A terrorist hides amongst us.
He is cunning and sly, well camouflaged and deceivingly small.
He has beautiful brown eyes, black and white hair and a tail that curls over his back, beckoning you to follow.
He is evil, and his name is Charlie.
Charlie seeks to hamper the U.S. Government's ongoing war by limiting my sleep. He sneaks into my bed in the morning, pawing and wriggling until he lays beside my legs, warm and content in the early morning hours.
When I have succumbed again to his charms and the warmth of his body pressed against mine, he disturbs my dreams, bringing me to wakefulness by licking my fingers and nibbling on my ear. He is a master at seduction of the most effective sort.
When sleep is no longer possible, yet before I leave the comfort of my bed, he bounces with unbound energy and determination, certain victory is near at hand. Most often, he secures his prize by bouncing heavily on my too-full bladder, ensuring a rapid chase to the bathroom before winning his freedom out the back door.
Ah - but this does not suffice. Mere moments of freedom in a dew-chased lawn does not complete his ultimate mission - The Walk.
For Charlie loves to walk as fish love to swim: it is vital to his very existence.
Impatiently he waits, pacing along the floor, jumping onto the couch beside me, stepping his little paws along the length of my thigh as I struggle to sip my coffee. Just one cup of coffee. Just one, please?
But no, the torture continues. Yips and pirouettes, jumps and leaps increase in volume and magnitude until, weakening under the constant onslaught, I break. With a sigh and a sad glance at my still full mug, I trudge forward, changing and dressing, pulling my hair into a pony-tail, tying my shoes and, if I'm lucky, brushing my teeth before we slip out the door for an hour of sniffing, peeing, pooping and rambling. Enough to appease his sense of purpose. For now.
Tomorrow brings another chance for covert operations and subtle, distracting tactics.