Skip to content

Hoof

Hoof only notices because he’s been doing it for three days. It’s not impossible: you could try on a well-fueled humbug, or a trike, if the ground were flatter here. But no one’s ever kept up with her on foot this long.

So she makes camp and waits until he walks up and plops down next to her fire, smiling shyly. He puts his sword down without a glance at the gun in her lap.

“What kind of robber are you?” says Hoof, in some bewilderment.

“I’m Found Dog!” he says cheerfully. “Found Dog is a good person to be!”

Louisiana

The boy’s tongue is black and his nails are bitten back to bleeding, but he has no cup, no patter; he’s not far from a restaurant’s midden, but he’s not scrabbling for food. He just crouches in the corner and moves in small circles, again and again.

“What’s your name?” says the lady in blue.

Catahoula bark,

sings the boy in a cracking voice,

Catahoula beg,
Catahoula piss
Down the emperor’s leg.

“You’re no cur,” says the lady. “You’re purebred. You’re a found dog now.”

She tilts the boy’s chin up. His eyes are wide and blank, one blue, one brown.

Found Dog

Found Dog rattles down the shale and draws an inch of blade, enough to use as a mirror. The gulls are still behind him. They’re catching up.

The bottom of the ravine is wet and he stumbles in it, looking for more shelter. There. Half a beaver dam. Found Dog gets his head under just as the scream of gullsong bursts over the ravine’s lip.

There’s a fat man in a smelly coat underneath. He’s bleeding, and he has ugly wings.

“Who is it,” he hisses.

“I’m Found Dog!” says Found Dog cheerfully. “Found Dog is a good person to be!”

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License.