Friday, 17 August 2018

The Three Squekes' Plastic Chop

The Three Squekes’ Plastic Chop: Object Post 75

Source? No doubt Dora Barkins bought it for them at the Dog and Sausage Fair
Significance? It was the object of their interest for some time
Fate? They probably still have it, though it might be somewhat chewed and manky and might be buried under the hydrangeas.
Author’s inspiration? Our terriers used to share plastic toys
Appeared in? The Jack Russell Dog Detective series from The Sausage Situation on


The hunt was on. Dogs were everywhere, barking and passing on the news. People tripped over them and yelled. A pile of terriers leapt into a bin of rubber bones, and fifteen bouncy-balls hopped all over the ground.
Red pounced on one, and the three Squekes yaffled over a plastic squeaker chop.

The three Squekes belonged to Dora Barkins and they were already resident at Doggeroo when Jack Russell arrived with his landlord, Sarge. The Squekes may have had individual names, but if so Jack and Dora never mentioned it. Dora addressed them collectively as Boys. They operated as a single entity composed of flowing silky hair, bulging eyes and loud yaffles. One of the Squekes’ fascinations was their plastic squeaker chop, which they found at the Dog and Sausage Day. Since they appropriated it during the great sausage thief hunt, Dora probably located the vendor and paid for it later.
The chop wasn’t their only interest. They also played with a dehydrated rat on at least one occasion.
On one occasion young Preacher, Jack’s son, was in pawsession of the chop. Preacher was too little to know any better. The true culprit was Foxie, Jack’s second in command, who had once been a street dog and never quite forgot it.

‘Dad, look!’ Preacher trotted back with a plastic chop in his teeth.
I looked. I sniffed. ‘Preacher,’ I said sternly. ‘That chop belongs to the Squekes. Did you steal it?’
‘Of paws!’ said Preacher, waggling. ‘Uncle Foxie says the Squekes will yaffle after it.’
‘You will take that chop back,’ I said. ‘And in future, Uncle Foxie…’ I glared at Foxie. ‘Fancy teaching the sprat to steal!’
Foxie scratched himself. ‘The Squekes will get it back.’
I shuddered. There are three Squekes. Sometimes that is three too many.
On the other paw, sometimes one Foxie is one too many.

The Squekes wanted that chop back, even during the affair of the Awful Pawful.

The Awful Pawful screeched and cat-erwauled and hissed. All this cat-cophany attracted Lord Red. Next came Polly Smote, the Squekes, Shuffle, Ralf Boxer and Jill Russell.  Of paws they all barked too. The Squekes yaffled, demanding their plastic chop. Jill Russell poked me with her nose, demanding Preacher. Ralf Boxer bit Lord Red's toe. Lord Red jumped and howled, and landed on Polly. Polly crawled out from underneath Red and bit Shuffle. Shuffle howled.

‘We want our chop!’ yaffled the Squekes. ‘Preacher, detect our chop!’
‘Chops? What chops? I want a chop!’ yapped Polly.

Later still, the Blue Stealer stole the Squekes’ chop again…

Next to it was a plastic chop. I recognised that, too. It smelled of the Squekes. The blue stealer had been busy.

Jack found it, but Jill Russell got hold of the wrong end of the stick…

Jill Russell was waiting. 'You were in that dog's territory,' she said. 'Did you ask pawmission? You've got the Squekes' chop. Did they say you could borrow it?'

That was the last we heard of the chop, but the Squekes got it back… until the next time.

The Squekes and their plastic chop appear in the Jack Russell series.


Sally is Sally Odgers; author, anthologist and reader. You can find you way into her maze of websites and blogs via the portal here.(Sally is me, by the way.)

The goal for 2017 was to write a post a day profiling the background behind one of my books; how it came to be written, what it's about, and any things of note that happened along the way. 2017 is well behind us, but I ran out of year before running out of books. As of June 2018 I STILL hadn't run out of books, but many of those still to come are MIA by which I mean I don't have copies and remember little about them. There are more new books in the pipeline, and I'm certainly showcasing those, but in between times, I'm profiling some of my characters, places and objects. Thank you so much to everyone who's come along on this journey so far!

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