Behind the Water Heater

Illustration by Alessandro Gottardo

Our dog Fern is convinced there’s something behind the water heater, inside the rectangle cut out of the drywall to make room for the pipes. She stands in front of the water heater for extended periods of time just watching, waiting. What do I do? I walk past her carrying the recycling to dispose in the bin outside. I start a load of laundry. When I open the door into her she makes room for me with her body but does not break eye contact with the water heater hole. She barely even moves her head.


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