Hey You, Dog


judah_icon.gif tamara_icon.gif

Scene Title Hey You, Dog
Synopsis Alternate title: What Not to Name Tamara's Dog
Date May 26, 2010

Le Rivage: Judah's Apartment

Everything breakable within reach of the puppy was relocated before she even got here. Judah's books are a different story, but unlike certain siblings the pale dog hasn't shown any outright destructive bent… though at the moment, she is contentedly chewing on something. Also intermittently dropping it and pouncing on it, the occasional misses sending it rolling away far enough to discern that it is a vaguely green-colored ball and therefore an appropriate toy. Tamara sits nearby, Jupiter's graying chin pillowed on one outstretched leg, girl and older canine providing tolerant oversight to the puppy's antics.

The lights are turned on low, the sky outside darkening from the vestiges of recent sunset. Dinner was a little while ago, and the youngest member of the household is going to curl up and crash sooner than she might expect.

Judah likes dogs. His first word was the name of his childhood pet. It's probably no surprise to anyone who claims to know him that he more than tolerates the puppy's presence in his apartment; they may even have been some letters written to the building's manager requesting permission to keep more than one, but photocopies of these are tucked away in the same drawer that contains Colette's adoption paperwork and, among other things, Tamara's case file.

"Have you thought of a name yet?" he asks from his seat on the couch, a copy of Animals in Translation: Using the Mysteries of Autism to Decode Animal Behaviour open in one hand and a piping hot cup of black coffee in the other. Tamara's charge might be starting to wind down for the evening, but he'll be up for several more hours yet.

One stockinged foot — the one that goes with the leg Jupiter hasn't pinned down — traps the ball as it rolls just that bit too close. The older dog lifts his head as if expecting trouble, or something, to ensue; the younger, however, plants her rear on the carpet and looks at the ball, head tilting rather far over.

"Did I need to?" Tamara asks musingly, rolling the ball back and forth underfoot. She who only rarely uses names, innately knows the ones she needs to without introduction — no, she probably doesn't need to think of one. On the other hand, she can fill in the impression that the dog and everyone else would like some sort of convenient handle. Coincidentally, the seeress' sigh is an echo of the puppy's, as the latter lifts dark eyes hopefully. Tamara smiles at her, nudging the ball back out into play.

"Were there any you liked?" She could just pick the sound out of the shadows, of course, the word that someday the puppy will answer to… or at least the one used more often. She doesn't need his input. But the question is a gift, in its way; in the way she approximates normal conversation.

"Salome," Judah offers, lowering his own eyes back to the text as his thumb catches the edge of his current page, traps it between the pad of his index finger and then turns it, flattening the paper under the heel of his opposite hand. It's a medium-sized book, but even medium-sized books are dwarfed by the size and span of his palms, making it appear comically small in his loose grasp. "Zillah."

He keeps an eye on both girl and pup in his peripheral vision, attention divided between the words in the seat of his palms and the rolling ball. "You could name her after a place," he suggests, then. "Is there anywhere you've really wanted to go?"

Watching the pup gnaw on the rubbery green blob, Tamara cants her head, gaze becoming distant. She considers the question, or maybe gets lost in it for a while, seeming not even to notice when Jupiter mutters a quiet sound and goes back to leaning against her. She probably doesn't.

"Only where I've been," Tamara answers after that stretch of meditative silence, the words not really that much louder in an absolute sense. Subjectively, it's rather quiet in here. Slender fingers find Jupiter's ears, burying themselves in the fur between. "That could get very confusing," the seeress professes. "Right behind but never there." She looks over at the pup, and wrinkles her nose. "Not people, not places. Things are better. Things— " Tamara waves a hand vaguely, words being elusive. "— bend."

"Well, if you don't come up with a name," Judah says, "I'll have to just start calling her 'hey you, dog'." It's not a threat. By now, Tamara is probably accustomed to his gentle teasing, slightly abrasive around the edges though it may be.

He shifts on the couch, lifting bare feet off the carpeted floor to rest crossed at their hairy ankles on the short coffee table in front of him. His back curves against the pillows, the tension in his muscles visible beneath the long-sleeved shirt he wears paired with a pair of athletic pants. He sets the cup down on its glass surface a moment later. "Dandelion?" he tries. "Zephyr?"

Tamara giggles at the facetious threat, grinning over at Judah. The subject of said threat, meanwhile, plops her ball down in front of his toes and regales the detective with a wide pink yawn, almost as if she were summoned by the words 'hey, you'. "It worked," the girl points out. Now, or maybe later; which isn't important. She watches as the puppy turns herself in a circle and then curls up, pressed against the side of Judah's foot, eyes closed just as soon as her body settles on the floor. "Maybe her name is Misty." It isn't quite a question; it's hard to take as one, no matter what she intended. If she did.

"I like Misty." Folding the book around his fingers, Judah bends at the middle and touches the nape of the puppy's neck, testing the texture of her wool fur for the first time. "She looks like a Misty." Feels like a lamb. There's a moment where he pauses to check the insides of her ears, maybe for parasites, and then the very tip of her mottled pink nose before his hand falls away and he picks up the ball, setting it aside on the cushion next to him.

"We'll take her to the vet as soon as they're open again," he says. "Get her the vaccinations she needs. Flea medication. Deworming. License."

"Yes," Tamara agrees, smiling across the room at Judah. Not entirely unlike the puppy, she curls her fingers in the ruff of fur on Jupiter's neck, leaning back against the wall and closing her eyes. The girl won't sleep there, but she can rest, while the puppy sleeps and Judah reads and Jupiter contentedly basks in their company.

All in all, a pleasant little evening at the Demsky residence.

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