Swallow’s Georgian Fayre has arrived at last and all the fourlegs are feeling the heat of the Best of Breed Show – Poppet, the Willowy Afghan blond is determined to win at any cost…until along comes Drizzle. Stepping out of the local woods appears the best looking male fourlegs she’s ever sniffed. Best of Breed flies out the window as excitement, danger and escape come sniffing at her rear end. Only a fourlegs can stop this right dog’s dinner from upsetting everything to save the day. Or can he?
“You’relate!” that old hindlegs Armitage growls at them.
“stickthisnumberonthedoggy” the old hindlegs thrusts a rosette into Sharonpackmate’s paws.
Sharonpackmate and Poppet stand at the edge of the showing ground, a load of fourlegs all sitting around the edge, some sitting sensible, some sitting slouched, and some looking Poppet’s way, snickering in those ass-licking little sniff sounds she just hates.
Aw Poppet, it ain’t a butt-showing agility contest Sasha the hard-faced Shih Tzu calls out.
At least I got a butt – and a good one. Judges won’t know which end your butt is
You’re a tart, just like that right bit of hindleg sket your dragging along behind you
Oh la la, don’t leesen to er Popeeet Marie-Antoinette, the French Poodle laughs She est un chien stupide
Wee Marie! Agreed on that! Poppet laughs back
“behavePoppet,behave” Sharonpackmate is turning into a chocolate fountain of sweaty nerves. She tugs at Poppet’ lead.
Don’t stress Shals, I got this Poppet stares down Sasha ..I think!
“numberten,numberten” the old hindlegs belches out “getyerdoggyouthereNOW”
“isthatyou?” Sharonpackmate is checking the rosette number on Poppet’s collar.
How do I know? daft hindlegs with all their daft yapping of numbers, whatever those are supposed to be.
A curl-hairy Standard Schnauzer trots onto the showground.
Oh just typical, it would be him, it just would be that bloody German, wouldn’t it! Sasha is shaking her head in disgust.
Vight zen zu stummwits, German discipline vill demonstrate ze right posture, precision and ze fine art of doggy agility, ya Gunther lectures all the fourlegs, moving precisely to the starting point.
Are ze vedy fräuleinmate?“
He is one big German poop! Sasha shouts.
Vatch and learn, zoo English stummwitts, French stummwitts, Japanese stummwitts…and all zoo other ugly stummwitts-
“disqualified!“ old Hindlegs Armitage barks out.
“butwehaven’tevenstarted,HeirArmitage“ fräuleinmate whines.
Fourlegs erupt into a chorus of English, French, Japanse and ugly stummwitts laughter. Gunthar looks straight ahead, ignoring them. Stummwitts!
“numberteleven,numbereleven” the old hindlegs barks again “getdoggyoutherenow,andnobarking”
“OhPoppet,that’sus” Sharonpackmate almost trips over the rope barrier while dragging Poppet onto the showground.
Bonne chance Poppet! the French Poodle squeaks.
A whole munch-load of legs, wings, thighs and other chicken bits later, Drizzle is full. Now he can put his mind to better things, like sporting fourlegs. He wanders around the stalls, enjoying a little territorial squirt here and there, hindlegs parting the way for him. He’s an impressively big fourlegs.
Stop that! an even more impressive fourlegs commands, as K9 Duncan steps out from the crowd, PC Andersen packleader pulled right beside him.
I sniff you, pig. And stop what?
Cocking a leg like you own the place
Against the law to squirt, then, is it? Bunching the muscles in his powerful chest, Drizzle raises his head, staring down the police Dobermann.
Where the hindlegs food is, yes Duncan stares back, his own brown eyes unblinking.
Or, you’re going to find yourself the wrong side of Thames Valley Police K9 Division…stray fourlegs are not permitted to squirt in non-designated squirting areas
Again, or what?
Duncan steps forward until the two big fourlegs’ snouts are almost touching Don’t be a clever cu- cos PC Andersen packleader won’t like it and then it’s going to be the dog pound. Up to you…
Drizzle wants to fight. He sniffs ready for it, expecting the K9 to do the same, but Duncan remains rock steady, his eyes bemused but disinterested.
Drizzle snorts and backs off, trotting away to lose himself in the crowds.
Thought so Duncan sighs, watching him disappear. Flaring his nose holes, filtering the colours of all the food about, he forgets Drizzle and looks up at PC Andersen packleader. So then, how about a bit of well-deserved police lunch?
The cloud that’s been sniffing of drink from the sky, starting dripping.
Time to find some shelter
Head down, Drizzle quickens his pace, but before he reaches the pooping woods with all their colourful squirt markers, he sniffs an even more interesting colour: female fourlegs. And lots of them.
Making his way ‘round the side of the Indoor craft market where there’s a load of silly hindlegs doing nonsense things with sticks – trying to put them together and not throwing them. Shooting past the Star Wars Exhibition where’s there another load of silly hindlegs doing stuff with plastic things, he zeroes in on the female colours. An ugly grey Whippet is watching him suspiciously. It’s not female so he pays it no attention. But it does make him truly wonder at just how dumb these hindlegs are. The only sensible thing he sniffed hindlegs doing, so far is stuffing their faces. Actually, he could eat some more chicken if it’s available. He almost gives up on the female sporting action plan to consider hunting down more chicken until, that is, one particularly overpowering colour sniffs him in the snout.
Now, who is that!
Chickens pushed straight out of his head, he picks up the pace and soon finds himself amongst a load of fourlegs with their hindlegs companions. All the females turn as one and sniff in his direction, the muttwit hindlegs keep staring straight ahead at something. Same direction where the overpowering colour is also sniffing from. He pushes forward to see.
I sniff vous some Frenchie whispers at him. Ordinarily that’s enough to get some sporting action going, but all he wants now is to follow his snout towards the most exciting colour he’s sniffed in a while.
It’s almost going well for Poppet. The old hindlegs is barking nonsense at Sharonpackmate who, in turn, is barking even more nonsense at Poppet.
You just said turn left?
Why don’t I just come with you?
Alight chill yer beans, luv! I’ll stay
“anybarking-nonsensenonsense-disqualified” the silly old hindlegs warns.
Sharonpackmate walks away, stops, turns around and waits. And she waits.
And she waits a bit more.
This is sick. I could have come with you in the first place
“leaveitoffmate” Sharonpackmate begins whining.
Okay, okay I’m coming…Jeez
But as she starts over, and Sharonpackmate starts barking at the old hindlegs who then starts barking back in his croaky growl, Poppet’s world is suddenly turned upside down. Inside out.
Onto the show ground steps the most dog-damned beautiful sex on four legs fourlegs she’s ever sniffed.
Poppet isn’t listening. She’s sniffing the most wonderful earthy colour. And sniffing hard.
Hello kitten Drizzle pants and immediately does something Poppet has never allowed any other fourlegs to try beforenow. Go ‘round the back and lick, deeply.
Ahhhhh the female fourlegs around the showground swoon in unison.
Before anyone can stop her, before Sharonpackmate registers shock and starts her hollering, before the old hindlegs can bark any more nonsense – Poppet is flying for her life. Following this wonderful sniffy fourlegs off the show ground. Flying headlong for the exit of Herdwick pooping park.
Sparky is witness to it all.
Knew the bad sniff meant bad news
The brown fourlegs is all size and sculptured muscle, a crease of hair along his back rippling silkily with the power of his running. The pretty Afghan right behind him. For a moment he stares in appreciation at these two beautiful young fourlegs racing between the gawking hindlegs, dodging food stands and splashing up drink puddles from the grass. Simply beautiful.
Before common sense slams in sideways and he barks a panicky warning No Poppet
Johnylegs, we gotta stop Poppet
No. We gotta stop Poppet before it’s too late
Dog dammit! in a burst of insane speed – which Whippets are famous for – he springs away from Johnylegs, the leash slipping out between his fat fingers, and races off to save Poppet.
Poppet, I’m coming…I’m coming
And Sparky is transformed from tingly Whippet to Fenrir, the gigantic wolfmate of Tyr, Norse god of legend. At least, he thinks he is. An ultra-fast sleek grey compact missile, zeroing onto them, zig-zagging and cutting corners to catch up, lessening the distance with each arcing leap of his little body.
Poppet! he shouts Poppet, don’t do it!
Poppet hears Sparky behind her – his little voice growing louder. But she’s got no time for this now. That big brown backside ahead, pumping sturdy legs through the drink puddles is calling to her in a louder and far more intimate voice. Summoning up all she ever wants, needs, must have. Now.
Poppet, wait up!
Leave me alone Sparky can’t you see I’m sort of preoccupied?
I cannot….no….never as she crashes into the wonderful brown backside of the big fourlegs who stops and turns fast on their pursuer.
I sniff you he roars keep away, she’s mine his whole body is trembling with the exertion, but he still manages another quick lick of Poppet before stepping in front her to confront the small grey Whippet splashing towards them.
Sparky skids to a halt on all four pads. He stands calmly as if he’s not been running at all. For all his small size he lowers his heard and growls Poppet is not yours. Poppet is a shield maiden of Swallow
What? Drizzle grunts in amusement.
Who? Poppet is genuinely puzzled.
Poppet is…never mind, Poppet one of us…not you
“Sparky,comehere,comehereboy” Johnylegs is calling out as he stumbles to catch up, his unhealthy sniff making all three fourlegs’ snouts twitch.
Poppet? Nice name Drizzle mutters approvingly, before lowering his brown eyes down and directly into the face of the little Whippet. But she’s not yours or Swallow, whatever that is, but mine. All mine. Me. Drizzle. Her sniff tells me so. He takes one purposeful step closer to Sparky, looming over the Whippet.
It’s true, Sparky, I’m his Poppet adds shyly, still feeling the wonderful sensation of his lick, of his sniff. Of Drizzle.
Wanna stay healthy, then stay away
Do it Sparky Poppet pleads Please go
I am not Sparky, I am Fenrir, and I will not let you take here anywhere
Is that so? Drizzle lunges so quickly with open mouth, spittle flying that Sparky doesn’t even see it happening, only feels the sudden white pain in his neck.
Submit! Drizzle roars
No Drizzle, don’t hurt him Poppet finds herself jumping in between the two fourlegs.
STOP! a huge voice freezes them all in mid-motion.
And K9 Duncan is suddenly there. Ears pointed, eyes glaring, the badge of his office bright across his chest: Thames Valley K9 Unit.
Attack Sparky again and suffer your death to Drizzle
By now Johnylegs is at the scene, sensibly hesitating to approach Sparky with these two big growling fourlegs either side of the Whippet.
Drizzle and Duncan stare each other down.
She is with me, now Drizzle bares his teeth You know the rules
“easyboy” PC Andersen packleader heels Duncan. “easyboy, justtwomuttshavingachinwag”
Yeah, that’s right Drizzle scoffs Listen to your master and turns to Poppet Run!
Both fourlegs immediately sprint away into the distance, disappearing out Herdwick pooping park and into the surrounding woods.
Dog dammit, Duncan, why didn’t you stop them? Sparky howls.
Duncan turns away from where they disappeared and looks down at Sparky, his cold gaze softening.
I cannot he grates between his teeth.
But I can! Henry bounds up, all hot breath and slobbering jowls.
(Sparky’s story continues next week…)