Betty was making breakfast when Charlie crept up behind her and placed his hands on her hips. He kissed the side of her neck. “Morning, Mrs. Franklin.”
Betty spun around and planted a kiss on Charlie’s lips. She smiled brightly. “Morning, Mr. Franklin ... hungry? Wait, that’s a silly question.”
Charlie nodded his head and chuckled. Then he opened the pantry door and removed a bag of dog food. He carried it over to Daisy’s bowl as he did every morning. Then he noticed something strange and put the bag down. “That’s odd.”
“What’s odd, baby?”
“Daisy hasn’t touched her food from last night. Where is she anyway?”
“I haven’t seen her all morning,” Betty said as she stirred the eggs in the frying pan. “Maybe she and Zach are sleeping in today. Go wake him and tell him breakfast is almost ready.”
Charlie put the dog food back in the pantry and headed for Zach’s room. He noticed that Zach’s bedroom door was still ajar. “Zach, breakfast is ready.”
Usually, when Daisy heard the word “breakfast” she’d storm through the house like a hurricane, but this time she didn’t.
Charlie started to get a bad feeling. There was a strange silence. It reminded him of the time their house was vandalized, and he found Zach under the couch covered in blood. Charlie didn’t like the feeling he was having. He could feel his anxiety rising with each second that passed.
“Zach, you awake?” Charlie said a little louder to ensure he was heard, but the feeling that something was wrong continued. He pushed the door slowly, and saw Daisy lying on the bed next to Zach. The room was silent, and when he came closer to the bed, Daisy began to whimper with her chin on Zach’s chest.
“Zach?” Charlie’s voice cracked as he called out again. He gently shook Zack’s shoulder. “C’mon, wake up, Zach.”
Betty entered the room wondering what was taking them. Then she saw Charlie sitting beside Zach crying.
“Betty, he’s not waking up!”
“I’ll call for help,” Betty said as she rushed to the telephone in the kitchen.
Charlie sat beside Zach’s still body. Tears poured from his eyes as he held Zach’s hand. “Oh, Zach,” he said shaking his head. He couldn’t believe what was happening. He couldn’t believe that Zach was actually gone. “I love you, Zach.”