She was always comfortable with herself. Felt good in her skin, and knew how to let it ride, to shine. Tonight is a night to be at home, to recharge over wine and laundry. She pushes the cassette into the player, the door silently clicking shut. Her eyes closed she waits for the sweet sounds of Etta James, singing about how it is, to flood room with that easy feeling. Pouring a glass of wine, she sits on the futon couch, chin on upraised knee, arms around her calves. Staring quietly into the shadows of the candles reflection, her eyes close and drifting sleep and dreams come. Visions and faces talking, speaking in her own voice, narrate herself into her own fiction. The wine opened, sits slowly turning into the night as she sleeps.
The early morning silence was broken by the frantic scratching of paw on cheap aluminum screen door. She wakes with a start, eyes focus on the once molten wax candle long hardened, its light forgotten, its end unnoticed sometime in the night. The Scratching persists again the shrill of nail on metal, a dark growl followed by bark, again and again. The scratching scraping away the metal, the barking running with rivulets of k-9 angst. Grabbing the wine bottle she hurries to the window, peering through the blind at the German shepard abusing her front door. The dog was young and strong, it pulled back and scented on the street, turns and, nails clacking on the sidewalk he bolts into the street. Turning the lock slowly, she opens the door to see the screen torn, shredded, the door with fresh paw sized gouges. Across the street he sees the dog trotting leisurely behind an early morning jogger. She steps onto the porch steps and yells..” Hey get back here..” she takes a few steps toward the street here.” ..Look what Your Dog did to my door!!” The jogger glances at her and bolts across the street, the dog guard off guard hesitates and bounds after him.
“ get out of the way..!!” he yells jumping between the parked cars. The dog, snarling, close behind, she turns to the door hurling the bottle behind her, wine flushing onto the sidewalk and landing with a thunk on the dogs head. The dog yelps and takes a turn around the street before heading back towards the porch. She flings open the screen door, the house door handle quickly found, she feels the joggers pushing behind her. They fall together onto the floor his foot slamming the door shut, the onslaught of barking gouging holding the minute while they waited for the door to splinter open. She pushes him off her and quickly gets to her feet. The athlete’s position ready to defend. “ Get out!!” she yells grabbing the Louisville slugger from the corner. “Wait. Wait” the Jogger pleads back to her, hands up slowly getting to his feet she noticed the faded jeans and torn t-shirt, the hem falling limply disconnected, spots of red blossoming higher up.
“ Get out!!” she yells again. The nails stopped scratching on the door and the silence stood between them. “Wait, Wait, I can’t go out there..” He pleads again. “Its’ your fucking dog, it’s a fucking menace.” She brandishes the bat, lunges slightly forward then back and stands her ground. “ No!” he says slightly smiling. “ No wait a minute.” She lowers the bat a little. “ It’s not my dog.”