TSoA: Chapter 35: Moar Puppies!!!

You’d think that a chapter about fighting off a pack of wild dogs would be exciting.

You would be wrong.

Murphy wants to go examine the remains of the gunmen that Token Turk killed, but first there are more important things, like sleeping and breakfast.

…Murphy was sharing a mug of steaming tea with Isis…

Wait, they’re sharing the same mug?  They haven’t so much as held hands, but they’re drinking tea from the same cup?  Somehow, I find that both intimate and gross.

(Don’t get me wrong.  There’s nothing wrong with couples sharing cups or spoons or whatever.  But Murphy and Isis are not a couple.  I do not drink out of my friends’ cups, be they guy friends or girl friends.)

It was all he could do not to hug her to him…

Why don’t you hug her, you repressed jerk?  Why don’t you tell her you like-her-like-that, that you have Special Feelings for her?  Why do you get off on thinking about a woman you have never touched?

…but she seemed to be happy he was simply there.

That’s quite an assumption there, Murph, and you know what happens when we ASSUME.  After all, another person who is there is The Nerd.  You know, the guy who actually hugged Isis after her ordeal.

Token Turk, The Nerd, and The Dick all think the gunmen were Kurdish rebels who like to kidnap tourists, but, as with the Shroud of Turin, Murphy is Not Convinced.  So he assembles another A Team to go and examine the remains: himself, Señor SEAL, and Token Turk.

They find a pack of about fifteen wild dogs eating the remains:

…from the looks of the bodies, the best pickings were already gone.

So, you know a lot about the “best pickings” of human bodies, eh?  Sorry the dogs didn’t save any for you.

I’m sure the authors mean dogs like these, and I’m sure if I met some I would be scared, but…

wild dog puppy

Picture from Wildlife Direct



Señor SEAL wants to shoot down all the dogs on the spot (NOOOOO PUPPIEEEEEEES), but Token Turk stops him.  Not out of any humanitarian impulse, mind you but because he thinks 15 dogs > 1 gun.  (For reasons best known to himself, Token Turk left his gun back at the camp.  And Murphy is unarmed.)

Quick question: why is Murphy not carrying his bow, that was so important to him in the first book?  This actually seems like a better environment for it than a tiny tunnel in a pyramid.

Anyway, Murphy is nonplussed by these wild animals that God created:

“Come on,” Murphy said.  “Animals that hunt in packs are basically cowards—and I’ll bet these pooches prefer their meat already dead.”

So they stumble down the mountain, and the dogs back off slightly—not because of Murphy’s Manly Manliness, but because Señor SEAL fires a warning shot.

Murphy sorted through the grisly remains…


…searching for anything that might give them a clue to the gunmen’s identity.

What do you think you’ll find, Murphy: Talon’s business card?

But the pawing (GET IT???) through mutilated and partially-devoured corpses is cut short by the dogs advancing upon Our Heroes.  Señor SEAL thinks the dogs “know” that he doesn’t have enough ammo to take them all down, but his Doggie ESP is not put to the test…

Suddenly, the unexpected happened.

Some old dude in a robe comes toward them.


The alpha male doggie attacks him, but the old dude kills the doggie with a staff lighstaber.

Holy.  Shit.


It IS Obi-Wan!!!

The other dogs flee at the sight of their alpha male Dark Doggie of the Sith eating staff lightsaber (as well they might), and just as quickly as he arrived, the old man FRAKKING DISAPPEARS.

Damn right he should.  Obi-Wan Kenobi is approxiamtely 24,900,563 times too good for this story.

Posted on February 13, 2013, in Books, The Secret on Ararat. Bookmark the permalink. 21 Comments.

  1. Wouldn’t that make the dogs Sandpeople, not Sith?

  2. Ah, see here’s the thing with miracles. If the magical old dude with the not-light saber is not confined to a very specific part of the mountain (ala the Grail Knight in the Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade) then God just looks like an asshat. Because if you don’t have enough miracles for the whole class then you shouldn’t be handing out miracles at all, m’kay. Its just basic manners.

    Poor, poor Isis. She’s probably sitting there, blissfully, still thinking she’s got her own independent thoughts and feelings and such. Run Isis! Runaway with Nerdboy or Larry the Awesome Photo Guy, or just run before its too late!

  3. I say Murphy is drinking from Isis’ mug as a display of dominance.

  4. Also, Murphy doesn’t know much about pack behavior. A lone animal is far more likely to retreat from a person than a pack. A pack of wild dogs is definitely a threat.

    • Murphy doesn’t know much about . . . well, much of anything. Hunting in packs is cowardly, my ass. What are humans if not pack animals? Oh, right, I’m sorry. Humans aren’t animals; we’re made in God’s image. Because God is also a sentient, hairless mammal. D8

  5. Don’t get me wrong. There’s nothing wrong with couples sharing cups or spoons or whatever.

    …or cookies, of course. Right?

    • I swear, thanks to Jenkins, if a date ever suggests we go get cookies, even if it’s the best cookie shop in the world, I’m just going to turn into NoNoNo Cat.

  6. Can’t be Obi-Wan. If it were, he’d have scared them off with animal noises, rather than take them on directly.

  7. What is it with ESP in the past few chapters?! Murphy knows what the Nerd is thinking without the Nerd opening his mouth, Murphy knows Isis is glad he’s there, Señor SEAL is reading the dogs’ minds even as the dogs are reading theirs . . . (ok, in the hands of a better author that last one might be kinda cool)

    Seriously, though. Enough already.

  8. “I suspect the attack from those gunmen that just resulted in half our team being attacked and Isis being kidnapped while those members of the team who can fight were away. I must investigate this. Teammembers who can fight, you’re with me. Isis, you stay here with the non-combatant half of the team* while we leave you again to check this out.”

    *Or is one of the sub-machinegun-totting-AMERICA-FUCK-YEAH teammembers still with their team? Well, either way, a single armed guard with a short range weapon can easily be sniped, especially if the enemy knows the terrain well and you don’t.

    And yeah, these are the weirdest dogs ever. Oh yeah, they checked the weapon Senor Seal was holding and quickly calculated that it didn’t have enough ammo to shoot all of them, so they all decided to sacrifice half of their pack to bum-rush him. See, this is Obama’s evil scheme: He wants to ban guns with more than 10 bullets per clip, so the wild animals know it’s safe to attack patriots with guns if there’s more than 10 of them.

    Come to think of it, we never heard what kind of SMG Senor Seal has, but most of those have 30 bullets per clip. That’s 2 bullets per dog. Granted, if 15 dogs storm at you I don’t know if you’ll have enough time to accurately shoot all of them before they reach you. Especially if these are cold calculated dogs that hate Born Again Bible Believing Christians, and will not be detered by having to climb over the corpses of the first ten dogs to keep attacking.

    • Especially if these are cold calculated dogs that hate Born Again Bible Believing Christians, and will not be detered by having to climb over the corpses of the first ten dogs to keep attacking.

      Listen, I learned everything I know about wildlife from playing video games for 30 years, and I can confirm that animals always attack mindlessly until every last one of them is dead, regardless of how many have died already or how badly they’re outleveled by their human opponent.

      And that old dude is no savior, he’s a goddamned kill stealer.

  9. Sharing a mug is particularly inappropriate given the usual Purity Police “demonstration” of why it’s important to be a virgin.

    And relic-plunderers who hunt in packs, as opposed to being just one guy and his travelling aviary, are…?

    Well, there’s a deus ex machina if you needed one.

  10. I can’t shake the feeling that Murphy’s dismissal of pack hunting is yet another presaging of the greater part of the retinue dying, thus highlighting his Manly Solitary Bravery all the more.

    Never mind that the point of pack hunting is to fence in something that could otherwise outrun you eventually. Not about trial-by-combat or its ilk at all. Just getting food. (I suppose Phillips thinks pre-civilized people ate the flesh of panthers and tigers?)

  11. To be honest, I actually do find Murphy’s attraction to Isis somewhat creepy, given that, in essence, he barely knows her – he’s spent maybe a week at most with her during the first book when he was looking for the serpent artifact, then didn’t have any contact with her at all during the next six months, then gets in touch with her again for this expedition (and I’m sorry, Ruby, but I’m not sure from your summaries how long it’s taken him to get to this point, but it certainly doesn’t seem like he’s spent the majority of that time with Isis) and now he’s head over heels in love with her? If I were Isis and Murphy confessed his feelings to me at this point, I’d definitely be freaked. But maybe that’s just me, I don’t know.

  12. Hey, speaking of puppies . . .

    Any updates on how Shari is doing, raising those two German Shepherd puppies that Murph decided to dump on her?

    • In a more awesome book, those puppies (whom Murphy rescued in Chapter 1) would reappear in this scene to return the favor. The wild dogs are about to tear into our heroes, when suddenly — “Waggles! Fritz! What are you doing here?” and the heroic pooches either scare off the beasts, or converse with them in Dog and negotiate a peaceful resolution.

      This would be more awesome, and no less preposterous than, Fauxbi-Wan Kenobi saving everybody.

  1. Pingback: Deconstruction Round Up, February 15th, 2013 « The Slacktiverse

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