My one and only pet was a turtle named Engelbert who elevated my childhood by giving it a greenish glow of quiet dignity.
I tended to Engelbert–changing his water, sprinkling in his food–with a due diligence that was rewarded by his steadfast refusal to make a single sound of discomfort, or any sound at all, actually.
Especially one day when I went to check on Engie and found that his shell had mysteriously softened into liquid and he had basically turned into turtle soup. Without any warning, the freak had croaked on me! I was devastated! From that moment on, every time I put on my tortoise-shell glasses, I choked back a tear or two.
Horrified that life–and friendship–could be so transitory, I vowed to never replace Engie with anything else that could eat, sleep, or drop dead. Instead, I went back to my imaginary rabbit pal Harvey, who could never really disappoint me. As proof of the incredible astuteness of my choice, he’s still by my side today.
Your pet horror story?