“Gyurika ran inside that afternoon, it was about the big hounds, because they were behind the barn, must of got hold of some part of a dead animal, and they were whining like hell. So I tell the boy go, take a look and see what’s going on, maybe they caught a rabbit or they’re fighting over something else. But the kid didn’t see nothing, it was kind of late, already getting dark out. I got scared suddenly, my little kid, we couldn’t find him nowhere.”
“Rabid dogs they are, they’ve messed up a lot of people around here,” the kid interrupted, but then fell silent, realizing it was not his turn to describe the events surrounding the mysterious disappearance.
“And if them dogs attacked little Akoshka… in that case…”
“In that case I would of seen it, because I keep an eye on those goddamned beasts.”
“How do you do that?”
“With a torch, I get a torch, I light it, and they start whining and growling, and I can see what they’re up to.”
“And what were they ripping apart that afternoon? Did you have a good look at it?” the detective went on.
“They were dragging a plaid piece of clothing back and forth, may they drop dead.”
“Oh, my God,” the woman drew a deep breath. “My little Akoshka had a plaid shirt on when he disappeared.”
“What color was the plaid shirt?”
“Blue, sort of, like the one Akoska had on,” the child was eager to volunteer the information.”
“I can’t go along with that… maybe the bears… Those wretched bears.”
“But you were talking about dogs fighting over the plaid shirt. What have the bears got to do with it?” the man was taken aback.
“Maybe the dogs got the shirt away from the bears.”
“From the bears?”
“Yeah, you know them bears when they eat someone, then the clothes, well they don’t want the clothes. And maybe that’s how the dogs got hold of the shirt, from the bears…”
“This is the first time I’ve heard of it, bears hanging around here.”
“Them bears, yeah, ‘cause they break in for the food, they take what they want from the sacks, nothing you can do about it,” the kid was quick with the answer again and he gave the detective a mischievous look.
The officer of the law clicked off the dictaphone and looked at his watch with a sigh.
“Missis Szabo, you can pick up the police report from a village notary next week,” he was no longer hiding his eagerness to get back in his all-terrain vehicle and hit the road. The last rays of the sun were raking the tips of the pines.
Zoltán Böszörményi, a Romanian-Hungarian writer, has been widely published as a novelist and poet. Most recently he was honored with the Attila József Prize as well as the Gundel Art Award for his novel, ‘The Night is a Soft Body’.
Paul Sohar ended his higher education with a BA in philosophy and took a day job in a research lab while writing in every genre, publishing seven volumes of translations. Latest translation volumes are”Silver Pirouettes” (TheWriteDeal 2012) and “In Contemporary Tense” (Iniquity Press, 2013).