“We told them not to.”
It’d been the better part of five years since I’d had any real trouble regarding dogs.
Well, that changed this morning.
Caesar, the last of my rescues, had a habit of patrolling the shore of Blood Lake. Often he’d disappear for five or six days before returning to give a report on all he’d witnessed or suspected. He was a damned fine scout, that’s for certain.
I was just pouring a second cup of coffee when he came back in, panting with his tongue lolling. He drank a fair bit of water before he shook his head, sat on his hindquarters and looked at me.
“Someone’s stealing sheep,” he told me.”
I put the coffee pot down.
“Where?” I asked.
“Eastern shore,” Caesar replied. “Got a few dogs with them, too. Dogs are good. Men aren’t.”
I snorted. “Tends to be the case.”
“They’re armed,” Caesar continued.
I raised an eyebrow, and the dog chuckled.
“Thought I’d let you know,” Caesar added.
“Thanks,” I sighed. I took a quick drink of coffee and went to the parlor. I took down my Spencer, loaded it, and left the house at a quick clip.
When I reached the eastern shore, I found the thieves, the sheep, and the dogs.
I stayed off to one side, and after a few minutes, a large female shepherd found me. She sat down beside me, tail thumping heavily against the grass.
“This isn’t the first time they’ve cut into your herds,” she told me.
She nodded. “We told them it wasn’t wise to rob a Blood, but they didn’t listen. Told them there’d be hell to pay once you found out.”
“Aye,” I agreed. “That’s a fact.”
“I’ll get my dogs out,” she said after a moment. “When you’re done, we’ll make sure the sheep get back. Caesar says you might have room for us.”
“He’s right,” I smiled. “Always rooms for dogs.”
“Good to hear,” she laughed and dashed off to her pack.
A few minutes later, the dogs raced away, leaving the sheep and the thieves alone.
I settled myself into a good firing position, set my sights on the first man, and pulled the trigger.
The sheep ran, and the men died.