Hotdog Hotdog Hot Diggity Dog
rating: +54+x

It's still dark out.

"Haha, I have to go now!"

Pluto barks playfully and nuzzles his nose against a tall, young man who is leaving the house.

"I promise, I'll be back sooner than you think… Stay safe, P."

The door clicks shut. Pluto droops his head and his tail stops wagging, as his companion heads off to walk. Gary, his owner, always tells him that he has to go to walk to earn money for stuff like food. Why doesn't Gary bring Pluto along? Pluto is very good at walking. It doesn't make much sense.

In fact, now would be the best time to go, since the sun's rays are just coming up.

Grimacing, Pluto shuffles through the kitchen - where he tries to avoid looking at his bowl of food - and into the living room. He doesn't really feel like eating. Again.

He plops down, pale as a ghost, and stares at the pitch black telly1.

Well, not pitch black per se, but without much light to reflect it's dark enough for Pluto's eyes to wander away. Before, Gary used to leave the curtains open and Pluto would hop up onto the window sill to observe the beautiful sunrise; the weird metal chunks zipping past every few minutes on the cold morning concrete; the annoying man with weird, white, thin rectangles.

Now he always leaves the curtain closed. It's something the woman in white said to do - the woman who always comes to visit Pluto, because she loves to look inside his mouth and flash lights in his eyes and give Gary exotic white rocks, which he slips into Pluto's food. Pluto knows this very well, but Gary would never do anything dangerous, so the white rocks must be safe, right? After all, the lady says it's supposed to "help ease the pain."

That would probably explain why Gary cries some nights while holding Pluto. The white rocks must be helping Gary with his pain!

If only the white rocks were helping Pluto himself…

And the sun. He misses the sun. Outside, the country is now basking in the sun's warmth. Oh, how he longs to feel the morning breeze and warm, early sunlight again.

Argh, he should stop complaining! As long as Gary is okay, that's all that matters. Gradually, the furry canine drifts into unconsciousness, where he reminisces on the days when Gary would still play with him and take him for car rides.

He's disturbed, however, by panicked knocking at the front door. Instantaneously, Pluto's ears stand erect and his tail straightens out. Despite the pain2, he still leaps up from his comfy spot on the carpet and stands at attention, where he begins barking at the intruder. It must be that rude man with his white rectangles again!

But suddenly, something drags hideously down the wooden frame, creating an awful scratching noise, the sound of which makes Pluto wince. He gallops back to the kitchen and resumes his retaliatory barking. Yet, the man doesn't stop! He's relentless. He has even made a hole in the front door, and is desperately trying to force his way through the doggy door.

The light seeping in is blinding. It's been a long time since Pluto has seen the light.

Nevertheless, this man must be taught a lesson, even if it means Pluto has to pounce into the hot summer morning and eat all of his paper—


The dog stops.

"Ah, I was really worried! I was trying to tap on the window but you couldn't hear a thing! It's me, I forgot… I forgot my keys."

Gary… Phew. It was just Gary.

"Sorry for all the noise, I was just scared for a moment there, ha… Ha."

Gary doesn't sound right.

"You alright there, bud?"


"P, I'm… I'm sorry for scaring you, I just really needed to see you. Nothing was working, y'know. I tried for a long time to cure you. My dad couldn't help you. Melissa couldn't help you. I'm sorry, Pluto, for… For all of that. But I… We… Want you to know that it's okay now. Come on out, bud. Let's go for a walk, yeah?"

Finally! A walk! The doggo starts running around frantically in a circle.

"Just like I promised. Let's go."

Pluto excitedly launches towards the door and out into the warm light.

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