Ana fell in love with a plush talking dog at a friend's house. I can't blame her--he was very charming. He sang when she squeezed his paws, giggled when she poked his tummy, counted, recited ABCs and said all manner of sweet phrases. Naively, I decided to buy one for our house too.
Our new pet was licked, kicked, smacked and mocked. He cheerfully sang the ABCs and nattered on and on about the itsy bitsy spider. Then he was left out alone in the cold, damp world. After this rainy abandonement, the first signs of spooky behaviour set in. 'Hug me', he chirped intermittently in empty rooms.
Somewhere in her early months--Ana, always a dog-lover and ever the barbarian--aquired the pet name Monster Dog. Her affinity with the canine cause made her more sympathetic to the posessed dog toy than the rest of us. So he ended up in her room. But he was quickly banished after he woke her up at 2am with, 'YOU'RE FUNNY!'
Then he went quiet. I thought--prayed--perhaps his batteries were spent. Weeks passed. I forgot all about him.
I found myself driving home alone on a dark rainy night. The streets were empty but for feeble moonshine and rainwater overflowing from defunct street drains. I was two turns away from home, going over a narrow bridge. Then bump over a pot-hole. 'I love you!' wailed Creepy Dog suddenly, blood-thirstily from the back seat. I swerved to correct my jumping, shaking hands.
That was truly the last creepy straw. Creepy Dog went into a bin liner that very night, over a year ago. But today I found him in the garage, in a dusty bin liner that never made it to the tip.
'Hug me!' he barked enthusiastically when I squeezed his paw. 'I love you!' It was comforting somehow, to know that at least he had missed me as he hibernated, conserving battery-power, poised, dormant, waiting. He went on to a twitchy rendition of the ABCs like some warped Sesame Street character. 'You win again Creepy Dog', I conceded.
Ana found him. In true Monster Dog form, she wrestled with her fellow puppy for about an hour before getting destracted by a biscuit.
He's out there right now and it's raining, it's pouring...