The second slice of toast did not take long, and soon I was on the sidewalk heading downtown. The canopy of fish overhead was a constant reminder that all was not as it should have been.
I had only been walking for a few minutes when I heard a clicking sound behind me. I glanced back, and saw that a small dog of indeterminate breed was following me. Its fur was brown, and it was roughly ankle height. The clicking sound was made by its toenails on the sidewalk.
Shrugging, I faced forward again and continued walking. The clicking sound increased as I went along, and when I glanced behind me a second time, there were three disturbingly similar small dogs of indeterminate breed following me. I turned back around and saw another dog ahead of me, sitting and watching as I approached. It fell in step with its associates as I passed.
Soon there were small dogs of indeterminate breed emerging from behind every utility pole, mailbox, and hydrant that I passed. They soon surrounded me, carpeting the sidewalk, and still their numbers continued to increase. They were all oddly silent. Not a bark, not a whimper.
I was getting worried.
As I approached an intersection, I saw that everything ahead of me was covered in dogs. They were piled ten feet deep, and a squirming wall of them was moving down the street towards me like a slow-moving storm surge or a really fast glacier.
I had no desire to experience being crushed to death by small dogs of indeterminate breed. I cast about for an escape route. I was walking next to a one-story brick building, and as luck would have it, there was a door. The sign on the door said, “Stairs.” I tried the door and found it unlocked. I pulled it open, displacing a knee-deep pile of dogs, jumped inside, and frantically shoved more dogs out of the way until I could get the door closed again.
I looked about. I was in a dimly lit small room, but I couldn’t tell where the light was coming from. The only exits were the one I’d just walked through, and a wooden staircase opposite the door. Seeing no other choice, I began climbing.