However his concern centered on the box containing the engagement ring he was suppose to give to his girlfriend, Lisa, later that morning. It was nowhere to be seen, amongst the items forcing him to quickly jump out of bed and crawl around the floor looking for it. While Michael was under his bed looking for the ring box he looked back and saw his Black Labrador Retriever, Murphy, lying on top of his briefcase with a very strange look on his face.
“Murphy,” Michael said looking at the dog, “you didn’t eat the ring box did you?”
“No,” the dog replied in English which astounded Michael. “But we have far greater concerns, my cover has been blown and you’re going to have to skip work today since I have to leave the planet.”
Still suffering the effects of yesterday’s small party with his buddies Michael reared up abruptly in surprise from his talking dog, smacking his head on the bottom of his headboard. Stars blinked about his field of vision as he felt a trickle of warm blood run down the side of his head. Not feeling quite in touch with reality Michael forgot about the ring and just laid on the floor.
“Dammit,” the dog said, “We don’t have time for this; my life is one the line here.” Murphy stood up and grabbed a chunk of Michael’s sweatpants with his mouth, pulling his owner from underneath the bed. “I swear to Dog in heaven if you don’t get a hold of yourself right now I will pee on your face.”
“Murphy old buddy,” Michael said smiling to himself while lying on the floor, “I must have had a great time last night because I swear to god I’m dreaming that you are talking to me.”
“Sit up!” Murphy barked with his owner astonished in his dog’s tone of authority and the fact that he sat up and froze in place. “Let’s get one thing clear dumbass; you think you have been writing all that cutting edge programming code? Well, you may be the one keying it in like a good monkey but it’s me that’s been feeding you the actual data. Now get dressed and I will fill you in on the life you thought you were living.
Able to move again but under some form of control Michael jumped up and began walking toward his closet fishing out a pair of jeans, polo shirt, and sneakers. Murphy followed and began giving details how it was Michael who was the pet while he was the intelligent owner.
Murphy explained that it all started 150 thousand years ago when his kind discovered Earth and the newly emergent Homo sapiens. Those ancient starfaring canines took pity on the barely sentient primates which looked like creatures they kept as pets on the home world. They conceived a plan to infiltrate human settlements and began to both raise human awareness and teach them neat tricks.
“Just how intelligent are we humans?” Michael asked while putting on his shirt.
“You remember ‘Forrest Gump’; well to us the best of you monkeys are under him.”
Murphy went on saying that it wasn’t only humans with stupid politicians. Certain conservative segments, called Pugicans on the home world thought raising human awareness was against the Great Dog in heaven’s plan and had been actively sabotaging efforts. Inside Michael’s briefcase was the final segment of a program that was to be released onto the internet and after it had invaded most computers would over the course of a few decades raise humanity to true sentience. Pugicans agents were looking to kill Murphy and use the obedience chip in Michael’s head to make him load a different program onto the internet that would have the opposite effect of Murphy’s.
“I have an obedience chip in me? And why does your species want to help us?” Michael asked feeling sick to his stomach.
“The chip has been standard procedure for centuries and we are helping you because we think you’re cute and for your opposable thumbs, telepathy can only do so much.” The dog said irritated with the passing time.
Murphy had to look normal in public and they walked away from the apartment building with the alien dog on a leash and Michael carrying his briefcase. They had to cross town quickly to rendezvous with Murphy’s starship and avoid Pugican agents looking for them. Their luck ran out next a tea shop where a party was spilling out into the streets. A blonde, long haired Russian Hound, backed up by a German shepherd and Doberman, appeared and soon surrounded them.
“Well Boulter you bitch, we meet again. I see you’re still working for your Pugican master Lush, has he ever gotten over his drug issues?” Murphy snarled.
The skinny blonde dog snickered. “Yes, and I see you still have some sick infatuation with the monkeys. Give me up the uplift program and I may let you smell my butt.”
“Not in a billion years you emaciated skank. Okay Bannity and Heck, let’s dance you pussies.” Murphy said as he and the two Pugican henchdogs began to circle each other.
“Quick Michael, open the briefcase and pull out the ring box and open it.” Murphy said as the overweight shepherd, Heck, lunged toward him.
Doing as he was told Michael pulled out the ring box and opened it, the diamond ring began to glow, emitting a shell of light that engulfed the four dogs and lone human. The effects from the ring were immediate, the blonde hound felt suddenly fat and ran off to puke; Heck felt a strong urge to cry and fell down weeping; the Doberman, Bannity, normally an outright coward became convinced someone was coming with a bucket of water and a board causing him to run away.
With their adversaries incapacitated Murphy and Michael ran for their lives.However they weren’t in the clear yet, a squadron of pigeons, allied with the Pugicans, appeared overhead and began diving bombing them with acid poop. Only the timely arrival of Murphy’s allies, the eagles Jon and Stephen, scared the feathered rats away saving them from a gooey death.
The starship, shaped like the Oscar Meyer wiener mobile, was waiting for Murphy next an abandoned baseball stadium. Both the alien dog and human had been together for years and were sad that their time was ending.
“Up about the uplift program?” Michael asked after finding out Murphy was taking it with him.
“The Pugicans will be on alert for any insertion onto the internet, I’m afraid it will have to wait a few years.”
Still not really believing all this Michael’s confusion turned to concern. “What about Lisa and me, will we be safe? Won’t the Pugicans try to capture me?”
“Not really,” Murphy said, “they only really wanted me but the safety device I inserted in the ring will protect both of you. Anyway another canine agent will be assigned to you quickly, if fact Michael I’m supposed to wipe your mind so you will forget everything but…”
Michael sat bolt upright in bed looking around his bedroom feeling like something was very wrong. But he was in his sweatpants, the engagement ring was on his nightstand, and Murphy was sleeping on his dog pillow in the corner, everything looked okay.
“Thank God it was a dream!” he said to himself with Murphy looking at him like he was crazy.
“Murphy, you wouldn’t believe the dream I just had, you were a talking alien dog with evil enemy dogs out to kill you and enslave humanity. I feel so tired, I’d better go back to sleep.” He finished laying his head back on the pillow
“Just don’t be late with the dog food dickhead, and the name is Rusty.” Michael heard from the corner, figuring it was for the best he ignored the talking dog.
Author's note: Out of ideas so I tried this prompt from the Writer's Digest website. "One day you wake up to find your dog/cat waiting for you at the side of your bed, sitting on your briefcase. Cocking its head, it tells you, in perfect English, that you won’t be going to work today. Why won’t your pet let you go to work, and what happens?"