“Mama, look!”
The young mother looked into the yard where her two children were playing and was startled to see a four-legged creature running back and forth as the 4-year-old threw a stick for it. The 6-year-old was on the steps.
“We found a puppy, Mama!”
The creature certainly bore a…resemblance to a puppy, with four legs and a tail that wagged excitedly. But it was hard to believe that this thing shared any genetics with canine kind as it’s jaw opened much too far and revealed too many teeth and a long snaking tongue. It’s four eyes seemed to blink independently, though they all closed as her youngest scratched it behind the ears.
“Can we keep him?”
The puppy vanished in a puff of something that smelled like motor oil and lavender before appearing at her feet, front paws up on her thigh. For a long moment, woman and dog stared at each other. She rubbed her temples and then looked at the wide-eyed hopeful expressions on her children’s faces.
“We can keep him for now, but you’d better make some posters in case he has an owner looking for him.”
She looked down again and the puppy looked up at her solemnly with all four eyes. Somehow, she doubted they would hear from anyone.

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