“Ma’am, is this your dog?”
Standing in front of me, with me clutching my bathrobe slightly more tightly than needed around myself, was a slender, pleasant-faced officer holding a sausage-linked, lackadaisical dog on a stout leather chain. As soon as Yowzer saw me, he started yodeling.
“Shush, Yowzer,” I said immediately, kneeling to give my roommate immediate affection- digging a little extra under his tags and collar. I was hoping to assist in silencing him before his yodels awakened the entire neighborhood. “Yes, officer.” I stood back up. “I had not noticed he was missing. As you can see, I am just getting up. I usually take Yowzer for a morning walk … but not this early.”
“Well, ma’am,” the officer was smiling at my discomfort, I hope as a way to make me feel a little more comfortable. “This morning it looks like Yowzer had the ‘up-and-at-ems’ before you were ready to start the morning.” He paused. “We received a disturbance call about four a.m. this morning. When we arrived, we were surprised the disturbance was being caused by this small dog. We found him howling and a jumping at the dumpster behind McCrainy’s Butcher Shop. We found you by the address on his tags.”
“McCrainy’s,” I said. “We often stop by there on the way home from the park. Mr. McCrainy finds a bone or meat scraping for Yowzer on our visits.”
“How well did you know Mr. McCrainy, ma’am?” Immediately, I noticed the past-tense turning of our conversation. The officer blushed. I suspect that he had just realized he had revealed more information in his question than he had first desired. “Is everything O.K. with Mr. McCrainy?” I asked.
“I’m sorry ma’am. I should have been more careful with the wording of my question.”
“How is Mr. McCrainy?” I asked again.
“He is deceased. Ma’am.” The officer hung his head and ceased making eye contact with me. “We found him … or rather, Yowzer found him lying behind the dumpster behind his establishment.”
“Oh, my.” I knelt once again a stroked around Yowser’s collar. A sight like that should not have to be seen by man or beast.
“May I come in?” the officer handed me the leash holding Yowzer. “There are some questions I hope you can assist us with in our inquiry.”
And with that, Yowzer and I lead Officer Stanford into the back kitchen, clicked on the percolator for a warm cup of coffee to ease the tension, and I began to hear the sordid details that Yowzer had discovered.
Written for FanStory Competitions.