Chapter 2. Freddie

       Ginger walked for a long time, or at least it seemed so. “The mall where I saw
Cathy must be nearby.” – he thought.
       Weirdly though, around him were only old abandoned houses. “There were smells
of flowers, sweets and a tasty smell of roasted meat there. But this place does not have
these smells. I have to hurry, they must be looking for me now.” – decided Ginger and
       He ran for a few hours and did not stop once but no familiar smells appeared. For
the first time in his life, his ears pricked up. He was not afraid, it was some other,
previously unknown to him feeling – he was alarmed. “Have I been running the wrong
way? No, I could not have.” – the spaniel tried to cheer himself up.
       The spaniel stopped and once again looked about. He stood in the middle of an
endless field with bare trees and burnt grass. “I’ve lost my way. Quite clearly, I have
been running the wrong way, now I am alone, and there is no one around. I will think
what to do next after I have a little rest.” – he decided.
       The spaniel stretched under a big tree sprawling his paws and put his head on the
ground. The tree was also almost bare so it could not cover well from the sun. He had
been lying there for a long time wishing he had something to drink.
       The day came to an end, the sun almost disappeared and it was twilight. Ginger
sat and scratched his ear. “I am dying for some food. Or at least some water.” – he
dreamed. The spaniel sniffed the air with his wet black nose but the evening breeze was
empty of smells of food or human beings. “I must not stop. I must go on and I will find my
home.” said he firmly.
       Ginger strolled slowly along the unfamiliar places. It was already very dark. “My
mat is not here, of course, and I don’t want to sleep in the open. I’ll go on.” he decided.
Suddenly he saw a house. It bore little resemblance to the house where Ginger grew
up, but at least it had a roof and looked like a little shed. Ginger pushed a heavy
wooden door open with his muzzle and entered.
       Inside was very dark and smelled of grass. Ginger was so tired that he had tucked
all his paws under his belly and fell asleep almost immediately. However, he did not
sleep long because soon the door creaked and some small black thing slipped inside.
The spaniel was on alert at once. “Wow! It smells of a dog!”
       - Hey, who is there? Get out here! – called Ginger.
       Nobody answered. Ginger heard someone whining and shivering.
       - Who are you? Why are you afraid of me? Want to make friends? I am Ginger and
I am kind of lost. Maybe you know how I can get home? – asked the spaniel.
       But seemingly, the small black lump did not hear Ginger and went on shaking.
       - Are you cold? – asked the spaniel.
       - No. – squeaked the lump.
       - So why are you trembling all the time? Are you scared of me?
       - I am scared of everything, everybody, and especially strangers.
       - All the same, let’s make friends. What’s your name? – asked the spaniel.
       - The master called me Freddie. – answered the black dog quietly.
       - But where is your master now? And how come you ended up in here?
       - The master went into a hospital and our neighbour hosted me for a while. But his
son wasn’t too fond of me. Once we had been out for a walk and he took me far from
home. And he grinned and told me “Now you are on your own, boy,” and before I could
understand what was going on, he jumped into a trolley, the trolley’s doors shut and
there I was all alone in an unfamiliar place. – with fear and resentment said little Freddie.
       - What happened next? – asked Ginger sullenly.
       - So, I was all alone for the first time ever. But I guessed that if the neighbour’s son
took the trolley, I had to follow his example. So that I’d be able to get home and wait for
the master at the door. – the trembling dog continued his story.
       - And you jumped into a trolley, didn’t you? – asked the spaniel even more sullenly.
       - Yes, when the next one arrived, I jumped in and crouched in the corner shivering
but so sure I was going home. – said Freddie with sorrow.
       - But you were going the wrong direction, right? Left the trolley and lost your way
completely. – added Ginger.
       - Yeah, kind of. The trolley had been driving for hours, all the people already left.
When the driver went to check on the carriage, he found me and I was so scared. He
bent over and asked me “Hey, whose are you? Are you lost?”. But I had already lost my
trust in humans and despite my fear, I leaped out and ran. Around me everything was
unfamiliar– no houses, no people, I must have left the city behind. And the rest you
know. I guess I will never see my home again. – Freddie finished his sad story.
       - Don’t give up, you will. By the way, how long you’ve been sitting here? –
wondered the spaniel.
       - A whole week.
       - A week? What did you eat? – Ginger was amazed.
       - Some grass and several pine cones. But I had some luck with water: it had been
raining almost every day and I drank my full from puddles. – declared little Freddie.
       - It all doesn’t look too good, but above all don’t despair, right? We’ll try to find
something to eat first thing in the morning. Sleep now and don’t be scared. – Ginger
reassured his new friend.
       - Right, it’s not so scary together. – he answered somewhat calmed.
       Ginger also told Freddie everything that happened to him. In the end he asked the
lean black dog with a small elongated muzzle and thin legs of what breed he was.
       - I am a Pinscher. – he proudly responded before falling asleep.

       In the morning, Freddie told Ginger that the small house they slept in was called a
       - A woman comes here sometimes but I always hide so that she won’t see me.
       - But why? – wondered the spaniel. – They see you, they will feed you. Really,
humans like us.
       - I also thought so for the five years I have been living with my master, but now I
am in the street like a useless thing. Not all humans like us, you’ll see it soon. – warned
the pinscher.
       Ginger wanted to eat more than to listen to Freddie’s complaints. That’s why he
was out of the shed with the first light.
       - Show the way, Freddie. You’ve been here longer than I. Where can one get
some food here?
       - Don’t know and don’t want to know. I felt the human smell somewhere yesterday
but I am scared to go there even in the broad daylight not to mention the night. There
are foxes, raccoons and hares here and all of them are bigger than me. I am a domestic
dog, you know, never hunted myself, the master brought everything on a plate, -
Freddie began his whining again.
       - Forget the plate. We have to find humans anyway, only they can help us. –
replied Ginger.
       And so they toiled along a dusty road to nowhere, in hope to find affection and
care. Two dogs that had lost their homes and met by chance. One of them was strong,
courageous and cheerful, the other – small, weak and sad...
       By noon, the sun was quite hot; the dogs were thirsty and sat down to rest.
Freddie, absolutely exhausted, said:
       - I cannot go on. I won’t budge if I don’t have anything to chew.
       - Sit tight, I’ll be back in no time.
       - Ginger, don’t go, don’t leave me here. I don’t want to be alone anymore. –
Whined Freddie.
       - I’ll only look around, I might find some humans nearby, - answered Ginger on the

       Ginger ran very quickly in the direction from which a faint humans smell seemed to
come. He had not been running for too long when suddenly he saw a big house with a
chimney and a green garden behind the high fence.
       `“Boy, I found the humans! I wonder how to make them understand I am hungry
and lost? And to get a few bones for Freddie too.” thought Ginger.
       The spaniel stood on hind legs, began scratching the wooden door and barking
loudly. He did not have to wait long – the door was soon opened by a shortish man with
a thick beard and kind eyes.
       - And who may be here to visit us at the lunchtime? Hello there, good dog. Where
are you from? Well, if you’ve made it this far, come in. – said he with a soft voice.
       - I, er... well,... just for a minute really. To drink a bit and maybe chomp on a few
bones. Cannot stay, left a friend over there, must run. – barked Ginger, wagging his tail.
       - Want to drink, do you. Wait a minute, I’ll bring some. – said the kind man and left.
       He returned with a large bowl full of water. Ginger drank it thirstily. While he was
drinking a woman wearing an apron came out of the kitchen.
       - Such a good dog. Lost, surely. Doesn’t look stray to me, too well groomed and
beautiful. What shall we do with him, Tom? – she asked the man.
       - We’ll feed him first and think later, - he responded.
       - Hey, I’d like more of everything, I have not eaten anything since yesterday
morning. And don’t forget Freddie, add another bone, will you. – barked Ginger.
       - Here you are, red and handsome, - said the mistress placing another bowl in
front of Ginger. The bowl contained freshly brewed soup and a hearty piece of meat.
       - I’m almost sure he is lost. Let him stay with us while I’ll try to call the city council
and the local newspaper. They will place a found red spaniel ad. His master must be
looking for him already. – reasoned the man.
       - You are right, Tom, let him stay. We shall try to find his real masters. – supported
the woman.
       “Thank you, kind people.” - thought Ginger finishing the soup while also dipping
his ears in it. “They always tied my ears up when feeding me soup, but of course, you
could not know.”
       Having eaten everything Ginger desperately barked again.
       - Look at him asking for more. Probably did not have enough, - wondered the
       - It’s not for me, it’s for Freddie, he is my friend waiting for me all alone nearby. –
barked the spaniel in response.
       The mistress had brought another piece of meat on a bone and was quite
surprised when the spaniel did not eat it. He took the meat to a corner instead and lay
down near it.
       - Look at this provident fellow. Making supplies in case there will be no more, -
laughed the mistress.
       - I have already told you, it’s not for me. Ah, well, I am too tired to explain. Take a
nap and return to Freddie, - barked Ginger while his eyes were closing seemingly by

       It seemed he slept but for a little while. However, when he opened his eyes the sun
was almost hidden behind the horizon.
       - Freddie! He is waiting for me! I have to leave, I must go now! Thank you for
everything but please, open the door! – barked the spaniel loudly.
       Ginger was rushing from doors to windows, pushing the front door with his paws
and barking. He ran to the man, jumped in his laps and licked his cheek.
       - What is it with you? You better stay here until we find your master. Why is it so
urgent? – asked the man.
       Ginger jumped to the floor and dragged the man to the door. There he rubbed his
muzzle on man’s knees wagging his tail.
       - Well, my friend, I tried my best. Still, if you have to go, I won’t keep you. Run on,
boy, maybe you’ll find your way home. Good luck. – with these words, the man opened
the door.
       Ginger was about to run away when he remembered the bone. He ran into the
room, snatched the meat he saved for Freddie and was away.
       For the last time he looked back and wagged. The man was waving at him and
smiling. “Thank you, thank you for everything. I would stay gladly and probably would
also find my home faster but I cannot leave my friend alone.” the spaniel’s eyes told.
       It was becoming dark. With a piece of meat in his teeth Ginger rushed to poor little
hungry Freddie for whom he was now the only hope.

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