“C’mere boy!” Ted shouted.

Warf’s ears perked up and he looked up at his human. Crouching down in the dirt and wagging his tail, he pretended to not hear him. Ted whistled, and Warf gave up his silly game, rushing forward. How he loved his human so!

Sitting on his haunches, Warf looked up, one paw raised and his head cocked to the side.

Ted knew what he wanted. Plucking a bone from his ribcage, he cocked his arm back and threw it with all his might; the bone whooshed through the air, turning over and over, and Warf took off after it, running full speed.

As he watched his bony companion bound away, kicking dirt up as he went, Ted’s mind drifted back to his childhood; when he was eight, his poor pup had gotten hit by a car. He’d been such a good boy, and had patiently waited for master for forty-three years.

When Ted passed last month, quietly and painlessly in his sleep, he’d woken up to Warf sitting in his arms, waiting for their next game of fetch.