When John’s beloved dog died from old age, he decided to make some changes in his life. He was a natural loner who always had a hard time making friends, but when he got Lancelot five years ago from a dog pound, the beagle had brought so much happiness to his life. Now that Lancelot was gone, he did not know how he could go back to a life of absolute loneliness.
After a few days of grieving, he scanned Craigslist’s personal ads hoping to find someone. There were a lot of senior citizens seeking friends or a romantic partner as well as dominatrices looking to fuck. He decided to write his own personal ad and formulated a quick description of himself: Single Male, Late-twenties, 6’0, average build. Enjoys movies, music, and books. Also, a dog-lover. Seeking new friend for possible romantic relationship.
He posted the ad and went to bed feeling hopeful for the first time in days. When he checked his email the next day, he saw that he received many messages from a variety of women. He weeded through the list until he came to one that sparked his interest. Her name was Melanie and she was a makeup artist who was looking to meet a nice guy. She stated that she loved dogs and had recently witnessed the death of her own dog a few months before. This completely drew John in, and he gave her his number. She quickly called him after he hit the send button. He was surprised and nervous but found himself talking to her for more than two hours about a variety of common interests especially her love for dogs. She had lost a collie a few months ago to cancer and it had completely devastated her. John told her about Lancelot, and they decided to set up a meeting in the middle of the week. John got off the phone feeling completely elated.
The meeting was at a Starbucks, so John arrived there early, and grabbed a Frappuccino to await Melanie’s arrival. He looked at every woman who entered the Starbucks and tried to figure out which one was Melanie. A short thin dark-haired woman walked in and looked around the shop. She had eyeglasses on and was wearing a light blue summer dress with white flower prints on it. She spotted John and walked to him with a smile on her face.
“John?” she asked as she got to his table. “Yes. Melanie?” he stated as he rose out of his seat and extended his hand to hers.
“Yes, it’s nice to meet you.” She shook his hand and sat down across from him. John’s nerves went away as they talked. Melanie was both easygoing and had a great sense of humor. They sat and talked in Starbucks for a few hours and made plans for dinner at Melanie’s place on Saturday.
Melanie was constantly on his mind as he dredged through the rest of the week. He was amazed at how easy it was to talk to her and that they had so many things in common. On Saturday, he showed up to Melanie’s apartment with a bottle of wine in hand. Melanie kissed him on his cheek when she opened her door and John instantly blushed.
The apartment had many framed photos of a collie scattered throughout. There were many shots of Melanie and her dog in various settings. John gazed at the pictures with a small smile on his face. She cared as much about her dog as he did.
When they finished eating, they sat close on the couch drinking wine. John desperately wanted to kiss her but felt afraid that he would be rushing things. Melanie gazed at him and set her glass down. She leaned into him and gave him a soft kiss on the lips. John kissed her back timidly. Then Melanie pulled his head down to hers and kissed him hungrily. She pressed herself against him to which John found himself getting hard. He cupped her breasts and ran his hands down her sides. She got up and took him by the hand to her bedroom. It had been a while since John had had sex and he prayed that he would be able to do a good job or at best a satisfactory performance.
There was a stream of light coming in through the blinds that displayed the bedroom. He kissed her and roamed her body with his hands. They quickly got undressed and kissed hungrily, devouring each other’s mouths and bodies.
As he moved to get on top of her, John bumped something furry near the bed. He looked up and saw a stuffed collie looking at him.
“Whoa!” he shouted in surprise. Melanie turned her head quickly to look back at what frightened him.
“Oh, I’m sorry. It’s just Delilah. I’m sorry she scared you, I should have told you.” Melanie explained. John looked into the blank eyes of the stuffed dog and felt unnerved.
“Ah, it’s ok. She should have barked to let me know she was there,” He said to ease the moment. Melanie laughed beneath him and pulled his head back down to hers and kissed him.
As they had sex, John noticed that Melanie would stroke Delilah’s fur. Her hand would reach out and brush Delilah, no matter what position she was in. John didn’t know what to make of this and tried to ignore it. When Melanie came, her hand was on the top of Delilah’s head.
They spent the night together and had breakfast in the morning. John went home afterward feeling incredibly happy. He went to Melanie’s apartment the following Friday to pick her up to take her to see a movie. As he walked in, he noticed that Delilah was in the living room looking at him as he entered. John felt uneasy with the dog’s dead eyes staring at him.
“Looks like Delilah came out from her hiding spot,” John said with a nervous laugh.
“Yeah she wanted to meet you with your clothes on,” Melanie said with a laugh. John laughed uncomfortably. He was not sure if she was joking.
They went to the movie theater and watched a romantic comedy that they both enjoyed. They went back to Melanie’s place where she brought out a bottle of wine. John sat on the love seat facing away from Delilah’s vacant stare. They chatted for a while as they drank their wine with John trying to ignore Delilah’s presence. John had to piss badly from the wine so went to the bathroom. She told him to meet her in the bedroom.
John felt quite happy as he peed. Melanie was amazing and he could not seem to get enough of her. He exited the bathroom and went into the bedroom in anticipation. Melanie was already under the covers. He walked to the bed and saw something to the right of the bed. Delilah was back in her usual spot staring at him. John hesitated for a moment then quickly got undressed. They fucked while Melanie’s hand darted out to Delilah’s fur constantly. John felt himself getting annoyed but tried not to show it. Before he fell asleep, John noticed Melanie’s hand rested on Delilah’s head.
They made plans to go to a Farmer’s Market the following weekend so that they can make dinner together at John’s place. John cleaned his apartment entirely on Friday night in preparation. Melanie arrived at his place in the afternoon to pick him up. He walked out of his apartment in excitement. He saw her sitting behind the wheel with sunglasses on and a huge smile on her face. John thought she was the most beautiful woman he had ever seen. He walked towards the car and saw a figure in the backseat of the car. He squinted to see more clearly in the sunlight.
Delilah stared back at him from the rear seat. John faltered in his step but quickly regained himself and headed to the car. He got in the passenger seat and Melanie gave him a deep kiss. She pulled the car out and started driving. John peered in the side mirror and could see Delilah perched in the seat behind him.
“So, Delilah wanted to come along for the ride?” he said with a trace of annoyance.
“Yeah she needed some fresh air,” She said as she turned back to the road.
John gave a small chuckle. He looked at Melanie a few times as she drove. He was trying to figure out if he was dating a crazy person. Other than the stuffed dog, there wasn’t anything wrong with her. No signs or red flags were calling his attention. Just the goddamn dog.
They arrived at the Farmers Market and stepped out of the car. John glanced at Delilah in the back who stared out the left passenger window. Melanie came up to him and gave him a long kiss then grabbed his hand and led him towards the vendors. He put Delilah out of his mind and focused on having a good time with Melanie. They picked up some produce and sampled many foods while they browsed the various vendors.
When they headed back to the car, Melanie leaned against John’s arm as they walked. John had completely forgotten about Delilah until he saw her in the rear passenger window. He instantly tensed up and tried to ignore Delilah as he piled the groceries in the backseat.
He hopped in the front seat and closed the door. Melanie drove to his place and they began taking the groceries upstairs. After all the groceries were out, John started to head upstairs when Melanie opened the rear passenger door. He turned his head and watched as she reached in the car for Delilah.
“Oh, you’re bringing her up, too?” He asked warily.
“Yeah, she can’t spend the night in the car. She will suffocate in there,” She stated in a cheerful voice.
John watched as she headed up the stairs with Delilah in her arms and into his apartment. He stood on the stairs for a few seconds feeling bewildered. He knew he had to say something. It was now or never. He went inside and saw Melanie putting the food on the kitchen counter. Delilah sat on the couch staring at him when he walked in.
“Hey, where is your skillet?” She asked him as she worked her way around the kitchen. John grabbed it from a cabinet and gave it to her. He leaned against the counter and watched her with an anxious look on his face. She turned to him as she grabbed a cutting board.
“What’s the matter? Is something wrong?” she asked him as she stopped to look at him.
“I have to ask, what is with the dog?”
“What? Delilah?” she said with a curious look on her face.
“Yeah, why did you bring it here?”
“Well, I couldn’t just leave her alone at home,” she stated.
“You do know that she’s not alive, right?” John asked cautiously.
“Now, where are those plates?” Melanie said as she began looking around the kitchen.
“Melanie, you can’t ignore what I just said. You treat Delilah as if she is still alive.”
Melanie laughed. “Well, she likes you and wanted to see your place.”
“Come on, Melanie. Enough of this, she is not alive.”
“She is alive!” Melanie shouted as she slammed the skillet on the stove. John stepped back in fright.
“Don’t you see? Yeah, she may be dead physically but in spirit, she is still alive. Why can’t you see that?” Melanie yelled as tears streamed down her face. She leaned against the counter crying.
“I thought you of all people would understand!” She yelled between sobs.
John felt guilty and ashamed. He reached out to comfort her.
“No, don’t touch me! Don’t you dare try and pity me like I’m crazy!” She screamed at him. “I thought you would understand. You lost your own dog, but no I was wrong. You’re just like everyone else!”
She pushed past him and ran out of the apartment. “Wait!” he called out after her, as she slammed her car door and started up.
“Melanie, wait!” he cried out again. But she was already peeling out of the lot.
John stood there for a few moments, just trying to catch his breath, watching as she sped out of his life.
When he finally turned to walk back inside, Delilah sat waiting on his couch.