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“For the Love of a Master” Teaser

March 23, 2012

For the Love of a Master is a novella I’m working on separate of co-authored titles with K. Piet. 🙂 It’s an idea I got late at night while watching television and chatting with the husband-thing. It’s also first person, which is something I haven’t written in a very long time, but that perspective was the only one that made any sense for this piece. I don’t expect it to be hugely popular, as it’s pretty strange and steeped in furries, but I think it’ll be awesome when it’s done. I’m writing it mainly for myself, so if anyone likes it, that’ll be a bonus.

One week, and I stood in the main room, chin lifted, and Sir Jiat fastened my new tag on the ring of my collar. It was official. I was his. No one could deny it now, and I certainly didn’t want to. In the course of a week, I’d gained nine pounds, my skin was golden from hours spent in the sun in Sir Jiat’s rear yard, and I’d never been as well rested. Nights were spent warm in Sir Jiat’s bed. My hair brushed until gleaming, my belly full from a day of meals, and my eyelids heavy with exhaustion. Each night, I prayed to know what it was that I’d done to be blessed with such a master.

“I have a surprise for you,” Sir Jiat said. I watched him reach for my leash. “There is a meeting of my like-minded associates today. They are bringing their pets with them, and I think it is high time you socialized.”

Fear struck me to my core. Socialize? With other pets? I’d never done that before. I was a one-pet home. My previous masters hadn’t taken me out. I knew the home, the yard, and the physician’s office. The closest I’d come to socialization was peeking through the slats of a fence separating me from another pet or the occasional romp in the pound’s lackluster play yard. Socialize? What was expected of me? What was I to do? How was I to ensure I didn’t humiliate my master?

Sir Jiat fastened the leash to my collar, and then he brought our eyes together. “I can scent your fear. Do you fear going out? Meeting other owners? Or is it the pets that make you tremble?”

I’d learned, since coming to Sir Jiat’s home, that if he asked me questions, he truly wanted my answers. Usually, I didn’t hesitate. But I was hesitating, not wanting to ruin his outing. I didn’t want to embarrass him, but at the same time, I didn’t want to prevent his own ability to socialize with his friends.

“Answer me, Ewan.” Sir Jiat’s tone was firm, kind, and he gave just the smallest tug on my leash.

“Other than the pound, I’ve not met other pets. I don’t know what it is you will want me to do,” I said, heat rising in my cheeks.

Sir Jiat smiled. “I want you to have fun. There is a large yard for you all to run around in, sun yourselves, and Lady Freeya will provide you with delicious things to eat. I want you to have fun.”

I tilted my head, unsure. Fun? With other pets?

Shaking his head with a chuckle, Sir Jiat helped me into my sandals. “Fun, Ewan. Where you laugh and talk and play. Nothing more than that. It’s casual. There’s no need to be nervous, and you won’t disappoint me in any way unless you keep yourself apart from everyone. These pets can be your friends, if you let them.”

Friends. I knew that word. It was what Kica had called the young women who’d visit her home. They’d giggle, talk about some boy or girl in their classes, and eat fattening pastries while grooming their nails. It hadn’t seemed like much fun, and when I was allowed to watch, most of what they said to each other seemed disingenuous or cruel. That didn’t make me think ‘enjoyable’ in the slightest. Maybe pets who were friends with one another were different. We didn’t have classes or girls and boys to gossip about, though fattening pastries and grooming did sound promising.

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