My Dog Ate My Homework & Other Tall Tales
This is the first Radcliff update / Next Radcliff update
Oz had spent the the last half of the afternoon raking old leaves, still leftover from fall. His granddad Erle had told him, after they raked the garden, he would call the officer who was bringing their new dog to them.
“Just finish that pile, Oz,” Granddad said, and then gave Grandma a kiss as she stood up from weeding.
Erle was good to his word, and when they had carried the pile up to the composter, he called the officer. A little while later, she arrived, and their newly adopted dog hopped out of the back of the squad car.
The family hadn’t quite decided yet what to name the dog. Granddad had heard through the Feed & Seed staff that an older dog needed a home– a big brown labradoodle mix who was not the smartest, but was a really good dog. His name was Klutz, but Oz had already decided he was giving the dog a new name. While Erle sat with Karina in the family room, Oz looked at his new pet. His dog looked back at him.
“Let’s see what he knows,” Granddad said. “Try ‘Sit.”
It turned out, the dog knew “sit,” “stay,” and “roll over!” Excited, Oz ran up the stairs and yelled, “Come!” and his dog followed!
But Oz wasn’t sure what to name him.
“Here, boy,” Oz said, and the dog cocked his head and looked at him.
When it was time for bed, Oz patted the dog bed and the dog readily laid down. Oz fell asleep, thinking he was the luckiest boy in the world, to have such a good dog.
After everyone else was asleep, the dog went outside, and he found Oz’s homework in the dirt driveway.
The next morning, on her way to work, Karina shook her head as she saw the shredded composition book.
Ruined homework couldn’t mar her mood though; she’d been carpooling since arriving in Falls Bridge the year before, and she had finally gotten herself a car, against her mom’s advice. A red, sporty car. She drove off to her job as a teacher’s aide quite content. They’d always managed to make ends meet, and she was sure it would be ok.
Back inside, Oz was about to leave for school, and his dog was singing along with the stereo music, Bruno Mars’ Count on Me.
“I’m gonna call you Bruno,” he said. “Bruno Mars.”
“Gotta run, boy, see you tonight!”
When he got home from school, Bruno Mars was waiting for him. Oz ran off the bus and yelled, “come on, Bruno Mars!”
“Dad, look what Bruno Mars can do!”
Oz showed him how his dog could fetch.
That night, Bee came into Jack and Karina’s room like a hornet.
“How dare you,” she spat at him.
“What?!” he said.
“Don’t tell me you don’t know. I hear the talk.”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” he said, looking angry and confused.
“Mom, what is it?” Karina asked.
But Bee turned and left, and locked herself in her own room with Erle.
Jack needed a drink. He went downstairs and poured a rusty nail. Bee must have heard about Jack’s inquiries months ago into making a quick buck through some easy connections, when he first arrived in Falls Bridge.
But he had been working since spring training with the minor league team in Grand Pass, as an outfielder, totally above-board work.
Upstairs, Bee was giving Erle an earful.
“So Milla was telling me that the owner of the burger joint she works at, has some businesses that don’t report their income. She heard him talking about Jack– he heard Jack’s a guy you could count on to take care of business.”
Erle looked at his wife incredulously.
“Well,” she said, “You know he had that run-in with the law as a mule in Grand Pass years back, maybe he’s at it again.”
Erle thought. “That was when Oz was a baby, and he turned evidence,” he said. “I think he’s turned over a new leaf. He loves Karina and Oz; I don’t think he wants to get in trouble with the law again.”
In their bedroom, Jack was doing what he did best… smoothing it over with Karina.
The next day, when Oz got home from school, his dad met him at the bus again.
“Let’s go help your grandma out,” he said, and they went to water and weed.
When they went in the house, Bee told them to clean up. “We’ve got company,” she said.
That night, the family had dinner with Raine and Aston Hodson. They explained that Lexie wasn’t feeling well, so she’d sent her apologies.
I found Bee and Jack arguing in his room one evening. He looks like he’s denying being a bank robber. When they first moved to Falls Bridge, he wanted a job as a criminal, so he went a couple of days to work as a criminal. However, he soon wanted a job in sports, and I had him get a job as a minor leaguer.
Bee wanted to be friends with Milla and spent a lot of time on the phone with her, so I figured Milla told her the gossip about Jack.
Jack really did go straight downstairs and pour himself a drink after Bee left.