Wolfhound Chapter 8

As they reviewed the footage, Reese barked to point out Nadege Mawon when she left the Haitian neighborhood that morning. There were few surveillance cameras within that district for Finch to access, but they were able to track her easily once she moved out of it, since her flowing white dress and traditional head-wrap made her conspicuous even on the multicultural streets of New York.

“She went to the 15th Precinct where her nephew is being held,” Finch remarked as Mawon entered a building. “No doubt to visit him… perhaps to tell him that she’d exacted her revenge on you.”

OR HELP HIM ESCAPE, Reese cautioned.

“True,” Finch agreed, fast forwarding the tape. “Ah! Here she is, coming back out again. No sign of her nephew, thankfully.”

After confirming that she had returned to her neighborhood, they continued to scan the video footage until they were caught up to the current time. Finch surmised that her clientele came to her premises – perhaps she had a shrine or altar set up – but it was hard to tell who might be her customers, especially since Finch could not pinpoint her location. As for an electronic footprint, apart from her family’s immigration over thirty years ago, she had none: no driver’s license, no bank account, not even a library card.

“She probably does all of her business within the Haitian community,” Finch said with a sigh when his searches came up empty. “Nothing like a tightly knit ethnic community to hide in, as long as you belong there… They would never tell an outsider what she does or how to find her – if not out of loyalty, out of fear.”

CANT BLAME THEM, Reese typed morosely. WONDER HOW MANY SHE CHANGED BEFORE ME.

“Indeed… or what happened to them,” Finch mulled. His search of missing Haitians in New York also brought up no unusual cases.

MAYBE NOBODY REPORTS THEM MISSING, Reese nose-typed.

“Very likely. If they’re illegal aliens, they wouldn’t want to go to the authorities to start with, and if they’re afraid of Mawon, all the more reason to keep their silence.”

WONDER IF THEY TURN BACK WHEN THEY DIE.

Finch gazed at his currently canine partner for a long moment after reading the last line.

“I assure you, Mr. Reese, I will do absolutely everything in my power to get you back to your true form. Even if I have to fly you to Haiti to get the spell reversed.”

Reese appreciatively nosed Finch’s hand where it hung off the edge of the armrest, then typed, BUT HE SAID ONLY SHE CAN REVERSE IT.

“Yes, well… that’s what he said,” Finch admitted, “but if she can’t be persuaded, I will scour the entire island of Haiti – or go back to Voodoo’s African roots if necessary – to find a cure for you. I promise, if there is a cure to be had, I will find it.”

THANKS. HOPE IT WONT COME TO THAT.

“As do I. I’m not sure I could survive a plane ride that long with you – in such an enclosed space,” Finch commented, hoping to lighten the mood. Reese lolled his tongue out in amusement.

IM A GREAT LAP DOG. YOU WONT NEED BLANKET. WONT EVEN HAVE TO WASH YOUR FACE.

“That’s what I’m afraid of,” Finch grumbled. “Just keep that tongue of yours where it belongs, Mr. Reese!”

IN YOUR MOUTH, Reese typed with impunity.

No, in your own mouth, thank you very much,” Finch shot back. “I may have to cancel our dinner reservation, after all…”

DONT MAKE ME FRENCH YOU WITH KIBBLE BREATH, Reese warned.

Finch glared at him balefully. “You are becoming truly insufferable, John. Even more so than when you were a man. I hope you know that.”

Reese just flashed him a wolfish grin.


Finch decided to take Reese to a dog run near the restaurant before dinner, thinking that his intractable behavior might be due (at least partially) to being cooped up in the library most of the day. Finch led him inside the fenced-in area and removed his leash before stepping back outside.

“Go on,” Finch said encouragingly. “It’s called a ‘dog run,’ John, so I suggest you make the best of it and get some exercise.”

With a huff that might have been agreement or resignation, Reese began to canter around the enclosure and was accosted by a few other dogs that wanted to sniff him. Fending them off with a well-timed paw, Reese took off running, in effect inviting them to a game of chase.

Satisfied that Reese was getting some good out of this outing, Finch walked over to an empty bench and sat down, watching the dogs frolic inside the enclosure. He was startled when a young man – possibly in his thirties – sat down beside him.

“Which one’s yours?” he asked with an amiable smile.

“Ah, the big one – the Wolfhound,” Finch told him, indicating a pile-up in a corner where several dogs were fighting over a toy. Reese had just stuck his nose between two growling Labrador Retrievers and, with a low “Woof!” that brooked no dissent, broken up the escalating tension.

“Wow… That’s a lot of dog,” the man said appreciatively. “Mine’s the brown Cadoodle over there… not quite as big as yours, but she still makes my apartment feel small.”

“Uh… Pardon my ignorance, but what exactly is a ‘Cadoodle’?” Finch asked.

“A Collie-Poodle mix,” the man explained. “You can see she got her curly hair from the Poodle side.”

“Ah, yes, of course. You must spend a lot of time grooming her.”

“Yeah… she is high-maintenance,” he replied with a slight grimace. “Wouldn’t trade her for the world, though. She’s helped me cope, in so many ways, since my partner died…”

“Oh,” Finch responded, in no doubt as to what kind of “partner” the man meant. “I’m sorry to hear that.”

“Thanks,” he acknowledged, keeping his eyes on his dog as she played with a Bichon. “It’s been a tough road… I don’t know how I would’ve managed without Sylvie.” He shot Finch a half-apologetic smile. “So… how did you end up with a big dog like that?”

“Ah, well, I’m prone to seizures, you see,” Finch said, sticking with his cover story. “I heard that some dogs can be trained to warn you when a seizure is coming on, so I looked into it, and John was the first one available. He can get help if I become unresponsive, too. He’s a bit more than I had bargained for, I admit,” he added with a wry grin, “but I’m glad I found him. He’s been a tremendous help.”

“That’s great,” the man said with a genuine smile. “It’s amazing what dogs can do. And at the end of the day, all they really want is your love and approval.”

“And belly rubs, apparently.”

“Oh, yeah!” the man laughed. “Sylvie loves belly rubs, too! I’m Erick Friedman, by the way. I work as a copy editor at The Prognosticator.”

Finch shook his extended hand and replied, “Harold. Harold Bustard. I’m a bean counter at an insurance firm.”

“Nice to meet you, Harold,” Erick grinned. “Is this your first time here? I haven’t seen you before, and Sylvie and I come every day.”

“Yes, this is our first time. I thought John might like a change of scenery.”

“Well, I’m glad you did.” Erick gazed back at his dog for a moment, then asked, “Would you care for a cup of coffee? I can run over to Starbucks if you don’t mind keeping an eye on Sylvie for a few minutes…”

“Ah… I don’t drink coffee, but I’d be happy to watch Sylvie until you get back,” Finch told him.

“Can I get you something else? Tea? Hot chocolate?”

“No, thank you – we have a dinner reservation in a little bit.”

“By ‘we’ do you mean you and John? Or is it… someone human?”

“Ah…” Finch hesitated, reluctant to share so much information with someone he had just met. He also sensed that the man’s offer of coffee had not been a merely friendly gesture – that his inquisitiveness regarding Finch’s dinner plans was not simply disinterested curiosity. “Just John and myself,” he finally answered.

“Oh,” Erick said, his smile brilliant and obviously relieved. “You must be going to Bone Appétit. Their food is great, and their service is awesome. I take Sylvie there for her birthday every year.”

“I’m glad to hear that,” Finch said with a polite smile. “I saw some good reviews for them online, but you can never tell…”

“You’ll like it, I’m sure. In fact… maybe sometime we could all go together…”

Finch did not know quite how to reply to that. For one thing, he realized that Erick was, for all intents and purposes, asking him out on a date; for another, he hoped that he wouldn’t need to bring Reese, in his canine form, to the dog run for much longer. Before he could even begin to contemplate the awkwardness of having Reese as a Wolfhound along at a dinner date, however, a furry blur came hurtling towards them, stopping just short of crashing into the bench but planting its front legs in the small space between them.

AWR-ROWR!!” [“HAROLD!!”] Reese howled in indignation.

“John! W-What…” Finch spluttered, his voice trailing off.

“Did he just jump that fence?” Erick asked, rhetorically and incredulously. “It’s four feet tall!”

Finch could not formulate an answer since Reese was crawling all over him, spreading his shaggy body across Finch’s lap and giving Erick a silent but eloquent glare over his shoulder.

“Well… Look who’s jealous,” Erick stated, then burst into good-natured laughter. “I guess he doesn’t want you talking to me, Harold. It’s okay, big guy, I can take a hint,” he continued, addressing Reese. “I’m not trying to take Harold away from you. But I do hope, if you come back here again, that you’ll let me talk to him a bit. I swear, my intentions are honorable!”

Erick bravely stretched out his hand close to Reese’s nose, which Reese deigned to give a cursory sniff, but Finch felt a low, not-quite-satisfied growl rumble through his chest.

“Really, John,” Finch protested, exasperated. “You’re acting like a big baby!”

“It’s all right, Harold,” Erick put in, nodding towards the dog run. “My Sylvie would be on my lap right now, too, if she could jump the fence.”

Sure enough, the fluffy brown dog had her paws up on the fence and was barking madly, frustrated that another dog was so close to her human when she couldn’t be.

“Dogs,” Erick chuckled, “Ya gotta love ’em!”

“Indeed,” Finch murmured, then let out a sigh.


A/N: Sorry it’s taken so long for me to update this! RL has been extremely busy… 😦
As penance, I have a couple of Wolfhound videos to recommend on YouTube:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ckkc9fWZAgw
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C_kI2So3Tlg
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sq-KRK7okBg

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wOJgqqzZx-U  Thanks for this one, Mamahub! 😀


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10 Comments

  1. Mamahub

     /  2012/06/30

    Thanks for sharing these great videos! And the fantastic update, of course. 😉 The one where the wolfhound is trying to be a lapdog reminds me of this chapter – LOL. And the “singing” wolfhound and his master remind me of how Harold can understand Wolfie Reese “talking” to him.

    After viewing your video recommendations, I alo found one suggested video called Merlin The Irish Woofhound. (Since I’m on my iPad, unfortunately I can’t copy and paste the link). Merlin is gloriously running and playing on a beach with other dogs and bounding through the surf. He is a dark gray color and he is exactly how I imagine Wolfie Reese looks. Gorgeous, athletic, and magnetic to watch, in any form!

    Reply
  2. managerie76

     /  2012/07/01

    “stopping just short of crashing into the bench but planting its front legs in the small space between them”

    I just bet he did.

    ***MY Harold! Get your own Vigilante Software Genius.***

    Reply
  3. ROFL! This time you not only kept the Reese and Finch in character, but the Irish Wolfhound as well! What a great choice!

    Reply
  4. sashatoy

     /  2012/07/10

    Jealous Reese even as a dog! Can’t wait for the next chapter. Love reading your stories.

    Reply
  5. Jules

     /  2012/09/09

    o_O “keep your tongue where it belongs”, “in your mouth”, and “don’t make me french you” all had me squeeing like a rabid fangirl! Plus jealous Reese is my favorite!

    Reply
    • Reese can do some serious french-kissing with a dog tongue!! XD
      I just LOVE how jealous Reese is in the show, like when Finch talked to the female “Jordan Hester” in the book shop, and even when he mentioned he would be talking to “she” (Zoe Morgan) over the phone!! XD

      Reply

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