by Mohit Singh, 16, Jaipur, India
The following is a story submitted for the DWAA’s Young Writers on the Web program.
One rainy evening Harsh was coming home from school when he heard a whining sound from a narrow street. He followed it to a cardboard box that was shaking. Inside, he found a shivering German Shepherd puppy.
He dropped his umbrella and school bag in the middle of the street,
picked up the puppy and sprinted to the clinic of a vet he knew. When the vet took the puppy for a check-up, the assistant handed Harsh a letter tied on the pup’s neck. It read: “Hey, I am Aditya. My business just took a blow, and I am making no money. I will not be able to bring this little life up. Please, whoever is reading this, please keep the puppy or hand him to some other safe hands. I am sorry!”
The vet treated the shivering puppy and gave him some medicines. Harsh had some money, so he was able to pay to the vet. He picked his bag and umbrella and went home, cradling the puppy in his hands.
He reached home with drenched clothes, a wet school bag, a torn umbrella, and an adorable puppy sleeping comfortably in his arms. His mom picked the puppy up and cuddled with him on the couch. After changing clothes, Harsh picked up the puppy and went to bed.
When he woke the next morning, the puppy was by his side, watching and sniffing everything around. Harsh went downstairs with the puppy in his hands. With tears in his eyes and a soft voice, Harsh asked his mom about adopting the puppy. Somehow, she agreed. Harsh’s happiness had no limit, he never expected to get this ‘yes’ from his mommy.
He named his new four-legged family member Charley.
Harsh was in love with his new puppy. He trained Charley every day. They would go for long walks and played endless games of fetch. But there was serious work, as well. Harsh decided to train Charley to protect his home and family from the robberies in the area that were getting worse day by day. Harsh and his family would be prepared with a 2-year-old strong German Shepherd named Charley.
On June 15, 2018, Harsh’s family left for a visit to his uncle’s house, but Harsh decided to stay with Charley. He wanted to spend some time training his dog.
After dark, when Harsh was feeding Charley, he heard a strange noise in the backyard. He saw a broom had fallen, and he figured it was blown down by a strong wind. He went back to the hall and again started feeding Charley.
After he finished, he went to wash the dishes, and there he saw a shadow on the window glass. He opened the window but discovered nothing there.
While he was preparing for bed, he saw the shadow again but could not figure out what it was. Perhaps it was one of his neighbors.
He was so uneasy he made Charley sleep beside him.
The sound of Charley barking woke Harsh from a deep sleep. The dog was barking at the closed door of his room. Harsh opened the door, and Charley ran towards the kitchen window where Harsh had seen the strange shadow earlier. The window was broken, and the glass was shattered all over the kitchen. Then Harsh saw the shadow of a huge man behind him. Before the boy could even turn to take a look, the man slammed a flower vase on his head. Bleeding and in terrible pain, Harsh fell to the ground.
The last thing he remembered hearing was Charley barking.
Hours later, he woke up in the bed of his local hospital, with a bandage on his head. His neighbors and his family were in front of him.
“Where is Charley?” was the first thing Harsh asked.
“Charley is sleeping in his crate comfortably,” his mom replied.
Harsh’s neighbor told them that they saw Charley catch the thief. The dog held the intruder, biting him on his arms and legs until the police arrived and arrested him.
After two days, Harsh got the good news that the thief Charley ‘thrashed’ was the person behind all the robberies in his neighborhood.
Hours later, he got a call from the police. They said he and Charley were going to be felicitated for their courage. This was for the first time in our state that a dog would be honored.
Harsh was so happy. He fondly remembered how he rescued the tiny, adorable wet puppy. He remembered the golden times training and having fun with Charley.
He looked at his brave dog, and questions began to swirl around in his mind. Why don’t people save a life by adopting a dog? Even if they buy a quality pet dog, how can they leave them abandoned after some time? But there were no answers to those questions.
The one thing he did know was that he had Charley, and Charley had him. And that was all that mattered.
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