Leaping to my feet, I reach out my hands and give her my best pleading eyes. Stradling the branch she sits upon, she rests her belly on the bark and lowers her arms enough for me to grab onto. Hoisting me up, she snarls and groans as I grasp for her like a fish out of water. I subsequently think about fishes, and how there was once a time when we emerged from the oceans and climbed the trees before turning into dinosaurs and then flying dinosaurs flying high into the sky searching the clouds for meaning. Understanding that I’m no good at climbing trees, Hachikō bites into the cuff of my jacket before doing his best to lift me towards him. He snarls the same as Meeko, and it warms my heart to see them both trying their best to raise me from the ground, which isn’t lava but could be. There was once a time when I was good at climbing trees. Back in my childhood days, there were two giant trees on the street where I lived which my best friend and I would climb. We did so to get a better view of the town where we lived, and because we wanted to see what secrets there were to find which weren’t visible from the ground. Life for us was a computer game. A holographic adventure littered with hidden doors. I still hold this outlook on life, but mainly when I’m drunk.
“What the fuck are you doing?” she cries.
“What the fuck does it look like,” I snap, “I’m trying to climb.”
“Well, try harder, then,” she huffs, “it wasn’t hard for Hachikō or me.”
Mumbling under my breath, I pull on her arms before swinging my legs and wrapping them around an adjacent branch. I’ve made a terrible mess of things, and have no idea why it was so simple for them to climb and not me. Seems as if my childhood adventures are further behind me then I care to admit.
“Why the fuck are you wrapping your legs around the other branch?”
“I don’t know,” I say, laughing at Hachikō as he furiously wags his tail. Pulling me upwards, taking care not to pierce my wrists with his teeth, he balances himself with the precision of a monkey.
“Well don’t. You’ve made this so much harder than it needs to be.”
Struggling to catch my breath, I blink away the sweat which stings my eyes.
“Why the fuck am I doing this in the first place?” I snap.
“Stop swearing,” she giggles, “and come join us”.
Biting my lip, I glare at her through stinging eyes, half wishing to bash her brains in, and half wanting to kiss her grinning lips.