​Risk​
By Melina Asnani

I was playing on my computer when I heard my message ringtone.  I opened the message on my phone and this is what it said, Hi! You have been asked to help rescue an animal.  We do not know what the animal is but we do know you will find it in the woods.  The animal is injured.  You may bring anyone you want to help you. Good luck!
Sincerely,
Anonymous

This must be some sort of joke,” I whispered to myself all confused.  How did they choose me?  Who sent me this message?  I started asking all sorts of questions in my mind.  It just didn’t make sense, but I was going to do it at risk.

Well, I needed to plan this out first.  And the message did say I could bring anyone I wanted.  So I was going to bring Ruby.  Ruby is my best friend!  Sure she’s a little clumsy and quite loud at times, but I was going to bring her along.  Plus Ruby loved animals and adventure.  I called Ruby straight away and she yelled right into the phone, “I ‘d love to!”  She said she was coming straight over and hung up.



I sat on my bed waiting for Ruby and thinking about how I would explain this to my mom.  I knew she would never let me go if she knew the truth.  So, unfortunately I would have to tell her a little fib.

I heard a squeal from outside the room.  “Ruby,” I guessed. I was correct!  Ruby was so delighted.  “Oh my gosh,” she exclaimed enthusiastically, “This is going to be so brilliant.”  “I know but calm down,” I replied.  We went to my mom and I didn’t have the guts to lie so I showed her the message with my fingers crossed. She was fine with it. So Ruby and I began our adventure.

When we got to the woods we found our first clue… footprints.  Ruby and I followed the footprints until they stopped at a row of bushes.  And peeking out from behind a bush was the cutest dog I’d ever seen.  “Aw, it’s shy,” I breathed. Ruby and I patted our laps encouraging the dog.  It came out knowing we were friends.  But it wasn’t walking properly.  I looked down at its front paws and on the right paw there were two thorns stuck in it and on the left, there were three.



Luckily Ruby and I were prepared for this.  We knew the animal would be injured (it said so in the message) so we brought a first-aid-kit.  I took a cloth and a spray from it.  I slowly eased out the thorns.  The dog started whimpering but I kept going.  After all the thorns were out I sprayed its front paws.  Ruby and I gave the dog food and water.  Yes, we had completed the mission, but now we had another problem, we were lost in the woods.

While Ruby and I were following the footprints, we were so excited that we didn’t take note on which directions we took.  We told the dog to follow us and it obeyed. We would follow the footprints back but they disappeared.  So we would have to find our way back by ourselves, Ruby the dog and I.

We did know that whilst we were walking we saw two mango trees, one just by the entrance and the other when we were following the footprints.  We turned left and walked for a while.  We came upon a pond with ducks in it.  They started pecking us to see if we had food.  Ruby and I ran back with the dog. That was definitely not the way because Ruby and I did not remember seeing the pond.

Ruby the dog and I sat under a tree hopelessly. Then I remembered something. Ruby and I had picked some mangoes from the mango tree at the beginning.  We took it out of our bag and gave it to the dog to sniff.  The dog led the way back and from the wood Ruby and I walked home along with the dog.

Ruby, the dog, and I were so dirty when we got home.  Ruby and I took a shower and scrubbed the dog.  We called a vet over to check out the dog.  He gave it a bandage for its foot because it was still limping.  We found out he was male.  I got to keep the dog or as I name him, Scruffy!

 

"Reputation is what other people know about you. Honor is what you know about yourself". Lois McMaster Bujold