It wasn’t until he handed his credit card over to the cashier that everything suddenly became real to him. He couldn’t believe this was something he was actually doing. He had decided to buy this on a complete whim. He didn’t even think about the money being an issue.
He wanted one. That was it.
Al had just moved out of his parents’ house about three months ago. He lived in a fairly small condo, but with just him at home it seemed to be a decent size. The condo had two bedrooms and he could just turn the second bedroom into a different kind of room if he wanted to. If he really needed to.
The front yard wasn’t much, but the backyard was okay. He had enough room to stretch out. There was some wooded area behind his house, but he had shaved off some of the weeds, dead trees, and plucked some poisonous plants away. It wasn’t a grassy field, but it made the yard look a tad bigger anyway.
“Sign here, please.” The cashier slide a small receipt over the counter along with a pen.
Al rubbed his hands together hoping to get the sweat off before he touched her pen. Then he picked it up and signed his name without a word. His hand shook as his cursive flowed from one letter to the other causing his signature to look like a five-year-old printing their name on their very first library card.
He let out a deep, nervous breath as he slid the paper back over to the cashier, who smiled at him.
“There is no need to be nervous. You are ready to take on this responsibility, aren’t you?” she asked looking serious once more.
Al nodded his head swallowing a lump in his throat.
He had wanted one for so long, ever since he was a young boy. He finally had his own space and had been preparing for this for a while. Being a bachelor was a lonely life, especially when you worked complete opposite hours from your friends.
“Are you ready to take him home?” the cashier asked. She stretched out her arm pointing to come behind Al.
Al turned around slowly as another worked entered the lobby. She was being dragged by a small, ten-pound Beagle puppy.
The puppy army crawled towards Al as hard as he could on account the leash was holding him back. His tongue hung out the side of his mouth panting loudly as though he was smiling. His tail wagged uncontrollably high in the air.
Al couldn’t help but smile. He bent his knees squatting to the ground and opened his arms wide. Without missing her cue, the worker released the leash from her grip and the Beagle pup dashed into Al’s arms.
Al finally had a friend to call his own. They both did.