Written 5/10/09, 621 words.
Bandom - gen. I completely rewrote the beginning of this, partly because I no longer liked it and partly because I thought it should all be Pete's POV. In the document, I had then pasted in the rest of what I'd written so far, but since I just posted that I'm not going to do that here. At this point, I was thinking that this might turn out Pete/Joe or Pete/Patrick/Joe in the end.
When Pete woke up as a dog, the first thing he thought was, Okay, where are the hidden cameras? People didn’t just turn into animals overnight. Only apparently they did now, because he definitely had paws, a tail and fur where he’d never had real fur before.
Confused, he wandered downstairs. Hemingway was sleeping on the couch, and Pete nudged him with a paw to wake him up. His dog only growled low and kept sleeping. Pete didn’t want to find out what would happen if Hemingway was hostile when he woke up and didn’t recognize him, so he gave up for the moment and went into the kitchen. An empty bowl greeted him, and he realized he wouldn’t be able to feed himself. So far, being a dog sucked.
He barked a few times, just to see what would happen. (He just sounded like a dog.) Not knowing what to do with himself, he ran around the house frantically, until he tired himself out. He wound up back in his room, where he laid his head on his paws and whined pathetically.
Cautiously, a head poked around the doorframe. Sniffing the air and staring at him in obvious confusion, Hemingway stepped into the room.
Pete tried to say something, anything, but the words weren’t there, and all that came out were a bark and a few whimpers. Hemingway cocked his head to the side like he sometimes did when Pete talked to him, and Pete realized in horror that he had no way of expressing himself, even to his own dog.
Hemingway, seeming to sense Pete’s turmoil, walked over to him and curled up close, snuggling in. Pete leaned into him and closed his eyes. If he had to be a dog, at least he was lucky enough to have Hemingway to keep him company.
Pete had forgotten that Joe was stopping by that afternoon until he heard the knock at the door. He was instantly grateful that he’d thought to leave a spare key under the mat and tell his friends it was there, since he doubted paws were sufficient for opening doors. He ran downstairs and barked through the door.
“Hey, Hem,” Joe called to him. “What’s up? Where’s Pete?”
Pete just barked again and scratched at the door. His cell phone rang upstairs.
“Pete, pick up,” Joe muttered.
After a minute, the ringing stopped. Pete shoved a little bit of his paw through the mail slot, and Joe said, “Okay, all right, I’m coming in, one second.” Pete removed his paw as he heard the key being slid out from under the mat, then the door unlocking, and Joe was there, looking at him quizzically.
“Where’d you come from?” he asked, bending down to scratch Pete’s ears. Pete looked up at him and whined unhappily.
“You have to go out, huh? Okay, let’s go. Maybe Pete’ll be back by the time we get back. Hemingway!” Joe called, and Hemingway bounded downstairs, panting. “Come on, let’s go out.”
Pete only had one leash, so Joe just didn’t bother. Thrilled to be outside, Pete raced all over the place, Hemingway close behind him. It was also clear that they were leading Joe, not the other way around. Pete made sure not to lose him as he ran towards Joe’s hotel. Maybe if he showed Joe he knew where he was staying, Joe would realize it was him. He took them right to the front door of the hotel and sat back on his haunches, looking up at Joe expectantly.
“Who are you?” Joe asked, bewildered. Pete sighed in frustration, and turned back to the house. There had to be a way to get Joe to figure it out.