I had a friend, when I was a kid that was a dog boy. His head was a dog's on a kid's body. Like a German Shepherd mutt. Dark hair, but ears not pointy like a shepherds. He would stare at you with the hope that dogs have, but with the unwillingness to love that angry boys have. We played together occasionally and I was bad to him. I would hit him. I knew his parents trained him well and that he would never turn on me. He would simply turn his sad eyes away from me whenever I started hitting him. I just wanted to play fight, like kids do, but he was too well trained and I guess that made me mad. Then I started taking advantage. As kids do.
I wondered what the other kids thought of him. So I called him over one day to play ball. That's what I told him. He came, and the other kids, a boy and a girl from the neighbourhood, hid in the hay loft. We played catch. He always caught the ball with his mouth. I could see that catching the ball was starting to hurt him. I threw it harder and harder. The ball started getting bloody. I became angrier because a sensible boy or dog would have stopped as soon as the blood came. I finally threw the ball so hard I knocked a tooth out. He caught the ball, but then he just let it fall out of his mouth and into the dirt, followed by a string of bloody spit. He spat the tooth into his hand, looked at it, then put it into his pocket. The kids hidden up in the hayloft started snickering. He pretended he didn't hear but I knew he did, could even smell them, I bet.
"I'm kinda tired. I better get home." Then he left the barn, slow and sad. I didn't care. He always came back to play because we were friends.
We followed him at a distance as he moped through the dust of the dry lanes. A cat came up to him. Nice farm cat. Friendly. He stopped and looked at it. I thought he was making friends, since he's part animal. He picked the cat up by the scruff, stared at it hard, then crushed its skull in his jaws. The cat clawed at his head, trying to push away. He dropped it. The cat tried to walk away, it's head flattened sideways. He jumped on it with both feet. Then he fell on top of it and started ripping at it with his teeth and hands. This all happened real quiet. He didn't make a sound and neither did the cat. Blood, guts, pinkywhite bones. The girl was crying. The boy stood up and left. We all stopped playing together after that. I can't even remember their names.
We all got older. I heard he started stealing hubcaps, hanging out with bad kids. Then I heard he got kicked out of the house. He moved in with an older guy by the airport. He ended up killing the old guy, for some reason.