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General

The snow had been predicted for days. It started wet and light yesterday morning and by 7PM the weather forecasters were finally claiming victory over their successful predictions.

Freya Wiles worked at the County Morgue in Lansdale, PA. By the time her double shift had ended, the entire area was entrenched in a sheet of dead ice layered with bodies of asymmetrical snowflakes that overtook the town in a rapid white shroud. How would she get home in this?! Heading to the car, she proceeded to clean it. When she started the ignition however, the battery, like the residents in the morgue she had just left, was dead. Her house wasn't that far from work, but the storm was proving to be blizzard conditions. There wasn't a car or public vehicle on the road. Dam this town and dam her for volunteering to take over Bryan's shift. The only alternative was to return to the refuge and warmth of the morgue among the dead cold bodies, or become one of the walking dead on her way home.

Freya never really liked the company of people since her tragic breakup with her husband Peter 6 months ago. That's why she sought the comfort of this lightly populated, currently isolated town and the job she embraced. Getting away from Peter and his surreptitious affair with that woman from his old college was a relief. She loved him and loathed him to this day. Independence was good, when not at the whim of Mother Nature. Geez, she wondered who had scorned Her this week to drop this blizzard on the planet?

While bemoaning her plight and trying to decide her fate, Freya heard a low, mournful whimper coming from the nearby trees. It sounded like an animal in distress. Moving closer, with shovel and ice cleaner in hand for protection, she found a half frozen golden retriever. He cried and whimpered and then led out a howl to chill you to the bones. The poor thing was hardly able to move!

Without thinking of her own safety, she quickly lifted him up. The entrance back to work seemed farther then it actually was; the pathway insurmountable.

Determined to help this poor creature, she steadfastly walked up and put the ID card in to open the door.

Once back in the warmth of the building, Freya proceeded to get the dog dried and warmed in as many sheets and blankets that she could muster. Later she'd feed him a little.

"Well it's you and me babe", she whispered to the dog. Funny but she and Peter had always wanted a dog, specifically a golden retriever. They were going to name him Odin, after the Viking God. With work and his affair they never got around to dogs, let alone kids.

After a few hours of nestling near each other for warmth, Freya figured eventually the local police and transportation crews would come around. The phone lines would be up again. She wondered if this dog had a chip. His leash had been lost.

By 7am the next morning, the phone lines were up. Her cell had been dead like everything else. Suddenly the phone sent a shrill scream out through the silence of the morgue. She ran to the phone and was relieved to hear that it was Sheriff Wilkes. Roads were being cleared and he was checking for stranded cars and people. He'd be over to get her out, however, one incident had held him back from coming sooner. A man had been run over in the storm searching for his dog. The man wasn't a local and they found out he had been staying at the motel up on 91. He was in bad shape but would probably make it. "No business for you today so far", he joked in his deadpan sense of humor

The odd thing was that the man had ID on him. A picture of a golden retriever and a letter addressed to Freya Wiles with another photograph of the two of them. The letter seemed to be an apology and this man named Peter Wiles kept muttering "Forgive me Freya". "He evidently had driven up looking for you". She was stunned and told the Sheriff she had been sheltering and caring for the dog all night in the morgue.

"I'll be right over" Sheriff Wilkes said. "Oh and one more thing. We found a leash and ID on the dog that had a blue bow and note on it.

It says, "I hope Odin will help me find you and forge my way back into your heart".

"Eternally yours, Peter".

January 04, 2020 22:49

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