Ragdoll watched the dogs play outside her trailer for the longest time, it seemed. Newte was so bad about not coming upon being called. And she’d given up training Jaspo in *anything* when he was not much more than a pup. What was the use?
They’re collecting at the door, she thought. Pops must be inside rattling around keys, getting ready to close up for the shift. Ragdoll knew Alma would be here any minute in her old, beat up blue Chevy truck to relieve him. She was reliable but testy, and could shout the skin off of any man alive if needed. More than once, her daddy had been the victim of scattershot, both of a verbal *and* a physical variety. Former bo Justice will be needing that specially made seat cushion for a while, haha. But it wasn’t a laughing matter at the time; Ragdoll thought that Alma had killed him. But Justice was just naturally a heavy bleeder, and all that blood covered much tamer wounds than spectators of the scene could imagine. Then there was the other time… oh, there’s daddy. Pops. At least *he* comes when called.
Upon exiting the building, Angus Nuffin petted each jumping dog individually. “How’s my Salt; how’s my Pepper?” (those were his nicknames for the mutts, bought for 2 lindens apiece from Gingus Kind Jr. after the death of his father). He then spotted his daughter sitting on the warm blacktop, waving brightly. Although not planning it, she finds herself jumping up as well, mimicking the dogs’ admiration of the man. But she resists running toward him and giving him a big hug. She had other things on her mind today. The Diagonal. Ragdoll had been plotting her dinner grilling strategy while waiting and watching. Again in both a verbal and physical variety, for she was the designated cooker as well tonight.
Meat Wednesday. That’s another thing she needed to talk to her daddy about when the time was right — about her vegetarian leaning ways. But for now, as a kid of 12, beef and chicken and the rest tasted okay still. Remained pretty delicious, except when she came across one of those hard parts that was probably, *hopefully*, a bit of bone or cartilage or something. Fish, she thought again. One day, not too far off, she will only eat fish as a meat. Snapper, flounder, perch. Mmmmmm, she thought. But for now, her mouth still watered a little for beef, for chicken, for the rest. But not ham. Never ham. That was a firm rule for Meat Wednesday since she learned that pigs might be smarter than some men. *Obviously* Alma’s Justice, hehe.
Angus Nuffin walks toward her and she couldn’t resist any longer. The big hug came swift and easy as Alma pulled in. “My little Zero,” he says, holding her tight.