Part One: “Lost”

Chapter 1:

Part One:”Lost

 

A Nice Lady was driving along City Forest Drive one rainy day, when she thought she saw something out of the corner of her eye. Sure enough, something small and furry ran out from under a bush! It was hard to see it in the rain, but it might have been a fox, or a dog. N.L. braked suddenly and pulled over to the side of the road. The creature looked scared and shivered in the rain. N.L. slowly got out of her car and approached the creature, saying in a soothing voice, “It’s ok sweetie, it’s going to be alright.” This little one looked like a dog with scruffy black, gold and gray fur and white paws, a white snout and large brown eyes. Its ears were a bit large for its head and it looked like it had three eyebrows! It made soft “roo-roo” sounds and backed away at first. But soon the dog (or whatever it was) let the Nice Lady pick her up and wrap her in a towel. The Nice Lady could tell this dog was very scared, but it also seemed to be friendly, she carefully place the dog in the back seat and turned around and drove to an Animal Rescue Group called the Pet Place that was right there in her neighborhood of City Forest, near the post office.

This was a pleasant little house that the rescue group used to house animals, mostly cats, until they could find a foster family or forever home for the cats and dogs they helped. There was also a little pet supply shop attached where the humans could buy good food, toys, and anything else a pet could need. When she brought in this little dog, everyone oohed and ahhed at how cute she was. They put her down on the ground and she shook off the rainwater and fell down. This was when they first noticed that she was a bit wobbly on her feet. Then after she was dried off one of the rescue ladies said she looked like a Cairn terrier or corgi mix. The little dog then barked out a “roo-roo” sounds. So they started calling her Roo.

 

When the Claire, the Nice Lady, got home to her cat Zuzu, she said”Zuzu, you wouldn’t believe what happened today!” She often speaks to Zuzu, some people think this is a sign that the Nice Lady needs a better social life, but she was a happy person, content with her life, and really why not talk the cat? Of course she could always do with more friends, and certainly more money, but her life was good.

“Well Zuzu, I think you would like this dog I found today,” she said as she unloaded her groceries in the kitchen. “She is very cute and she really likes cats, because when I brought her into the Pet Store where they have rescue kitties, she got very excited and happy around the cats.” Zuzu seemed more interested in the paper bag that she was emptying than what she was saying. The rest of that evening the Claire would talk about Roo to Zuzu. “I don’t know Zuzu, there is just something special about that little dog. She just has the sweetest face.”

That night she even dreamed of Roo. In her dream she lived in the woods and her name was Maddieroo. Hmmm, what a funny name, Maddieroo, but I think it suits her, she said to herself as she rolled over to get ten more minutes of sleep.

The next day Claire went to work as usual. She walked to the library where she was in charge of the reference section. Part of her job was to keep track of the reference books such as the dictionaries, encyclopedias, maps and other books and data that someone might need to use in order to do research. The other part of her job was to answer questions when people called up on the phone. Not so many people called and asked questions anymore since most people used a computer to look things up. Now she mostly helped people use the computer to search for answers.

If Claire had only known that Maddieroo was a special woodland creature she could have looked her up in one of the oldest and dustiest books in the library. Even a library can lose track of things sometimes and down in the basement, in the back of the closet, in the darkest corner there are some old books. One of them is called the “Encyclopedia of Little Known Creatures”. Along with books about Little Known Plants and The Book of Oddities and Strangenesses, the Encylopedia of Little Known Creatures had been donated to the library many years ago by a Mr Noseworthy. The books showed up one day in a wooden crate, a crate made out of small branches and cleverly joined with notches and twine. In the crate was a pile of books and a note from Mr Noseworthy.

 

To whom it may concern.

Forthwith and henceforth, I do bequeath my collection of notable books on important things to the City Forest Library. No one in the Noseworthy Clan, the skunks that they are, has shown any interest in these important works. Therefore I am determined to leave these tomes in your keeping to treasure and use for important research, until the Noseworthy Clan produces someone of sufficient intellect to appreciate them.

 

Sincerely,

Phineas U. Noseworthy, Professor of Exceptional Knowledge

 

No one knew who this Mr Noseworthy was, and no one could figure out where he was from or why he chose the City Forest Library. There were no Noseworthy’s (Noseworthies?) in the neighborhood or in all of City Forest. Everyone appreciated the gift but no one really knew in which section the books belonged, or who exactly would like to read them. The librarians at the time thought Mr Noseworthy was a bit harsh to call his family skunks, but they all laughed when one of them noticed a certain musky scent emanating from the crate. “Judging by this smell it seems like they really are skunks.” Laughed the head librarian. Little did they know how true those words were!

The next morning the rain had stopped and the sky was a clear blue. There was a hint of fall in the air and Claire enjoyed her walk to the library. On her way there she decided to go a bit out of her way to get a coffee and a pastry from the Daisy Rose Café.

“Good morning Rose”, Claire said as she walked through the door into the cheerful interior. The Daisy Rose Café was in an old house that looks a bit like it comes from a fairytale. The eaves were very pointed and went down low to the ground, the door was rounded off at the top and had a round window in it. There was a nice round bay window that was large enough for two table and four chairs, wooden floors and stone walls, a glass case for freshly baked pastries and cakes. They served coffee drinks and pastries for breakfast and delicious sandwiches and soup for lunch. The walls were painted pale lavender with white trim, the wooden floors glowed a honey brown. The curtains were made of rose, lavender, brown and cream colored stripes., and everywhere there were drawings and paintings of daisies, roses and lavender. The staff wore brown or cream t-shirts with a large bouquet of roses, lavender and daisies printed on them that said, “Have a great Day at the Daisy Rose Café”.

“Rose you wouldn’t believe what I found yesterday!”, Claire said.

“The usual Claire?”, Rose answered, “What did you find,” she asked as she poured Claire’s coffee with two creams into a to go cup and place a “daisy sun” pastry in a bag.

“I found the cutest little dog! She has the sweetest face, and she has big ears and, oh why didn’t I take a picture of her. Well she is at the Pet Place now. They are seeing if she is a lost dog. I mean she must be she is so friendly.”

“Are you going to keep it? I mean if she isn’t someone’s dog that is.” Rose said as Claire handed her exact change for the coffee and pastry. “I haven’t had a dog in a few years, I have to ask Zuzu for permission first!,” Claire laughed. “Anyway, I doubt she will be missing for long I can’t imagine no one is looking for her!”