Wally quickly changed into his red spandex Superhero costume, preparing to spend the afternoon fighting crime, capturing criminals, and saving damsels in distress.

He smiled; Damsels in distress were his specialty.

"Looking good Scarlet Speedster!" He commended himself. Red was definitely his color.

The buzzing of the doorbell interrupted his thoughts.

I'd better change back into my regular clothes, he thought. "Be right there!" he yelled across the apartment.

The buzzer rang again.

In a flash, he was at the apartment's door comfortably dressed in his favorite green Central City University baseball shirt and pair of faded blue jeans.

"Yes?" he said as he turned the knob opening the door.

The man on the other side hurriedly pushed the door open knocking Flash forcefully backwards onto the floor.

"Hey!" he shouted as he fell awkwardly onto his keester onto the floor. "What do you think you're doing!"

Annoyed, Flash looked up. He was surprised to see Ronald, the clumsy neighbor who lived in the apartment next door.

"Sorry, Wally," Ronald said looking embarrassed. "I did it again, didn't I?" he foolishly asked.

"Umm, yeeeeah," Flash said, climbing back to his feet. "Never mind that," he added. "What can I do for you?" he asked, knowing that the sooner he got rid of Ronald the better.

It wasn't that Ronald was a bad guy or anything... he was just a walking catastrophe. How this guy ever managed to survive from one day to the next, he'd never know.

"Wally... I just came by to return your bike pump," Ronald said handing Flash an awkwardly large brown paper bag.

As Flash took hold of the paper bag, the bottom ripped out and the bike pump slipped through the opening on the bottom. It crashed loudly to the floor and broke into two.

Flash looked silently at the broken pieces on the floor and then back up at Ronald.

"Um, sorry, Wally."

As Flash bent down to retrieve the broken pieces, Ronald bent down to help, knocking against him and sending Flash back onto the floor in the process.

"Sorry, Wally."

Flash nodded his head. "Was there anything else, Ronald?" he asked calmly.

"Ummm. No, I guess not," he answered hesitantly.

"Spit it out, Ronald. What do you need?" Wally asked, knowing full well that Ronald had something on his mind.


"Just tell me, Ronald. I can't help you if you don't tell me what you need."

"It's just that my mother is going in the hospital for surgery today."

"I see," Flash said having no idea where this was leading, but hoping to hurry 'hurricane' Ronald along before he caused too much damage.

"I just need someone to take care of Bruno."

"Bruno? Your dog?"

"Yes. He LOVES you... and... well... I... trust you," Ronald said looking down at his feet.

Ohhhh boy! Flash worriedly thought to himself. There was a REASON he didn't have a pet, and a dog like Bruno certainly would not be first on his list should he feel inclinded to change his mind.

"Ronald, I know Bruno means a lot to you and he's a swell dog and everything, but..."

"Oh thank you, Wally! You're the best!" Ronald said enthusiastically slapping Flash on his back.


"I'll bring him right over!" Ronald said quickly disappearing out the door.

"Yeah. Right. No problem, Ronald." Flash sighed. "Sorry, damsels in distress."

Suddenly the door burst open again. Bruno, Ronald's large Saint Bernard puppy, came lumbering into Flash's apartment, knocking Flash back onto the floor.

"I'm so glad Bruno likes you!" Ronald said happily. "I'll call you in a few days to check on you," he added, slipping out the door before Flash could get a word out.

"Ronald… WAIT!" Flash yelled after him, but it was too late; Ronald was gone.

"Okay, Bruno… let me up," Flash commanded, groaning as he pushed the enormous dog aside. "I don't suppose you have to… No! No! NO!" Flash shouted frantically waving his arms. "No, Bruno, we do THAT outside!" Flash yelled.

The unpleasant odor emanating from the enormous pile of excrement swiftly filled the room.

"UGH! Bruno, what does Ronald feed you anyway?" Flash complained holding his nose.

Flash bolted from the room and snatched a roll of paper towels from the kitchen. As he raced back to the mess on the floor, Bruno suddenly darted across the room, causing Flash to stumble and crash into a table, stubbing his toe in the process.

"OWWWWWWWW! That smarts!" he shouted, reaching down and yanking his shoe off the injured foot, carelessly tossing it aside.

"Bruno! Bad dog!" he yelled rubbing his sore toe and looking around the room to see where Bruno ran to. "Ow, ow, ow!"

"Bruno?" Flash called out. "Are you in my… bedroom?" Oh no! Flash forgot his sore toe and bolted into the bedroom to find Bruno on his bed tearing his pillow apart into several small slobbery pieces.

Flash's jaw dropped. How could one dog cause so much damage in such a small amount of time? he wondered.

"NO!" he yelled ripping what was left of his pillow out from Bruno's mouth.

Thinking quickly, Flash grabbed Bruno by the collar and dragged him across the room into the bathroom.

"Here, just stay in here while I clean up the mess you made of the rest of my place," he said closing the bathroom door behind him. That ought to hold him. He can't cause any damage in a bathroom… Can he?

Flash raced back into the living room to clean up the dog poop. His heart sank as he approached the pile of excrement that awaited him. He couldn't believe his eyes; perched on top of the pile of poop, buried head first was his shoe!

"UGH! Why am I surprised?" Flash said aloud, rolling his eyes in frustration.

Using his super-speed abilities, he washed off his shoe, cleaned up the poop, and picked up what remained of his pillow in the bedroom.

"Whew!" he sighed aloud as he plopped down into his comfortable brown leather recliner.

He tried to close his eyes and relax, but his sore toe began to throb again. He decided he had better soak his foot in a pan of Epsom salts, so he ran to the bathroom.

Bruno pushed past him as he opened the door.

Flash's jaw dropped, once again, as he surveyed the wreckage that he surveyed looking over what he could barely recognize as his own bathroom. There was soggy shredded toilet paper everywhere, the shower curtain had been pulled off its rod and ripped apart, the vanity cabinet door was open, chewed, and torn off its hinges, and there was dog hair everywhere, including on the face of the bathroom mirror.

Flash shook his head in disbelief and began cleaning up the mess.

With his bathroom back in order, Flash gathered the Epsom salts and pan to soak his foot in. Carefully carrying the mixture back into the living room, he was relieved to see Bruno fast asleep on the couch. On the couch?

Flash shook his head. "I don't care," he told himself and settled into the recliner once again. He eased his foot into the warm soaking solution he had prepared and sighed.

Just as his toe began to stop pulsating, the door bell buzzed again.

Bruno jumped off the couch and ran to the door, barking loudly.

"Coming!" he shouted, wondering if anyone could hear him over the dog.

As he turned the knob, the man on the other side hurriedly pushed the door open again knocking Flash forcefully to the floor.

"Hey!" he shouted.

"Bruno, are you being a good boyo!" Flash heard Ronald say as he looked up.

Ronald was back.

"Sorry, Wally," Ronald said looking embarrassed. "I did it again, didn't I?" he foolishly asked.

"Yeahhhhhhh," Flash answered. He decided to remain on the floor and save Ronald the trouble of knocking him down again. "Now what?" he asked expectantly.

"Oh nothing. It's just that I missed my airline flight," Ronald explained.

"Are you catching a later plane then?" Flash asked.

"Ummm no. There isn't another flight out until tomorrow afternoon," Ronald replied.

"So, you're going to leave tomorrow then?"

"No. I'm not going at all," Ronald answered.

"Oh." Flash replied, not knowing what to say.

"She's having surgery on her woman parts and my sister says she doesn't want me there," Ronald said sadly.

"Oh." Flash nodded. "Ok. I'm sure she'll be fine," he added trying to reassure Ronald.

"I'll take Bruno back now," Ronald said grabbing Bruno by the collar. "Thanks for everything," he added pulling Bruno out the apartment door.

"No problem," Flash shouted back.

Flash got up off the floor and returned to the recliner to soak his foot. As he sat down, his eyes caught sight of the couch where Bruno had laid. Clumps of hair and dog slobber were everywhere.

"Gone but not forgotten," he sighed, closing his eyes as he lowered his foot into the soaking solution once again.