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Adventure Drama Fiction

THE JOY MISSION

Lauryn stood at her kitchen sink, looking out the window, filling the coffee pot with water.  This was the first pot of coffee she and her husband would share in their new home.  Jeff was upstairs getting ready for his first day of work since being transferred for his job at an architecture firm. He would have a long drive into the city so they were both up early.   The sun was just peeking over the horizon in the distance and Lauryn thought how lucky she was to be able to watch the sun greet her every morning through her kitchen window.

As she turned the tap off and yawned, Lauryn saw something move in the distance. She blinked the sleep out of her eyes and tried to focus. It looked like a dog.  It was a dog! And it appeared to be tied to a tree.  A very big tree, with a very big chain wrapped around the tree and the poor dog’s neck. Lauryn’s heart sunk to her feet as she took in this sad scene against the beautifully painted sunrise.  Lauryn’s free hand instinctively went to her baby bump, 6 months along she was. She was familiar with the country life, having grown up moving through rural areas. There are not a lot of fences out here, and your neighbors are far and few between. So most folks chain their dogs when outside.

Lauryn finished making the coffee and started breakfast. Jeff came down and kissed her forehead. They chatted while enjoying breakfast and coffee, and he headed out to work. Lauryn cleaned up the dishes, and looked out the window to see the dog still there. The pup was laying down in the dirt. It had nowhere else to go. The neighbor came out, a large rough looking fellow with a ball cap.  The dog stood up upon seeing her  human, tail wagging.  He ignored the dog and got in his truck, backed down the dirt driveway and left. Lauryn wondered if the dog had any food or water, or when was the last time the dog was fed. But she had work to do and so went to her computer to do it.

Lunch time came, and Lauryn saw that the dog was still there.

Dinner time came, the dog was still there.

Bed time, the dog was still there.

And, the next morning, the same.

The entire week, nothing changed. That dog was stuck to the tree with no attention, no food, no water, no life.  It rained for a couple of days, and the poor dog was stuck in the mud. Lauryn couldn’t stand it. She tried to talk to her husband about it, but he told her not to get involved.  He didn’t want any trouble with the neighbors,  and Jeff thought it wasn’t their business anyway.

 Lauryn was not going to give up that easily.  Her heart broke for this dog that she saw just sitting there waiting for it’s human’s love, or even just food and water.

The following Monday, Lauryn waited for Jeff and the neighbor to leave for work.  Lauryn walked over to the neighbor’s property.  She called to the dog in a high pitched voice, and the dog got up and wagged her tail.  As Lauryn got closer, the dog cowered down with its  tail between its legs. Lauryn carefully pet, and cooed,  and talked to the dog. The dog looked up at her with the most soulful, sad eyes.  Lauryn could see that the poor dog was just desperate for some love and attention. She could see that the water in the dog dish was dirty, and the poor dog was surrounded by its own feces. There was no tag because the chain was locked around her neck. Lauryn decided to name the dog Joy. She  deserved a beautiful name.  She was a sweet little bull terrier mix, white with some brown patches on her. Lauryn ran home and brought the dog some leftover chicken which Joy devoured.  She also dumped and refilled her water, after having to run back home for water because she didn’t see a hose in the yard anywhere.

Lauryn tried not to go everyday, she did not want anyone to see that she was taking care of Joy, and hoped their secret would be kept until she could develop some kind of plan.  Every time Lauryn had to leave, Joy looked at her with pleading eyes.  “Take me with you” they said. Lauryn promised Joy that she would be back, and that someday she would take her away for good. Lauryn did call animal control and asked if there was anything they could do. Unbelievably, there was no law against chaining your dog on your property. Even worse, legally, that’s all animals are-just property. “Not giving up”! Lauren thought. Next, Lauren got on social media and searched for rescues in the area and left messages. Lauryn was also in a “pregnant mommy” social media group and started asking about dog rescues there.  One of her friends said she might be able to help. Lauryn went to private chat and explained what was happening to Joy. Her friend wanted to help and would enlist some of her rescue friends to help join in “Mission Joyful” as the plan came to be known. After many messages, willing rescue and a lot of trust in a few good women, “Mission Joyful” was secretly plotted.

Late one night, Lauryn would sneak out of bed and walk across the road in the dark to a white SUV.  Her and two other pregnant women would sneak down a dirt driveway to a tree.  The sweet little dog with a patch over her eye looked up with hope.  It was as if she had been expecting the three of them.  A pair of channel locks, a lot of struggling and grunting. broke the chain off. Lauryn was finally able to pick up Joy and hold her in her arms so tight.  The three women all ran down that driveway as fast as they could.  Back at the SUV, Lauryn ran back home with tears of joy running down her face. She snuck back into her home and fell asleep.  “Mission Joyful” completed.

The next morning a tired Lauryn stood at her kitchen window making coffee. The sun was peeking out over the horizon.  That morning’s sunrise was extra sweet, there was an empty  chain tied to the neighbor’s tree. Lauryn’s hand instinctively went to her baby bump, and she smiled warmly thinking about her own little bundle of joy, and another bundle of Joy with a patch over her eye.

The End.

July 30, 2021 20:44

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