Sunday, February 6, 2011

Apollo" Big Surprise

This is a short story I worked on awhile back but never finished. So I thought today I would finish it.

Apollo's Big Surprise
Anise Cassell

One of Apollo's favorite games is to pounce and nip when he would go on his afternoon walk with his best friends. Hootie the toy rat terrier had been his best friend since he first came to live on the family's farm when he was a pup. Collies need lots of open space to run. Most afternoons he would go for walks with his mistress and the older dachshund Cocoa and Hootie.
They would always walk in the fields behind the family's house keeping them away from roads and traffic. Apollo would run ahead of the others with Hootie not far behind. The two loved exploring as much open grass as they could. Apollo would double back and pounce on Hootie nip her behind the ears. Hootie would growl back at the over sized collie to send him on his way.
Their play made the walks enjoyable for the mistress. Cocoa let the collie know right from the start that she would not put up with nipping games. Once a mother the dachshund could promptly let the young pup know she meant business.
Apollo learned then not to cross the old girl. For his size he could easily rebel and start a real fight. The walks meant to much to him to give his mistress reason not to take them with her. He loved his mistress. He loved his time with Hootie just as much.
This walk was different. Cocoa always wondered off by herself exploring new smells in the furthest places from the others. Apollo newer intruded upon her spots. But something attracted him to this one. Cocoa suddenly started digging intently at the spot eager to dig up whatever was hidding from her.
Apollo smelled something in the earth that aroused his interest. He was not a digger. He rather leave the digging to others who were more apt to it. Coca's digging made Apollo join her search. Most times he would stand and wait for the prise to come jumping out at them. He would be the first to claim it. That always angered Cocoa. For which she would promptly nip him just to show him she would not stand for him snatching her fought for prize.
Apollo rolled his head back running away from her with the prize so she could not get it back. He would end up having to fight Hootie for the prize. She could always take it from him. Once it was dropped Hootie would snatch it up fast and run away before he could catch her.
The prize this time had a very different smell. Not like any he had uncovered in recent days. Apollo was eager to claim it this time. Whatever was hiding in the side of the hill Apollo's nose would dig it out. Dachshund's nose were much more finely tuned. Dachshund could uncover foxes in their holes for special hunts and badgers for which they get they're names.
Neither of those animals had ever been found on the farm. On occasion the badgers have been seen far from the farm making it's way across corn fields. But none so close to the family home. Skunks were far more common in these parts as are raccoons.
Apollo never failed to go to his mistress when she called him. This time he was to engrossed in his digging the hear her call. Hootie joined them. The small rat terrier eagerly joined in opposite Cocoa. She didn't like Hootie. So Hootie kept her distance.
"Polly what are you looking for big buy?"
Apollo felt the mistress hand gently pull him back. She knelt on one knee beside him to get a look at the hole they were digging. It was deep now. The dirt they were throwing back behind them had uncovered a tunnel. The digging had made it collapse under the pressure.
A mother field mouse jumped out at the dogs suddenly caring one baby in her jaws. She quickly dashed into the cover of tall grass stalks slipping away from the home wreckers before the dogs saw her. Apollo wanted to pursue her but the hold his mistress had held him fast.
He licked her cheek. The time for their walk was over. Apollo didn't mind. He had the best day ever. A field mouse escaped wasn't the disappointment it should have been. Sharing a dig with the old dog Cocoa and Hootie not only a surprise but to him it was his happiest moment in a dogs life.

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