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When Chocolate’s owner disappears, she sets out on a mission to find them

Chocolate licked her brown fur twice as her owner petted her and made some sounds with her mouth. Her owner made unusual sounds; humans made sounds Chocolate couldn’t make. Chocolate guessed humans made those sounds so the other humans could know how he or she felt. Today, the sounds sounded sad.

Chocolate wondered why, but she usually guessed it was something like her owner had found out that her favorite coffee wasn’t on sale, but this was mega sad, like someone died. She wondered why, but guessed it was nothing really important. She buried her face in her owner’s replaceable fur so she didn’t have to look at the bright, orange sun, which was half hidden in the land and trees. She closed her eyes and rested her head on her paws. She fell sound asleep.

When Chocolate woke up, she saw a wall. She stood up and yawned and saw the blue sky. She was outside! She jumped up in excitement, only to find her head banging on her cage roof. Why was she in a cage?! She glanced around looking for her owner. She wanted to run! When she realized that her owner was not nearby, she thrashed at the cage door. When she finally opened it, the sun was high in the sky.

She wandered around looking for her owner’s scent. She then found it behind a tree. It led to the right, where the path was wide. Wide means happy! she thought and grabbed her favorite toy from the cage, and she ran, following the scent.

Chocolate ran for a couple minutes. The scent led to her house! She clawed at the door, hoping her owner would answer. After a few minutes of clawing at the door, she realized that her owner wasn’t in the house or was ignoring her. She knew her owner wouldn’t ignore her, so she guessed it was because her owner wasn’t in the house.

She traveled for days. She got chased by humans and other dogs. She had to find food, water, and shelter for herself.

She looked around for her owner. Maybe they were playing hide and seek! She started looking for her owner. After a while, she sighed and wondered if they weren’t playing hide-and-seek. “I give up!” she called, and that is when she noticed a big truck. It was gray with lots of scratch marks on it. She neared and the door on the other side slammed shut and her owner’s scent wafted over to her  nose. She barked happily and ran to the other side and saw her owner in the truck. She barked. But her owner didn’t hear her. The truck with her owner rolled away, leaving Chocolate alone.

After exactly five minutes of staring at where her owner used to be, she whimpered in protest. “Don’t leave me!” She then wandered to a nearby forest. The thick green leaves covered her from the sun, and she was grateful, but after a while she began to feel cold. She stopped when she heard rustling from a nearby bush. She ran, but she ended up falling in front of a cave with . . . other dogs!

“Hi!” Chocolate said, and stood up.

“Who you?” one of the dogs said.

“You come where?”

“Name what?”

“Where come?”

They asked a lot of questions.

“I am Chocolate,” Chocolate said and resisted the urge to say, “You talk weird.”

The dogs burst out laughing.

“What’s wrong?” Chocolate asked, but Chocolate could pretty much guess why.

Before they could answer, a big muscular dog fell on Chocolate.

“Gotcha!” the dog said.

“Umm . . . will you please get off?” Chocolate asked, trying to sound polite, but it was hard to hide the frustration when someone was on top of you.


“We wolves! Eat you!” the wolf said.

“You eat me? You are a wolf? You are a Wild Dog?” Chocolate asked. Wolves were called “Wild Dogs” in the dog world.

“WE NOT DOGS!” the wolf on top of her roared, but it was more of a howl.

Chocolate squeezed out of the wolf’s grasp.

The wolves all gasped for some reason. They started saying things like:

“She escaped from the Master!”

“She is the leader now.”

“Master Chocolate?”

“That is a weird name.”

“But she did escape!”

“Yeah!” They huddled close and did some whispering, and Chocolate could only pick up some parts, like “leader,” “dog,” “wolf,” and “rules.” After a while the wolves said, “You are now our leader!” in unison. Chocolate asked them what that meant, and they all said, “You became the leader.” From that moment on, she was brought food and treated with respect. She didn’t like how the food looked, so she closed her eyes and ate it or ate fruit. She always had her favorite toy by her side, which was nice. But something about this place was unsettling. So she set off for her owner again.

She traveled for days. She got chased by humans and other dogs. She had to find food, water, and shelter for herself. She had never really done that, so it was hard.

First day. She got chased by people.

Second day. She was chased by dogs.

Third day. She couldn’t find food.

Fourth day. She was almost hit by a car.

Fifth day. A person caught her and brought her in and fed her. The feeding part wasn’t bad, but the owner had another big dog.

Sixth day. She overslept.

A week.

A month. Finally. On the forty-ninth day. Finally—she smelled her owner. It led to a blue house. She clawed at the door. And the door peeked open, and she saw her owner. Her owner stared at her in shock. Chocolate could feel the shock waves. Then her owner smiled and picked Chocolate up. And for the first time, Chocolate understood what her owner said: “Thank you for coming all the way here for me. I didn’t realize you cared about me this much. Dogs are loyal. They do say, ‘Man’s best friend.’”

And then and there, Chocolate knew this was her home. Her home was not with wolves, not in a bush, not in a wild city, not with another owner, but with this owner.

Lily Yagi
Lily Yagi, 11
Irvine, CA

Amity Doyle
Amity Doyle, 11
Katonah, NY