how could you possibly understand? a consequence is nothing to a scared animal. threats fall unheard upon raised hackles and shaking paws. you dug yourself so deep into that hole trying to protect yourself—yet nobody pulled you out. a hole becomes a grave becomes a suffocating stench that fills the air. did you understand why i held you so tight that morning? why i refused to let go? of course not. but how could you? you stared down the barrel of the gun and you bit down