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The Legend of the Evil Woobie!


Once upon a time, over a hundred years ago, there lived a kindly
old man named Lord Tweedmouth who loved his doggies very much.
For his doggies were very special. They were hunting dogs, like
many others in the neighborhood, but they had been born a very
unusual shade of gold. These dogs became known far and wide for
their prowess at returning birds to their beloved master when he
went out shooting, and they returned his love and affection
manyfold, even sharing his bed (unheard of among hunting dogs at
that time). This was a source of great dismay to the good Lady
Tweedmouth, for she felt her social status was measured by
keeping the manor house tidy. (And, if she could have admitted it,
she would have said that she had always been more than a wee bit
jealous of these special dogs from the outset.)

As word of these special golden retrieving dogs spread like
wildfire among the gentry, good Lady Tweedmouth was astonished
to find that her social standing was greatly enhanced by being
associated (if only tangentially) with her husband's special
hunting companions. Gradually, the Lady's heart began to soften
towards the great huge drooling beasts that inhabited the house,
despite the bitter complaints from the parlor maid and
chambermaid about the vast quantities of golden hair they removed
each day from parlor and bedchamber. In fact, as the Christmas
season began to draw near, she even began to contemplate giving
the dogs a special gift of their very own. Being a wise woman, she
kept these thoughts to herself, as dogs were not treated then as
they are today. Nonetheless, she owed the golden beasts a debt of
gratitude for improving her social standing, and she spent many
hours debating what gift they might most enjoy. . .

Part 2
Then one day inspiration struck good Lady Tweedmouth as she
observed the aforementioned surly maids going about their work.
Why not make these special dogs some special toys, while at the
same time doing something to make the household staff more
agreeable? Whereupon she collected the vast quantities of golden
fur and began to spin it into a fine golden thread, and continued
about her work by weaving this exquisite thread into a most
unusual fabric, which was wonderfully soft. She then set about
fashioning small likenesses of the dogs' favorite woodland
creatures... squirrels, hedgehogs and the like. These she stuffed
with more of the soft golden fuzz that continued to accumulate
around the manor house, despite the maids' most earnest efforts
to keep it in check.

At last, on Christmas Day, after all members of the household had
exchanged their gifts and indulged in much merrymaking, Lady
Tweedmouth called the dogs to her side and presented them with
their special presents. After much sniffing, each of the dogs took
one of these unusual toys into its mouth, wagging with gratitude,
while at the same time barking their appreciation. But instead of
coming out "Woof! Woof!" as they'd intended, the dogspeak came
out "WOOB! WOOB!" as their mouths were indeed full!

Part 3

At the dark end of that good day, when the guests were gone, the
Tweedmouth retrievers settled into their master's bed, along with
the Lord and the Lady, and of course with the Lady's toys, which
were by now being called "Woobies" by all members of the
household. In the days that followed, it soon became apparent that
these Woobies were looked upon by their owners as their own
special pets, for the dogs cared for them in the same doting
manner that good Lord Tweedmouth ministered to their needs. And
the Woobies returned the dogs' devotion equally, being never far
from their sides.

Never had the manor house seemed so full of harmony and
goodwill. Lady Tweedmouth was deeply touched by the dogs'
response to her gifts, and came to realize that she did indeed
truly love them, regardless of what the neighbors might think of
her frequent and excessive displays of affection for them. Seeing
the Lady becoming so enthralled with his golden darlings naturally
pleased Lord Tweedmouth greatly, as the dogs were no longer a
wedge between himself and his good wife (though he now often
found himself sleeping on the floor!). Even the housekeeping staff
left off their bickering and complaining. And in this happy state
of affairs, the winter passed slowly and peacefully, gradually
giving way to spring... until one truly terrible day!

Part 4

The coming of spring was once again a signal for celebration at
the Tweedmouth estate. The somber Lenten season was past,
Eastertide was but a memory; it was now time for the annual
feasting and merrymaking that was the center of the May Day
observance at the manor. Each year, townsfolk and gentry would
gather for a day and evening of eating, drinking, dancing and all
other manner of fun (some of it naughty, but most of it nice). The
preparations leading up to this day were, of course, extremely
burdensome to the household staff, who now (in addition to the
usual drudgery associated with the annual event) were forced to
complete their tasks while dodging the "great drooly loathsome
beasts" (which is what they called Lord Tweedmouth's precious
ones when they were safely behind closed doors). Needless to say,
the maids and footmen began to return to their churlish ways, and
occasionally they would forget themselves and hurl their
unpleasant epithets at the dogs while they went about their labors.
This preyed greatly upon the mind of the good Lady Tweedmouth,
for she could not bear to hear their complaints against those who
were now HER very special companions.

Finally, the first of May arrived, bringing a cloudless sky filled
with singing birds and just enough puffy white clouds to provide
the odd bit of shade should the day become warm and the more
delicate of the ladies begin to swoon. Last minute preparations
were completed, the dogs' coats brushed by the Lord and Lady to
a high sheen. At last, the Tweedmouths, seeing that all was in
readiness and done to their satisfaction, repaired to their private
chambers to dress in their finery and prepare to meet their guests.
It was then that an uninvited guest named TROUBLE invaded the
Tweedmouth manor house... stealthy, soundless and unnoticed by all.

Part 5

Soon all that could be heard were the sounds of horses hooves on
the cobbled drive as the invited guests began to arrive. Laughter
filled the great hall as peasants and peers came together,
forgetting their class differences for this once a year opportunity
to get a glimpse into each others' lives. The workers from the
fields gaped open-mouthed at the richness of the feast and
partook of it with great glee; the stuffy old titled folk were
treated to some rather "low" humor, and chortled behind their
hands (or, in the case of the ladies, their fans) at the naughtiness
of it all. Lord Tweedmouth looked over the scene and smiled with
pleasure, knowing that once again, the Lady and the household
staff had managed to pull off a smashing social success.

Not noticing the good Lady herself, he was able to surmise, from
past experience, that she was waiting for just the right moment to
make her entrance. And sure enough, when he turned a moment
later and looked up the stairway that led to the great hall, he saw
her poised regally at the head of it. Giving her a small nod and a
conspiratorial wink, he called for the attention of the assembled
guests. "Ladies, gentlemen, and good folk, it is my honor to
announce to you the entrance of the Lady Tweedmouth, my wife
and the maker of this feast."

All eyes were cast upon the Lady, who graced the throng below
with one of her legendary smiles, and proceeded to descend the
stairway in a slow and measured pace, looking every inch the Lady
that she was.

Until, that is, her foot chanced to land upon something that was
indeed not a stair tread... something soft that rolled beneath her,
causing her to complete her descent of the staircase in a most
unladylike manner, arriving at the bottom in a disheveled,
unconscious heap. The guests gasped collectively! It was then that
the culprit was discovered... there, on the third step from the top
was a WOOBIE! And the Lady Tweedmouth was indeed in a bad
way, lying pale and still on the stone floor...

Part 6

Fortunately, old Doctor Leech was in attendance, and quickly
elbowed his way through the crowd to attempt to revive the Lady.
He knelt over her prostrate form for several moments, waving a
vial of some foul smelling substance back and forth beneath her
nose... but alas, his efforts were in vain! The only noticeable
effect of this treatment was the rapid disappearance from the
scene of the Tweedmouth Retrievers, who until now had been
sniffing their beloved mistress with great concern.

After a few more minutes of ministering to the Lady, the old
doctor instructed Lord Tweedmouth that "only time will tell if she
will revive," and instructed him to have her carried forthwith to
her bedchamber. Two of the servants quickly produced a
makeshift litter and prepared to carry her up the same staircase
which she had descended in such a terrible fashion. In so doing,
they noticed that the woobie which had caused her demise had
disappeared from view, but did not remark upon it to the Lord.
Lifting their burden ever so gently, they began their sad task,
troubled greatly by the Lady's seemingly lifeless pale form. The
hushed crowd watched with grief-stricken faces as she was carried away...

Part 7
In which, Lady Tweedmouth's Fate is Determined

Slowly and ever so gently, the faithful retainers carried the Lady
up the long and winding staircase arriving at last at the threshold
of her chamber. The door was, fortunately, cracked open ever so
slightly, so there was no need to shift their mistress needlessly.
But as they carefully eased the door open, they were barely able
to keep control of their burden BECAUSE...
The air in the room was FILLED with flying golden fur!! There
upon the Lady's bed were gathered the good Tweedmouth
retrievers and their entire collection of Woobies, all of which
were by now in tatters, their innards and entrails flying about the
chamber. For the retrievers were indeed wroth at their heretofore
beloved toys, for they were keen in their perceptions that one of
them had precipitated their mistress' undoing and, being unsure
which Woobie was the culprit, had agreed among themselves that
ALL must pay the ultimate price and be destroyed to prevent
further harm to the members of the household. Indeed, they were
so intently bent to their task of avenging their mistress that they
would not cease, even after they were sternly admonished by Lord
Tweedmouth to do so (and they were generally VERY obedient dogs).
And so the servants, still bearing Lady Tweedmouth on the litter,
and unable to deposit her on the bed, waited for the dogs to cease
their frenzied Woobie-killing and looked on as Lord Tweedmouth
tried in vain to restore order. And thus it was, with all save the
Lady temporarily distracted by the dogs' activity, and with golden
hair swirling about in abundance, that there came suddenly a
MOST unladylike sneeze!! Then another, and another!!! Lo and
behold, the Lady was coming back to herself, thanks to the violent
invasion of her nose by the combination of Woobie innards and
bits of the down comforter that adorned the bed. Slowly, she sat
up on her litter and surveyed the shambles that was her bedchamber
and very nearly fell into a ladylike swoon.
At the sight of their revived mistress, the Tweedmouth Retrievers
immediately ceased their heretofore relentless shredding, and
began to lick and nuzzle her with joy.
And in the aftermath, harmony and happiness once again prevailed
at the Tweedmouth manor. But ever after, from that day to this,
the Legend of the Evil Woobie has been passed on to descendents
of the original Tweedmouth Retrievers from dam to pups for
generations. And for generations, they have continued their
vigilance in protecting those whom they love, faithfully honoring
their Woobie-killing ancestors and unselfishly sacrificing their
beloved toys for the sake of their human companions' well-being.

- THE END –

„ Cheryl P. Vetter


If you use this text please credit the author. Cheryl P. Vetter. Thank You!
 

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Thanks for the explanation! Our house has be woobie free for many years now. We're a Nylabone family now :lol:

Do you think that's where allergies started? Didn't Lady Tweedmouth start sneezing with the destruction of the WOOBIES!? :D
 
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