Raymundo didn't have a lot of experience with climbing. He didn't climb the colorful rock walls at the gym, nor did he climb rock faces the few times he hiked. Granted, climbing a tree was different than either of those things. But Raymundo still didn't have much experience finding hand and foot holds which camouflaged into the environment.
And that was without taking into account he was currently a squirrel. Or the fact it was raining, pretty hard.
Maybe it was his squirrel eyes, size, or instinct. Maybe it was adrenaline coursing through his small body, but every crack in the tree bark, every nub from a broken branch, all of it seemed to protrude from the tree a few inches. Now he just had to coordinate his four limbs and busy tail.
Tiny claws gripped the bark nicely. The first foot or so was easy. Though, if anybody watched closely they would have seen a squirrel climbing very much like a human and not like a squirrel.
A gust of wind caught Raymundo's tail and knocked him sideways. His claws scraped to find a new grip and he wiggled his tail a lot to regain balance. He clung to the tree for a moment, tiny heart beating wildly in his heaving chest. It took another moment to remember why he was trying to climb the tree in the first place, much less for the first time in a small storm.
His fur was soaked, his tail waterlogged, and he was exhausted from the running and hiding he'd been doing since Lucky and Skylar departed. Making it home seemed impossible in this weather, so hiding in a tree seemed the next best bet. Or maybe that was his squirrel instincts talking and not human rationalization.
Either way, Raymundo found himself continuing the laborious climb. Ever so slowly he clawed his way up the tree, his tail often more of a hindrance than a help, but eventually he got up to a nice wide branch. Sheltered from the rain, he stretched out, arms wrapped around the bottom, clinging on while he debated his options.
The wind was picking up. The rain was heavy and steady, but Raymundo could see more from up here. His line of sight was up above the fence now, and there it was. The gray building with the red triangular flag by the air conditioning unit on the rooftop.
In the row of cars Raymundo spotted Becky’s silver Chevy impala. Partially protected by the rain, Raymundo scooted towards the trunk. Climbing the tree was hard enough in the rain, and his small body was tired.
Soon the rain would let up, soon he would regain his energy, soon he could get to Becky’s apartment. But for now, Raymundo curled up, put his wet tail over his muzzle, and let his little eyes close.
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