It was a cold and rainy afternoon. The clouds were a dark grey and rain poured down from the heavens. The streets were flooded with cars rushing by, in a hurry to get to work. There were very few people out in the cold, wet rain. Most people stayed indoors: either at cafes or their homes.
A tall and slender fox man ran into one of the cafes, trying to shield himself from the freezing rain. His dark orange fur was soaked to the skin, including the black specks on his snowy white muzzle, and his tall, foxy ears with black fur coming out of them had sharp, cold pains piercing them. Luckily he wore a long black coat and a dark fedora on his head to keep from catching his death. His bright blue eyes pierced through the cafe, trying to find a seat where he could read the paper in peace. Fortunately there were only a few silent folk at the cafe.
He strayed along through the cafe, and soon his toucas found a warm and comfortable seat to sit on. His fluffy orange tail, capped with white, was poking through the hole of the seat; and it swished back and forth. He slipped off his coat, showing his wrinkly, white buttoned-down shirt, his loose red tie and his coal-coloured jeans. He placed his fedora on the table in front of him.
A bulbous wolf fellow with ash grey fur and bright green eyes who wore a beige apron, waddled up to the fox’s table with a rather content look on his pudgy face.
"Hullo, Thief," greeted the wolf. The fox’s name was Thief. It might have been a strange name, but it was his name nonetheless.
Thief looked up at the ballooned wolf and he raised a smile. "Afternoon, Erik. How’s it going?"
"Well, it’s a quiet afternoon," said the wolf. "I’m just thankful I’m inside here, and not outside freezin’ my tail off!" He laughed, and he jiggled like a bowlful of jelly. "Yourself?"
"Meh," Thief shrugged his shoulders. "I’m so-so. Comme ci, comme ça." He laid back in his chair. "It’s a quiet day for me too."
"Yeah," said Erik, "well I’m glad you’re in here instead of out there. You know there’s danger afoot! I’ve heard that there might be some strange folk out and about!"
Thief chuckled at Erik’s remark. "Erik, there are no strange folk out and running rampant on the streets. How many times do I have to tell you? The strangest folk you’ll probably find around here is me."
"No, but it’s true!" protested Erik. "Folk that’ll take you away, and turn you into a pie! Just last week there were about three people missing just last week!"
Thief looked up at Erik with an unamused expression on his foxy face. "Erik. Trust me on this, they’ve just gone missing, it happens. They aren’t turned into a pie, so eat all the pie you want."
"Yeah," said Erik. "I guess you’re right, Thief. You’re usually right. I shouldn’t worry so much.’ He cleared his throat. "But anyway, what can I get ya?"
"A cup of tea and the paper, please," said Thief.
"Two sugar, two milks?" asked Erik.
"Yes please," said Thief with a smile.
"You’ve got it, boss." Erik waddled back behind the counter, where he started to make Thief’s tea.
As Thief waited, he looked out of the window. He saw figures trek past the cafe, and he saw the lights of cars rush down the streets. He saw the rain trickle down from the dark skies onto the black concrete road. A few thoughts passed through his mind, nothing terrible or ecstatic, just everyday thoughts.
Erik quickly came back with a paper tucked underneath his flabby arm and the tea in his other hand. He placed the tea by the wet fedora and he handed the paper to Thief.
Thief smiled as he took the paper from the flabby wolf. "Thank you, Erik." He opened up the paper and he began to read it. Erik smiled, and waddled back behind the counter.
Thief just skimmed past most of the paper: an article of a scandal with an actor, a few ads of tupperware and orange juice, and a few new movie reviews. But one article caught his attention.
"“The Largest Blueberry in the World,”" he mumbled underneath his breath. "Hey, Erik!"
"Yeah, Thief?" shouted Erik.
"Come look at this!" shouted Thief, keeping his eyes glued to the article. "“The Largest Blueberry in the world”"
Erik waddled back over to the fox, and he pulled up a chair beside him. He gazed at the article with confusion. "What’s it about?’
“Well,” said Thief. "It’s about some fellow down by Islebury was at a bar one day with his pals -- he was a bear. The bartender offered him a new drink, “berry burster”, the fellow accepted the drink and he swallowed it down. Within minutes the bear started to turn blue, and he started to feel “funny”. He and his pals just laughed, but then the bear started swell up. He started to feel juice sloshing around in him. The bear had to run outside, or else he was going to be too big. He soon turned into a blue sphere, almost two stories high, and he couldn’t move. He felt like he was going to explode, but his friends, who were drunk, started to roll him down around town. They pushed him down a hill and they just laughed in a drunken roar, losing their swollen friend.
"“Luckily the bear didn’t pop and he was found the next morning. Luckily no one was hurt, but the bear was still a “blueberry”, large as he was the night before. One of the friends had the bright idea to use this “advantage” to earn some cash. They set up a store for people to see him… blah, blah, blah… still a blueberry… blah, blah, blah...”"
"God rest that poor soul," said Erik grimly. "To be stuck like that, a blueberry."
"Yeah, well, you’re not too far off from that." Thief chuckled underneath his breath.
"You know there are people larger than me!" cried Erik.
"True, just look at the people down by the port, not the sailors, but some of the merchants," remarked Thief. "But hey! I bet you could eat your way through misses Koster’s entire pie shop!"
"I could not," protested Erik. "But it is temptin’, all of those apples pies, the banana breads..." His mouth began to water, his eyes grew with excitement and his stomach lowly growled. He could almost taste all the freshed baked goodies misses Koster baked.
"I swear, if you married her you wouldn’t even be able to get out your front door," said Thief. "I’m just glad you don’t know how to bake. Or else I wouldn’t have my fresh coffee every morning." He chuckled underneath his breath.
Erik loudly laughed. "You would be a rather grumpy fox, now wouldn’t you?"
"Yeah," said Thief. "And you don’t want to see me grumpy: I get lippy, and moody. Some people would claim I would need something to eat, but they already think that way: I’m thin as a pencil, but I’m as smart as a whip, well, maybe I’m over exaggerating, but I think you get my point."
"Yes, yes," said Erik. "I understand ya, Thief. When I get moody I just eat."
"You eat no matter what," remarked Thief.
Erik laughed, his belly jiggled like jello. "Thief, you have to be so rude!"
"Yet honest," said Thief, he sat back in his seat and he placed his hands behind his head. "Anyway, you should get back to your work, and I need to finish my tea."
Erik nodded and he stood up. His belly brushed up against the table, almost knocking it over, but Thief quickly grabbed his tea. Erik stretched out his back before he waddled back to his work.
Thief began to sip his tea as he flipped through his paper. Some folk came and went, some thin, some fat, some tall and some short, but they were all furred. He never raised his head to see any of them, he kept his bright eyes glued to his newspaper.
He read some strange and some shocking articles: folk going missing, people getting mugged on the streets, a few bodies found, a new strip joint, and a few very strange bank robberies. After he finished his tea and he read through the paper a couple of times to make sure what he had read was not just a figment of his imagination, he made his ways, paying Erik two-dollars and fifty-cents and giving him a quick good-bye. He grabbed his fedora and his hat, and treked out of the cafe, into the grey-rain, heading back to his home.