Now her head was tilted back, her neck exposed, awaiting the kisses that she always said took her to heavenly places – her words, not mine. The man obliged her slowly, as if to heighten her anticipation, touching those bright pink lips to the pulse that throbbed madly at the base of her neck. She moaned. His hands travelled down from her chest where they had been busy with her breasts; they roamed down her hips and then paused to grab her ass. I felt my hackles rising where I sat. Their mouths disengaged as they came up, gasping, for air.
“Oh God, Femi… I’ve missed you so much,” she panted through lips that were three times their normal size.
“I missed you too,” he answered.
She gazed deep into his eyes and my heart started to race with the hope that she was finally seeing something. She wasn’t.
“When you left and I couldn’t reach you, I was such a wreck. I couldn’t eat or sleep, I couldn’t function at work… I thought I’d lost you.”
He smiled into her eyes.
“I’m back now,” he said.
She was quiet for a moment.
“But what happened? Why did you leave like that? And for three days! I mean, it’s not like we haven’t had fights before. Where were you?”
He shook his head as he shushed her. His voice was gentle when he spoke.
“I was just… let’s just call it a case of temporary insanity. But I’m home now, and I’ll never leave you again. I promise.”
That I couldn’t take. My mode of protest was a low growl from my throat. They turned to look at me.
“Shola, what’s wrong with him?” he asked, his eyebrows raised.
“I don’t know,” she said. She was wearing her puzzled face. “You know, he’s been acting funny since you got back yesterday.”
She made as if to walk towards me, but he held her fast.
“Leave him; he’ll get over it, whatever ‘it’ is. There’s more… interesting things we can do,” his voice had become a raspy whisper.
Her eyes lit up and she turned to him and promptly forgot I existed. So much for loving devotion. I was obviously no match for Mr. Magic Stick.
“More still?” she shivered her delight. “Ooh, I can’t wait.”
He took her hand and quickly led her towards the bedroom. I followed as fast as my short legs would carry me, pissed that my heated protests were being completely ignored. It wasn’t until I ran into the door that had been shut in my face that I accepted I’d failed again.
With my head down and my tail between my legs, I walked into the kitchen to find the now familiar figure sitting – no, hovering – where I had left it. No, him. He raised his head to look at me, and I could see my disappointment mirrored in his eyes.
Hey, don’t blame me; you heard how loud I barked out there. Try being a miniature dachshund trying to send a message to a human, particularly that human. I don’t speak humanese!
“It’s okay, Brandy, I know you tried. You’re still the best.”
I grinned up at him. He’d been good at reading me, even before he’d become like this. Shola, unfortunately, was a different story. I saw him rise and glide towards me. Then he squatted beside me and scratched me behind my ears like he used to. Only, his hand went right through me; I felt nothing. I looked up into his translucent eyes and whimpered. He tried a reassuring smile but didn’t quite get it. He stayed that way for a while, and I could tell that, like me, he was picturing the scene now unfolding in his bedroom, with his wife and – as far as she knew – himself in it.
I raised my head to search his face for the answers he wouldn’t or couldn’t give, but I could see nothing but the desperation in his eyes.
The minute Other Femi had walked into the house yesterday, I had known something was very wrong; I had smelt it. I hadn’t been able to place my paw on it immediately, but that hadn’t kept me from barking and nipping at his heels for all I was worth. The moment it had become obvious to Shola that my excitement hadn’t been borne out of joy, she’d tried to keep Other Femi out of my way. Luckily for me, she’d never gotten round to buying me a cage. Bet she regretted that now, he-he! I shouldn’t push it, though. She was probably now considering taking me to an animal shrink to have my head examined.
Four days ago, Shola and Femi, my owners, had had another one of their legendary fights, complete with screaming, hysteria, and identifiable flying objects. I’d observed them from the relative safety of the floor under the sofa. I am a very small dog. Femi had stormed out of the house at some point, and had only returned yesterday. But the Femi getting frisky with Madam in the bedroom was Other Femi. This I’d finally been able to tell for sure when Real Femi had literally walked through the door minutes later, while Shola and Other Femi had been busy playing let’s make up. Real Femi had looked at me and seen that I could see him. He’d looked so relieved, but now I doubt that there’s any way I can help. He’d bent to greet me like he always did, and I’d run to meet him. Don’t get the wrong impression here, I actually am a smart dog, but I hadn’t quite gotten the picture just then. It had therefore come as a surprise to me when I’d hurled myself at him, as usual, only to find myself going right through him and slamming into the door behind him. My head had cleared eventually, and it had finally registered that he was… well… see-through. And so now, even though I don’t know how some other… being… has managed to expel Real Femi from his own body, or why, we are both trying to get Shola to notice that her ‘husband’ is not her husband. However, judging from the sounds of commotion we can hear coming from the bedroom – even with the doors closed – you can tell we haven’t made much progress.
Yeah, they could build planes and get on the moon, but humans were still quite dumb. I’m just a dog, but I could tell as soon as I’d seen Other Femi that he was an impostor. You would think that his wife of five years would have some inkling, at least. But no! She was too busy getting busy with Other Femi.
My ears perked up as the bedroom door came open. Real Femi became still. Shola walked into the kitchen, as you humans say, in her birthday suit, which was slick with sweat. She pulled open the door to the fridge and grabbed a bottle of water. Arching her neck, she emptied the bottle in quick gulps. Then she leaned against the open door of the fridge and closed her eyes, running one hand through her now disheveled hair. Now, I love Real Femi, but I must admit I’ve never seen him induce this sort of reaction from her. No wonder she couldn’t tell something was wrong – he was keeping her too occupied to think!
He walked in too, Other Femi, and yes, he was naked. I stood and snarled at him. He glanced at me, and though I was making my ferocious face, he walked – apparently unperturbed – to Shola, and put his arms around her. She took out another bottle of water and handed it to him. The water disappeared down his throat. They dropped the bottles on the kitchen counter and stood looking at each other. Shola’s eyes were glazed, reminding me of the way the bitch three doors down kept looking at me. I should look into that when this gets over.
“There’s something… different about you,” Shola purred, trailing a finger down his chest. “You’ve changed a bit.”
I thought I saw a panicked look cross his face, and then he smiled.
“There’s a lot about me that has changed, Shola. But you like what you see?”
“And what I feel,” she gave a laugh that male humans might call sexy. “Especially what I feel.”
They kissed. I looked at Real Femi. He turned to stare out the window.
“And there’s more where that came from,” Other Femi said.
“Wow… you never used to have this much… stamina,” Shola said, her voice thick with admiration.
“I told you – I’ve changed.”
“Good. I like this new version,” she said.
“So do I.”
She looked uncertain for a moment.
“And you’ll never leave me again?”
Shola smiled. His hands stayed on her hips as they waltzed out of the kitchen, Other Femi taking up the rear. I gave one last growl for his benefit. He turned and winked at me as they walked through the doorway, closing the door before I could follow. I lay down on the floor, placed my head between my two front paws, and whimpered. Real Femi was still staring out the window.
“Don’t worry, Brandy, there’s always a way. We’ll find a way to tell her…”