White Dog has, since we bought the cranberry chairs that sit as a pair against the front windows of the living room, claimed the space behind them as her own little fortress. This was before there even WAS a White Dog Army. As each member has joined us, they have just known to respect that only her Serene Highness languished there and visitors were neither welcomed nor invited.
This afternoon saw a shift in the wind and deep rumbling thunder announced the arrival of a storm. The wind whipped the branches and howled through the space between the buildings; the thunder crashed louder and louder as it crept closer. The air smelled different and the suddenly dark sky was threatening. All of the pups were restless and uncomfortable with the weather change. I was addressing postcards when White Dog came and sat beside me. She growled and I reached down to calm her thinking she, too, was upset by the storm's approach. I didn't even look up as I cooed comforting words. But she was persistent, pawing my leg and growling with more and more urgency. I put down my pen and looked at her.
"What?" I asked, "hop up here with me and I will keep you safe. It is OK." She shrugged me off and paced to draw my attention to the window chairs, her den of safety. Only it had become nearly the entire WDA's port in the storm.
YoYoMa was behind the watching chair, curled tightly in the little space. Quinn stood between the two chairs with his head under the end table. Oso and Puff were in the far corner snuggled between the chairs and the fireplace. Only Nuka, brave, deaf Nuka, was not in clear violation of the rules...she was sleeping soundly in front of the couch, head on her paws, oblivious to the invasion going on around her.
WD was beside herself, blowing air through her cheeks in anger and working up quite a froth of mad. I swooped her up in my arms and held her in time out, like when she was a puppy. "They are frightened, Little One, and do not mean you any disrespect. To them your castle is the safest place they know because we are all in the same room and yet they are protected by your den. Don't be mean. As a leader you surely understand that the Army needs to feel safe and loved above all else?" WD squirmed in my arms but stopped growling.
I turned her to face me and clasped her in my embrace. "Stay right here next to me. You know there is nothing to fear. I promise when the storm blows past everyone will return your space to you and it will be forgotten. We will watch over them all for now."
White Dog snuggled into the pillow at my side and together we watched the rain pound down and lightning crackle. Pressed together we rode out the 50 minutes of angry weather and then the sky cleared. As predicted one by one the WDA emerged from hiding and life returned to normal.