Feb 07

Ned


    I had absentmindedly wandered into the pet store today. I didn’t plan on buying a pet, but as the time came closer for the store to close, I was starting to have second thoughts. I checked the clock. I had four minutes to decide now. I strolled along the aisles of the pet shop, admiring the cute pets. I was shocked to hear the intercom announce that the store would be closing now. It barely even felt like a second after I had started walking, but in reality I had been taking too long. I begrudgingly left the shop. I was about to simply walk away when I saw something out of the corner of my eye. A simple flash of white. I wasn’t sure what it was. Could it be an escaped pet? A stray?
  
  I walked in the direction of where I saw the quick white thing. It seemed like it might have been hiding behind something. I looked around, and saw nothing at first. But then I finally saw it again, a little white thing peeking out from behind a wall. I had no idea what it was. It had ears like a cat, but it also had tiny nub-like horns on the top of its head. It had a round body, with fairly large feet and small little arms and paws. It was standing on its feet, it was not like a cat or any four-legged animal. I still had no idea what it was.

    I slowly crouched down and reached my hand out. The creature hesitated before slowly waddling towards me. He stared at me. I smiled at him. He was a very cute little creature, round and short, almost up to my knee but not quite. He had pure black eyes, and even though that should be scary, he looked far from scary. He was the cutest little thing I’d ever seen.

    “I’m going to name you Ned,” I announced softly after thinking for a few moments.

    Ned seemed to like that. His ears perked up a little and I see a little smile on his adorable face. I carefully picked him up. He was no heavier than that of a toddler. I held him close and starting walking home. I was incredibly happy now. I carried Ned all the way home. I nearly melted into a puddle when he snuggled close.

    Once I arrived at home, I unlocked my door and walked inside. Ned looked around curiously and I smiled. I gently set Ned down in the living room so he could explore as I pondered what Ned would possibly eat. I had no clue at the moment. Ned happily wandered around as I went through my pantry. I had no idea what Ned even was, how could I possibly know what to feed him?
    I sighed and Ned waddled over to me, looking up and tilting his head lightly with curiosity. I smiled at Ned.

    “What do you like to eat, Ned?” I asked. It was obviously not going to be answered, but I asked anyway.

    Ned seemed to understand the question. He looked around then back at me. I took that as an “I’ll eat anything” sort of gesture, so I decided to feed him some pudding. He was hesitant of the stuff at first, but once I told him what it was and ate some to prove it was okay, Ned ate it.

    He seemed to enjoy it, which made me happy. Once Ned finished his pudding, I put the bowl and spoon in the sink and picked him up after hearing him yawn. I didn’t have any designated area for him, so I decided to let him sleep in my bed. He was even cuter than a teddy bear, anyway. I walked into my room then gently laid Ned down, tucking him in with care. Ned looked at me with his sleepy eyes and I smiled brightly. I stayed with him until he fell asleep. Once he was asleep, I gave him a little kiss on the forehead and left the room after closing the curtains so Ned would have a nice peaceful sleep in the dark. He certainly wasn’t afraid of the dark, in fact, he seemed to really like it.

    I sat in the living room and read a book for a while before I ended up falling asleep. When I woke up, I got up to check on Ned. It must’ve been a few hours later, because the natural lighting in my house seemed dimmer. Ned was starting to wake up, so I sat on the edge of the bed and watched silently. He stretched and yawned softly before he opened his eyes and looked at me. His pretty eyes lit right up when he saw me.
    I stroked his head as he started to fully wake up, then I picked him up and carried him back to the living room. He lifted one of his little arms and moved it in the direction of the front door.

    “Want to go for a walk?” I asked.
    Ned looked satisfied with my request and he bounced up and down a bit. I let him follow me to the front door, then I held it open for him as he walked out, then I closed and locked the door once both of us were outside. Ned looked very excited. I walked with him through the small town. A few people looked at Ned, but they all smiled. People were very kind and accepting around here, which made me feel happy. I would be very upset if someone were to stare at Ned and make him uncomfortable.

    Ned picked up his pace into a slightly waddling run. I followed him, chuckling at his enthusiasm. I let him choose where to go. I just kept following him, trusting that he knew where he was going. He certainly seemed to.

    When we stopped walking, we were in front of the pet store. It was open again, strangely enough. The schedule must’ve changed. Ned hopped up the steps and I followed him. I opened the door for him and we walked in together. The clerk looked over and smiled, greeting us.

    Ned was staring intently at the collars, so I smiled and walked over to them. I pointed to each, Ned replying with a shake of his head until I pointed at a certain collar. It was a cute collar, red with little hearts on it. I took the collar then walked over to the clerk.

    “I’d like to get a customized pet tag with this, please,” I requested with a smile, showing him the collar.

    The clerk nodded and asked what name I’d like engraved into the tag. I replied with “Ned” and the clerk smiled, complementing that name. The clerk then walked into another room and returned a few minutes later with the neatly engraved tag. He attached it to the collar, and I gave him the amount of money I owed, then I crouched down and put the collar on Ned.

    Ned looked very happy, to which both the clerk and I smiled at and watched Ned waddle to a small mirror and look into it. He seemed to greatly enjoy the look of his new collar, because he began to bounce up and down a little with excitement. I grinned and thanked the clerk, walking over to Ned. I picked him up and we left the shop as Ned gratefully nuzzled close.

    I certainly didn’t expect for the day to turn out like this, but I’m incredibly glad that it did. I met my best friend, and pet, Ned, today. Even though nothing went as I planned it to at all, it was the most perfect day of my life. I got a pet, and he’s the best pet in the world. Even better than a dog or a cat, if I may admit. Ned is the sweetest little thing I’ve ever met, and I feel so lucky that he chose me to take care of him. As I walk home with Ned in my arms, I promise him that I’ll be by his side forever. He enjoys hearing that, nuzzling even closer. I kiss the top of his head and continue walking. Today has turned out to be incredible, and I wouldn’t ever change anything about it.



 
About the Author: soulpunk
“Self-deprecating or arrogant, it's all selfish. Hard as it is, life's better when you spend more time on the rest of the world.” ― Patrick Stump
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