"I'm hungry," said PJ Wigglebee.
"How can you be hungry," asked Patrick. We just had a feast.
"I don't know," said PJ. "I just know my tummy is growling."
"Is anyone hungry?" he laughed. Uncle Kramer never wasted food.
"Did you hear my tummy growl?" asked PJ.
"Come to think of it," said Cricket, "I'm a bit hungry myself."
"Me too!" said Henry.
"Me too," agreed Patrick. "Hear MY stomach growl?"
"That's mine!" said PJ.
Uncle Kramer gave everyone a big fat dog biscuit.
"Room service," he laughed. "Are you having fun PJ?"
"I'm nerbous," said PJ.
"Nervous," corrected Cricket.
"Are you afraid you won't have fun tomorrow?" asked Uncle Kramer.
"No," said Pj. "I'm nerbous, um, nervous that I won't make my mother
proud of me for telling the world about Puppy Mills."
"It looks like you've already made friends," said Patrick.
"Matisse!" said PJ. "He's going to paint my picture to help
us raise money to save me."
"That's wonderful," said Uncle Kramer.
"If I don't make it," said PJ softly, "you will always have my picture
to remember me."
The grownups didn't know what to say. On the one paw, they
wanted to be completely honest with PJ about his chances of survival.
On the other paw, they didn't want him to give up hope.
"You have time to keep your pawmise to your mother," said Cricket,
"and you have time to get well, but now it's time for you to get some sleep.
In the middle of the night it seemed to PJ that the room was filling
with stardust and light.
"What is that?" he tried to ask, but he could not make a sound.
"Mommy" asked PJ in surprise. "What is all this magical dust?"
"Rescue dust, PJ. Keep believing. Keep telling the world
about the terrible things you have seen." said his mother.
"I'm going to be a fireman tomorrw," said PJ. "I'm going to
tell the world. I'm going to keep my pawmise to you."
"I know you will, PJ." said his mother. "I want you to know how very
proud I am of you and your new family. I love you so much!"
"Don't go!" said PJ, sensing that whatever was happening was about
"I am never gone, PJ. I am always in your heart. Someday
you will understand. Whenever you need me, listen with your heart."
"I love you Mommy," PJ whispered before falling into deep sleep.