Chapter 10: Not This Time
December the nineteenth, a few hours left before the big trip. Everyone in the house, especially Laura had been up early trying to prepare all the stuff needed for the big trip. While Bob, is at the office, preparing to take a leave for the event. The kids are apparently at school, taking up their classes (as usual). The animals lie down for the moment, for they knew that whatever the humans are doing, whenever they need help, they would simply ask for it.
The pups are sound asleep in their spots, leaving the adult pets on their own. Chance feels lazy and just ends up lying by the side of the couch where the family sits when watching television, Delilah and Sassy just went on and talk about random stuff. Shadow on the other hand, has been quiet and made a blank stare on their backyard, now covered in at least four inches of snow.
"Hey, here's one question for you," Delilah clears her throat, "Why do cats hate getting baths?" Delilah asked.
"What do you mean hate baths, I take a bath at least three times a day." Sassy bragged.
"You mean licking yourself? That's not a bath." Delilah argued. "It is on my book." Sassy replied.
"Heh…No wonder you smell like that all the time." Chance intervened, prompting a stare from Sassy, "Watch it dog." Sassy then faced Delilah once more, "Okay, how 'bout this one. Why do dogs sniff each other's butts?"
Now all three of the adult dogs, faced each other, trying to figure out an answer for Sassy's unexpected question.
"Does it really have to be that question Sassy?" Shadow asked.
"Well, if you don't wanna answer it, it's alri-" Sassy paused, "It's alright Sassy, Don't worry, I'll tell you why."
"I'm all ears." Sassy said.
"You see unlike humans or cats, we dogs sniff-." She paused as she heard a light chuckle from Sassy, she then continued, but with the use of different words, "As I was saying, we do that for a variety of reasons, preferably for social interactions with one another. A smell for a dog, means a thousand more or so messages that we can pick up. I guess you can say it's one way of greeting for us dogs." Delilah stopped as Sassy stood up and turned around.
"Uh, what are you doing?" Delilah wondered.
"What are you waiting for Delilah?, start smelling." Sassy said with a laugh. "You're not serious, are you?" Delilah asked.
"Well you did say it was like greeting among you guys right? So, give me a whiff and see what you can find about me." Sassy still chuckling as she mouthed of the words.
"I'm not smelling your butt!" Delilah declared.
"Oh come on Delilah, you know you want to. After all, sniffing is better than talking for dogs. Ain't it right?" Sassy said.
"Not even if perfume comes out of your butt on a regular basis." Delilah replied, prompting a laugh from Shadow and Chance.
"Nice comeback Delilah, you don't wanna know what a cat smells like anyways." Chance said.
"What the hell is that supposed to mean, Chance?" Sassy said with a glare.
"I think you already know what it means Sassy, you...and your butt, smells exactly the same." The statement from Chance ended with uncontrollable laughter.
"Why, I'm gonna-" Sassy was stopped by Shadow, "That's enough guys, one of the little one's is starting to get up."
"Well, what do you know. Dog beats cat once again." Chance uttered.
"Don't worry, next time you won't be so lucky." Sassy said. Chance then glanced at her momentarily and replied, "In your dreams."
As the pups started moving slowly, they began to stretch out their legs. Among the litter, Diva was the first to woke up. As her eyes opened up, the first one she saw was her father.
"Good Morning Papa." She greeted.
"A good one indeed, sweetie." Chance greeted back. Then she was shortly followed by Cody, Buffy and Jessie, respectively.
"How long was I out?," was the first thing Buffy said, followed by greeting his parents.
"Clearly not long enough." Cody replied. "Man, I'm the last one to wake up today." Jessie said.
"What's the big deal about it?" Buffy asked.
"It's a personal thing, you wouldn't understand." Jessie said. "Fine keep it to yourself then, as long as it has nothing to do with your usual pranks." Buffy replied.
"Whatever, Buff." Was the only reply he got from Jessie.
"Hey kids, how's the nap?" Delilah said as she approached the pups.
"It was good mama, I feel refreshed." Diva cheerfully said.
"Good for you honey, what about you guys?" She turned towards the other pups.
"It's alright mama, although I feel like I've been sleeping forever." Cody replied.
"Well, from that statement, I'd say it was good." Delilah laughed out.
As their conversation got carried on, Laura noticed the pups are awake, "You guys hungry?" In which they replied with a bark.
"Come on then, the kids will be home soon. Good thing I'm almost done." She said.
An hour later, Bob arrived along with the children. They brought some snacks with them as well, hinting that they passed by the grocery store before heading on home.
"Hey honey." He greeted.
"Hey, how'd it go with the boss?" Laura asked.
"It went fine than I expected, he didn't ask too many question or showed any hint of disagreement with the leave." Bob explained. "Looks like your boss knows how a family man's life goes on, I'm starting to like him already." Laura replied.
They then share a kiss, Jamie intervened a few moments and asked Laura, "Mom, where are the crates and food for the animals?"
"They're by the kitchen Jamie." She answered. Jamie thanked her, and went on. Peter and Hope began to pamper the pups along with their respective pets.
"What have you been doing while we're gone, huh?" Peter talking to the pups.
"Don't be silly Pete, you know they can't understand our words." Hope intervened.
"It doesn't mean they don't know still, they have feelings." Peter said.
"Hey kids, excited?" Laura asked. The kids replied with a nod. She continued, "Well then, you better eat dinner and sleep early, it's gonna be a long trip tomorrow." She finished.
"Sure thing mom." Peter said.
"To the kitchen!" Jamie declared.
The humans headed straight to the dining room shortly after being served their dinner.
"What about the animals?" Bob asked. Laura gave him an assuring look, "Don't worry about them dear, I just fed them."
"They didn't jump on you?" Bob asked. In which she replied with a smile, "They didn't even try."
"Nice, you must be really good with them compared to me." Bob said.
"Let's just say I have a way with them, I'll teach some of them to you sometime." She explained.
"You could've taught them to me sooner you know." Bob said, prompting Laura to laugh, "Now, that wouldn't be fun, would it? "
After the entire task for the night is done, everyone, including the animals both hit the sack, since they will be leaving by five o'clock in the morning. It was peaceful and quiet, but someone is certainly not feeling the same. Among the pups, Diva's started moving uneasily, twitching, as if she is having a bad dream, a horrible nightmare of some sort. She was muttering, "No….Don't…Please."
Diva's was running over a dark area, a plain of some sort, she could feel the grass on her feet. On her side was her Uncle Shadow, Aunt Sassy, her parents and siblings.
"Keep running kids, don't stop, we don't know if they could hold him for long." Delilah muttered.
"He's getting closer!" Cody screamed.
"Don't look back kids, just follow each other." Shadow ordered. They passed towards a bushy area, for Diva, it was like a thick brush of leaves, she couldn't see where she was going or any of her sibling or the adult animals.
"Guys! Where are you!?" She frantically asked, she was feeling tears coming out of her eyes, out of fear.
"Mama! Papa!, Where are you!?" She asked once more. As she saw a light, she followed it through, she was hoping that is where the others might be. If only that were the case.
As she stepped into it, she looked around. There was no sign of anyone. She was in a place surrounded by thick leaves, she couldn't find a way out, even if she tries. She was palpitating, she felt like she had been running forever. She suddenly heard a sound, pieces of sticks breaking. She looked to her left side, noticing the moving leaves.
She cautiously approached, "Papa, Mama, is that you?" To her horror, a giant creature approached her, a blurred form of a beast, she couldn't think what kind of thing it was, all she felt was fear running from her head down towards her spine, she couldn't move, she was frozen solid. As the creature moved to attack her, suddenly, out of nowhere, Chance came out, and went on to attack the bear as a distraction. Now Chance and Diva face the creature, together.
"Papa!" Diva screamed out.
"Run Diva!, go right, Mama's in there." Chance ordered.
"What about you Papa?" She asked with concern. "I'll be alright, just go!" Chance screamed.
"Papa, I can't leave you here."
"I love you sweetie, but you have to go, now!" He said once more.
Diva feeling defeated, she run towards the direction her father pointed out. After a few minutes of running, she turned back after hearing a loud yelp.
"Oh no." She muttered, she dashed back towards the direction she came back in. To her dismay, she found her father, with both his hind legs broken, Chance was motionless in the ground.
"Papa?" She said tearfully. She started patting her father, but still no movement from him.
"Papa, wake up!" She continue padding him. "Wake up!" She screamed again. Her eyes were full of tears, she heard loud growls and breaths from behind her, it was the BEAST. It raised its claw, preparing to deliver the killing blow. She was frozen once more, as the beast was about to bring her life to an end, all she could do was scream.
She woke up from her nightmare, she was breathing and sweating heavily, her heart beating so fast, "Honey?" came out from behind her. She gasped and turned around, realizing her mother.
"Are you okay? Looks like you had a bad dream." Delilah said.
"Yes, something like that. But don't worry mama, it's alright, I think I'll just close my eyes again, sorry for disturbing you." Diva replied.
"Don't worry about it? What was it about?" Delilah asked.
"What?" Diva asked back. "Your dream." Delilah implied.
"It's…nothing mama, good night." She just laid down and closed her eyes. "Okay, well…Good Night sweetie." Delilah did the same thing.
"You have to tell her about this dream!" her inner voice told her, but in her mind she simply thought, "I don't wanna cause uneasy thoughts for everyone, it's best if I keep it to myself."
The last words she heard from her inner self was, "It's your call." She then went back to sleep.
December, the twentieth day, the big day has finally arrived. What better way to start it with a nice ring from the alarm clock.
On their room, Laura and Bob were still lying in bed, until Laura heard it.
"Bob!" She shrieked.
"What in the name of-." He was shocked. The next thing he heard was, "Get in the shower!, we're gonna be late, I'll get the kids."
Realizing the situation in their hands, Bob quickly did what Laura said quickly. Laura marched straight into the kids bedroom. She quickly opened the door saying, "Come on guys!, get up, we're gonna be late for the trip." The trio quickly got up, Jaime rushed to the bathroom.
"Hey! I'll be first." Hope argued with Jamie. Jamie simply smiled, "You snooze you lose," then he locked the door. Hope irritated with the fact that her brother outwitted her…..again.
Peter stood up, "Hope, get the animals ready." Hope nodded back and headed downstairs, then Peter faced towards the bathroom door, "Hurry up Jamie!, we don't have all day."
The animals were sleeping soundly in the living room floor, lying down quietly. As Hope's footsteps grew louder and louder. The animals slowly started waking up.
"Come on Sassy, get up guys, we're leaving for Wyoming." Hope said.
"What the heck!? My beauty rest was interrupted for…. this!?" Sassy supplied.
"What's going on?" Chance asked lazily, then he face Shadow, "Do you know about this old timer?"
Shadow glanced at him, "I think this is what Peter and the others have been talking about the last time."
"They sure have a lot of things prepared for whatever is happening." Delilah said as she notices the baggage they had. The pups have already been awoken the same time as the adults were, watching the humans running up and down the stairs confuses them.
"What's going on mama?" Jessie asked. Delilah looked at her daughter, "I think the family is going on a trip."
"They're not taking us with them?" Cody asked her next, but Chance was the one to answer for him, "Of course they are son, they wouldn't want us to be alone in this old house."
"Yeah Cody, besides, you wouldn't want to miss out on the adventure they are about to embark, would you?" Buffy stated.
"I….I guess so, as long as it doesn't lead to something dangerous." Cody pointed out, Buffy gave out a laugh, "Dangerous? You're starting to act like Uncle Shadow now."
"I'm sorry, who's acting like me?" Shadow intervened. This time, it was Chance who laughed, "What the hell have you been doing to my kids Shadow? They're losing their sense of adventure."
"I didn't do anything, Cody here is just thinking of their safety, that's a good thing." Shadow remarked. Chance, who is apparently speechless for a moment, came up with a response, "Come on, it's just a trip, what could possibly go wrong?"
"I think I've heard that statement being tossed around a couple of times in the past, if you know what I mean." Sassy said.
Everyone gave out a laugh, including the pups, who have heard all about the past adventures before they were even born.
A few minutes later, Bob and Laura went down the stairs, keeping an eye out for anything that should be looked upon (electric plugs, the gas tank, the lights, the iron, you know what I mean).
"Well, I guess that sums it all up." Bob said, "I think everything is fine."
"Aren't we forgetting something?" Laura said. "Not that I think of." Bob replied. Laura leaned closer to him and whispered something to his ear, none of the others were able to hear what she said. Bob let out a huge sigh, "Should we?" In which Laura defeated, he faced his kids, "Alright, come on guys, lets feed the animals first." He motioned for his children to follow him.
The kids called out to their pets, the animals quickly followed them into their usual eating spots. As they reached the place, the meal was already set, Bob was just standing there, smiling, "Dig in guys." He said, then the animals quickly gobbled up their meals.
A minute later, the bowls were clean as a whistle, only there was this strange feeling they were having.
"My food kinda taste different today." Chance mentioned. "Yeah, so is mine, I don't remember it tasting like this." Shadow stated.
"Funny, usually I'd disagree with Chance, but it seems…..he's…..right." Sassy started to yawn.
"Whoa Sas, you just got up, you can't be that tired, I know I'm-." Delilah gave out a yawn as well. She wondered, "This is strange, suddenly I feel so…sleepy." She lied down, and her eyes closed shut, sleeping on the floor.
"Delilah!, what's wrong?" Chance approached her wife. "Shadow,….do….some…thing.." Chance just dropped by Delilah, sleeping.
"Chance!, hold on, I'll…get…he-." Shadow then fell asleep as well. Sassy was drowsy as well, "Something….is…in the…food." She gave out another yawn, soon she joined the others in their state.
The pups were the only ones left awake, for now. Jessie started observing the rest. "There's something in the food, guys we need…to….stop…eat-." She fell asleep as well. The rest of her siblings were feeling drowsy already, "Dude, what's….wrong with…her? Cody asked, but didn't get any response, he glanced at Diva and Buffy, they were all fast asleep, then again, so was he.
"I think I'm gonna lie down for a while." He thought, then he slowly fell asleep like the others.
Bob and the kids stood there watching the animals fall asleep. Bob broke up the silence, "Well, I didn't forget to give them the tranquilizers this time, that takes care of any running away problems."
"Do we really have to use those tranquilizers dad?" Jamie asked. "Well Jamie, if you ask me, I don't think we needed those, but, I don't wanna repeat the past events from happening."
"I hope they'll be alright." Hope said. Peter placed his arm by Hope's shoulder, "Don't worry, they'll be fine. It's not like they're going anywhere." They all laughed.
"Well, not this time, perhaps." Jamie said.
"Come on guys, what are you waiting for?" Laura asked.
"Okay guys, let's place the animals in the crates." Bob stated, in which the children followed. They went on to exit the house and into the car. Laura made sure everything was in place and locked the door.
"Hey guys, could you help me up?" Bob asked. "No problem dad, come on guys." Peter said.
As they carried the crate into the back of the car, "Man, they're getting heavier, next time we use those tranquilizers, we should make sure they're in the car already." Jamie stated.
"You done guys?" Laura asked them.
"Yeah mom." Jamie said excitedly.
"GROUP PICTURE!" Hope yelled, "Oh right, everybody in their places." Laura ordered. She grabbed her phone and a monopod from her bag. "Time for a family picture, selfie style." She slowly placed her phone to the monopod, and raised it high, "On 5 guys." She stated.
Everyone went to their places and gave out their best smile, until they heard the click from the phone.
Laura looked at the picture and smiled, "Now that's a keeper."
"Let's go, she's all prepped and ready." Bob referring to them and his car. They all got inside the car and headed for the road, all the way to the airport. They took Stan with them, so he could take care of the car while the family is away.
They reached the airport in less than half an hour, they unloaded their baggage and the animals, "Thanks for the help Stan, take care of the car for me, will ya?"
"I'll treat the car like it was my own wife if you want." Stan replied. Peter handed him the keys and off they go. They made it out early, the Seavers have met with the adviser of their children's class, they were brought to the gates and their luggage and the animals were brought in the plane without trouble.
The plane left at exactly 7:25 in the morning, the Seavers, just like the rest of the families on board, just sat and relax, the kids had their first flight where they don't have to worry about anything else. The flight took at least four hours, before they finally reached Jackson Hole Airport. They were waiting for their luggage to be given to them, along with their pets. Their stuff and pets arrived ten minutes after entering the Baggage claiming area.
"Dad, they're still asleep." Jamie said, "I think you might've given them a little too much of those sleepers."
"There must be a mistake, I gave them very little. Maybe it'll were off in a couple of minutes." Bob replied.
Peter joined the conversation, "Yeah Jamie, maybe they're just having a nice dream. That's why they don't wanna wake up yet."
"I guess you're right." Jamie said. Laura checked the baggage, whether they were missing some things or not.
"It's all here." She confirmed. "Let's go then." Bob said. They walked towards the exits of the airport and followed the advisers of the classes towards a bus which would lead them to the hotel they will be staying.
Less than an hour later, they arrived at "The Cody", a hotel just outside the park. "Welcome to the Cody ladies and gentlemen, kids too." The conductor said.
All the kids rushed outside the bus, never minding that it was cold outside. All the parents and the teachers could do was try and slow them down to avoid any accidents or injuries. But unlike the other kids, the Seaver kids stayed put, waiting for someone to wake up. Luckily, it was starting.
"Hey Dad, I think they're starting to wake up." Jamie observed. The rest took a look at it and they too saw the animals slightly moving and opening their eyes.
"Uhhhh…where…..are..we?" Buffy slowly moved his head. Slowly the other pups started stretching and moving in their crates.
"That….was one horrible tasting food, it made me drowsy." Diva stated.
"Cody, Buff, Diva, you guys awake?" Jessie was confirming, "What was that stuff?"
"I don't know, but whatever it was, it wasn't meant to harm us, I think." Buffy said.
Then the adults started to move, who were placed in two crates. The first one being Delilah and Chance, the other Shadow and Sassy.
"Where are we? Shadow?" Chance asked the other, "I have no idea, I haven't been to this side of the town before."
"Chance, stop moving, I'm sleepy." Delilah said with her eyes closed. "Delilah, wake up, there's something creepy about this place." Chance said. This prompted Delilah to stretch her legs within the crates boundaries, "If this is one of you pranks again, I swear you won't get anything from me for a week." Delilah warned.
Chance started to sniff the air inside, "What's that smell? It smells like a cat just let one out."
"I heard that butt sniffer." Sassy replied, finally awake.
"I'm glad they're awake, I thought we have given them too much of those sleepers." Jamie said.
"Well, now that they're awake, we can get them out of the crates and walk them to our rooms." Peter stated.
"Hey Dad, can we let the animals out now?" Hope asked.
"Sure thing, sweetie, just don't let them out of your sight in this place." Bob instructed, Hope nodded in response.
The kids slowly put a leash on their dogs, except Hope who just carries Sassy, Peter and Jamie helped each other, since they have more dogs to keep in line. Their parents went to the counter.
As they reached their room, the kid's eyes widened with awe at how beautiful their suite was. They knew this was a once in a lifetime experience for all of them.
"Wow, this is probably the best hotel I've seen or ever been." Bob said.
"I think that goes for all of us." Laura said, "Come on guys, we better change and rest for a while, I'm sure the trip was exhausting."
"We don't mind being up mom, we're gonna watch the animals too." Jamie said.
"How about this, you take a nap for one hour and I'll watch the animals?" Laura offered.
"You sure mom? I mean, they're a handful." Peter tested.
"I'll be fine honey, I handled them every day. Now get some rest."
"Now that you said it mom, I think I'm feeling a little tired at the moment." Hope said, and picked one of the beds and lied down, "Now, that's what comfortable sounds like."
Peter and Jamie had their eyes on the double deck, "Dibs on the top bunk." Peter said, before Jamie could finish his. "Hey no fair, I wanted the top bunk." Jamie said.
"You snooze, you lose little brother." Peter mocked.
"Fine, you won't be so lucky next time." Jamie stated as he took the lower bed.
The family settled in their suite, Bob began to fix all their stuff while Laura watches the animals. The kids took their naps, just to keep themselves rejuvenated for what the school has planned.
(At the Hotel counter)
The man on the front desk was tuning up his radio, "This damn thing never works properly." As he was turning the knob sideways, faint voices were heard, "Sto-…, Stay….Dan…" The words were unclear, prompting the man to get more irritated with the radio, "If you still don't work tomorrow, say hello to eBay."
(Meanwhile at the San Francisco Weather Station)
The communications engineer is having a hard time getting a clear signal, "Sir, this storm is causing technical difficulties with both radios and the Internet, we can't get any messages through to Wyoming. The same thing goes to everything in the East, all communications are down. They won't know what's coming." He stated.
"We are trying our best, so far, no response from Wyoming, sir, or any other station within that area. Eveything in the eastern part of San Francisco has no clear response. Relays aren't working due to the the storm preventing signals from this end, sir." His co-worker said.
"Keep trying, don't stop! We have to find a way. Until then…God help us all." The manager said, as he now looks at a blizzard plagued San Francisco.
So sorry for the delay guys, I've been quite busy for the past days and month. A little note on this chapter, originally I planned to release one chapter with most of the details, but I realized it will be too long for me to manage, so I split up the original chapter into two parts, this chapter being part one. The next will be out in….who knows when, just stick around and wait :). REVIEW!