The first time I left the notebook and pen out on the table for the dog walker, I envisioned the informative yet humorous exchanges that would transpire regarding Scout’s daily excursions. I wrote, “Hey, here’s the leash. Scout loves these new organic wild boar treats! She can have two! But not three cause I don’t want her getting fat!” I then explained to Scout that she would have a friend stopping by for a visit and urged her to trust this man and enjoy the excitement of a new relationship. When I headed out for work, she was curled up on the couch, a tiny and perfect package of love and fur. I wondered how things would go? Would Scout be frightened? Would she have fun?
Normally, I hear the little barks as the garage door is closing. But I heard no barks. I imagined the worst. Could she have been taken? Would the man have done terrible, horrible things to Scout before disappearing into a car I could not identify for the police? My heart pounded as I opened the door, tears forming in the corners of my eyes. But there she was, just like always. I hurried to the pad and pen, excited to read the narrative of the day’s events. “Peed and pooped,” it said. No more, no less. I flipped the page. Nothing. Each day I wrote a hopeful note, constructed in such a way as to invite a lengthier response. But he never took the bait. One day, it read “peed, pooped twice.” I picked up Scout. “You pooped twice?” I cooed. “What a special girl you are!” “What else happened?” Scout stared into my eyes without responding. But then I wondered, wasn’t that enough? To poop twice in one day? And the answer was yes. Yes it was. // Lisa Levchuk