Dmitry had been running for half an hour along the paths of this cozy forest park, when suddenly his sporting solitude was violated in the most ruthless way.
– Man, where are you running to? – Suddenly, a young woman of about thirty in a brand-new tracksuit appeared next to Dmitry, who began to adjust to his running.
Dmitry looked at her as if she was crazy, said nothing and accelerated.
The woman also ran faster.
– You still haven’t answered, man! Where are you running to?
– I’m just running … – Dmitry answered, after all, trying not to lose his breath. – There…
– How interesting… – It was hard for the woman to run at such a pace, but she tried to keep up. – And do you often run there?
– I run every day… Two hours each…
– Wow! – the woman was surprised. – Can I run with you? Would you mind? Take me with you… Somewhere…
Dmitry glanced in her direction with displeasure and did not answer.
They ran in silence for two minutes. At the same time, the woman was puffing very hard, and Dmitry thought that she most likely went for a sports run for the first time. And this guess was soon confirmed, because the woman suddenly asked with a plea in her voice:
– Man, could you run slower?
– Why? Dmitry asked with displeasure.
– Well, I can’t keep up with you! Don’t you see?
– If you don’t have time – leave me alone, and that’s it… – Dmitry answered. – Why do you have to run alongside?
The woman fell silent again, only began to puff even more. Her face was flushed, and beads of sweat stood out on her forehead. But she held on. And soon she started talking again.
– Aren’t you afraid to run around here alone?
– What? – he didn’t understand the question.
– I say, are you not afraid to run in this forest park? Look, there’s already a real forest around.
– Do you think there are bears here?
Dmitry was having fun. He carefully looked at his strange companion, noticed that she was almost exhausted and could fall at any moment, took pity and ran slower.
“Thank you…” she said heavily. – It’s much better to run this way. And yet, why did you run so far?
– Because no one interferes with sports here. Look, there’s not a single person around.
– Are you by any chance a maniac?
– Does it look like that? – Dmitry chuckled.
“Not really,” the woman admitted. – But all the same, it seems to me that it’s not worth running so far into the forest.
Dmitry looked at the watch that was on his left hand.
“I’ll be running back in exactly ten minutes.
The girl was already swaying, and Dmitry had to slow down even more.
“I can’t run that slow,” he said in a dissatisfied tone. – Maybe you will come back after all?
“I’d love to, but I’m a terrible coward,” the woman confessed. – You and I have run away so far. There is a real forest around.
– And what?
– Like what? she pointed towards the dense growth of young aspen. – Look how gloomy it is. Oh… – The woman suddenly stopped dead in her tracks and grabbed his T-shirt with sharp nails. – Look!
– What is it? Dmitry exclaimed indignantly. “Get off me right now.
– Look there! – The woman pointed to the bushes with one hand in fright, while still holding on to Dmitry with the other hand.
– Where – there? – he didn’t understand.
– It seemed to me that there was something moving in the grass next to those bushes… – A genuine fear appeared in the woman’s eyes. – And sounds… Why can’t you hear them? It’s like a baby whining…
– Where? He listened. – Exactly… There’s someone there… alive … – Dmitry, it was, went to where these strange sounds came from, but the woman still held on tightly to his T-shirt.
-no need! – she said pleadingly. – What if there really are wolves?
– What wolves?!
– Ordinary! Wild! They’ll eat us…
– You’re crazy… – Dmitry began to unhook her tenacious fingers from his T-shirt. – You’re not a Little Red Riding Hood to be eaten by wolves. Let me go now! What if there’s a child there?
He finally freed himself from her hands and in a few seconds disappeared into the thick grass. And then his surprised voice rang out:
– Come here quickly, don’t be afraid! You were right!
– what? She hesitantly followed his voice. – There are wolves, right?
She cautiously parted the grass and saw two black, almost blind, puppies on the ground, who, squeaking, reached for Dmitry’s warm hands.
– Who is this? – on the woman’s face appeared anxiety with emotion.
– I see that the puppies. Aren’t they cubs?
– Why are you bothering with these wolves?! Ordinary dog babies. But where is their mother? Had she abandoned them?.. So what are we going to do with these guys now?
– The woman hesitantly took one puppy in her hands, brought it to her face and smiled. – To be honest, I’ve been dreaming about a dog for a long time… I wonder if they are thoroughbred? However, what difference does it make… Do you think, man, if I take this puppy for myself, it won’t seem strange?
– It will be fine, – Dmitry also smiled. – And what are we going to do with the second one?
– First you need to show both to the vet. And the sooner the better. Take the second one and run back as soon as possible! – the woman suddenly commanded. – I know a vet clinic nearby.
Dmitry at first wanted to be outraged, why was she giving orders here, but, realizing that the woman was right, he obeyed…
P. S. About three months later, along the same – though already autumn – path, two people ran again – Dmitry and Sophia (that was the name of that woman). And next to them, two black, albeit mongrel – but very happy with life -grown-up puppies were hobbling comically.