It is a brilliant day and you are walking with your human. You love walking.
Walking is the <span style="font-size: 150%">best.</span>
Your human throws a treat for you to 'find'. You love finding treats. Treats are the best.
Just then a <span style="font-size: 200%">(transition: "shudder")[squirrel]</span> darts across your path.
[[Chase the squirrel!|SquirrelChase01]] Squirrels must be chased!
Ignore the squirrel like the (text-style: "bold") [dignified] dog you are, and [[find the treat.|IgnoreSquirrel]]The squirrel runs up the nearest tree. You stare at it up there, mocking you with its ability to 'climb'. Stoopid squirrel.
And then you hear it. The worst sound of all sounds. Your human is cross with you.
You look at the floor and feel (text-style: "blur") [very sad.] You have no idea where your treat is now.
[[Squirrels are the worst.|DogFace feels sad]]You have decided not to chase the squirrel.
As you sniff about for your treat you feel proud of yourself.
You are sure that this is what your human calls 'progress'.
You will probably get a really good <span style="font-size: 150%"> ear rub</span> now. Ear rubs are the best!
You have found the <span style="font-size: 150%"> treat!</span>
Treats are the... <span style="font-size: 200%">(transition: "shudder")[squirrel]</span>
[[Stop and eat your treat.|Treat]]
[[Chase that squirrel!|SquirrelChase01]]You wish that you had never chased that squirrel. Now you have no treat and your human is cross.
Squirrels are dumb.
You'll show them, you'll show all of them. And then you'll get belly rubs, and ear rubs and all the treats and... <span style="font-size: 200%">Squirrel!</span>
Your whole body ripples with tension; you (text-style: "italic") [have] to chase the weird fluffy-tailed-tree-rat. But you stop. You remember something. Something that happened not long ago. Something that involved (text-style: "blur") [feeling sad].
But the squirrel. The squirely squirrel!
[[You contemplate the thoughts in your head.|Contemplate]]
[[You run as fast as you can. This squirrel will not get away. Oh no, you're gonna show it!|SquirrelChase02]]As you eat your treat you wonder if you have entered a new, more mature phase of your life.
You can hear crows in the trees around you. They sound espcially caw-<span style="font-size: 125%">caw</span> today.
One of them dive-bombs you.
This is not acceptable behaviour and you do <span style="font-size: 200%">deep-barking.</span>
That will show them.
Something (text-style: "smear") [WHUMPS] onto the ground.
[[You decide to investigate.|WHUMP]]You run like you have never run before. The wind whips back your ears, your nostrils flare, your tongue lolls out of your mouth and with every great <span style="font-size: 150%">big bound</span> you (text-style: "italic") [are] DogFace! Scourge of squirrels and best at chasing!
You are alive!
You hear your human calling.
You are free!
You wonder if your human wants to rub your belly.
You are chasing the... hang on... (text-style: "fade-in-out") [where'd it go?]
(text-style: "blur") [You have lost the squirrel and your human is calling you. The shouty-voice does not sound happy.]
But there - in the distance - another squirrel! or the same one... it's getting hard to tell...
[[Return to your human.|Turn back]]
[[Chase|SquirrelChase03]] this new (or possibly the same) squirrel.This is new. And very un-dog-like. In fact, this kind of contemplation is more suited to cats. Cats can climb trees too. If you were a weird cat/dog hybrid, maybe you could climb trees... Then there would be no escaping you.
You would be a hero among cat/dog hybrids.
You sit down and scratch your ear. Your human rubs it for you. Ear rubs are the best. You love your human. You will do whatever your human says because you love your human more than anything, even chasing squirrels and eating treats! That is a <span style="font-size: 150%"> lot </span> of love and... <span style="font-size: 200%">squirrel!</span>
[[Chase the squirrel.|SquirrelChase02]]
Walk obediently beside your human and [[ignore the fluffy-tailed-tree-rat.|good dog]]Your human says 'Good Dog.' You wag your tail. You have learnt that this means your human is happy with you and that is a <span style="font-size: 150%">good thing.</span>
You love your human. Your human is the best.
Your human gives you a treat!
Treats are the best!
[[You eat the treat.|Treat]]You are gaining on it. You have almost caught it!
You have not thought about what you would do if you ever actually caught a squirrel... But now, as you get closer and closer, you spare a moment to ponder the possibility.
And that is when (text-style: "italic") [this] squirrel - the one you have almost caught - bounds into brush and dissappears.
You stare at the brush. Your ears are high for (text-style: "italic") [best-hearing].
You do not hear or see the squirrel.
And that is when you notice the absence of sound, in particular, the absence of your human's sound. You cannot hear the shouty-voice, or the good-dog-voice... You look all around.
(text-style: "blur") [You do not know where you human is...]
And then the squirrel bounds out of the brush!
[[You chase the squirrel again. This time it shall be yours!|SquirrelChase04]]
[[You decide to look for your human.|Turn back]](text-style: "blur") [You cannot find your human.]
This is odd.
Your human is usually nearby.
You look all around. You sniff the air. You lift up your ears for (text-style: "italic") [really-best-hearing].
<span style="font-size: 200%">Where is your human?</span>
Stoopid squirrels... this is all their fault.
It's ok. It's ok. No need to panic.
You run around panicking.
You hear a crow caw-cawing. You don't have time for stoopid crows. And then you hear a whump.
[[What's that?|WHUMP]]As you approach you catch a familiar scent. A squirrel sort of scent.
You go into stalk-mode. This squirrel will not get away. You approach with (text-style: "italic")[best-stalking].
And there it is. You have finally caught a squirrel. It is right in front of you.
It is... it is... <span style="font-size: 50%">quite small.</span>
You look more closely and do deep-sniffing.
It is a baby squirrel.
It is a baby squirrel, and that crow knocked it out of the tree.
The baby squirrel is not moving. You sniff it.
Your human calls you.
(text-style: "blur")[The baby squirrel is not alive anymore.]
You feel something inside. Like when your human cries.
Your human calls you again.
[[You nose leaves and debris over the dead squirrel.|Bury it.]]You keep nosing leaves and bits over the squirrel. You had not thought of them dying before.
The crow caw-caws and your human comes to see what you are doing.
You will not stop until the little body is covered.
Your human calls you away.
You carry on, very, very gently. You human's voice catches in the way that means they feel something deeply. Your human stops calling, and waits for you to finish.
(text-style:"blur")[You have buried the squirrel.]
You return to your human and carry on with your walk.
[[You probably won't chase squirrels anymore...|Squirrel]]It was not 'all worth it'.
Your human does more of the (text-style: "outline") [shouty-voice]. They tell you to 'leave it' so you drop the squirrel.
They say a word that you have heard before. <span style="font-size: 50%"> 'Fleas.'</span>
You do not like where this is heading.
Your human puts the lead over your head. (text-style: "blur") [The walk is over.]
Your human is cross and you are going to be 'washed'. You do not like being washed. Being washed is rubbish.
This is all the squirrels' fault. [[Stoopid squirrels.|Squirrel]]You are running with <span style="font-size: 150%">mighty-strides.</span>
You cover the ground between you and the squirrel.
It will probably turn and evade you now. That is what they usually do. Your jaws are in touching distance. You reach out.
<span style="font-size: 200%">You have it!</span>
You have the squirrel! You hurl it about and throw it into the air. You have won! You have finally won!
The squirrel is not moving.
You sniff it.
<span style="font-size: 75%">The squirrel is not alive anymore.</span>
You look all around.
(text-style: "blur") [You did not mean to kill the squirrel.]
You can hear a shouty-voice in the distance. It is your human!
You pick up the squirrel and [[return to your human.|Return with the squirrel.]] You caught a squirrel and they will understand that it was all worth it.=><=
<span style="font-size: 200%">(transition: "shudder")[Squirrel!]</span>