“Brad? What are you doing here?” Gloria was too surprised to hide her displeasure at seeing Brad along with Jamie and that pesky dog, Annie.
“I came to see my sister, may we come in, Gloria?”
“I’m in the kitchen, Brad. Annie has already found me.”
“Excuse us, Gloria,” Brad said as he and Jamie walked past her and into the kitchen. Gloria, however, was not far behind.
“I was about to suggest that Barbie lie down and rest. She has been overdoing it lately, with the trip to see you and all. It’s important for her to keep her strength up.” Gloria was in a state for sure.
“Gloria,” Barbie said. “That is absolute nonsense. I may not be able to see but I’m as healthy as a horse. Brad, Jamie… I just made a pot of coffee. Would you like some?”
Both Jamie and Brad declined. Both were wondering how they could accomplish what they came to do. They needed to make sure Gloria didn’t pose some sort of a threat to Barbie. Annie had gone to great lengths to convince them to go to Barbie, but at this point, they had no idea why. They only knew that Gloria was not a favorite of Annie’s.
Barbie suggested they all go sit on the flower covered patio in the back. For some reason, Gloria didn’t join them.
“I can’t see them, but I can smell their fragrance and it brings back memories of Mom’s flowers. Do you remember her beautiful garden, Brad?”
They had a good time talking about old memories and Jamie was happy to learn more about Brad and what he was like growing up.
“Look at the time,” Brad finally said. “Jamie, we have a long drive home. We need to think about leaving. Where did Annie go? I haven’t seen her in a while.”
“I’ll go find her,” Jamie offered. “She probably found a place to curl up and take a nap.”
Jamie proceeded to look around the house and call for Annie. A couple of minutes later, the front door opened and Gloria walked in.
“I accidentally let Annie out,” she said. “I went chasing after her, but she kept running from me. I’m afraid she has run away.” Gloria’s eyes were cold. Not at all like someone who was upset because a poor dog was missing.
“Go tell Brad what happened,” Jamie said. “I’m going to go look for her. Annie is a smart dog. I’m sure she will find her way back to us.”
over an hour later, neither Annie, nor Jamie had come back. Even Gloria was starting to worry. She had made arrangements for the dog to disappear, but not Jamie.
Katie and Dina were having a great time swimming in the river. Arf was busy chasing his frisbee. A group of boys who were fishing nearby, were taking turns throwing it to him. The day went by far too quickly and when the sun started to set, Dina rounded up her little crew and they all piled into the car.
A car that wouldn’t start.
“It isn’t that far, Mommy,” little Katie said. “I can walk. I’m only a little tired,”
“Oh honey, your’re very sweet but after a day like today, there is no way you could walk that distance and I can’t leave you here alone in the dark, while I go get someone to help us.”
Dina looked around to see if the boys who had been playing with Arf were still there, but it appeared the area was deserted.
While Dina was trying to come up with a plan to get help, Arf started barking and pawing at the door handle.
“He wants out,” Dina said. “I don’t know if I should keep him here to protect us, or let him go and find help.”
In the end, she decided to let him go.
“You’re a very smart dog, Arf. I’m going to write a note and fold it around your collar. Go find us help. Please hurry.”