Well. It took me a forever and half, but I think that the preview can now see the light of day. Or... at least the forums...
Oh! Before I forget, you should check out FoxRock's little fanfic too! viewtopic.php?f=13&t=2972
Hope you enjoy Chapter 2! It was a blast to write!
-Housepets! Home Story: Sparks’ Beginning
- Party Time-
: The Next Step=
Sparks inhales and exhales as he brings his paw up from his side to the door in front of him. Although the biggest hurdle of his plan, Fido, was done and out of the way, he felt uneasy going through the other steps. If one thing goes wrong, the whole plan could fall apart. What if Grape says no…
Sparks hesitates just as he is about to knock on the door.
The thoughts of failure flood his mind while his ears begin to droop. Sparks then feels a paw touch his shoulder, making his ears perk up and his body jump slightly. He turns his head toward the direction of where the paw came from only to find his friend with a brown spot of fur on his left eye, standing right beside him.
“You ok Sparks?” Joey asks concerned.
Sparks then smiles, his confidence slowly regaining knowing that his friend was by his side. “Yeah… yeah, I’m fine.” How could I have forgotten about Joey?
Sparks thinks to himself.
He then turns his head back toward the door as his paw coming back up to knock. She already knows about me and Tera, and she even agreed to talk with us whenever we needed to. There’s no doubt that she’ll say no!
Sparks then hits the door with his paw in a rhythmic pattern creating a hard knocking sound. Just as Sparks’ paw comes back down to his side, a booming voice could be heard from the other side.
“I’LL GET IT!” The voice calls out. The door then opens, revealing a brown colored dog with dark brown floppy ears before them. Sparks could already tell that his energy level was through the roof. “Hey Joey.” The dog greeted with a smile. “Hey Sparks.”
“Hey Peanut.” They say nearly in unison.
“Mind if we come in?” Joey asks.
“Sure.” He replies as the both of them enter the household. Peanut closes the door behind them and begins to speak again. “So… Sparks, is this about the thing about me sing--” Peanut starts, but is interrupted by Sparks.
“No!” He blurts out rapidly. Joey gives him a strange look, puzzled at his response. Too quick Sparks…
“I mean… no. We were actually here to speak to Grape.”
“Oh… um… ok, sure… “ He then turns towards the stairway as he puts his hand up to his muzzle. “GRAAAPPEEE!”
“UGGHHH. WHAT?!” A muffled shout echoes down the stairs. “THIS BETTER BE SOMETHING IMPROTANT PEANUT! I WAS HAVING THE BEST DREAM EVER!”
“Joey and Sparks are here! They need to talk to you!”
“Joey?! Why is he… wait… did you say Sparks?!”
In an instant, the cat appeared at the top of the stairs. She hastily makes her way down to the front door, greeting the two before her. “Hey guys.” She says fixing the fur standing up on her head. “What do you need?”
The black and white dog inhales and exhales allowing his nervousness to subside, and begins to speak. “It’s… about Tera. I need to talk with you…” He looks over at Peanut, now behind Grape. He brings his head closer to the cat, bringing his voice down to where only the two of them could hear. “In private.”
The cat looks behind at Peanut, still standing there with a smile. Grape then looks back at the two standing in front of her. “Why don’t you come into the kitchen? I’ll be there in a second.”
“Sure” Joey answers. “Come on Sparks.”
The two walk through the house to the kitchen while Grape pulls Peanut aside. I should talk to Peanut later…
Grape holds back Peanut with her arm at his chest as she leads him toward the landing of the stairs. “Peanut,” she asks, “Could you stay in your room for the time being? I have to talk with Sparks for a moment.”
Peanut frowns. “Ok…”
Grape sighs. Why does he always get like this…
“What’s wrong Peanut? You’ve been acting weird lately.”
“I’m… fine Grape. Nothing’s wrong.” He replies, now sporting a weak grin.Really?
She thinks, her expression now emotionless with her head slightly lowered. Now you’re just making it obvious…
“Are you sure? You know you’re a terrible liar right?” Grape says now looking serious with arms now crossed.
“I said nothing’s wrong.” Peanut says defensively. Grape was astonished. He’s never acted this way before… Something must be up…
Noticing the slight hint of an irritated tone in his voice, he then sighs and smiles almost identically to when he was at the front door. “I… just have a lot on my mind right now. That’s all.”
“Are you sure that’s all? Do you need to talk about it? You know that you can talk to me if you need help with anything.”
“I’m sure. Thanks Grape.” Peanut says as he walks up the stairs and around the corner.
“No problem.” She replies quietly, making her way to the kitchen. He’s definitely not acting like himself. I’ll get to the bottom of this eventually. It’s probably nothing.
She takes the first few steps down the stairs. What if it has to do with that one time…
Grape stops dead in her tracks, remembering the time when Max and Tarot came over to play ‘Imaginate!’ together. She lets out a sigh, moving once more, nearing the room. I’ll deal with Peanut later, right now, Sparks needs help.
As Peanut enters the sanctuary of his room, he lets out a sigh as he collapses to the floor, the fake smile disappearing from his face. His head goes back, gently landing on the door in back of him. Why do I always get his way when I’m around her? Maybe… maybe I’m just nervous and scared. Every time I see Grape, I think about it, then when I think about it I get nervous. I don’t know what to say when I’m around her… I just… tense up.
He ponders for a second, thinking about his situation. Is it because of Sparks? No… no… she doesn’t even spend time with him.
He then gets a sudden realization. It’s Max. It has to be. Maybe when I think of Max, I think of me in his position.
Another thought hits him. What if… what if my plan fails…
He shakes his head. No. Sparks and Angel have my back. They know it will work. I guess I should start believing that it will too.
He looks to the ceiling for a second, stuck in his thoughts. He couldn’t believe that he was crazy enough to try something as big as he was going to do. He knows that with the help of his new friend Angel, a husky who he had met at the park, as well as Sparks that the plan that they all made was going to work.
After a moment, he lets out a sigh returning to reality. He then grabs his MP3 player from the pocket in his collar and puts one of the earbuds in. He looks down at the MP3 player’s screen, going through his list of songs. The song ‘Fireflies’ catches his eye. I should probably practice. That should take my mind off of things. Hopefully…
The dog presses down on the MP3 player and the song begins to play. His foot starts taping immediately to the beat while a smile slowly returns to his face. I love this song…
Sparks twiddles his thumbs around on the table, trying to let the excess nerves out before Grape returns. He looks around the room, observing every little detail as his mind begins to wander off. The first thing that catches his eye is the white refrigerator. On the front, there were a few pictures of the family together and some magnets that resembled letters spelling out the word ‘SANDWICH’ in colorful capital letters. Just as his eyes wander toward the items on the counter, he sees a paw moving up and down in the corner of his eye. His head moves toward the movement only to find Joey with a confused look on his face.
“You sure you’re ok Sparks? You seem out of it.”
“I’m sure.” Sparks says.
Joey crosses his arms. “Sparks.” Joey persists.
Sparks opens his mouth to attempt at reassuring Joey, but nothing comes out. He’s right. Sparks shuts his jaw and lowers his head slightly. There’s no avoiding it
. “I’m… just nervous… and afraid, ok. It’s… I’m just afraid of the outcomes of the plan. What will happen, you know? The steps, putting it all together, that sort of thing.”
“But, Grape supports you and Tera. Why are you afraid?”
“I… I don’t know.” Sparks pauses, remembering the dream about Tarot. “Remember Fido coming out of the shed, leaving me in there?”
“Well…” Sparks pauses once more unable to find the words to explain. “I guess I must have passed out or had a sudden nap while you guys were talking outside, and I saw this Pomeranian who was talking to me about Tera and I. She told me that I worry too much about the future and don’t focus on what happening right in front of me, I guess that’s what makes me nervous all the time. I…” Maybe I shouldn’t mention the whole fate pathway thing…
“I know that she’s right. I have to stop worrying so much. This plan is all that matters.”
right you know.” Sparks jumps. The purple cat managed to sneak into the room through the door behind Sparks, scaring him unintentionally. “Sounds like you met Tarot.”She knows her?!
“You know her?”
“Yeah, of course I do. She’s Peanut’s girlfriend. Not only that, she’s also a psychic. You know, magical powers, seeing into the future, all of that kind of stuff. That’s how you were able to see her. Want anything while I’m up? Water? Tea? Coffee?”So that’s why I was able to see her…
“Really? And yes, Coffee please.” Sparks replies as his hands come together on the table. Wait, did she say that Tarot is his girlfriend? How will she feel after…
“Water, please and thanks.”
Grape moves over to the dish washer near the sink grabbing a coffee mug and a glass. While she’s prepping the single cup coffee maker, she continues. “So, what’s this plan you were talking about? I’m assuming I’m a part of it.”
“Yeah. The plan is that I was going to sing at the end of the Halloween party for her. She doesn’t want to hide the relationship anymore, so I thought that this would be the way to do it.”
“That sounds so awesome! I know that she’ll love it.” Grape pauses. “Wait, how do I fit in with all of this then? I thought this party was for dogs only.”
“I’ve already talked to Fido about it. He said he’s going to talk with the other head members to get cats and other pets in besides dogs. What I need you to do is to take her to the party and be with her until the very end. Being the DJ of the party, I have to stay on the stage managing the music, so I figured having one friend there would make it better for her.”
Grape brings the assortment of drinks to the table as Sparks continues. “I’ll invite her to the party first sending her to you next. Maybe you can introduce her to the other cats of the neighborhood there too." Sparks stops for a moment to take a sip of his coffee. YOW!
Sparks winces as his tongue burns from the coffee. He ignores the pain and elaborates further. "At the end, during the song, I’m going to give the crowd a thumbs up. When this happens, I need you, Joey and Fox, if he says yes, to lift Tera on the stage so I can finish the song and… well… kiss her.” Sparks’ face turns crimson, showing through his fur.
“Wow, you’ve really got some guts. I wouldn’t even know what to think if I were in Tera’s position, but I know that she will love it. I know for sure that I wouldn’t take that big of a risk.” Grape pauses, leaving Sparks in suspense. Then, after a good minute, she decides. “I’m in.”
“Really!” Sparks beams, his tail wagging wildly while his face shows a smile stretching from ear to ear.
“Why not? It’s about time that we have something interesting going on here.”
Sparks was on the verge of jumping for joy. All of the worry, fear, and anxiety that resided in his mind had suddenly vanished in a single moment. Nothing could make today any better. Before Sparks could celebrate, Grape’s voice filled the room once more.
“So, if you don’t mind me asking, what song were you going to play at the party?”
“Sorry Grape, it’s a secret.” Sparks sticks his tongue out, bringing the cup of coffee to his muzzle.
“Aw! Just a little hint!”
“Please! I won’t tell!”Wow. She can really nail a puppy dog face…
Sparks shakes his head, still smiling.
“Alright, fine. I’ll wait then.” Grape pouts.
Sparks takes a long drink of his hot beverage and sets the cup down on the table. “Again, sorry Grape. I have to keep the song under wraps until the party to avoid any spoilers.”
“I understand. It’s fine.”
There is a long pause between the three of them as they all try to think of what to say. Joey is the first person to break the silence. “So, is there anything else we need to talk about Sparks?”
The black and white dog brings his paw to his chin, attempting to think of anything else to talk about. Explain the plan, check. Tell Grape her roll, check. Finish off this really good cup of coffee…
He takes one final sip of his coffee, leaving an empty mug on the table. Check
. “Nope. I think we covered everything.”
“Then I guess were ready to move on to phase three of the plan. Right Sparks?”
“Right. Thanks for the coffee--” Sparks stops speaking suddenly. Someone pops into the dog’s mind just as he hops off of the chair. Peanut! How could I forget?
As the other two look at Sparks in confusion, he continues. “I almost forgot! Can I go and see Peanut as well? I need to talk with him for a second.”
“Um… Sure…” Grape replied, confused. “Go up the stairs, and go left. It will be the second door on the right.”
“Thanks!” Sparks says as he makes his way to the stairs alone.
“Don’t take too long Sparks! We still have Fox to convince too.”
“I know, I know.” He turns his head toward Joey, flashing a smile. “I won’t be long.”
Sparks grabs the handrail of the stairs and ascends to the top, almost tripping on a couple of the steps. He makes it to the top of the stairs and turns left down the hallway. He looks at the closed door ahead of him, finding two of them labeled with an orange fish and a white bone, the same as the tags that both the Sandwich pets sported.
He nears the door with the bone, the exact location to where Grape described it being. He stands in front of the door bringing his paw up to the doorknob, but stops hearing a familiar voice singing a very familiar tune. I’d like to make myself believe
That planet Earth, turns, slowly
It’s hard to say I’d rather stay
Awake when I’m asleep,
‘Cause everything is never as it seems.
As the voice continues to sing, Sparks knocks on the door. The singing then ceases, and things could be heard moving about in the room. “Who… who is it?”
“It’s me. Sparks!” He answers, opening the door slightly. I sigh could be heard from the other side. “May I come in?”
Sparks enters the room, closing the door behind him. He then takes a seat on the edge of the bed next to Peanut. “So, how’s the practice coming along? You almost ready to sing at the ‘half-time’ show of the party?”
October 15th - 12 PM
Sparks groans as his head lays on the desk. After all of the work that he had put into the playlist, he was burnt out, uninspired, and unwilling to work. The dogs head lifts up from his desk and glances over at lower right hand corner of his computer monitor to check the time.Twelve o’clock? Already? Where did my three hours go?!
Sparks scratches his head, trying to think of what to do. I could work on my Joker impression… or… I could go over to Tera’s for a bit. We could play Mario Kart on her Wii…
His thought is suddenly interrupted by loud knocks coming from the entrance of the house. Sparks gets confused and turns around. How could I have heard the door? My studio is sound proof… Oh, yeah. I forgot. I left my door open…
He stands up from his black leather desk chair and makes his way to the front door.I wonder who’s at the door… is it Tera? It could be, but I don’t want to have a repeat of last time.
Sparks recalls the moment Joey came over to visit him by Fox’s request. He had accidentally mentioned the word ‘kitten,’ giving the hint away. He knew that if it were anyone else, his secret was clearly out of the bag. Otherwise, there would have been a very confused dog or a very offended cat on his porch. He didn’t want this to happen again. What if it was
He continues to question what being could be at the door further as he nears the door. It could be Joey. Maybe he wants to play Magic. Then again, he would have called the house first.
Another one of his friends pop into his mind. Who knows? It could even be Fox. Maybe he’s actually comfortable with me and Tera together now…
Sparks sighs as his hand goes to the door knob Who am I kidding, ever since Tera moved in he’s been uncomfortable around me. Like he doesn’t know what to say around me. I doubt he’s here to see me.
His thought was then interrupted by the loud knocks at the door making him jump. I should probably open up the door…
Sparks turns the knob and slowly opens the door. He then peaks ahead of the door as it continues to open to reveal a white husky standing on the porch. Not only that, a dog with cinnamon colored fur was beside the husky. He first looks at the male dog. He sported a red collar with a bone dangling from it. Not only that, his ears were floppy, but stood slightly up, unlike Bino’s that were almost glued to his head.
Sparks takes a short moment to get a good look at the… female husky. He could tell that she was indeed a girl by the stance and the look of her. She looked a little agitated with her hand on her hip, but her expression said the opposite. Her head fur was long, almost covering her right eye. She had a locket around her neck as well, silver, very cool. She also had grey colored fur at her chest and a hint of black on the tip of her tail. Not only that, she also wore a blue collar which seems to pop out in contrast to her fur. After this short moment analyzing her, Sparks introduces himself meekly. “H-hi. I’m Sparks.”
The husky then responds, “I’m Angel.” She then turns toward to the dog beside her, his hands behind his back. “This is Peanut. Are you Sparks?”
“Yes.” Sparks answers confused.
“May we come in?””So
this is Peanut…
“Sure.” He replies, opening the door completely for his guests. They both walk through the door, stopping behind Sparks, taking a look at the house. The door shuts and Sparks turns around, continuing his greeting. “Would you like to sit down in the living room?”
“Yes. Thank you.”
They all move towards the living room, Angel and Peanut sitting down on the couch. “Would you like anything to drink? Water? Tea? Coffee?” The husky thinks for a second. “Orange Soda?”
“No thanks. We’ll only be here for a second.”
“Ok then.” Sparks says, taking a seat in the chair facing the couch. “So, what did you guys need? Is… this about the party? Would you like to add more songs to the list? I’m almost done, but I guess I can squeeze in a few more.”
“Well,” Angel announces, unabashed, “Yes, but we would like to ask you something.”
“We would like to have Peanut here sing at the party. A few songs. Nothing more.”
Sparks looks at the two with a smile, although, Peanut looks like he’s about to break down looking as nervous as ever. It was almost as if you could see him shake. He’s never seen a dog shake this
much before other than himself. The last time he felt this nervous is when he first sang for a crowd of people. Sparks thinks for a second, trying to understand Peanuts situation. There has to be some reason for him to come and ask to sing.
Sparks quickly comes to a conclusion. I wonder…
“This is just me guessing off the top of my head, but is this specifically meant for someone?” Peanut smiles, a slight blush coming though his fur. “Someone special?” Peanuts expression switches completely with his eyes wide and his mouth slightly ajar.
“Wow.” Angel replies astonished. “How did you come to that?”
“Well, I just thought about him in my shoes. What would be the best way to get the attention of someone you like at a party? Singing. Gets ‘em every time.” Sparks chuckles. “Well… not every time, but you get my point. I also saw Peanut’s reaction when I mentioned ‘if it was meant for someone.’ He seemed to have a slight blush, that’s how I knew. It’s very romantic if I do say so myself.”
Sparks then turns his head to Peanut, moving forward on the chair, almost leaning in. “Peanut, be brave. I know this whole plan seems scary, but I assure you that you’ll do fine. Is Angel helping you sing?” Peanut nods his head. “Well, then I bet that this student will do great by using what his teacher *Points at Angel*
is teaching him.
“Just know that you’ll do fine. Trust me. I know from experience. When I was in New York, my parents talked me into singing for a crowd of people for a talent show. You should have seen me. You could see me shake from a mile away. It was like the ground was shaking under me, like my own personal earthquake. It wasn’t until my dad finally came to me before I went on stage before I calmed down. I still remember the song…” Sparks give a smile as he hums the opening part to ‘You’ll be In My Heart.’ This song to him was a dedication to Tera, his girlfriend.
“You’ll be in My Heart…” Angel chimes in, smirking at her new found thought. “Looks like someone
was in the exact
Sparks smiles, snickering to himself. “Not exactly.” Angel and Peanut stare at each other, confused as Sparks switches the subject.
“So. If Peanut is singing at the party, could I know what songs or artists he’s considering?”
“I thought that considering his voice, he would sing a bit of Owl City. Do you know them?”
“Heard of them? I have ‘Ocean Eyes Deluxe Edition. They’re one of my favorites besides Linkin Park!”
“Really? Linkin Park is my favorite too! Anyways, great! I’m sure you know the song If My Heart Was a House
The mention of the song make his ears twitch, he remembers the name but can’t remember the tune. “Well… yes. I do. Could it be possible for Peanut to give me a little taste of what he can do? He can sing anything he wants” Sparks looks at Peanut and his expression turned from a smile to absolute fear in an instant. He quickly takes back his statement, attempting to not stress the dog out. “I mean, only if he wants to. I think of it as kind of an audition of sorts, but if he doesn’t want to sing to me right now, he doesn’t have to. It’s his choice.”
Angel sighs. “You’re right. If Peanut doesn’t want to, I won’t make him. It’s his--”
The sound of a familiar tune fills the air as Angel stops speaking to take a listen to her apprentice, singing beautifully to a song by Owl City. Peanuts eyes were closed shutting out the world as he sings with grace.“You’re the sky that I fell through
And I remember the view whenever I’m holding you
The Sun hung from a string
Looking down on the world as it warmed over everything.
Chills run down my spine as our fingers entwine
And your sighs harmonize with mine
Unmistakably I can still feel your heart
Beat fast when you dance with me.”
He remembers the song. It’s the song that Sparks listened to for the longest time before he made a connection that ended his Owl City days. Sparks gets these sudden flashbacks of his old home with his biological mother being with him through everything they put up with in that house. He then remembers that day when they were separated. Sparks’ emotions start to fly as the first tear makes its way to his arms that were resting on his legs, his head lowering so no one could notice.“We got older and I should have known,”“(Do you feel alive?)”
Angel sings back up, Peanut continuing, not noticing.“That I’d feel colder when I walk alone,”“(Oh, but you’ll survive,)”“So I may as well ditch my dismay,”
They both sing in harmony, Sparks included adding a lower part into the mix creating a perfect major chord. “Bombs away… Bombs away…”
Just as Peanut begins with the chorus, he feels a paw come to his shoulder. Sparks looks up finally to find Angel standing beside him, comforting him. She must have noticed his reaction to the song…“Circle me and the needle moves gracefully,
Back and forth, if my heart was a compass you’d be North
Risk it all cause I’ll catch you if you fall
Where ever you go, If my heart was a house you’d be home.”
Sparks was now sobbing in the arms of Angel, the memories overpowering his will to hold back the emotions flowing through him, but to no avail. “Did… did I do something wrong?” Peanut asks concerned.
Sparks then speaks, his sobs dying down, "No. No, its something from my past. This song made me think of something that still... haunts me even till now. Something that NO ONE
knows about. Not even my mom and dad."
"Do you need to talk about it?" Angel asks in a caring tone.
Sparks hesitates, thinking about the offer. "Y-yes. I think its about time I get this off of my chest. I've been living with this for too long." Sparks wipes the tears from his eyes and fur and continues. "Its... about my mom... and her passing. She... she died right beside me."
Angel and Peanut stare at him, surprised. “Do… do you mind me asking how?”
Sparks shakes his head and begins telling his tale. “It was around noon, it seemed like any other day, my… owners…” Sparks growls. “Were tending to their ‘plants,’ and left me and my mom in the corner of the room to just sit there doing nothing. Then, the humans were freaking out, panicking about something. My mom held me tight, comforting me as I start freaking out, unaware of the situation. Then, I see my owners grab these big metal things and flip the dinner table over next to us. My mom holds me tighter, caressing me as I almost hyperventilate in her arms. I was in a state of panic and shock.
“Suddenly, there were loud bangs at the front door. It shook the whole house like an earthquake. The next thing I know, the door flies open and big men start filling the house yelling ‘POILICE! DROP THE WEAPONS!’ Then, mom pushed me to the ground and covered my ears, suppressing loud bangs that filled the air. So many thing were happening at once, I was freaking out. I screamed, but I couldn’t even hear myself. As the final bangs were going off, I feel my mom’s body jolt. She starts to stagger and then starts to fall…”
Tears were filling Sparks’ eyes, leading to full on sobs as the memory continues to play in his mind. Before he has a chance to speak, Angel comes towards him, starting to caress him, trying to calm him down to continue the story. “Then… my mom falls down on the ground, me catching her laying her down on the floor, covering a red spot on her that wasn’t there before. She started breathing heavily and looked into my eyes, my confused, innocent eyes and pulled me close.” He pauses to sniffle and cough, the sobs still pouring out of him. “She whispered something to me. She told me: ‘I love you Max. Be a good boy for me. O…kay....’ Then… then…”
Angel supportively hugs him, his face now buried in her fur, sobbing harder than ever before soaking the husky’s fur in his tears. After almost a full minute of crying, his face gravitates away from the husky and lets out puffs of air before continuing on. “I tried to wake her u-up, but everything I-I tried wouldn’t work. I tried shaking her, calling her, but nothing worked. I was then picked up by one of the guys that came into the house. I was screaming at the man to put me down. I kept telling him that my mom was still in there, but he wouldn’t listen. Before he took me out of the house, I got one last look at my mom, laying there, motionless on the floor just like the other two humans that were once my owners.
“I learned later that the police were there to arrest my owners for planting, harvesting, and distributing drugs out to various people and dealers. Not only that, I found out that the officer who accidently shot my mom was hit by one of my owners, causing the officer to get forced back by the impact and shoot off the stray bullet. Both of my owners died that day, as well as the only being that I held dear, and ever since then I’ve been trying hiding all of the anger, sadness, and depression because I didn’t want to relive those moments again. I wanted to be the happiest, caring pup I could be, because I wanted everyone else to feel good around me. To honor my mom’s memory. She would have wanted me to be happy.
“Up until this point, this information was kept in the dark. My records were lost on my transfer to the shelter, so no information came with me other than my old name. As I said, not even my mom and dad know about this. I would like to keep it that way. Please. For my sake. Could you guys not mention this to anyone
. I wouldn’t want anyone to know of my struggle and strife and make them feel bad for me. Plus, I haven’t yet fully healed mentally and I don’t know what I’d do if someone asked. Just please, do me this favor.” Sparks lets out one last puff of air as he wipes the last of his tears on his arm.
“I Promise.” Angel speaks first. “Not a word.”
“Me too. I promise.” Peanut adds.
Sparks smiles. “Thanks guys.” He looks toward Angel, seeing the spot where he sobbed against her, the wet fur clumping together. “Sorry about getting your fur wet Angel.”
“Its fine Sparks. Don’t worry about it.”
He stares up toward the sky as his head tilts up, his thoughts now happy and relieved. I love you mom. Thanks for watching over me. I hope I’ll see you again in the end.
His head drops back down now facing both Angel and Peanut. “So, Peanut, could you sing something else? Something to lighten the mood. I’m sure we’d all enjoy that.”
“Sure.” Peanut says confidently. “What song?”
“Oh!” Angel chimes in, “How about The Bird and the Worm
? You know that one!” Then she directs the conversation towards Sparks, “It’s a great song.”
Peanut stands up from the couch, now eager to show his new found talent to both of his friends. As he finishes breathing in and out, he begins a new song.
“If you're the bird whenever we pretend it's summer
Then I'm the worm, I know the part, it's such a bummer
But fair is fair, if my segments get separated
I'll scream and you'll be there
Close your eyes, close my eyes
Slide the cotton off of your shoulder
And feel the shine, feel the shine
I'm hooked so toss me over and cast a line, oh I'll try
Oh, throw a party and greet my undersea friends
It depends, as they arrive, if they arrive
You and I left our troubles far behind, troubles far behind
But I still have just one more question on my mind
For all my pals who live in the oceans and the seas
With friends like these well, who needs enemies?
“That was awesome!” Sparks beams. Almost showing no signs of sadness.
“Thanks.” Peanut responds.
“You can definitely sing at the party. If you guys stop by another time, I could set up my equipment and start working on the technical side of the performance.”
“Cool.” Peanut responds, looking at the clock on the DVR. “Well, I have to go. I’ll see you guys later!”
The dog leaves the house, leaving Sparks and Angel alone. “So, Sparks…”
“Is it possible to create a CD of Peanut singing? Just in case, I want to have a backup plan if something happens
that Peanut can’t perform that day. That way, Grape can still have Peanuts singing.”
“Sure, I can do that. No problem.”
“Good. I think that it’s about time for me to go too. I have to be home by three o’clock and my house is six blocks away, so I have to start heading out.” They both stand and move towards the door, Sparks opening it for her. “Wait,” she stops, “I want to let you know, I saw you with that cat that moved into the neighborhood.”
Sparks’ face turns a bright red, showing through his fur, the room suddenly feeling a lot warmer. “Y-you did?”
“Don’t worry, your secret is safe with me. By the way, that kiss was so romantic. Did you know her before she moved here?”
“Yeah. It’s a long story. I’ll tell you later.”
“Alright. I’ll see you later then”
“Bye!” Sparks says as she leaves the house and off the porch. He shuts the door and turns around toward the stairs, not knowing what to think. His thoughts were a jumbled up mess. There were no words that could describe this moment. Sparks sighs and finally gets a phrase out. “What a crazy day.” His head turns toward the kitchen. “Maybe an orange soda wouldn’t hurt. I wonder if we have any left…”
---===---The Sandwich Household
Sparks waits for a response from Peanut. All of the practice with Angel and the recording with Sparks to “monitor” his progress was extensive, but very much worth it. Peanut was almost ready to perform. All that’s left is the stage work for the singing and the setup of the mics he acquired off of Amazon.
Peanut responds with a weak smile, “It’s going good.”
“That’s great. Is there anything else? You know, you can talk to me if you have any problems.”
Peanut’s head lowers, the smile disappearing. “I just… I’m nervous. I’m afraid about what will happen. What if I screw up? What if Grape doesn’t like it? What if…”
“Peanut,” Sparks puts his paw on his friend’s shoulder, “You’ll be fine. This is why you’ve been practicing so much with Angel, there’s no way that you’ll fail. Trust me when I say this: You’ll do fine.”
The smile returns to Peanut’s face, this time bigger, and not forced like the last one. “Thanks Sparks.”
“No problem.” Sparks replies as his paw comes back to his side. He then hops off of the bed and stretches out before speaking once more. “Anyways, I’ve got Joey waiting downstairs and I still need to go to two more houses, so I’ll catch you later, ok?”
“Sure. Bye Sparks!”
Sparks opens the door back up and starts to head out. He stops, a new thought pops into his head as he turn around to see Peanut again. “Just so you know, you’re one of the things that inspired me to sing at the party too. I want to thank you for that.”
“Really?” Peanut looked shocked, “I… uh… you’re welcome. So you’re singing at the party too?”
“Yep. At the very end. It’s going to be super special.”
“Cool. So, what are you singing?”
“I don’t want to spoil it for you.” Sparks says in a jokingly serious manor.
“Sorry Peanut! I have to keep the song under lock and key until the night of the party. You’ll hear it then.”
“Okay…” Peanut says disappointed.
“Well, I have to go. Remember to practice! Cya!”
“Cya.” His friend replies as the door shuts behind him.
Sparks stares at the door for second and sighs. Peanut sure has come a long way since he started singing. His progress is astounding. At least now the Sandwich phase is complete in my plan. Onto the next step. Fox.
Sparks makes his way down the stairs to find Joey and Grape, still standing near the front door almost in the same positions. “There you are Sparks.” Joey starts, “You ready to go?”
“Alright then. Good luck guys! I can’t wait for the party. Tera’s gonna freak when she hears you.”
“Thanks. Bye Grape.” Sparks waves as both dogs make it out of the house and onto the sidewalk. Next stop, Fox’s house.
Joey and Sparks near Fox’s house, as they finish up their conversation about Magic: the Gathering. Joey then moves the conversation towards their plan. “So, this is the last stop right?”
“Not exactly. We have one more stop after this.”
“Which is?” Joey asks as they stop at the front door of the house.
Sparks brings his arm and paw up to knock. “You’ll see…”
The black and white dog hits the door creating a hard knocking sound. His arm comes back to his side and stands beside Joey as they wait for someone to answer the door. For a moment, nothing happened. All that could be heard was the sound of the fall wind blowing through the streets and the birds chirping; a relaxing scene making Sparks smile.
Thoughts of the day Tera moved in flood him mind, how Fox was so uncomfortable around the couple when he was around them. He turns towards Joey, taking a breath. “Hey Joey?”
“Do you think that Fox would even help?”
“Why would you say that? You said he was your friend right?”
“Well, yes, but other than a few times of me coming over to his house to play, he hasn’t even asked to hang out. Even when we do, he acts so uncomfortable around me. It’s just… I don’t think he wants to be my friend anymore.” Sparks’ head lowers as well as his ears, now uncertain of what his friend will say.
“Sparks, you know that he doesn’t like cats, right?
“And you know that he still wants to hang out when you come over, right?” Sparks nods. “So just give him some more time. I know if I didn’t like cats and my new friend turned out to be a cat lover, I wouldn’t know what to think.”
Sparks sighs. “You’re right. Maybe he’s just trying to adjust. He did
say that he would tolerate it. You could be right, maybe he just needs some time.”
Suddenly, the door opens revealing a grey husky before them. His head fur was standing tall on his head and his yellow bandanna was crooked on his neck. He looks groggy as he brings his paw up to his eye, rubbing it trying to wake himself up. “Hey Sparks. Hey Joey.” He starts, yawning. “What brings you two here?”
“I need to talk with you about something.” Sparks answers. “May we come in?”
“Sure. I’ll get something for us to drink while you make yourselves at home. Water or orange soda?”
“I’ll take a water.” Joey replies taking a seat on the couch.
“Orange soda please. OH! Cover up the label too! I wanna guess the brand.” Sparks says as he sits down next to Joey, Fox disappearing.
“Got it!” Fox yells from the other room.
“Since when did you start drinking orange soda?” Joey asks with a hint of curiosity.
Sparks puts his paw to his mouth, trying to remember. “My first soda… Hmm… It was when I was two at one of my parent’s gatherings when one of their pieces of art was used in a gallery. People and pets of all kinds were there. During the party I saw some soda sitting on the counter and I got curious, so I took a sip… then a swig… I guess it just tasted good, you know? I didn’t drink the full can though.
“I didn’t know what it was until my dad told me, and mom didn’t mind because they like to throw parties every once and a while, and that’s when the soda comes out, but they did lay down some rules about the stuff, like no more than two per month, what it can do to me, et cetera.
“So, we made a deal that I could only have one can of soda every month. Sometimes, I have one more than I’m supposed to have… well… not on the same day or week, but you get what I mean. This will be my second one this month. Actually, I haven’t had two sodas in a single month since the beginning of last winter…”
“Your family must be really flexible with rules.”
“They’re only like that because I’m always being good, well, I try to be at least. It all started at the same party. Apparently, I talked a dog out of doing something really, really bad. When I was passing by the kitchen, I saw a border collie out on the terrace of our flat. When I got closer, I saw that she was looking down, so I went and introduced myself to her. She seemed so lifeless at first sight, her first few words didn’t fare much better, but as I talked more and more to her and asked her why she was alone, she told me that I shouldn’t worry about it.
“When we got further into our conversation, I must have struck a nerve because she started to get very sad and mad all of a sudden. Then when I told her how great of a dog she was, because she seems so good deep down, she started to cry, and I hugged her. She told me that I was the first pet to actually acknowledge her in years, she even thanked me. I talked with her about video games all night until she had to leave, believe it or not. Then before she left, she told me her name. Funny, she didn’t even give me her name until the end of the night. What was it… oh yeah! Emerald!
“She never told me what that bad thing was, but she did tell her mom and dad. Her parents were immensely grateful though. They told us that I even saved Emerald’s life. Imagine if I didn’t even meet her that night… that’s also why I like to meet anyone I see, just in case, you know? Anyways, that’s when my dad made that deal with me. I consider it a reward, you know? Well… not a reward, I didn’t mean it like that, but… a…” Sparks couldn’t find the words to finish his sentence.
“I understand. It’s your one chance to unwind, have your own fun, and reflect… I guess. That was a great story too. You really do
have a way to make friends with whoever you come in contact with. You know, even though you’re young, you seem very
mature…” Joey stops, looking at Fox now arriving with two cans of soda stacked on top of each other in one paw, and a glass of water in the other. Both of the sodas were covered with some sort of paper, so the label could not be seen. Fox gives Joey his water and Sparks his soda.
Two clicks of the tops of the cans sounded as both Sparks and Fox sip down on their beverage. “Mmm.” Sparks sounded as the soda swished around in his mouth. “Fanta. Definitely Fanta.”
Fox lowers the can from his muzzle. “Man, you really know your soda, don’t you?”
“Yeah… well… no… I just remember tastes well, that’s all.”
Sparks sets his drink down on the coffee table in front of him while Joey drinks is water and Fox takes a swig of his sugary drink. As the can moves away from the husky’s face, he continues. “So, why are you here you guys? You wanted to hang out?”
Sparks could tell that there was a slight sense of discomfort with Fox. He could feel it around him. “We needed your help with something.”
“Well…” Sparks pauses, picking up his can and taking a quick drink. “I was thinking of singing at the party…”
“That’s great! You’ll be awesome.”
“I’m not quite done. I was thinking of singing a song at the party, but it’s for Tera. She’ll be on the stage with me.”
Fox’s face was in shock. “Are you… are you out of your mind?! Do you know what you’re even thinking?!”
“No I’m not out of my mind, and yes, I do. Tera and I don’t want to hide our relationship anymore. If anyone has a problem, they can ignore us.”
“But think of all of the backlash!”
“I don’t care. As long as we’re happy, that’s all that matters.”
Fox’s expression changed again, now more irritated than before. “Fine, if I were to take part in this plan of yours, who would all be into it.”
Joey then steps in, “So far we have Fido, Grape, and I. We still need two more pets, including you.”
“Wait, Fido? How’d you get Fido to help you?”
“Long story.” Sparks takes another drink and carries on. “So will you help me, or not?” There was a long pause between the three of them. Sparks waited in anticipation. Why is he so hesitant? Is he afraid? Who or what is there to be…
Sparks’ eyes grew wide coming to his conclusion. Bino.
Before Fox could make a decision, Sparks spoke up. “Fox, are you afraid of what might happen to you?”
“No! I mean… no…” Fox quickly responded.Gotcha.
Sparks thought as he kept himself in control. “Fox, are we friends?”
“Then you can talk to me right?”
Fox’s head lowered, looking at the ground. “Yes…” Sparks smiles at his friend, trying to be as supportive as possible. “But, Joey’s here…”
“If you want me leave the room for a bit I can. This is between you two.” Joey speaks up.
“Thanks Joey.” Sparks says as his friend leaves the room. “So, what’s wrong? Is it something? Someone? I’m all ears.”
“It’s… it’s just that I’m worried. What if someone sees me helping out and tries to call me out as a cat-lover or something…”
“I’m just going to throw this out there, but, it’s Bino isn’t it.”
“What? No!” Sparks crosses his arms. “Alright fine. Yes. It’s Bino, ok? He’s my friend, I’ve known him since we were pups. He and I hated
cats. It wasn’t until I was saved by one until I actually started to lighten up, but I do still dislike cats. If Bino sees me helping you, he might think that I may be a cat-lover and might not want to be friends anymore. Even though he can be such a jerk, and I mean a JERK, I still consider him a friend.”
“Do you want my honest opinion?” Fox shakes his head. “If you care about your friends, you would do anything to help them right?” His head goes up and down once more. “I understand if I’m putting you in a tough position right now. You want to help, but you don’t want to put your friendship at risk. If you don’t want to help, that’s completely fine, I understand. I want to maintain the peace as much as possible during this, so if you feel that your unable to do this, that’s ok.”
“Thanks Sparks.” Fox smiled half-heartedly. Sparks could tell that he felt really terrible about not being able to help.
“Hey, if you do change your mind, you can visit me and tell me later. Is that alright?”
“Yeah. Thanks again.”
“You’re welcome.” Sparks takes one last sip of his soda before setting it down on the coffee table in front of him. He stands up from the couch, stretching a little bit as he walks towards the door. “Well, I have one more stop before my day is done and it’s five blocks away, so I better get going.” He then directs his voice towards the other room that Joey was in, “Hey Joey, we’re all done here. Time to go.”
“Sure Sparks. Nice seeing you Fox.”
“Nice seeing you too Joey.”
“Hey Fox?” asks the black and white dog.
“You should come and visit when you have the chance. I have video games, books, chess, you name it!”
“Will do.” Fox opens the door for Joey and Sparks as they walk through the opening. “See you later guys.”
“Cya!” Both say in unison.
The door closes behind them, leaving the two of them walking down to the sidewalk. “So,” Joey starts, “There’s one more house left right?”
“Yep. You ready to walk five blocks?”
A groan could be heard from the two, as they continue to walk down the street.
“Is this the place?” Joey asks.
“Yep.” Sparks responds. He moves forward towards the entrance of the home eager to complete the preparation phase of his plan. As he was walking, he noticed the absence of his friend in his peripheral vision. He turned around to see Joey standing nervously in front of him. That’s odd. Joey? Nervous?
He comes up to Joey, reassuring him. “Don’t worry, she’s a friend.”
Joey looks at the house for a moment and then back at Sparks. He breathes then speaks up. “Ok.”
“Great. Let’s go.” Sparks lets Joey go first, taking the lead. I don’t think I’ve seen Joey like this before. I wonder why… Could it be someone in this part of the neighborhood? Or is it just Angel? No, he wouldn’t ask if this was the place if he already met her. What is it?
Sparks and Joey step onto the porch of the house, Sparks stepping up towards the door. He takes a look around the front door, noticing the plaque labeled ‘Raymond’ with the address below it to his left. Fancy…
. He turns towards Joey who was looking behind him. “Joey?” He asks his friend, whose head quickly turns toward the direction of the sound.
Sparks turns back towards the entrance and brings his arm up, readying his paw to knock. Sparks takes a moment to collect his thoughts and calm his mind, then knocks at the door. He brings his arms behind his back and waits for a response.
“You know what?” Joey speaks suddenly.
“The most stressful thing about each of these visits is just waiting for the door to open.”
Sparks thinks about this for a second. “You know what, you’re right. It really is one of the most stressful things about our plan.”
“You mean your
“You know what I meant.” Sparks says jokingly with a smile. “To me, I think the most stressful thing is talking about the plan--”
Sparks was cut off by the loud opening of the door in front of them. Sparks smiles waiting in anticipation. It’s been a couple days since he’s seen Angel and Peanut for them to ‘monitor’ his progress, as Angel would say.
The door opens fully, revealing the Siberian Husky from behind it. “Hey Sparks.” She welcomes with a… A smile? That’s unusual… Could it be the red dye in her fur? It has to be. It’s like she seems so much happier with it in.
(Um, Sparks… you kind of interrupted me in the middle of my narration…) Oh shush random voice in my head! You can wait for a second, right?
(*sigh* Yes, I can wait.) It’s weird, ok? She seemed to be so agitated about something when I met her, it’s… cool to see her smile.
(Yeah, your right. It is a bit weird. Hey… uh… can I go back to narrating please?) Sure! Go ahead.
Angel then looks to Sparks’ right, noticing the dog behind him. Her smile disappears, straightening out as her expression turns to confusion. “Who’s this?”
Sparks turns toward his friend. “This is my friend Joey. Joey, this is Angel.”
Joey steps up towards Angel extending his paw to her. “Hello Angel. Nice to meet you.”
She grabs his paw and shakes it. “Nice to meet you too Joey.”
“May we come in?” Sparks asks.
“Sure. Come with me to the kitchen.”
Sparks and Joey follow the husky though the doorway and down the hall to the kitchen, talking on the way. “So Sparks, Joey,” she starts, “Why are you guys here?”
“We want to ask you if you would take part in our little plan that we’ve come up with.”
Angel tilts her head. “Plan? What plan?”
“A plan where I sing in front of the whole neighborhood at the party.”
Angel smiles, “Is it for… ‘you-know-who?’”
“Tera? Yes. Joey knows. It’s fine.”
A sigh of relief came out of the husky. “Okay, good. I had to make sure. Does anyone else know?”
“Yes. Grape, Fido, and Fox know too. Grape and Fido agreed to the plan and I’m still waiting on Fox.”
“Are you sure that Fox can be trusted? He’s friends with Bino you know.”
“I know, but he told me himself that he questions his friendship with him anyways, so there’s still a chance of him helping out. Besides, before Tera moved in, we hung out together almost every day.”
“Alright… if you say so.”
“I know so. Trust me.” Sparks looks down at the table, thinking about Fox and his plan.
After a moment, Angel continues. “So, about the plan… what would I be doing?”
“You would be with Fox trying to make room for Grape, Joey, and Fido helping Tera onto the front of the stage. When I give the signal, a thumbs up, that’s when you and the others come in to help get her on the stage.”
“Alright. Is that it?”
“I think so…” Suddenly, a new thought came to his mind, begging to be heard. “Did I tell you the story on how Tera and I know each other?”
Angel puts her hand on her muzzle, almost as if she was “The Thinker” statue. “No, I don’t think you’ve told me yet.”
“Do you want to hear it?”
Joey then chimes in, eager to hear the story. “You should. It’s a great story.”
“Alright, sure. I’ll listen.”
“Great!” Sparks enthusiastically replies. “Now, would you like to hear the shorter version or the longer version?”
“I’ll go with the longer one. I have time.”
“Sure. Longer version it is.” Sparks says as he begins telling his tale of how he and Tera came to be.
After about a half hour, the story concludes and a certain Husky is left baffled at the blushing young dog. “I don’t know what to say. Um… I guess I didn’t know that you and Tera were so close. I probably wouldn’t have guessed in a million years. I’m happy that the bonds between the two of you held strong though those years too. How long was it? Two?”
“Yep. It wasn’t until two and a half years before we were reunited again. Oh, and thanks.” He smiles as the red in his face starts to dissipate. “So will you join in on the plan? I know you still have that other project going on, so I understand if you can’t. I’ll just have Fido take your place if that’s the case.”
“It won’t be too much, I’m in.”
“Great! Thank you so much!”
“You’re welcome. So, is that it?”
“Yep. I guess we should get going, I’ve got some preparations to do before the party.” Sparks says as he and Joey get off of the dining room chairs and towards the door. “I’ll see you later Angel!”
Angel yells from the kitchen, still sitting at the table, “See you later guys!”
Sparks and Joey open the door and leave the house, happy now that the plan is now in motion. Well, one of them anyways. Sparks looks at Joey, still looking around nervously. Something’s not right… He’s doing it again… I’ll ask him about it later, right now, it’s time for celebration.
“Hey Joey,” he asks His friends head moves toward his voice, “How about we go to my house and play some Magic: the Gathering or Mario Kart for the Wii?”
Joey sighs as he smiles, “Sure. That sounds like fun.”
Sparks and Joey walk down the street happy, knowing the preparation for the plan was out of the way. The only obstacle left for them today was the six block walk ahead of them to Sparks’ house.END OF PART FOUR: CHAPTER TWO
A/N - Hey guys! You should check out FoxRock's little fanfic too! viewtopic.php?f=13&t=2972
I also highly recommend that you take a look at the songs posted in this chapter! They're really good!
Pentatonix is also a really good group as well, so go on YouTube and show them some love! PTXofficial is the channel!