December 26, 2019 | Posted in WooFPAK Heroes

WooFDriver is a very good human. He cares for the environment. He loves animals, especially dogs. He takes very good care of all of his animals, and his love extends even outside of them, to wild animals, to the animals other people own.

But he’s not perfect.

In fact, he’s very far from perfect – especially in the eyes of the WooFPAK.

One of the biggest faults that WooFDriver has, as far as Chase is concerned, is his endless curiosity. Often times, it’s a good thing! WooFDriver loves to explore! And that’s awesome!

Except, of course, when his curiosity happens to be about something moving around in the brush, when Chase, Princess, Zarro, and Jag all agree that there’s a bear running around nearby.

Princess says, “he can’t go out there.”

Zarro asks, “what are we supposed to do?”

“I don’t know,” snaps Princess. She shakes her head, distraught when WooFDriver moves closer to the woods, like he’s thinking about going out there, like he’s thinking about going to see what the sound is.

That’s when Chase starts barking.

He starts barking, and growling, and howling.

Jag protests, “stop it before the bear hears you, and comes this way!”

“It’s already coming this way,” says Chase. “Whether we’re being quiet or not! And if WooFDriver goes in those woods by himself, there’s going to be all kinds of problems.”

WooFDriver turns around, eyes wide. “Chase? What’s wrong, boy?”

Chase stops barking the moment that WooFDriver kneels beside him. He tells the other members of the WooFPAK, “if he’s going out there, I’m going with him.”

“That’s dangerous,” says Zarro. “You could both get hurt!”

WooFDriver pets Chase a few times, then gets up and goes back to the edge of the forest. The moment that he does, Chase starts throwing a fit again. He barks so hard and with such force that it makes his front paws rise up off the ground. “Or,” he says, to his companions. “I could make sure that he doesn’t get hurt! I have to go with him! It’s going to be at least a little bit safer that way! I’ve got too!”
It takes four trips back and forth before WooFDriver breathes out hard, runs a hand through his hair, and then hooks Chase up to a lead. “Just this once,” he says, though they both know that’s a lie. “We aren’t going to be doing this again, you hear me?”

Chase wags his tail, hard. He bounces up onto his back paws, giving WooFDriver a slew of wet, sloppy, doggy kisses.

WooFDriver laughs, allows it for a moment, and then tugs Chase towards the forest. “Alright, boy. Let’s get going.”

As they walk, a dark sense of foreboding fills Chase. He knows in his heart that this is the best course of action, but there’s no way to deny that it’s still very, very terrifying. In fact, Chase isn’t sure he’s ever been more scared before!

Bears are really big deals!

They can be really mean!

And it might not be the only bear that they’ve been around, but still! That doesn’t make it any less scary!

So he looks over his shoulder, eyes wide, tail held up just the right amount, to give off the impression that he’s happy. He tells the rest of his pack, “it’s going to be fine. I’ll make sure we aren’t out here long!”

It’s not until Chase and WooFDriver vanish into the trees that a new problem arises, and a worse thought comes to light.

Jag looks from Princess and Zarro, to the forest, and then back again. Tail dropping straight down between his legs, he says, “we didn’t think this through.”

Princess snorts. “Like that’s a surprise, with Chase involved?”

Zarro shoots their female companion a sour look. He asks, “what do you mean, Jag?”

Jag hesitates for a moment, then, softly, ears back, tail down, he asks, “what do we do if the bear comes out this way? There’s no way he didn’t hear Chase throwing up such a racket.”

Much to his displeasure, neither of his companions seem to have any kind of answer.

Should something happen…it’s just going to be the three of them, muddling their way through it.

And that is a terrifying thought indeed.

 

Katelynn E Koontz – Author

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