Araya was sound asleep when her pet, OsKar, made his move. He totally enjoyed being cared for by Araya and her Parents, but he’d planned to take off in the night months ago. Living in their expensive 3 bedroom apartment here in New York was awesome, but he began to feel cooped up awhile ago. He was too smart to stay in the confines of his space here in the apartment and longed to see what he was missing out there in this Big Ol’ World.
Her Dad, a well-known Architect and her Mom, a Fashion Designer made tons of money so he, even as a Pet, had the best of everything. Even so, once he’d taken off, he felt that they could easily afford to replace him. This thought helped him to process through his feelings about leaving once and for all. Knowing what he knew, he was convinced that he would have to make his move in the wee hours of darkness in order to not to attract any unwanted attention.
Then there was the factor of waking Araya in the middle of the night. If she caught him trying to make his move she alert her Parents, start crying, and cause a whole scene. The sheer thought of that convinced him that the time he’d picked was perfect. It’s odd how many nights he watched her as she slept. He couldn’t have asked for a better owner and he tried to be the Ultimate Pet over the years. He was grateful that they took him in shortly after he was born and she’d taken care of him from that point until now. He didn’t remember much about the early months, when they first took him in, but it was around the 2nd year when he began to remember stuff. It started with feeding time and progressed to nap time, morning time, daytime and nighttime.
It was a point where he even began to understand what they were saying to each other, especially when Araya’s Dad began to complain about how much he ate. Well, he didn’t really complain, but he joked about it an awful lot. He’d overheard him talking to Araya’s Mom a few times, ‘Oskar’s gonna have to get a job if he keeps eating up everything!’ They laughed, but OsKar took it to heart. He barely touched anything they gave him for over a week. When he overheard Araya’s Mom on the phone with the Veterinarian questioning, ‘He hasn’t been eating anything we feed him…What should we do?’ he figured he’d best get to gobbling up everything again or else. So he did.
It was a miracle, since no one had a clue that he could understand everything that was being said. Everything. He didn’t even have to be in the same room. The apartment was over 7,000 square feet and if a word was spoken in any area of it, OsKar would be sure to hear and understand it. As he moved from his area, he looked around the room at all of the Marvelous Décor Araya’s Mom had designed. Araya, a huge fan of Little Mermaid, Finding Nemo and soon Finding Dory, had her room totally decked out in a, somewhat, underwater theme. The cutest parts of the décor, were all of the cute drawings Araya had drawn of him around her room.
She was quite the artist and would come home at least once a week with a drawing she’d done of him at school. He had never met any of her school friends, but knew that she’d talk their ears off about him every chance she got. Her Mom allowed her only a few drawings up at a time. The rest were kept in her OsKar SkrapBook. She actually had 3 or 4 of these scrapbooks, because she’d draw at least 1 picture a week of him.
Their relationship reminded him of the Girl and the Alien in home. They were really close like those two, except he wasn’t an Alien. A foreigner, yes, but not an Alien. That thought made him chuckle quietly as he climbed up on the bed, lifted Araya’s Samsung Tablet from near her head and posted up at the foot of it. Her Queen Bed was massive, especially for a 3rd Grader. Hey, I guess that’s how you roll when you’re Mom and Dad are Filthy Rich.
OsKar posted up at the end of it nearly every night without fear of waking Araya, who slept like a log once she was out. She’d always fall asleep playing Angry Bird’s on her tablet. OsKar, being a huge fan of that game himself, would always pick up where she’d left off. He loved Araya and her Parents but he had been bored for quite awhile. She did her best to take care of him but she was currently in school and could only look after him in the evenings once she got home. And even then she couldn’t give him her undivided attention because she had to do her homework first. Which, by the way, he found extremely easy.
There were times he wanted to take her pencil and do it for her, but that would have probably freaked her out. Just like if she woke up right now and caught him playing video games on her tablet while resting at the foot of her bed. OsKar felt like a part of the Family, but after living with them for the past 5 years he was over it. A few months ago, after tapping around on Araya’s tablet, he realized that there was a whole different world out there. He began to see others that looked like him. This sparked a curiosity within him that only grew with the passing weeks. He truly felt like he was missing out on life by being a Pet. Even though he was living in an Upscale Residence, there was nothing like the thought of Freedom.
He paused long enough on his video game to chuckle at the idea of ‘Missing Signs’ posted all over the neighborhood. That would be too funny. From his internet research, he found that most pets, that ran away, found the signs both funny and ironic. The agreed that they weren’t ‘missing’ since they’d purposefully run away. Not quite ‘missing’ when looked at from that perspective. Yes, OsKar was different that most pets who just sat around all day staring out the window, wondering what was out there. No, he had made up in his mind that he was going to go see for himself.
Growing bored with the video games, he clicked on Google and began to surf the internet. He was beginning to feel like that one Red Bird from Angry Birds… a bit angry with his current situation. Although, he thought, it could have been worse. There were several times he’d overhear the Parents discussing whether or not Araya could handle another pet. His vote on this matter was: Absolutely Not! Now that other pet, had they brought one home, would have ended up missing, indeed. He would have simply ate it. Chuckling some more at himself he was glad that Araya was content with him and him only.
But getting back to the matter at hand: Yep, his current situation was cool and all, but it was time for him to break camp. One of his favorite spots on the internet was the zoo. He was always thrilled to read stories of the animals that escaped those prisons. Most of them were unhappy there in those places so far away from home. Even though the Zoo Personnel did an outstanding job re-creating their habitats, there was still no place like home. Although he was an Exceptionally Smart Pet, he never let on just how smart he was… Fear kept him in the Observing Mode which kept the Family from suspecting that he’d ever be capable of what he was about to pull off.
He continued to surf the ‘net, looking for cool animal stories. There were quite a few that escaped captivity, but were caught and returned. But in most every story there were RockStars who actually got away, never to return. This would be him by tomorrow this time. Identifying with those who actually got away was thrilling. He was sure that his name would be in lights and that he would become a bit famous once he pulled this off: ‘OsKar and His Outlandish Escape!’ or perhaps, ‘How OsKar Outwitted Them All!’ The headlines would be hilarious and he would become a Legend.
Thinking all of this left him a bit sad as he looked back at Araya who was sound asleep. He felt really guilty for plotting to leave her but he couldn’t take her with him. There was no way that she would be able to hang out in the sewers beneath the city streets. She wouldn’t last a day down there, but he knew he’d have to for awhile. With the influence of her Parents, there was no way he’d be able to scoot down the street without being spotted and returned. Nope. Not the look of a RockStar at all. And they’d be sure to launch an all-out Pet Hunt for him once they discovered he was ‘missing.’
So the original plan was to scoot away while Araya was in school and her parents were at work, but that would be way too risky. Their apartment, located on the 7th floor of the B. Corcoran Condo-Continuum, so he’d have to take the Fire Escape to get to the street below. To successfully pull that off meant traveling through the shadows of darkness. OsKar was in deep thought about all of this when he felt the bed move, slightly. Araya was starting to stir awake from her sleep.
Shooting a quick glance at her Little Mermaid Clock, he realized that it was almost time for her to get up for school. How long had he been drifting away there at the end of her bed. Sloppy move. Down the hallway he heard the shower thrust on; a signal that Araya’s Mom was already up and moving. Not particularly fond of the idea of being caught at the foot of Araya’s bed, while surfing the internet, OsKar moved quickly and quietly. Pressing the off button on the tablet, he placed it next to Araya’s head, gently climbing out of bed. Straightening the covers, he reached simultaneously to push the door open to his area and entered.
All of this, from the moment he heard the shower down the hallway, was done in a matter of seconds. He was as fast as he was smart but both helped in his preparation to depart. Although, even with his brains and speed, he knew that if he didn’t leave tonight, the opportunity might not present itself again for months. Tonight would have to be the night. For weeks he noted that Friday Nights presented the most opportune times due to the Family’s going out pattern.
Tonight would be no exception to that pattern. All week Araya had been pumped about finally getting a chance to go out with her Parents to see ‘Finding Dory.’ Finding Nemo was easily one of her favorite movies of all time, OsKar was quite fond of it, too, having seen it several times on Araya’s Apple Desktop Computer. Old Nemo, what a RockStar…! ‘Gooood Morning, OsKar!’ Araya actually startled him that time. ‘Guess what today is, OsKa-Pooh?!’ The name had actually grown on him… If he could ‘talk,’ at least to the point to where she could understand him, he would’ve responded to her question.
‘Today is Friday and tonight you get to hang out with your Filthy Rich Parents for dinner and a movie. And wait, lemme guess, you’re going to see Finding Dory!’ And to really drive the point home, he’d add: ‘Oh, and by the way, once you return from your shenanigans, I’ll be looooong gone!’ Actually, he would omit that last part because it sounded a bit cynical. Coming across that way wasn’t a true representation of how he felt. He knew she’d take him out and about if she could, especially to the movies. If only pets were allowed into the Movie Theaters. What a sweet girl. A tear fell as he thought of all of the fun times they had together over the years. He’d miss her, terribly.