I've not managed to come up with a groovy name for this yet, so we are going to have to limp along, nameless until I figure out where the story's going and manage to come up with something witty.
Here's the first installment of my Interactive Blog Serial:
Heroine: Decca - part dog walker/part nature tour guide
Heroes: Bly, Decca's husband and Park Ranger; Lewis, The Shoe Guy
Sidekick: Sparta, hound of dubious parentage
“Oh for the love of…” Decca hauled back on leashes she’d looped together and looked for a patch of grass she could wipe her shoe on. “That’s the third damn time today I’ve stood in a pile of dog shit -- which one of you little buggers is leaving booby traps?”
Damn it! She’d never get the smell out of these shoes. Had she not ended up with her gumboots full of water the day before, she would have been fine. But since she hadn’t fancied two hours of walking in damp rubber boots, she’d worn her running shoes. Her nicely worn in, a little-bit-scuffed-on-the-outside-so-she-looked-like-a-serious-runner running shoes -- the expensive, now-covered-in-dog-shit ones.
God, she hated this job. Well, sort of. The little bastards did have their cute days. But their owners? Some of them wouldn’t know what a happy face was if it up and bit them on the ass.
But this was her life. During the summer she led wilderness tours, and the winter she did something else to see her through till it was spring again and she got to spend her days doing what she loved most.
“Hey Decca!” A runner came up the inside, and the dogs went nuts when they recognized who it was. “Race you home!”
“Ha, bloody ha, Bly.” Her husband slowed and turned around to face her, managing to jog backwards, smile and laugh all at the same time. “You could do your five miles all over again before I could manage to get this lot back to their owners.”
As if to prove her wrong, Sparta, a brutish, waist-high hound of dubious parental lines gave an almighty tug on his leash. It was enough to stretch his collar to the point of no return and it snapped. His owner, still being a smartass as he ran backwards, could only watch in horror as the massive dog leapt up and sent him sprawling.
Decca couldn’t help herself; she started to laugh. Bly was covered from head to toe in leaves, mud and moss, and a steadily increasing amount of dog slobber as she and her doggy charges caught up to Sparta as he showered his owner, quite literally with love.
“Sparta, leave him alone.” The command was weak at best, and easily ignored amongst her laughter.
“Get him off me, Decca!”
“Well, I did warn you his collar was looking worn… It’s going to cost you.”
Bly had his hands up in front of his face fending off multiple doggy tongues that were saying hello. “Anything, damn it, call ‘em off before they lick me to death!” There was humor in his voice even as one of the smaller dogs climbed onto his chest and let out an ear piercing bark.
“You have to take me shoe shopping tonight.”
“Shoe shopping?” Bly had gone still enough that even the dogs backed off. “At the shoe store?”
Decca moved her weight on to one leg, cocking her hip. “Yeah,” her brow quirked up. “The shoe store, where the shoe guy -- whose ass we like to ogle -- works.”
Bly’s brow quirked right back at her, and his smile turned lecherous. “I think I can do that.”
Decca made a strange snorting sound -- not a laugh, but not a sound of disgust either, as she took a couple of steps back, taking the dogs with her. “You’re no fun, Bly. When it comes to the shoe guy, you are so damn easy…”
Her husband, still sprawled on his back just kept on smiling, but this time his eyes smouldered as his gaze wandered it’s way up her legs, over hips and to her breasts. “Yeah, I know.”
For next week:
1. The Shoe Guy - willing participant, a player even? Or a shy first timer?
2. How are they going to get together?
3. Does Lewis (The Shoe Guy) have something to hide?
4. Does Bly have a problem at work first, or does Decca find something on her first tour of the season?
5. Random item you'd like to see thrown in there...
Leave your suggestions in the comments section.