A Dog and his Boy

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Title: A Dog and his Boy
Author(s): Greer Watson
Date(s): 31 October 2011
Length: 1930 words
Genre: backstory
Fandom: Mary Renault
External Links: "A Dog and his Boy"
Screen capture of the webpage for "A Dog and his Boy".

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"A Dog and his Boy" is a short story by Greer Watson based on Mary Renault's 1953 novel The Charioteer. It takes place before the third chapter of the book, in the summer of 1940 after Laurie is wounded at Dunkirk. The story is set in the village where his mother lives, and is seen from her perspective.


Deeply worried about her son's injuries, Lucy has trouble coping with his elderly Airedale, Gyp, who has taken an unaccountable dislike to the new vicar.


"A Dog and his Boy" was written for the 2011 Spooky Challenge on the maryrenaultfics LiveJournal community to the prompt, “unquiet dark”. It was posted in a members-locked post on 31 October 2011 and shortly thereafter placed on the author's website.

The webpage for the story was given a lace background trimmed with dark wood, representing the sort of lace tablecloth that Lucy might use. This is intended to provide illustrative characterization of her as a mid-century middle-class Englishwoman with strong social proprieties.


Comments on the story include the following:

  • "Ooooh! This is such a treat, I love the way the village opened up, and to have this backstory we never knew about. The memories of Laurie are so poignant... *sniffs*."—comment by my cnnr
  • "This is very fine. There is so little fanfic in sympathy with Lucy. This shows her as a rounded character with flaws, but also a good side to her."—comment by fawatson
  • "I want to take this and insert it into my copy of TC. Your Gyp is showing immaculate taste in people, and I felt really sorry for Lucy when she was praying in the church."—comment by queen ypolita