Ok. Last bit of novel for a while. Then on into my life at school! Or just my life in general.


 


                “Excuse me, miss,” said Mr. Polo with an unmistakable edge of hostility, “you have my dog.”


                I turned to the man and stopped short. He’d certainly never pass as a supermodel. “I’m sorry, your dog? Will you hold on one moment? I really should finish this conversation.”


                “Of course,” he spat, “how could you ever miss out on a chance to talk about hair? It’s not as though there’s something that doesn’t belong to you in your hand. It’s not enough to steal my dog, you also have to make me wait to get him back while you talk senseless drivel!” While the last of his words goose-stepped out of his mouth, his eyes raked over my figure and when his gaze returned to mine I could tell that he had already dismissed me as a useless, fashion-driven harpy.


                “I beg your pardon!” I said in a huff. “No! Wait, you don’t go anywhere. This call is important.” I turned back to my phone call. “Baron? Baron. Did you get all of that? Blue shirt, charcoal slacks etc. Are you going to be able to manage? Ok . Good. Call me when you finish and tell me how it went.”


                I turned back to Mr. Polo absolutely determined to straighten this out. He was continuing to glare at me as though I were the cause of every problem he’d ever had whether it be with women or work and I can’t say I appreciated it.


                “Sir, if this is your idea of an overture to a date, I assure you it is quite far from an attractive prospect.”


                “Overture?” he scoffed, “Don’t flatter yourself, Pretty Girl. I wouldn’t date you if you were pointed out as the biggest thing since Kathleen Battle. I know women like you and I know how this all goes. And don’t stand there in your designer clothes expecting me to apologize, because girls like you are not my idea of prime dating material!”


                “Dating material?” I seethed. “I don’t date unkempt old jerks anyway! What makes you think this is my idea of fun? I was sitting here innocently having lunch when you, ever so boldly, made your menacing way over here and interrupted an extremely important conversation only to accuse me of stealing your dog! If anyone is in the wrong here, I’d have to say it’s you.”


                He took a step toward me and in a quiet voice that held more intensity than any amount of yelling could have, he simply said “It’s not wrong to want a thief to return the things that were stolen. That, my dear girl, is no crime.”


                I took a step toward him and in no less intense a tone said “Now you listen here, mister. This is a very sweet dog and I refuse to believe he ever could have been happy with a curmudgeon like you. If you want him, you’ll have to provide proof of ownership.”


                I handed him my business card. “Drop the proof by my office,” I said crisply. In response he pushed his card into my unwilling hand.


                “What is this?” I asked, turning it over in my hand. “Why would I want your address?”


                “So you can hand deliver my dog, Nikko, with a sincere apology,” he said with a smirk.


                I stood there in a mild state of shock for a moment. I backed off a step or two in amazement at the absolute nerve of his words and unfortunately stepped into the collapsible dog dish that was still half full of water. I poured out the water and became instantly flustered by the laugh I heard from behind me. I knew it was Mr. Polo and rather than continue the embarrassment, I stuffed the bowl in my bag and stalked off with the dog in reluctant tow.

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