Madeline has another question for me: Did Andi keep Scout?
Does anyone even remember who Scout is? He's the little black puppy that led me on a merry (or not so merry) chase down a creepy alley, where I ended up witnessing a horrific crime. I took the puppy home and named him "Scout."
Mother said I could keep Scout. He liked to stay in Taffy's stall, and they seemed to be good friends. Scout's paw healed up real nice, too. But Mother would not let my new dog in the house. He had to stay outside with the rest of the ranch dogs: Duke, Prince, and King. Scout looked so funny trying to keep up with those big dogs!
Then I started noticing that Jake, one of our ranch hands, seemed to take an extra "shine" to Scout. After Jake was finished with his cowhand duties for the day, he scooped up Scout and petted him. He even began to let him sleep in the bunkhouse with him! Of course, when Jake saw me, he always handed Scout over and said, "He's sure a cute pup, Miss Andi. I'm sorry if I'm takin' too much with him."
That got me thinking. Jake had a faraway look in his eyes every time he looked at Scout. So I finally asked him, and he told me Scout reminded him of a pup he'd had when he was just a small boy. He missed that old dog and Scout made him think of home . . . somewhere back East.
Well, with school starting up and me hardly having any time to ride--much less train a wild little puppy--I asked Jake if he wanted to take care of Scout for me. "You can keep him if you like," I told him. "He needs somebody to teach him things, and I don't have time."
You should have seen the grin that split Jake's face! He snatched Jake right up, climbed into his saddle, and took off. I reckon he's got himself a real cow dog now. Oh, and he promised I can play with Scout any time I want.