Kubla Khan and the Ultimate Sacrifice


Kubla Khan had had a great day. He got to follow Grandpa Rodger around and eat all the food he dropped on the floor. He discovered the existence of chickens, and barked at them a lot. He got to go to a bonfire in the woods, and spent the evening running through the snow and eating deer poop.
By the time they got home, Kubla was very tired. He was so tired he laid down as soon as he got inside, and didn’t even get up when everyone went to bed. Now, this tells you how tired Kubla really was, because he ALWAYS went to bed with Liz and Josh. But on this night he was just too tired to move.
But at about 2 in the morning, he heard something outside. A Very Threatening Car drove by outside. It didn’t matter that the car was gone in seconds, it needed to be barked at. Kubla’s vigilance woke up Liz, who came downstairs to see what was going on. She told Kubla to come back upstairs with her, and Kubla began to follow.
But as he came through the kitchen, he stopped in his tracks. He simply couldn’t go on. There, in the hallway, leaning against the trash can, was his ultimate nemesis. The Super Scary Yellow Broom. It didn’t matter that this wasn’t the Very Scary Red Plastic Broom, Kubla knew that all brooms were in cahoots with each other, and they they had mysterious ways of communicating with each other. This broom in Duluth must have talked to the evil broom in Minneapolis. This broom would be poised to attack. It would be folly to try to pass.
Kubla backed out of the kitchen and hid in the dining room. Liz thought she would be helpful and move the broom, but Kubla saw what was really going on. The broom used its evil magic powers to attach itself to Liz’s hand, and to float across the kitchen in a very menacing way. Liz thought she was putting the broom out of the way, but really just gave it a better vantage point for watching Kubla.
Kubla circled around through the living room, but came to a stop again. For the first time, he noticed the air vent at the bottom of the stairs. As Kubla knew that air vents are also evil, he assumed this one was in league with the Super Scary Yellow Broom. The Super Scary Yellow Broom that was just sitting there in the kitchen, watching him. Liz coaxed, and pleaded, and pushed, but Kubla would not be moved.
Liz was tired and it was late, so she decided to go back to bed. Kubla could come up to bed or not, it was his choice.
Kubla watched Liz disappear with sad eyes. She had abandoned him to face his demons alone. And so Kubla made a big decision. One challenge might be overcome, but facing two enemies at once was too much to bear. He would, for the first time in his life, choose not to sleep with Josh and Liz. He would sleep all alone. He was not brave enough to fight the evil that faced him, but he was brave enough to sleep alone. He settled down by the door where he could keep a sleepy eye on the Super Scary Yellow Broom and the Evil Air Vent of Duluth, and eventually fell asleep.
In the morning, Josh came down and released Kubla from his vigil. He had survived the night all by himself. He had been a very brave dog. He laid down at Josh’s feet and fell into a peaceful sleep, finally able to dream about chasing chickens through the woods.

Kubla Khan and the Very Scary Red Plastic Broom

(I have joked that I should start writing a series of children’s books about Kubla and all the things he is afraid of. Last night was so ridiculous that I decided to actually write the story. I submit it for your enjoyment.)



Kubla Khan and the Very Scary Red Plastic Broom

Once upon a time there was a Greater Swiss Mountain Dog named Kubla. He was kind and loyal and brave…well, maybe not so brave.

One day, his master Josh was doing some cleaning upstairs, and got out the Very Scary Red Plastic Broom. Kubla had met the Very Scary Red Plastic broom before, when it had been leaning against the wall once and fell over and made noise. Kubla did not like the Very Scary Red Plastic Broom.

Finally it was time for bed. Kubla had had a very tiring day of eating snow and taking naps, and he was ready to climb into his masters’ bed and settle in. He sleepily started climbing the stairs when suddenly his doggy senses kicked in. There! At the top of the stairs! What was it? Oh no! The Very Scary Red Plastic Broom!

Kubla paused in the middle of the stairs to assess the situation. He was very tired and wanted to go to sleep, but getting upstairs meant walking by the Very Scary Red Plastic Broom. Kubla thought for a moment, mustered his courage, lowered his head, and slowly crept up the stairs and past the broom. His stealth won out and the Very Scary Red Plastic Broom did not notice him passing.

But now Kubla was in a quandary. The Very Scary Red Plastic broom was leaning up against the wall right next to his bed. This just wouldn’t do. Kubla decided to wait for his masters to come up and help, and he placed himself in the hall by the closet, as far from the Very Scary Red Plastic Broom as he could get while still keeping an eye on it.

Kubla’s mistress Liz came upstairs, and saw that Kubla was locked in a battle of wills with the Very Scary Red Plastic Broom. She tried to move it, but this only made noise, which Kubla rightly interpreted as a full-frontal attack. Then, for some unfathomable reason, Liz capitulated. She left the broom alone and climbed into bed, patting the spot where Kubla usually lay. She was mocking him! How could Kubla possibly make it to the bed with his nemesis, the Very Scary Red Plastic Broom, waiting to strike? He stood rooted to his spot in the hallway, eyes on the broom.

Kubla’s master Josh came upstairs just then. He quickly assessed the situation. “Should I take the broom downstairs so the dog can go to bed?” he asked. Laughing, Liz said yes.

Kubla’s ordeal wasn’t quite over – he watched very carefully as Josh grabbed the Very Scary Red Plastic Broom and carried it downstairs. As soon as it was out of sight, Kubla relaxed and quickly climbed into bed with Liz, claiming most of Josh’s space before he could get back upstairs. It had been a good fight, and Kubla settled in for a well-earned rest.

The End.