Dare he makes his way around to the place where his home should be. Would it be better to just sit happily in blissful ignorance with the knowledge that it might be there, and be oblivious to what it not being there meant. “If it’s not there then what can I do?” His words were answered by a bark from a spaniel behind him.

The dog had sneaked up on him out of sight. It barked again, not with a vicious tone, but one showing friendship and play. He patted it on the back.

“Toby!” It was his masters voice, and it heralded the arrival of an old man, stick in one hand, lead in the other. “He’ll not harm you lad.” The dialect was not his own but he understood it.

“Its okay, I’m used to dogs. I had one of these myself up to two years ago.” Bitter memories came flooding back to him of his own dog, and having to make the decision to put her to sleep when she became ill. Of how he had nursed her in the last two weeks of her life hoping that she would get better, but it wasn’t to be. On forcing tablets down her on spoons of food and finally having to make the agonising call to the vet.

“She likes you” the gent said with a smile. “She knows who she can trust, she once got kicked when she was a pup and since then seems to have developed a sense of who likes her.”

“Why would anyone kick a dog?”Mac whispered the sentiment at the dog, now sitting on his foot.

“There are some bad people in this world.” The man seemed to speak from experience. “Good day lad.” With that he left Mac to his thoughts and followed the path. Toby stood up and did the same.

The last sentence kept playing in Macs head. “Some bad people in this world.” Which world? Which people? Where in all that was good was he and what had happened? “There’s only one thing for it!” The statement of intent came out louder than he would have liked prompting the dog walker to turn about, and although he had not heard the words exactly he acknowledged something had been said by a nod of his head.

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