, he defied all odds and walked an untrackable route to see the man unpack his truck with his wife and one child there at the front dusty courtyard of their house. He could smell the woman and their little son; the tribe. The scent of the man also lingered in the air; the king. Ra-ool growled lowly and quietly as but a soft inner rumbling from which a sneer crept up upon his lips. This new man was a stranger and Ra-ool was hungry.

Mid-day arrived. The family had gone into their house. It was time to prowl. Ra-ool sniffed along the fence line. He looked up at the truck. It smelled of gasoline, which, was an unfamiliar smell to Ra-ool. Just then, the screen door slammed open. Ra-ool jumped back behind the truck and hid. It was the woman! She carried a small cat in her arms and dropped it down onto the porch. It purred and meowed. She placed a bowl of cat food and a bowl of milk down by the door for the cat and walked away. Ra-ool scampered up and drank the milk and ate the food. He hid behind the truck again. Day after day, Ra-ool would eat the cat’s meals like this.

Soon, Ra-ool found it very difficult to get to the front door of the house to eat the cat food and drink its milk. It turns out that the man was, in fact, a mechanic of automobiles. Not only did he buy and sell parts but he was a plum-right genius! Everybody in town started lining up for Mechanic Joe’s to get his insight on buying a car, fixing a car, using an old piece of steel if he would have it, maybe getting an old tire patched up. Ra-ool was dog down depressed. He had come to love the man and his wife and child and even the cat (for its food). Ra-ool needed to belong, and this was his tribe.

So, the long and short of it is that Ra-ool eventually showed himself to the man. He tried to be really sweet about it too. Early next morning, Ra-ool went to the chicken hatch and unlatched the gate to let out all the chicks but he didn’t eat them because he knew that they belonged to the tribe as property and that the chicks were dear to them. So, he guarded the animals from leaving the gate. When the man came out to work on a car at his garage he saw Ra-ool. In that exact moment Ra-ool was nudging a fluffy yellow chick from behind the man’s truck toward the house back into the driveway.

It was all that man needed see. He said, “Hey there, ol’ fella’.” After that moment, the bond between dog and man grew to the point where Ra-ool would sleep by the front door, let the cat eat her food, and get a good meal (maybe two) every single day. People started to say, “God Bless Mechanic Joe. Ever since he came to town, all the thieving stopped. And he never does a dime less-work on a car that needs fixin’.” The man grew extremely prosperous. His wife was the belle of the town. Their little son was the apple of his father’s eye. Ra-ool had found his tribe. The man made sure to give him a female dog too: a beautiful border collie. Ra-ool loved her. In no time, Ra-ool continued his blood-line and had many little dogs of his own.

~ Somiya

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