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Life Could Be a Dream

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"Here, Roger!"

A mass of grey fur comes barreling through the park towards Arthur. He kneels to pet it.

"My parents never let me have a dog," he says as Roger licks his face.

Ariadne asks, "What breed is he, a husky?"

"He's a wolf. I had a fantasy of going into the woods, finding a cub, and taming it."

Arthur gives Roger a bone, and he starts gnawing on it.

"I used to drag a belt around to take him on walks. I'd pretend to sneak him food under the table at dinner."

Ariadne reaches towards Roger but Arthur says, "Careful, he's pretty wild. He was only loyal to me."

But Roger has already dropped the bone to start licking Ariadne's outstretched hand. 

"Oh," he says, puzzled. "Never mind." 

She scratches Roger behind his ears. His tail wags.

"Well, ready to show me yours?" asks Arthur as he stands.

Ariadne nods, then she turns and walks behind a tree. She comes out hand in hand with a little boy in a toga with the head of a black and white calf.

"My dad's obsessed with Greek mythology. He used to read it to me. I felt bad for the Minotaur, all alone in the maze. I wanted to be his friend."

Arthur crouches and waves, but the boy hides behind Ariadne's legs.

"I guess he's feeling shy," she says. "We used to play games together, and I'd read to him."

Arthur stands. "Want to know about Cobb's?"

"You've seen Cobb's imaginary friend from childhood?" she asks with surprise.

"Yeah, it's kind of a thing for dreamers to show theirs to each other as a sign of trust. I shouldn't tell you what his looks like without his permission, but I have to tell you what he named him."


"Mr. Charles."