A Curious Story

 

A short story.

 

The street was long and twisted, like a black snake slithering among the abundant foliage and small, cottage-like houses with little red roofs and porches with rocking chairs. An dense and menacing overhang of gray, ominous clouds loomed over the town, rather like a vague, yet menacing school teacher. A smattering of sunlight rays speared the clouds here and there, and a light fog rose slowly from the dew-damp street.

There was a girl. And there was also a dog. The both of them were sitting together on a green porch, two peas in a pod. The girl had a mother. The dog had an owner. They were both barefoot. The porch also had an owner, it was the same as the girl’s mother. The peas normally wouldn’t be there; that was just a metaphor.

However, it was true that both the girl and the dog were eating peas. The girl was eating the succulent fruit from the inside, and the dog was cleaning the porch by eating the tough wrinkled shells, which the girl discarded.

I mentioned before that the girl had a mother, and the dog an owner. Neither of those facts were strictly true. The girl had a mother, but was not entirely sure where that mother went. The dog had an owner, who had unfortunately vanished along with the mother. The porch still retained the same owner, and did not feel the loss of said owner keenly, as it was only a porch, albeit a nice one. I won’t even bother to explain the metaphorical peas. The reason the girl and the dog were eating peas was that they both did keenly feel the loss of their respective overseers, and had grown rather hungry with worry.

“Espy?” Said the girl. She was speaking to the dog, whose name was not Espy. It was, in fact, Esperanto. However, the girl and the dog were rather close, and affection in such a form warranted the use of what might otherwise be referred to as a ‘nickname’. In this case, the term Espy might quite possibly be used far more often than Esperanto, and thus become more than a nickname.

“When do you suppose Mama will be back?”

The dog, who we now know to be Espy, merely regarded the girl and the half-empty pea pod in her hand. She turned and looked at it too.

“I’d say it’s half full.” She murmured to herself. Espy moaned slightly, wanting to continue the pea feast on the green porch. The girl seemed to have another idea.

“Mama and Aunty said they would be back, didn’t they, Espy?”

The girl’s aunt was the dog’s owner, and the sister of the porch’s owner, with no relation whatsoever to either the metaphorical peas or the ones on which the dog and the girl feasted.

The girl did not wait for the dog to respond.

“But they aren’t back.” The girl dropped the paper bag, inside of which were the peas – the real ones, not the metaphorical ones – and clapped her hands together loudly, to rid them of any dirt. She then turned to Espy, whose round black nose was shiny and wet, and whose eyes watched the girl excitedly. The girl had succeeded in reaching nine years of age, and surpassed that by one quarter of a year, and as such, was feeling extremely grown up and responsible.

“Because they aren’t back, do you know what we have to do, Espy?” Said the girl. Espy did not respond, but this did not deter the girl. The porch didn’t respond either, nor did the metaphorical peas.

The real peas were unable to respond, as they were currently being consumed by the unresponsive dog, whose name was actually a nickname.

“We’ll have to go and find them.” Said the girl. She picked up the paper bag containing the real peas, and stepped off the porch. Espy, who felt a strong loyalty to his owner, followed the girl.

And thus, the metaphorical peas left the metaphorical pod, not to mention the porch that was very real and not metaphorical at all.

Neither was their journey that they had just commenced.

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