My Darling Boy and His Panty Fetish

Copyrighted by Lorna Tedder. Originally published in Third Degree Burn.

Finally. He’s asleep. Our darling boy. On the floor under my main altar, the cool tile against his bare belly.

Flying By Night novelI was supposed to be working, supposed to be writing this novel,  but there’s always something to interrupt, it seems. This time, it’s Grendel, our little Norwich terrier I named after the monster  in Beowulf, as any  good former English major would do. Except that the little cutie is now  living up to his name.

I’ve heard it said that God makes puppies and newborns adorable so you won’t kill them. Definitely true with this puppy on this day. I keep reminding myself that I paid for him instead of for a family vacation. I’ve put too much money into him to kill him, I tell myself, half-joking, though he’s seriously getting on my nerves while I’m so stressed.

Not that it’s his fault. He’s spent the Summer going back and forth with the girls to their dad’s, to my parents’ house, and evacuating for hurricanes, so his schedule’s been a bit inconsistent. That should improve when the girls are back with me when school starts.

He’s active and playful and loving, and I’ve been told not to let him off his leash because he loves to play chase, with him being the chasee.  Fun for him but not for the rest of us, who have all bashed our heads diving under tables after him. He has a quick mind, and the girls joke that he’s a little ADHD, too. Lots of fun, but definitely a handful.

I did manage to get some writing done courtesy of my secret weapon, the digital tape recorder. He went berserk (in a good way) when he saw his leash, so I took him for a walk (aka, a drag) while I let my  novel’s heroine do a little fancy driving through a ley line-induced thunderstorm. But I hadn’t planned to have him with me at all on this working weekend.

At the last minute, before the girls took him with them to their  dad’s for a few days, they expressed their concern at how their dad’s live-in sometimes takes Grendel to her parents’ house while the girls are sleeping—without their permission or knowledge. The last time resulted in a pair of frantic girls turning their dad’s house upside down in the morning and fearing their puppy was indeed dead or lost. They were a  little concerned that their dad’s girlfriend wasn’t very responsible and that their darling boy might get hurt or lost. So they wanted him to stay with me for the weekend since I’d cancelled all my other plans.

Except he  wouldn’t  let  me  work.  Typical  little  boy. Wanted my attention every minute he was awake. Every time I looked away, he was off to the closet to chew up a shoe or pull the stuffing out of a floor pillow. At one point, he turned over a dirty clothes hamper and trotted out into the living room with yesterday’s underwear hung over his nose.

The worst part, though, was the two-hour aerobic work- out, although he seemed to enjoy it just fine. I’d shut off most of the house so he could quietly sleep at my feet while I wrote at the computer. Except, he didn’t sleep. He wanted to play. I did- n’t. So he grabbed a computer cord  from under the desk and took off with it.

It worked. He had my full attention.

I chased him under and around the dining room table, under and  around the kitchen table, behind the sofa, up and down the hall a few dozen times, back into the office, through the kitchen, between the bars of the exercise machine. He hid one time in the far corner under the claw-footed Ouija table be- fore escaping.

I think I finally cracked when he wriggled into a tight spot  behind  the TV, a spot I couldn’t possibly reach, and I found myself  yelling, “Don’t make me come back there after you!”–as if I could. That’s something I never said to my kids so it shocked me when I heard myself say it.

At my wit’s end and desperate to get some work done and save my computer cord from being gnawed in half, I finally remembered his favorite thing to chew on. I went to the laundry room, dug through the dirty clothes, and pulled out something red and lacy I just knew he’d love.

It worked. He trotted out, dropped the computer cord at my feet, and took off with my panties.

Hmmph! Boys.