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    R. Eric
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His Royal Highness, Prince Vincent - 16. Thor's Law

I took a week off. Sue me. I love beagles. I enjoyed writing about Thor I just had to do it again. I miss all the dogs I had. Peanut (He died when I was eight), Bear was black Labrador Retriever and Saint Bernard who looked like a bear cub, Miss Scarlett (beagle), Belle (beagle)

Thor's Law

 

 

Thor was proving to be a delight to have around. His actions with the ball made us all laugh. His attempts at behaving like a big dog made what was cute even cuter. The horrible moments in the past seemed to have been forgotten. The behavior was predictable. A dog can dream. I’ve seen a few times with my cousin Jacy’s dog when the legs would twitch and Duke would sometimes let out a muffled “woof” that said he was barking at something he saw. It was that realization made me angrier. Thor was so amusing and smart. It had to be one of the breeders. However, it could have been an owner that wanted to breed his dog. Completely out of season? A breeder had to be responsible. Thor was obviously a mixed breed. A mut. To breed one that was not a pure breed didn’t make a lot of sense. Just like with women who live together, their menstrual cycles often synchronize. Depending on how many females had their cycles started, Thor’s mother might only have been stimulated by the other females and the male that impregnated Thor’s mother wasn’t an intentional target. It might be impossible to know what had happened. Little did I know about the local animal lovers.

What I did know, was Vincent had fallen in love with Thor and Thor just adored Vincent. I was a little jealous. Annabelle had fallen in love with Thor, too. I had a feeling we’d be seeing her a lot. Again, it wasn’t Queen Maregete’s fault pets made her sneeze. The allergy did not get passed on to her children and they loved playing with Thor. Thor would lower himself on his front legs and got ready to lunge and now he barked at the ball as it passed and literally pounce on the rolling ball making him tumble over the ball as he growled. But his tail wagged before he did this and he loved the game! He would stop if he didn’t like it. It was a higher brain function that got enjoyment from play. Human children learn how to be an adult from play. So was Thor!

We lost track of the time. Once again, there was the faint sound of the door knocker.

Vincent got up, “You got it the last time,” he said. “It’s my turn.”

When he returned, I was surprised. King Fredrik was with him.

“I came over to see what happened to my daughter,” he grinned. “Now, I know.” He waved indicating Thor.

“Yes, Daddy,” Annabelle smiled as she picked Thor up. “This is Thor. Vincent’s and Eric’s new little friend.” Annabella waved Thor’s right paw at the king. “Say hello to the king of Denmark, Thor.” Thor gave her a few licks as he tail started up again.

King Fredrik smiled and knelt by his daughter. He took the paw that Annabelle had waved for Thor, “It’s nice to meet you, Thor.” The king chuckled and shook Thor’s paw, “I always pictured you, Thor, as being a little taller.” He stroked the puppy’s head gently and shook . “And blond!”

I grimaced, “I know your pain.” I waved at Copenhagen outside the house, “All these descendants of Vikings and you, Uncle Fred are the only blonds around I’ve seen!”

“There were a few in Norway! Harald?” Vincent then looked at his father, “Wait a minute. Mom isn’t with you. You left her with Matilda!?”

“Your Mom left me!” King Fredrik said back, “Christian left to do…” he tried to think of a word for it, “whatever. He really left to leave me to deal with Matilda and your mother went to her room that no one would dare to enter without knocking…not even me…for the same reason. I wasn’t going to be trapped with her, so I came here

I frowned, “Doesn’t it occur to her that people leave when she approaches?”

The king shrugged, “I don’t know.” He rubbed Thor’s head again and played with a floppy ear and then stood. “I’m sorry, but I can’t get on the floor like you can and get back up again without the sound of cracking. I’ll sit in a chair.” He lowered himself into a plush, cushioned chair.

I patted him on the shoulder, “That’s okay, Uncle Fred. We love you anyway.”

Annabelle then explained what she wanted to do because of what happened with Thor.

King Fredrik frowned when she told him what I theorized about what happened to Thor, “There is a group pushing for an Animal Welfare Act. I’ll bring it up again at the next meeting of Delegates. I’ll also send a letter to the breeders in Copenhagen.”

“It will be difficult to enforce,” I said sadly. “We have to catch them in the act.”

“Matilda has to have poor self-esteem,” Vincent said as Thor was put back on the floor and sort of ran to Vincent who had the ball in his hand. Thor mouthed Vincent’s thumb to get the ball. Vincent grinned at Thor and rubbed him over backwards and rolled the ball to Annabelle. Thor raced after it. “She does it to herself, but I would have a low self-esteem if I saw people avoided me.”

“If it’s a cause she believes in,” I shrugged. “She may view it as worth it.”

“The only cause for Matilda is Matilda,” Annabelle shook her head, “She’s not that smart. This is what she’s done for so long, she might not realize it.”

“I would like to know more this von Lobenstein,” I said. “She gets him to sign a contract? He dies in two years falling down a staircase he took every day. I know he was drunk. But took it every day and probably several times a day. Being drunk was a condition he was use to. It could be an accident, but did he have a history of such accidents? He was home!”

“She has an alibi,” Vincent reminded me.

“Yes,” I nodded. “She does have one that says she wasn’t there. That doesn’t rule her out of involvement.” I looked angrily at no one, “And what did he have to hide that he had to marry her? What did she have on him to make him do that?”

“You think she blackmailed the Baron into marriage?” King Fredrik asked.

“I don’t know anything,” I stated. “I think she’s capable of many things. She’s trying to find something on the two of you to get something from you. She knew there was something, we just don’t know what that something is and she needs evidence or a corroborating witness.”

 

I would have invited them for dinner, but it would have been leftovers from previous meals. Vincent and I couldn’t go to dinner with them and leave Thor alone and we couldn’t bring him because it would bother Queen Maregete.

And it was bound to happen. We both knew it would. I knew it. Vincent knew it. I’m grateful there was no rugs involved. We found a puddle. It wasn’t water. Just pee. It was our fault. We had gotten distracted telling King Fredrick and Annabelle good-bye. I picked up Thor and had him face me.

“I can’t punish you,” I sighed at Thor who just licked me and continued to wag his tail. “You probably don’t know you did anything wrong. Really, you didn’t, but we don’t want you to go inside the house without the paper beneath you.” I handed Thor to Vincent. “Just so you know,” I smiled at Vincent. “Ammonia and baking soda will get the urine smell out and disinfect.” The floor was marble, so it wouldn’t stain. It was a quick clean up. I rinsed the cloth out and hung it up to dry. I leaned back on the sofa as Vincent played with Thor on his lap. “Having a puppy has good things and bad. He’s an animal. He doesn’t really do anything on purpose to make you angry.” I remembered when Jacy’s dog got mad that he had been left behind and acting out from being left, a revenge token was left. “Maybe when he’s older. Maybe. Once he understands what you want him to do. He will learn to manipulate you. I just don’t want to become the only one to discipline Thor. We both should do that.”

Vincent gave a grudging nod, “Yes.” He admitted reluctantly. “But you know what to do. I don’t. You took the lead with this because you know what to expect.”

“He’s different than any livestock I’ve ever dealt with,” I smiled and stroked Thor’s head and took an ear in my fingers. “I believe he was sent to us for a purpose.”

Vincent grinned, “You think God gave him to us?”

Thor took a couple of my fingers in his mouth and began to gnaw on them. It was a common thing for puppies to do. All babies did it. He got a better sense of world this way. It didn’t even register with me other than a warm, wet gnaw. He didn’t have adult teeth and it didn’t hurt at all. “You have compassion and that is needed with Thor. I think he’s doing very well considering what happen yesterday. He hasn’t shied away from anyone in fear.”

“He didn’t understand what was going on, I bet.” Vincent said.

“True,” I nodded, “He didn’t see anything in that sack. He was so small he couldn’t produce much heat by shivering. He only had minutes to live, but he did.” I grinned as Vincent smiled at Thor again. “I say you’re doing a damned fine job with this little life. The Pohogwe don’t own land and we don’t own lives of others. I don’t see that we own Thor. He belongs with us and we were given charge over his life, but he’s our friend he is not our property.”

 

The first day with Thor came to a close. We ate some stew left for us, fed Thor and did the potty thing again with the newspaper. The expression on a beagle was precious. Thor was a happy little dog. It always seemed that a beagle smiled a lot. Thor had enough beagle in him that he seemed to smile all the time. When Vincent placed him on the paper and tapped again, “It’s potty time again.” He said to Thor who was listening and tried to make sense of the noise he was hearing as his tail wagged again slowly at Vincent’s kind voice. “Do it here.” Vincent said tapping the paper. Thor had heard this before and his beloved Vincent was making the same noise now. So, he did it again. That made Vincent and Eric very happy.

I was thrilled that Thor didn’t show any signs of reliving what horrible thing happened to him.

 

Normally, dogs don’t relieve themselves where they sleep. However this was a big bed, so Thor looked for somewhere to do that, but when he walked around, Vincent and I felt him do that and heard him sniffing.

Vincent sprang up grabbing Thor up, “No, no, no, Thor.” He hurried Thor over to the corner, “Not there, buddy.” He rushed Thor over to the waiting papers and put him down on the papers. “Do it here,” he tapped the paper, “You do that here.”

“I’m jealous of you two,” I chuckled at the two. “You speak and Thor listens.”

“Thor loves you,” Vincent grinned at me.

“Yes, he does,” I grinned back. “But he adores you.”

“Maybe,” Vincent nodded, “But he’ll be spending a lot of time with you.”

I shrugged, “As long as your mother isn’t there, he can go with you.”

Vincent tapped the paper again, “Here. You go here.” And Thor did. “Good boy!” He scooped Thor up and hugged him making Thor very happy. “Only one mishap we know of, you’re being so good!”

That was as good as it got until he could jump down and up again.

We showered and shaved. Of course, we included Thor. Not the shaving part, but the shower. Well, he didn’t want to excluded, so we brought him in the shower with us. He wasn’t sure about this, but he was whining to be included. We let him. The previous night Vincent was reluctant to do anything intimate at first. I knew Thor was a baby and I didn’t use a harsh soap. He could have sensitive skin. Sensitive skin and dogs didn’t seem to go together. Dogs haven’t been wild for tens of thousands of years. We had dogs that could hunt, large dogs to guard and stand watch, small dogs that could scurry into a rabbit hole and ferret prey out and Thor…well, his beagle breed was bred to hunt and sniff. What his other parent was I couldn’t tell yet. It seemed to be a short haired breed. If Queen Maregete were to encounter Thor the dander that made her sneeze would be reduced having been bathed.

It seemed that Thor had us wrapped around his life. That’s because it was! He was not the most important being in our lives, but he was a very important part of our lives now and any plans had to include him now. And I got an idea right after our shower. My grandmother said we Humans were all made out of the things that make up this world. Modern medicine identified things that are natural in the air our body suddenly identifies as abnormal flora (plant particles) and abnormal fauna (animal particles) and tries to expel them from our bodies by sneezing, coughing and seemingly have all the symptoms of a severe cold or break out in a rash; anything to get rid of whatever. Other adverse reactions tried to expel whatever it was out of our body. If she didn’t know Thor was there, would she have symptoms? My grandmother cautioned me to never believe they didn’t have allergies, they could.

You are going to test your mother,” I said.

“Test her!?” Blurted out as he pulled his shoes on and he sat up suddenly. “What do you mean test her? Why me?”

“The most important thing is she won’t kill you,” I smiled. “I just got her to be nice to me, so you need to do it. Test her to see if Thor will make her sneeze.”

“As soon as she sees Thor she’ll cover her nose and face,” Vincent said in a near panic.

“If she doesn’t see him at first,” I explained hopefully. “If she sees him, she will sneeze.” I scooped up Thor from the floor. “He is clean now. There won’t be a lot of dander or anything in the air. If any.” I pointed out. “If there is something in the air, she should sneeze whether she sees Thor or not.” I knew it was risky, “Then we do the big reveal.”

“She’ll be pissed,” Vincent said smiling standing up.

“Yeah,” I nodded and agreed. “She will, but she can’t argue with the evidence. Thor might not bother her at all. He’ll be able to come with us.”

“It will be my funeral, not yours,” Vincent chuckled.

“Why does it have to be anyone’s funeral?” I asked. “Annabelle was fine, Uncle Fred was fine…maybe she will be, too.”

“You hope,” Vincent grinned and followed me out in the hall.

 

The stairs was going to have to wait a week or so. And going up would be easier than going down. We wouldn’t let him fall down the stairs and we carried him into the kitchen. Laura and Rebekka saw us and immediately began speaking to Thor as they came over to pet him. We were forgotten. Thor was the star of the morning. He didn’t get scared once.

Vincent dug in his pocket and pulled the tennis ball out and waved it where Thor could see it. Thor’s tail suddenly went faster and he yipped his bark. Vincent was going to play again! He yipped twice more and then let loose a longer “ooorr.” The beagle in him was dominate.

“Er han ikke sød!?´Laura asked no one. Isn’t he cute?

“Han er nuttet!” Rebekka nodded. He’s adorable!

“Yes,” I chuckled. “He is both. He had a great day yesterday.”

“That was his first howl!” Vincent laughed.

I chuckled, “How else is he tell you he found something?” I pointed at the ball. “He sees that!” Our lives still went on. “Lord and Lady Haversham will be dining tomorrow night,” I reminded Rebekka. “Has Lady Haversham confirmed her daughter, son-in-law and infant daughter will come?”

“She did this morning,” Rebekka smiled. “Do they have a menu preference?”

“Beverly will be happy with what we give her,” Vincent said.

“She will,” I smiled at Vincent. “However, is there venison available?”

“Sure,” Laura nodded.

“I am the American Ambassador and I’m Pohogwe,” I grinned. “There is an excellent Pohogwe recipe for roasted venison, a squash and corn dish, fried bread…I know you have maple syrup. We need a good bourbon, too. There’s a great Snow Candy dish for desert…”

“I don’t know how to make those dishes,” Rebekka protested.

“But I do!” I nodded, “Trust me! You’re a great chef.” I pointed at Laura. “Get enough venison to fed six adults. There is a chicken and corn dish that’s good.” I was thinking out loud.

“His mother made it and it was very good,” Vincent said. “They were big on squash and corn.”

“That and beef were what we had the most of,” I shrugged. “That and potatoes. I’ll have you cooking like a Native American!”

 

Emil came in to see Vincent and me, and Thor. Everyone liked Thor. Then he slipped us a note with an address on it.

“What’s this?” I asked.

“It’s a pet and feed store not far from here,” Emil said. “I just recommend you go there and see what’s there.” He shook his head, “I wouldn’t suggest you buy anything from him, though. There is another I recommend run by a man named Lars Olsen. He has got products to sell. I’ve worked with him before when I was practicing more.” He frowned. “The other man is Alberte Rasmussen. He’s a breeder.”

I frowned, “Is he the breeder you think bred Thor?”

“All I can say is,” Emil began. “Everyone knew he had puppies last week. Now, he only has a few.”

“You think he did this,” I said.

“I don’t know for a fact,” Emil said. “But he specializes in small breeds. Such as beagles, terriers and…he’s not very humane.”

I recognized Vestend as a street nearby. Only a few blocks away. “I think we should pay him a visit, Vincent.”

Vincent’s eyes narrowed, “I think you’re right.”

 

Emil’s business were animals. He specialized in horses, but he had a history in Copenhagen. If anyone had an accurate guess, he would.

 

We ate and then Emil hitched up a sleigh. Wrapping Thor up in a blanket we rode to Lars Olsen’s Kæledyrshandel. (Pet Shoppe) Business had returned to Copenhagen as we traversed the busy streets. People rode horses, walked or took carriages to where they needed to go. At the moment, it all looked peaceful and serene. It had snowed last night so a lot of ground was covered with a new layer of white. Emil recommended Mr. Olsen.

We got to pet store and just seeing it made you feel good. Was it noisy? You betcha. Children had their noses pressed against the glass as the looked at some playful pups. They looked very well cared for. They were clean and seemed to enjoy looking at the children as much as the children enjoyed looking at them. Tails wagged and yips were heard.

A little girl about six rushed up to me, “Skal du have en hund?” Are you getting a dog?

“Nej, jeg har allerede en hund. Se?” I said. No, I already have a dog. See? I pulled the blanket back so they could see Thor. “Ro. Han behøver ikke at være bange.” Calm down. He doesn’t need to be frightened. I held Thor securely.

“English, Emma,” A larger boy about ten reminded her.

I assumed it was her brother. Dark hair on both and there was a slight family resemblance.

Emma smiled at me, “Sometimes I forget.”

I chuckled, “So, do I.” He bent down so she and two others could see Thor better. “This is Thor. He joined our family night before last.”

“Oh,” Emma said. “He’s so cute!”

“He’s hearing that a lot lately,” Vincent grinned. “I hope he doesn’t get a big head.”

Saying phrases in English the meaning didn’t translate, but again Thor took everyone’s attention.

“He doesn’t look mean, Gyrth,” Emma said to her brother.

“Mean?” I asked. “He’s eight weeks old! He’s a baby. Babies aren’t mean.”

“We have a neighbor that has a big dog that scares Emma,” the brother explained.

“Oh, I see,” I nodded. “He is guarding his home. I find that most animals aren’t nice or mean; they just are.” I covered Thor again. “I don’t know of any animal that is mean. Wolves, bears, lions are seldom just mean.” I smiled at Emma, “They often are staying alive or protecting their family. Mother bears can’t take a chance that another predator won’t hurt her young. Lions and wolves often provide for many others so they can eat and stay alive. What they do is seen as bad, but really it’s more for protection or food.”

“Thor doesn’t have a mean bone in his little body,” Vincent grinned.

The boy’s eyes widened when he really saw Vincent, “Your Highness! Forgive me, I didn’t recognize you until now.” He bowed and hit his friend next to him. “This is Crown Prince Vincent Henrik of Denmark, Dummy.”

“Who now has a puppy to call his friend,” Vincent smiled. “And he is loved very much.”

We went again through the American Ambassador and cowboy thing. People would have seen Vincent and other members of the royal family before as they passed. They knew me by reputation mostly. I was often seen with them. Mostly with Vincent.

“We’re hoping our parents will let us have a dog in the Spring,” the young man said happily.

I smiled at that, “I can honestly say there is nothing like loving one of nature’s most loving creatures.” I brought Thor up to my face, “And if you win the love of one of them, it says a lot about you. Just make sure you deserve it. A puppy will be totally dependent on you. Where it lives, sleeps, its health, when it eats and it will be totally devoted to you and won’t leave you. Ever. A dog will never let you down. It takes a serious commitment. I’m from a people that doesn’t think a person can own another life. See a dog as a friend; not someone you own.”

 

Lars Olsen was a happy person. He was in his late forties and blond. What hair was left, that is. His midsection showed he was also fond of eating. He was held a small dog himself. It wasn’t a puppy. I recognized a Scottish Terrier and this one was solid black.

“Your Highness,” he bowed to Vincent. “What can I do for you?”

The dog being held by Lars knew another dog and barked. Thor yipped a reply.

“We need to get a few things,” I began. “A collar, a thermal cover for outside, some soap and shampoo for Thor…”

“And perhaps register Thor with the Animal Welfare Department?” Lars suggested hopefully. “It’s a new way to help keep track of pets.” He leaned forward, “Can I ask how you got Thor?”

“We rescued him from the cold near my house,” I explained. “Why?”

“There is another man in Copenhagen that breeds dogs,” he pointed at Thor. “He has some small beagles.”

Vincent nodded, “We heard.”

“Thor was found, soaking wet with barely the ability to walk,” I hugged Thor.

“You think it was Alberte Rasmussen,” Vincent said.

“I have no proof,” Lars qualified. “But yes, I do.” He shook his head, “He had puppies and then he didn’t. Where did they go? He has prized beagles.”

“And you think Thor is one of those pups,” Vincent stated.

“Based on what I see,” Lars pointed at Thor. “Yes.”

I felt my anger rise, “And no one did a thing about it.”

Lars shrugged, “What could we do? We asked him not to. He didn’t break any laws.”

“Not currently,” I agreed. “Hopefully, King Fredrik will be changing that soon.”

 

We did get some great treats for Thor. We registered Thor with the Department Animal Welfare complete with a number if he got lost. I dare say he would never be let out of our sight. We also got him a collar to hang his tag and bone shaped tag with Thor written on it. The collar pretty well swallowed his neck and it was the smallest one Lars had. Or course, Thor had a little difficulty getting used to the collar and scratched a lot to get it off. We got him a roomy pet carrier. We also got him something to wrap him in that was quilted. There were even some canine shoes! To keep his four feet off of the cold ground. It would be a few months before he would do that. We got them, but he didn’t wear them. A good mild soap and shampoo and he was set! We also bought him a brush and clippers for his toenails and some grooming items.

Lars was a very happy man! As I said, you saw it in his face. He was content. He also loved how we were devoted to Thor and how much Thor was devoted to us.

 

I had said it would hardly be possible to know what happened, but the community of animal lovers were apparently watching. Using the exact means I had used to figure out what might have happened, they did the same. The two breeders were completely different.

Lars’ Kæledyrshandel was clean and the center for all happiness. Alberte’s Kæledyr Bizart, a bizarre for pets, while not exactly the canine version of dog Hell, it wasn’t a place that claimed happiness. See how the same word is used for something? Pets! Kæledyr was Danish for pets! There are so many words that could easily be translated to English!

No! No rabbits. I hear rabbits made great pets, too.

“I don’t believe in beating around the bush,” I said to Vincent. “We should go in and tell him what everyone thinks he did.”

“He can deny it,” Vincent said holding Thor.

“Yet,” I stopped the horses. “Everyone knows he did it.”

Thor was for the first-time whining with us. He did that when he didn’t know us, but something he sensed or heard was bothering him and he was scared.

“No, Little Guy,” Vincent assured Thor and kissed him on the head. “You’re fine. We’ve got you. No one will hurt you. We won’t let them.”

Entering the store, I guess Alberte knew to display the pets appropriately, but he failed with me. There were cages arranged with various animals in them. Mostly dogs. There were a few cats, but as Lars said most were small and most dogs had to lay down. I saw a few water bowls, but many were overturned because of the lack of room.

“Can I help you?” A man asked coming from the back.

What I also saw was Thor duck down and he was heard whining.

‘This wasn’t a good idea,” I said to Vincent and stroked Thor gently. “He won’t get near you, Thor.”

“Take him,” Vincent urged me and handed me a squirming puppy. “I think Thor just gave witness to what happened two nights ago.”

I hadn’t really seen the look on Vincent’s face before. It was quiet rage and he was growing red in the face.

“This won’t take long,” Vincent said through gritted teeth.

“Your Highness…” the man stammered.

“Save it!” Vincent said quietly. It was like a volcano about to blow and deceptively quiet with deep rumbling. “I want to know who his mother is and who his father is.” He advanced on the man who was backing up.

“Let’s go, Sweetie,” I said to Thor and walked out of this odd bizarre! “You’re okay.” I wanted to support Vincent, but I think being confronted by the Crown Prince was enough. “You’re okay.” I said again hugging Thor to me. I wanted to hear what was being said, but I couldn’t make anything out other than muffled voices until…

“…and everybody that knows you knows you did it!” Vincent shouted. That I heard with no problem. Alberte said something else I couldn’t make out. “I am Denmark’s future king! That’s why!” Vincent bellowed. “I love that dog! He is innocent! God knows how many other puppies you destroyed! He is a miracle! My sister loves him, my father, King Fredrik Henrik loves him and soon it will be illegal to do what you did! If you doubt that, keep it up. I will destroy you! You can’t deny this, you and I are going through your inventory right now. We are going to record every single animal and their condition and when I return they had better be in the same condition if not better or sold to a family that deserves them. And they must be registered and addresses recorded that can and will be verified. If you don’t, my family and I will ruin you and you will not be able to sell anything!! Now, show me my dog’s parents!”

I was smiling after I heard this. It did take quite a few minutes before I saw Vincent leave the store. He tucked a piece of paper in his coat pocket.

“Sorry it took longer than I thought,” Vincent climbed in the sleigh and sat by me.

“Don’t you dare apologize for that. What you did in there was wonderful,” I grinned holding Thor up. “He is a miracle.”

Vincent chuckled, “You heard that.” He nodded and picked Thor up and nuzzled Thor on the nose. “Who’s a good boy?” Thor’s tail wagged and he licked Vincent repeatedly. “I’m giving Emil the list of animals and I will come with him next time which will be in two days. He would be better at accessing their health.” He looked at me, “Oh, Thor’s father is champion beagle, one of those smaller ones. His mother is a combination of a Terrier from Norwich and West Highland Terrier. They don’t shed and not much dander.”

I hadn’t noticed any hair or fur on the sheets, “Really?”

“The asshole in there considered Thor to be a breeding failure,” Vincent said hugging Thor. “He’s not a pure breed and that is just nonsense as I see Thor as a very smart, happy and loving dog.” He grinned at me. “I disagree with you, though. You told Emma there were no animals who are mean. We just met one! Alberte Rasmussen isn’t just mean, he’s also evil and just greedy.”

I smiled more, “You won’t get a disagreement from me.”

“No,” Vincent stated. “I thought of getting Annabelle over here. She would get away with breaking his nose. You might not.”

Putting a small animal up to your face would scare some people and animals, but Thor was so happy!! His tail again was going so quickly it seemed to disappear and he licked Vincent’s face almost as quickly!

“That’s it,” I chuckled. “I’m jealous.”

Vincent gave me a mocking sympathetic look, “Don’t be jealous.” He held Thor up to me. “He’ll lick you, too. He loves you!”

Of course, Thor did lick my face. I was jealous that Thor could express affection that I couldn’t. There was no choice in the matter. I didn’t like that Vincent and I were deceiving the whole world! We were!! Ignorance could be dealt with by education. That would just take longer than we had. I often refer to the good qualities of the Pohogwe. For the most part there were many things about them that were good. They were not perfect, but they were the most tolerant of others. All American Natives weren’t always nice. There were a few that were quite blood thirsty and had been blood thirsty long before Caucasian men arrived. And who arrived where first when!? Who really knows? Educating a great many at once was risky. A few at a time fared better. Once people believe one version, getting them to see that was wrong is almost impossible. In Denmark, Norway, England or the United States of America they hold to what they believe in even when confronted with the undeniable truth. It was far easier to die for a cause than live for one. Schools were opening everywhere. King Fredrik’s explanation to Vincent just before he and Angelica married was very true. Children of Royalty were given the best of everything from food, healthcare, and education to get them ready to lead a nation. Now every child in any developed country went to school. There was the organized religions who preached more than Thou Shalt Not Kill or Steal. Religious held people under control threatening their eternity if they didn’t comply with their rules. Rules to follow about what to eat, pray and even who you can and can’t love.

“It’s amazing to me how in two days’ time,” Vincent began. “How one small animal can charm it’s way into the heart of so many adults.”

Taking the reins, I got the horses moving again. “I hope it works with your mother.”

 

Sneaking in any creature into the palace took preparation. My hope was renewed when I heard about Thor’s mother. She was an ideal breed for people sensitive from exposure to anything an animal gives off. Thor still smelled like he had from the shower that morning. He still had the puppy smell, but it wasn’t unpleasant. Humans spent thousands of years trying to rid themselves of odors that simply were a part of life. From Egyptian to Greek and Roman construction. Putting palaces and government buildings high above any other buildings you could see anyone approach, friend and enemy. Congested on the city floor you were down where the smell of unbathed flesh, sewage and garbage were. Up high you got a cross breeze that was fresh and cool. The use of oils and perfumes were used to cover those natural odors. And who is to say what anything we smell wasn’t what it was suppose to smell like? Good smells verses bad smells are subjective. We smell something we judge as wrong. Why? The smell could mean disease. Rotting flesh has a bad odor. Odors can be very complex! Yes, this is a rabbit, but we are presented a good smelling meal. We have a tendency to take the combination of things in it together as one. One smell! But there are spices and other ingredients that add to the odor! Paprika, oregano, peppers, onions…a plethora of things (Plethora. I seldom use that word. Like pontificate, I hardly ever use it. Plethora for a lot of choices and pontificate sounds better than calling someone a blabbermouth.)

It was a small rabbit. A bunny really! Anyway, we needed an inside man. Or inside woman. Or girl…it was Annabelle! We carried Thor in the blanket and waited for Annabelle in a room off the main entrance lobby.

“What’s up?” Annabelle greeted coming in the room. “What’s with the secrecy?”

Vincent grinned and pulled me over and pulled the blanket open.

Annabelle clapped her hands lightly and smiled, “Thor!” Her whole demeanor changed to one of calm and quiet affection. “Hi, baby!” She walked over closer and Thor remembered her very well as he struggled to get from me to her! She reached for him and he let everyone know how happy he was to see her as he yipped again.

I leaned closer to Vincent, “He still needs to grow into his bark.”

“Look at you!” Annabelle said to Thor and he said he was happy with his tail going again. She touched his collar and tags. “You got him registered!” She smiled at Vincent and me. Thor said his hello as he licked her face.

“We did,” Vincent smiled at his sister’s acceptance at Thor heartfelt licks of affection. “We also found out who did this whole thing.”

One of the things Vincent and Annabelle learned from their parents was to listen first. Her expression told us she knew what we were saying and what we were planning to do.

“Fine,” Annabelle nodded. “I will go with Emil to be sure Alberte Rasmussen complies.” She looked at her brother and me, “And I won’t promise to not break his nose.” She then grinned. “I will bring Thor into the living area. Mom will be coming down for a late lunch. I will keep Thor occupied behind her for a while. If she starts to sneeze…”

“Then get Thor out of here!” I said quickly.

“I don’t think she will,” Vincent said.

“Be prepared if she does!” I said to Annabelle.

 

It was only a half an hour when Queen Maregete came into the communal room and smiled at us.

“I wasn’t expecting you,” she smiled coming over to greet Vincent with a quick hug and kiss.

Vincent chuckled, “Should we leave?”

“Of course, not,” she said to Vincent and then she greeted me.

“We were in the neighborhood and thought we’d come by,” Vincent grinned. All I could do is roll my eyes.

Annabelle was quiet, but Thor didn’t understand the need to do that. He yipped at Annabelle. Queen Maregete spun around and saw Annabelle holding something wrapped in blanket. Whatever it was; it was alive.

“Sorry,” Annabelle said

“No,” I smiled at Annabelle. “He’s being honest.” I looked at Vincent. “I don’t like lying.” I bowed to the queen. “I will explain.”

Queen Maregete nodded and folded her arms over her chest, “Please.”

“You are not the woman I met years ago,” I told her.

Her face had the look of regret, “I was frightened. I worried Vincent wouldn’t do his duty.”

I nodded, “I know.” I shook my head. “You don’t need to apologize. In nature the role of mother is quite deadly. The bear is very protective of her cubs. Cougars, wolves…a mother will fight any thing that threatens their young.” I grinned at her, “I was scared of you! Uncle Fred learned to trust me first, but I would do anything to keep Vincent safe.”

Queen Maregete nodded, “You made a friend.” Her brows came together and she pointed at Annabelle, “And how does that explain…that?"

I put Vincent between his mother and me, “Now you know why I was planning for you to do this.” I whispered in a hiss. I looked at the queen, “I was getting to that.” I chuckled. I explained about Julefrokost and when walking home and our rescue of Thor. “When you hugged and kissed Vincent, did you get any itch or burning in the eyes?”

“Think about it, Mother!” Vincent said excited. “Thor was sent to us! Five minutes earlier or later we would have missed Thor!”

“He is a dog,” I nodded, “But his ancestry is from dogs that don’t shed.” I walked over to Annabelle. “He had a bath this morning. Any dander was washed away.”

“I held Thor most of the morning,” he threw his arms out helplessly. “I should be covered with his dander.”

Annabelle hugged Thor, “And last evening I played and held this sweet little guy.”

“It’s not the shorthaired dogs that make you sneeze,” I smiled at the queen.

“No, however, all cats do.” She waved at Thor, “You named him Thor.” She said nodding.

“Sure,” I grinned. “He was born in Denmark. He could be loyal companion to Vikings.”

The queen smiled at us, “There is another reason I said no to pets.” She shook her head sadly. “They get sick and die.” She looked at Vincent. “When you brought that dog home,” she reached out and stroked Thor’s head. “Examining him; he could have had worms or many diseases carried by dogs.” She chuckled, “That dog did make me sneeze and t I could tell you were falling love with him. Its better I said no than have to break your heart later.”

I nodded understanding now, “He’s been seen by Emil. Having a Veterinarian on staff was smart. Thor will be the healthiest dog in all of Scandinavia!” Thor began to squirm in Annabelle’s arms.

“When did he go to the bathroom?” Annabelle asked.

“Right before we came in here,” I replied. “It shouldn’t be that.” I held my hands out to show I would take him and he came over and licked my face. I turned to the queen. “I say with nothing but observation. This,” I kissed Thor on the head, “is the sweetest soul and is completely innocent.”

“What’s going on?” King Fredrik asked as he came in. He saw Thor, “Oh.”

Queen Maregete laughed, “I was just about to give my approval.”

Then Vincent and I told who did it. Both King Fredrik and Queen Maregete were appalled.

“The problem is there was no crime,” King Fredrik groaned.

“It will be when you make it illegal,” Annabelle bounced a little.

“That sounds like the perfect campaign for you,” the queen grinned. “You will have to speak to Parliament.”

“Me!?” Annabelle balked.

King Fredrik nodded, “You have the passion for it. That will add credence to what you want to do.”

Annabelle looked down as she thought, “Sure, I can do that.”

“You were never shy, were you?” I grinned at her. “And come early so those in Parliament will have a focus when you ask them to approve your law.”

Annabelle touched Thor’s head, who now wanted to go back to her.

“Make up your mind, Thor!” I kissed him on the head and gave him back to Annabelle. “This is going to work! A society will be held accountable for how we treat innocents like Thor.”

Copyright © 2016 R. Eric; All Rights Reserved.
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They have found the man responsible for Thor to be out in the cold where they found him while walking home. Now they have done a test with the Queen to see if she was allergic to Thor or not, she isn’t at all. I can’t wait to see what Annabelle does to the breeder who tossed Thor out.

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Annabelle AND Vincent against that breeder!  I almost -- almost -- feel sorry for him.

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I am interested in Thor's reaction to Matilda if, and when they should meet!!!

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Queen Maregete laughed, “I was just about to give my approval.”

Then Vincent and I told who did it. Both King Fredrik and Queen Maregete were applauded.

“The problem is there was no crime,” King Fredrik groaned.
 

 Near the end of the chapter, did you mean:

appalled vs applauded?

 

When Thor develops his bark, may it strike fear in the way Thor’s Hammer strikes down those that dare challenge.

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4 hours ago, Philippe said:

Queen Maregete laughed, “I was just about to give my approval.”

Yes, I meant appalled. I'm still alive and still writing, but I am being evicted because the owner wants to sell. I don't want to move. Not again. That and the first of the month I buried Daniel. I was depressed. Still am, but that's not me. Every time I move I get farther away from Charleston. Moncks Corner is where. :no:

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17 minutes ago, R. Eric said:

Yes, I meant appalled. I'm still alive and still writing, but I am being evicted because the owner wants to sell. I don't want to move. Not again. That and the first of the month I buried Daniel. I was depressed. Still am, but that's not me. Every time I move I get farther away from Charleston. Moncks Corner is where. :no:

So sorry you’re being uprooted, especially when your loss is already so great and all too raw. I hope you can find peace amongst the chaos, wishing you the best.

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