Jace and Kinsey

Jace and Kinsey

A Story by Abigail T

An anxious sixteen-year-old girl relaxes outside with her less-than-helpful companion.


            “Outside is always better than inside,” I murmur into Kinsey’s soft, sun-warmed fur. I inhale deeply, not wanting to let go of her comforting scent.  She whines in what I think is agreement, and I smile, my face still against her coat.  I remember years ago, when my family first got Kinsey, I complained because I wanted a Golden Retriever like Sherry Applegate, not a Belgian Shepard like nobody else. In sixth grade, Sherry Applegate was the most popular girl in school, and all she talked about was the cutest new trick she taught her new puppy.  That was why I begged my parents for a dog in the first place"I thought having a dog would make popular, too.  Of course, it took me only a day to fall completely in love with my Kinsey puppy and forget all about wanting a Retriever.  Plus, she is a hell of a lot smarter than Sherry’s stupid dog.

            As if she knows what I’m thinking, Kinsey rolls over in the summer grass so she can lick my face.

            “Ew, Kinsey-pup!” I squeal, laughing.  She continues to lick, and I don’t stop her.  There’s no one else in line to lick my sunburnt and freckled face.  Outside in the front yard with Kinsey-pup is easiest.  We can just lie down in the sun, take a nap, curl up together, or I can read while she rests her head in my lap.  I can be away from everyone for a couple hours, since my parents are at work and most of my friends live in the next neighborhood over, except for Delaney but she’s at ballet right now.  This is the part of the day when I don’t need to worry about my appearance, or what I should be doing, or who I should be hanging out with. 

            I push Kinsey away from my face and roll away from her, grass sticking to my dress.  She doesn’t like that and rests her head on my hip.

            “Kinsey-pup, I’m lucky you can’t speak human,” I say, my eyes closed and hands resting beneath my head. She grunts in response. “Because if you could talk, I’m sure you would tell me exactly how pathetic I am for spending a perfectly beautiful day alone,” I continue.  I feel her lift her head from my hip, and I look to see her head cocked to the side, confused.  “Oh, fine, you’re right. I’m not completely alone,” I laugh and ruffle her fur. Satisfied, she sets her head back on my hip, her eyes half-open.

            As Kinsey falls asleep on me, I pluck strands of grass out of the ground and arrange them in a crisscross pattern. “Maybe I need someone to tell me I’m pathetic. Maybe that way I’ll make an effort to spend time with my friends, instead of them needing to ring me all the time,” I say to Kinsey-pup, even though she’s falling asleep and can’t understand me anyway.

“Why don’t I have anyone to tell me that? Why don’t I have a friend who will kick me into shape and say, ‘Hey, Jace, stop being stupid and do something!’” I grumble, suddenly realizing that I’ve plucked a ton of strands out of the ground during my rant.

            “I think I need one of those stress-balls, Kinsey-pup. You know, the soft things you can squeeze really hard instead of smashing something,” I look at my mess, “Or uprooting a hundred pieces of grass.” And as if my puppy has finally had enough of my egotistical moping, she rolls away from me to sleep undisturbed.

“A lot of help you are,” I mumble. 

© 2011 Abigail T

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Author's Note

Abigail T
This is the first of three "scenes" involving Jace. This series of scenes is an assignment for my senior project.

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Added on October 24, 2011
Last Updated on October 24, 2011
Tags: 80's, puppy, young adult, girl, sixteen, anxiety, social life


Abigail T
Abigail T

Amherst, MA

My name is Abigail, and I'm a recent college graduate now in the world to write fiction for young adults. I'm using this site to archive my work. more..

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