The dog found him where he lay curled up into a ball behind the dumpster, bruised and battered by his latest encounter with Bruce the Moose, the kid that made his life a living hell. Max was weird, forever lost in a book or a world of his own making. None of the other kids liked him. He’d made peace with that fact a long time ago. He just couldn’t understand why they wouldn’t just leave him alone.
He felt a wet tongue lapping at the blood on his hand where a broken bottle had sliced his palm. Cringing he looked up and stared transfixed into two glowing red eyes. A huge dog, the biggest he’d ever seen, looked down at him. It wagged its tail and proceeded to cover his face in slobber.
Scraps, that’s what he named it, followed him everywhere. It was odd how people never seemed to notice Scraps. They just detoured around them, giving Max strange looks and shaking their heads whenever he chatted to his constant companion.
They were playing in the woods when Bruce found them. “Whaddya doing weirdo?” he snarled as he shoved Max to the ground. Scraps howled and came crashing through the undergrowth. Bruce turned, his face went ashen and with a scream he fled into the trees.
“Go fetch, boy!” Scraps looked at him and bounded into the woods. He heard distant screams and a few minutes later Scraps returned depositing a bloody bone at his feet.
"Good job boy!"