She was going to run late for work so hurriedly rushed past the crowd. But something tripped her. Then she noticed the small fluffy animal in front of her. There was also a manhole.
She looked at the small white animal and the manhole that it had its gazed fixated on. She had no idea what kind of story this poor animal had and what she would end up doing for it.
KKang studied hard all of her life to end up graduating from Shangai University with flying colors. She was proud of her hard work and even went on to work at a major bank. After a while, she was an executive at the bank but she still felt as if there was a void in her life that needed filling.
But she was unaware that the universe was going to meddle in her life.
She would wake up before sunrise and walk all the way to her work. She’d then leave her shift 10 hours after it started and walk all the way home just to fall in bed.
Kang lived a relatively dull life. She worked harder than anyone she knew and was a good citizen and daughter. She didn’t think too much and just got on with working. But then she stumbled into something that would change everything.
Kang lived in her apartment all by herself and had no idea that on her way to work she’d find something odd. She woke up like she normally did and rushed out the door so she wouldn’t be late for work.
But on the streets, no one else seemed to notice a poor animal that needed help. Nor would Kang, until she tripped.
Kang walked quickly to make up the lost time. She heard her heels as well as a thousand others on the busy street. Then she tripped over something and barely managed to keep her balance. Then she looked at what she had tripped over. It was a manhole.
Then she saw the furry animal before her.
She tried to get the poor animal away from the busy street. But it wouldn’t even budge. She was running late and had to move on. She wouldn’t break her streak of being early.
She frowned and knew her only option was to leave the puppy next to the manhole cover and continue to work. But the puppy wouldn’t leave her head.
She got to work and started her busy day. Between mountains of paper work she had her lunch break. When her shift ended she started her short journey home.
She walked the same route to get back to her apartment but never thought that she’d stumble upon the puppy again exactly where she’d seen it before.
It was now asleep but sitting in the same place she had found it earlier. Where was the animal’s master? surely they were close by. Maybe one of the shop owners looked after it? But now it was late and there weren’t many people around.
She knew that she had to do something but didn’t have the time. It shouldn’t have been her problem, but now it was.
She still thought of the puppy’s cute face from earlier. This made it very hard for her to sleep. She felt guilt for leaving the poor thing out in the cold all on its own. Why was it hanging around in the same spot?
But the only real thing that stayed on her mind was why didn’t she do something? The remorse kept her up the entire night.
Kang awoke in a flat panic. Her heart raced as she realized that she had slept through her alarm. She’d only managed to get a few hours of sleep, and now she knew that she was going to be late for work if she didn’t run. She considered taking her car, but that would be pointless in the morning Shanghai traffic. She threw her business suit on and sprinted out the door. As she ran, another worry popped into her head: would the puppy still be there?
She sprinted past the manhole cover and her heart dropped.
The puppy was still there. Hundreds of people continued to walk past him as he kept his vigil at the manhole cover. Kang resolved there and then that she would do something about it, but she had no time now.
Distracted and worried, she went through the motions at work until it was time to begin the walk home again. Only this time, she took a different route home.
She stopped at the all-night supermarket and bought some rice, a whole roast chicken, and some dog kibble. Then, she made her way back to the puppy, sitting all alone on the manhole cover. She tried again to move him from the street, tempting him with the scent of roast chicken, but he refused. Kang left the food next to him, but he didn’t seem interested.
But at least she had tried, she thought to herself as she walked back home.
That night, her worries about the pup only intensified. She knew she had to do more for him – clearly, nobody else would. But what could she do? She lived in an apartment and didn’t have the time to take care of an animal. But she also didn’t want to take him to the pound. There was only one thing she could do.
She promised herself that if the puppy was still there in the morning, she would take him home. And then, she’d take it from there.
That morning Kang held her breath as she rounded the corner, hoping that the pup had been taken in by a Good Samaritan. When she saw him still sitting on the manhole cover, she felt a mixture of joy and disappointment. But she knew what she had to do. She scooped him up and took him home. She was his mom now. She called in sick that day to make sure that she could take care of the little pup.
But as soon as she turned to put the puppy on the floor and close the door, he took off running.
Kang raced after him, through the streets and throngs of people. She couldn’t lose him now! But where was he going? It didn’t take Kang long to realize that the tiny puppy was running back to the manhole cover! And that’s where she found him. She’d caused quite a commotion in the street, running at full tilt and yelling for the puppy to come back.
A passerby saw the puppy sitting in his spot and exclaimed: “you again!” Did the woman know him?
Kang turned to the woman and asked her if she knew the puppy. Was he hers? Did she know the owner? But the woman’s response left her breathless. She began to tell Kang the puppy’s story, and why he wouldn’t leave that spot on the manhole cover in the street.
And then, the puppy’s strange behavior made perfect sense.
Just three days ago, there had been an accident in this very spot. Unfortunately, the puppy’s mother had been a victim of a hit-and-run in the middle of the night. The woman had witnessed it firsthand. The driver had felt the impact, but he kept on driving. The pup’s mother didn’t survive and she had been taken away by the sanitation department. There was another of the mother’s pups that was unaccounted for.
The tiny white pup had been left there alone and had refused to leave the spot where his mother had passed.
Kang knelt down by the puppy and stroked his white fur. She understood. He was grieving. Tears ran down her cheeks as she thought about all this poor creature had gone through. But then, the pup did something strange. He moved away from the manhole cover and walked over to the drain on the pavement. Kang followed him, and then she heard a small yelp.
She knelt down again to peer inside the drain and saw a little face looking back up at her.
This must be the puppy’s sibling! Obviously terrified, he had run into the drain to hide. Had the little pup been waiting for this moment to get help? Kang lay down and leaned inside as far as she could, stretching her arms out until her hands brushed wet fur. She pulled the tiny pup out of the sewer and inspected him. He seemed hungry and wet, but uninjured. Was the little white puppy protecting his brother this whole time?
She took both puppies home with her and bathed and fed them. Soon, they were running around her apartment, playing and yapping – happy to be together again.
Kang kept both puppies. She got up before work to walk them, and she always made sure to take the same route – to the manhole cover. Every morning, she lets the two pups sniff that spot and has a moment of silence in honor of their mother. Soon, she began to see a positive change in her life, too.
Her adopted puppies brought her joy when she saw their wagging tails every evening. They gave her something to come home to. But she does have one regret: she should have helped them sooner.