I had just come back from the hospital. 12 stitches on my right arm demanding for some attention. Doctor had advised me rest for at least a week, but that was the last thing on my mind. My eyes were searching for Caesar, but he was nowhere to be seen. I was not used to such a silent welcome at home. Normally Caesar would have been all over me as soon as I entered the house. But it was not to be this time around, and I perfectly understood the reason behind it.
It was all my fault. I shouldn’t have loosened the grip. I shouldn’t have run after him when he got away. He might have come back instead of running around. What appeared as a game to him didn’t end well for us. I ran with all my energy when I heard the screeching of tyres and a painful howl. I reached for Caesar with trembling hands. He was alive, but his back was severely injured.
On our way to the vet, I was trying to apply disinfectant on his back. He knew it would burn and was not allowing me to do the needful. When I forced it upon him, he bit a big chunk off my arm. I tried comforting him but the poor thing was too troubled to understand what was going on. We reached the vet in some time. Doctor told us that it would be fine and we need not worry. After 2 hours of panic and chaos, I was finally feeling a little better. And it was only then I realized the cut in my arm.
Caesar was lying near the work station in my room. His back was bandaged, but that was not the reason why he didn’t come to me.
“Caesar, come here”, I said softly and bent down to pet him.
He looked at me. I saw pain in his eyes. I knew it was because of guilt and not the injury. He was blaming himself for hurting me.
I took him in my lap, kept my hand over his eyes, held his paw and sat there for some time without saying anything. He rested his head against my shoulder. I held his face and looked into his eyes. I didn’t require words to let him know that he need not ask for forgiveness. He need not feel bad for something which was not in his control. He was my baby and will always be, no matter what.
Since the day my Dad brought this little thing into our home, this was the most silent day that we spent together. Silent, but beautiful.
That day was a milestone in our friendship. I still remember those eyes. Those pure eyes that expressed the very soul of my little friend.