Over a Litter

She saw the bundle in the corner, covered by dirty blankets. It moved. It was freezing cold. No wonder it was trying to find cover or at least a little bit of it under the shredded and filthy fabric. It must be desperate, she thought. She was just about to walk on when she heard the sound coming from under the blankets. And it was not what she had expected to hear. She froze and slowly turned around, and lifted the blanket. 

She clicked her tongue. “Poor things. Who’d do such horrible thing to you?” She cooed the puppies as she swooped the blanket into her shopping cart and pushed it down the road.

“There you are,” she placed the puppies on the ground between her and the graffiti filled wall. “It ain’t much but that bridge can take some of them chilly winds away.”

As she put together her own bed, some of the golden-retriever puppies rolled into an upright position and stared at her curiously. She lay down on her own filthy cloth that she called a bed and turned to the puppies. “Go to sleep now, my dear. Tomorrow will be a better day for us. We’ll be the best of friends.”

Unfortunately, there was no tomorrow because when she woke up the next morning, the puppies were gone. She was saddened that the puppies had run away and would remain depressed until a week later, as she was pushing her shopping cart along another road, she heard a familiar voice coming from a block away. “Puppies, get your puppies, 100-dollars each.”

It was her son, Brock, standing on the steps of an apartment building holding one of the puppies in his raised arms. “Brock! What you doing?”

“Oh, hey, mama, I’m making some dough, that’s what. It’s what you taught me, remember? Dough is the guide to happiness, right? Well, I ain’t happy. So I ought to make dough, right? People, get your puppies! They are pure bred golden retriever, a guarantee your next batch will make you say ‘cha-ching’!”

“Son, get down there right this second.”

“No,” Brock replied blatantly. “What you gonna do about it? Hit me?” He dropped the puppies back into the box and jumped down the steps. “Punch me? You ain’t got that no more, mama. You ain’t the bigger one no more.” He swung his fist which collided with her jaw. She fell.

“Please son, you’re right! Dough ain’t everything.” She pleaded but Brock didn’t listen. He stood over her and threw punches after punches until her face was barely recognizable and then he just stopped. His eyes opened wide. “Mama?”

This story was originally posted on October 27, 2015.

Written for Finish It, a writing challenge where we are provided an opening (in red) and we are to finish the story.


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