by Cathy www.cathy-cade.com
We bought a pre-loved camper-van. We’d travelled up by train. The owner’s dog had crept inside and wouldn’t come out again.
The lady planned to emigrate. She’d shown us both around, Watched carefully by Algernon, an indeterminate hound.
Embarrassed, she said, ‘Take him too. ‘He won’t cost much to feed. ‘He can’t come when I emigrate. ‘So… shall I get his lead?’
When Jim and I, and Algernon (with dog bed, lead and trough) Were halfway down the A1(M), the camper-van took off!
Jim fought it through the back roads, till it stopped outside a pub. We all leapt out. One bystander gave Algie’s ears a rub.
He said, ‘That’s Fred’s dog – and his bus! ‘Fred died in that there ’van.
‘Were camped on t’moors. Two days it were before they found the man.’
Tears in his eyes, he told of Fred and faithful Algernon. ‘He barked, and barked, till someone came. Fred’s daughter took him on.’
Now, spooked and fearful, off we went but Jim mistook the track.
A cloud of starlings formed an arrow pointing our way back.
The engine gently coughed as we approached a petrol bay. Jim hadn’t noticed fuel was low. The next was miles away.
The light was fading when, at home, I raised my evening drink. ‘Thanks, Fred, for looking after us.’
I’ll swear, one headlight winked.
Fred's Legacy is one of my contributions to be found in a new anthology, Where the Wild Winds Blow published by our writing group, the Whittlesey Wordsmiths and available from Amazon as print and e-book >>>>>>>>>>