Rex sat faithfully by the front door. 

His wet nose pressed against the crevice between the door’s frame and its edge.  The bottom of his snout lay flat on the floor nestled between his giant paws.  It was almost time and Rex knew it.  He looked calm as he lay, with his back feet spread.

But his nose…

His nose told a different story. 

His nose twitched and jerked in search for his master’s scent.  He usually caught the scent as the elevator doors opened, down by apartment 201, because they would waft his master’s smell down the hall and through that crevice.  The crevice where Rex placed his snout.  As his nose searched the air, he thought about his master. 

Rex thought about how his master would rub and fold his ears and tell him what a good boy he was.  He reminisced about mountain hikes when the leash would come off.  Rex was petrified of losing his master in the hills, so he always kept him within eye-shot.  “Rex, come!” was the command that would catapult him into a sprint back to his master. 

Rex remembered that orange boomerang toy that squeaked as he snatched it in his jaws.  It would be thrown into the breaking ocean waves in a wet, salty game of fetch.  If you looked close enough, you could almost see a smile on Rex’s face while he remembered how his master would turn away as he shook the ocean water from his fur. 

“Aww, what a guy.” Rex thought. 

Memories came back to him as his nose continued to sniff the air from the apartment hallway.  There were a few times when his master just wasn’t himself.  He hugged Rex extra long on those days.  And on those days, he wondered why his eyes were like the ocean… 


Nevertheless, Rex lay extra still during those moments.  He didn’t mind at all.  It seemed to make his master’s breaths less shallow. 

Rex was older now.  He moved a bit slower.  But his tail was ready to whip and wag as fast as it did when he was a young pup.  All he needed was to catch that scent. 

Rex sat faithfully by the front door. 

He sat with his nose pressed against the crevice.  Patiently he would wait.  And by that door was a small table with a picture frame on it.  A picture of his master in a police uniform and his master’s police badge encased next to it. 

And so…

Rex patiently fell asleep while he waited.

He waited everyday. 

He waited with the hope that the scent of salty waves would one day waft through those hallways again. 

-Tom Ludlow