First I had to fend off a bear and I didn’t feel too badly about that. In my dreams whenever I fight someone I go too far and end up feeling like a monster. My brother and I were on the deck when suddenly we noticed the bear crouching there, low and growling. M. was paralyzed and the bear bit him on the chest and took out a piece of his shirt. I raised my arms, not trusting to them, and somehow frightened the bear off.
Later I was on that same deck with the family dog. She was going from post to post and barking, like she used to do. She was not old because this was a long time ago, when we still had the other dog–the German Shepherd–who was hit by a car a year after we got her.
The forest surrounds that house like a moat and so I was surprised to find a murderer climbing up the side of the deck on a grappling hook.
“You’ll never get up here!” I shouted, knocking the grapple down. But I was worried because I knew that determined he would find a way.
I gathered knives in the kitchen. I thought the German Shepherd might get him. She was huge. I waited.
Well, he got in anyway.
“I killed your dog. He was an odd thing & I liked him but I killed him anyway. Even if I regretted it that dog is dead.”
He? We wrestled for the gun and I managed to shoot off the last five rounds into the wood of the house. Then I got a knife and put it on his throat. How could I let him know how awfully he had treated us? There was no way besides pressing the knife in until blood ran, just a bit.
I got someone to call the police and threw him outside for them to find. The body of the bear was slumped dead on the driveway, and the murderer weeped for the dead dog.
Inside my family cast me suspicious looks, as if I would take the knife to them.
“Well?” I said, “Well??”