Dee dreamed she was high on a bank looking over a river. Across the river was a child, a girl child. Sometimes she was recognizable as one of her students, sometimes she was faceless. Dee knew the child was special – an introspective child, a child of a strange intelligence. Both Dee and the child watched the river from opposite banks.
A dog jumped into the river. It was swimming for fun – enjoying the motion and the cool water and loving the challenge of crossing against the current. Dee could tell that she and the child took pleasure in watching the dog. As the dog crossed the mid point of the river, a tiger jumped in from Dee’s side. The child, Dee and the dog all knew that it meant danger – Dee leaned hard and watched the tiger gain ground on the dog now swimming harder and in panic. The tiger glided up to the dog and struck with a giant and powerful paw. The dog sunk. It resurfaced, struggling and bleeding. The tiger struck again. Dee ran up and down the river bank willing the dog to make it to the other side, sending pleading looks to the child on the opposite bank who calmly watched the drama unfold below. For some reason, Dee couldn’t make a sound.
The wounded dog scrambled to the banks, exhausted and broken, it’s hind legs no longer working. Dying. The tiger made his leisurely way toward the dog from one direction while the child approached the dog from the opposite direction.
Dee watched in horror – what could the child do? Would she be safe from the tiger? The child went to the dog as the tiger watched patiently. She knelt down, cradled the dog’s head in her arms. Lightning quick, she wrenched the dog’s head and broke his neck cleanly. The dead dog lay sprawled on the beach. The child looked at Dee unflinchingly and walked away as the tiger approached.