Martine, the postwoman (who knows everything that's happening in the neighborhood), informed me that she had sighted Fitzroy over on the other side of the Bourne, in Châtelus. I immediately dashed across there in the car. Members of the Huillier family told me that Fitzroy had often been hanging around their houses over the last few days. A young lady said in a whisper, as if it were a secret item of uncertain information: "I have the impression that your dog is in love with my mother-in-law's dog." As for Fitzroy, he was nowhere in sight. My friends told me that my dog's usual habit was to collect his beloved female from the farmhouse and take her for a promenade on the wooded slopes below the Cournouze. I left my phone number and asked them to let me know as soon as Fitzroy returned.
Within an hour, I got a call saying that Fitzroy and his lover had been sighted in the tall green grass beneath a single cherry tree located in the middle of their walnut orchard. When I arrived on the scene, it was truly idyllic. From the road, all you could see were the black tips of the ears of the two dogs protruding from the tall grass, surrounded by a thick canopy of magnificent cherry blossoms. When I called, Fitzroy recognized me instantly, and started to move towards me. But he faltered from time to time, looking back over his right shoulder at his loved one, who remained under the cherry tree. After a little coaxing, the two dogs moved towards the Kangoo, and I was able to attach Fitzroy to a lead. He was still in a state of tender attachment to his female friend, and the two dogs were constantly rubbing up against each other. Fitzroy finally jumped into his wooden pen at the rear of the Kangoo. As soon as I drove off, however, he realized that I intended to take him away from his romantic haven, and he started to express his indignation vocally. Back at Gamone, I was of course obliged to enchain my lovestruck friend... and provide him with sustenance.