I began to notice what was happening three months ago. He usually came back an hour or two after he left for work. Madam did not know about it. And when he came back, he came with another woman. Although, it was madam that brought me to the house, master had accepted me without any objection. I had to be loyal to him as well or did I?
I probably would have thought nothing of it if he didn’t behave so suspiciously. Normally, when he came through the gate, I would be the first to know. I would run and greet him and he would usually acknowledge with a pat or say something like, “how’s your day been girl?” I would offer to carry his brief case but he did laugh it off saying there were important documents inside.
I wouldn’t necessarily describe master’s and madam’s marriage as perfect but I presumed they were happy. For master to cheat on madam, then it must be that something was askew. They had the usual marriage squabble here and there but I guessed it was a passable union. They went about their normal everyday business; dropping the kids at school; going to and from work and so on. The family was a plausibly happy one and besides I was there to help around with a few things especially with some street senses I picked up while growing up.
* * *
I remember the first day master hit me, he came in with a huge frown and he wouldn’t respond to my salutations. I tried again and again, but he just walked right by me leading the other woman into the house. “Oh, how much I hate her. I sure would have prevented her from entering the house if master was not there. I think she sensed the hatred. I saw fright in her eyes when she passed by me. That gave me satisfaction! If that was all I instilled -Fear, then I was more than satisfied. Master usually responded to this tautness between me and her by giving me a mischievous sneer but on this present day he gave me a big smack to my face calling me a stupid mutt. “Learn to stick your nose where it belongs”, he said. I couldn’t believe what just happened to me, I just ran off into my room to cry. Master never hit me before. Never! And now because of this bitch, I was getting a whooped. To be honest, I really didn’t blame master; it was this slut that had made him lose his senses. The way she moved her slender buttock pendulously could rid the brains out of a man- but not mine!
When madam came back, I wanted to tell her. I looked at master and then at madam and knew he was sorry and dropped the thought. It would break her heart to find out. Madam would tell master off and be out of the house in no time. I was sure she would demand a divorce immediately. Naturally I would have to go with her. But deep down, that wasn’t what I wanted. I loved Master and his wife together and I loved playing with their kids.
But what happened the following week made me loose all manner of restraint. Master had beaten me again because of that woman. What happened was this; they were on their way out and I presumed they had quarreled because she stormed out of the house alone! She looked like she had been crying because I could see her makeup was smeared over her chubby cheeks. I considered this a hint to give her a piece of my mind. I was able to move stealthily behind her. Before I could utter a word, master was right beside me; I think he knew what I was nursing and decided a blow to my head would put correct my line of thought. That was the last straw; I had been beaten three times now because of her-I would tell madam.
* * *
Madam took longer than usual to come home today. Master was already back. Madam came in smiling as usual. I had no time for the usual pleasantries; I was going to bare my soul before I lost my nerve.
I told her the whole story; I revealed everything from the genesis till then. Madam just stared at me in disbelief as I barked aloud showing all my teeth as the evening wind permeated my Alsatian fur.
©2010 Ewoigbokhan Otaigbe Itua.