The dog was an interesting and pleasant surprise for Theodore; he knew others must own the houses around here, but he hadn't seen much of them during the previous summer. A boat, here and there, out on the water. Children splashing around in the shallows at a distance, that sort of thing. And while they'd never had pets, Theodore wasn't particularly animal-averse; it was just that owning animals and then being gone for long periods of time really didn't seem to be fair to the animals in question. Love took presence, at a minimum. After Jamie had passed, the travel had ended, but Theodore had Elaine, and she had filled his heart to the exclusion of all else. He would've resented some pet, trying to burrow its way into his affections. And then time passed, hurts eased, and he just hadn't given it much thought, to be honest.
The dog was friendly, though, and it brought a little smile to Theodore's lips. It had come upon him and done its dog thing, the sniffing and the licking at his hand like it hadn't a care in the world. He was all right with that. "She's no bother at all," he assured the younger man who was approaching him to collect the dog, his accent still holding that of his native England, but tempered by twenty years in the Northeast. He turned his head slightly to the right, compensating for the negative space in the world where his eye should have been picking up details of the world around him, the man and his dog, but instead returned nothing for his senses to latch onto. For him, it was instinctive and unnoticed, an accustomed accommodation.
He took a few steps forward; feet bare in the sand, dressed in a simple white button down and black slacks. Comfortable, loose, at home in his body in a way he never had been as a boy. Walking in the uneven sand disguised his limp to a degree, but the walking stick was the sort of thing that called attention right back to it. Not that Theodore minded at this stage in his life. He knew what he was, and if anyone wanted to think him frail, an easy target, unprepared, well, the walking stick had other uses. But that life...had been lifetimes ago. He seemed to accumulate lives as he did names.
"She's lovely," he went on. "And while I suppose it's rude to ask her name before yours, perhaps you'll forgive me if I ask both at the same time." He got close enough to hold out a hand. "Theodore Chambers."