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It slowly sprung to prominence ...

It was around 4:00pm and Rene (pronounced Raynay) was woken up by his dad.

“Rene, can you take Max for a walk? It has been barking and whining for the past 30 minutes”, said his dad.

Max was Rene’s dog. Rene was wondering whether he was hearing his dad’s voice in his dream or in real. This was because, from the day he got Max as a gift for his 13th birthday, his dad keeps bothering him to take care of him. After continued pestering, Rene got Max as a gift from his dad with a strict instruction that he should take care of Max's complete needs. At that time, he did not think that taking care of a dog was that difficult! But now he realizes how big this responsibility is!

He reluctantly got out of the bed and looked at the clock. It was around 4:05pm. He was still feeling tired. He spent the entire last night at the local hospital. His sister’s adorable 18 day baby girl was sick. He came back home by noon only after the doctor declared the baby to be out of danger. His mom is currently at the hospital to help his sister. After having his lunch around noon, he went to bed to catch on his sleep when his dad woke him up to take care of Max.

Rene changed to a Jeans from the pajama and took Max outdoors. It was a usual sunny day in spring. Max was happy to be out of the house and was running from one point to another. Rene passed through the market which was buzzing with people. His town is a historic, quiet beach town. Most of the buildings are more than hundred years old and carry a history for themselves. The beach is shallow with white sands and provides a perfect setup for anyone looking for a quiet setting. No wonder the town’s economy is driven by tourists.

Max was pulling him away from the road towards the small hill. Rene followed Max who was still whining and was not interested in being at one place. Rene could not understand Max’s behavior but kept following its cues. This hill is closer to the beach and because of its proximity to water it is adorned with green trees. As it was the beginning of spring the trees were decorated with bright green leaves and colorful flowers. Max was leaping and trekking up the hill and Rene was trying hard to cope with Max’s pace. It was really exhausting to cope with a dog’s speed and is a good exercise by itself!

Finally Max stopped after reaching the hill top. Rene was happy that Max finally stopped moving. He was fully exhausted and was really gasping. He could see Max gasping too, but at least Max seemed happy to be there!

Short story continues in next page... 2

* The characters, settings and happenings are fiction only.