Harwood rubbed the back of his neck as he sipped his tea, watching the morning rain come down on the city. Behind him, his two sons were watching the Weather Channel for any updates on the forecast later that day.
On the streets below, people were clambering to seek shelter. Many of the businesses remained open as if to capitalize on this. On the corner, a meteorologist could be seen describing the potential torrent.
Upon realizing he’d run out of tea, Harwood grumbled and went to the kitchen to get more.
“So how was your night out on the town last night, bro?” Marc asked Sinbad when the weather program was on a commercial break.
Sinbad cringed, not wanting to bring up that he’d seen Annette. As unbelievable as it sounded, he also didn’t want to arouse any kind of worry in the others.
“Wasn’t as fun as I thought it’d be,” he said gloomily, feeling the effects of the weather upon him.
To that, Marc just replied with, “Oh…Sorry.”
After about five more minutes or so of staring at the weather forecast, Harwood got their attention. When they looked over at him, he was pulling an umbrella out of the holder by the door.
“Let’s go, you two. There’s a house I’ve been meaning to look at.”
The family was grateful to find a dog-friendly hotel before the weather got too bad.
Shark was left to watch TV in the room with Sagebear, while his father and stepmother were having continental breakfast.
Outside, the rain seemed to get even heavier. Sagebear didn’t seem to like this very much, given the way she sighed deeply when looking at it.
Trying to watch early morning Cartoon Network shows, Shark was distracted by his thoughts. All he could really think about was what happened last time he stayed at a hotel.
It seemed so long ago, especially since it was indeed over a year since that time. So much had happened since then, as well.
“At least Lolly won’t walk in on me getting a blowjob from Sinbad this time, right?”
Even just saying his name caused Shark’s chest to hurt. Trying to redirect his distraction, he reached over for the room service telephone.
“Mom and Dad said I could order breakfast if I wanted to-” He was cut off by Sagebear running up and setting her paws onto his face.
Sagebear appeared to have the same idea, taking hold of the receiver in her mouth. Stepping back, she dropped it next to him.
“All right, puppy. Daddy can order some toast to share with you.” Taking hold of the receiver, Shark began dialing for room service.
Annette looked around for shelter, for what seemed like an eternity. She wished she’d grabbed something to cover herself with, like a raincoat.
The nearest bar had yet to open for the day, and would remain closed for another few hours. No one looked in her direction when she tried to get someone to look at her.
When she reached a newspaper stand, Annette decided that was the best she was going to find. When the vendor wasn’t looking, she snatched the top two papers off of a nearby stack.
Said papers above her head did little good. It wasn’t long until the rain soaked them to the point of tearing apart.
Throwing the papers away on the ground, Annette then caught sight of a familiar trio of men. All of them seemed intent on reaching an unknown destination.
“Harwood!” She cried out to the oldest of them. They kept walking, her shouting presumably drowned out by the noise of traffic.
Seeing her attempt to catch his attention went nowhere, Annette resumed her search for dry shelter.
Her searching led her to the inside of what looked to be a consignment store. Besides her, however, the only other people in there were two elderly women.
“I still don’t know where he is,” said one in a worried tone of voice.
“Now, don’t you worry,” the other said, “I’m sure he’s at his friend’s house, is all.”
As they spoke, Annette shook the water off of herself like a dog. She kept an ear open for anything intriguing they might have said.
Soon, there was something that proved vital to her search. Stepping a little closer, Annette pretended to file through the clothes as she listened in.