Friday, February 25, 2011

Feline Pursuit

My Friday Flash is more like a chapter, because I believe I will develop this a little further.  I wrote this based on a dream my daughter had about a little boy looking in her bedroom window.  Another time, when she was awake, she thought she'd seen a cat there, so I combined the two images.  I hope you enjoy reading this fun piece.

Feline Pursuit
By Lisa McCourt Hollar
Sage was staring in the mirror at her reflection, wondering why God had cursed her with such an average face, when a movement behind her caught her attention. She sat still, looking at the creature whose image had appeared in the mirror, then turned to verify that a small boy was sitting on her window sill. The boy looked at her and smiled a toothy grin, one that showed two missing in the front and canines at the side that looked, well, rather cat like.

“What in the world,” Sage said, rushing to the window to see what the boy was doing out there. She was on the second floor, but had a small balcony outside her window. The apartment next door was empty and she imagined the boy had crawled onto her balcony from the adjoining one, but why and where were his parents? It was the middle of winter and the child had no shirt on…no clothes at all, she realized as she reached the window and the boy turned and ran across her balcony, jumping off the edge.

“NO!” Sage screamed the words as she saw him go over the side. Pushing the window up, Sage climbed onto her balcony, which doubled as the roof to the sunroom and looked over the edge. The boy was nowhere to be seen, but a large orange cat was on the ground, looking up at her as though waiting for the teenager to join him. A ladder leaned against the edge, was this how the boy had climbed to her window. Where had he gone? Sage looked up and down the road. It was empty and the snow, which had fallen throughout the night, undisturbed, showing no footprints, save for the cat’s.

“Mwow,” the cat called to her, turning to show his impatience for her to follow him. Sage heard her mother down in the kitchen making breakfast. It was only 10:00 and the teen never ate breakfast, sleeping until noon on the weekends, or at least letting her mom think she was sleeping, while she avoided interacting with them; at least this early in the morning. Her mother, not being the pushy kind, would leave her alone until noon, when she would knock on her door and tell her it was time to get up.

“Mwooow,” the cat called again, this time letting out a longer cry, probably cussing her out in kitty language. “Get the hell down here,” she imagined he was saying.

“Fine, I’m on my way,” Sage grumbled, putting her foot on the first rung of the ladder, glad she had thought to put her tennis shoes on. She wished she had her coat, but despite the snow, she really wasn’t all that cold. Maybe she should have told her mother she was going out. Reaching the ground, the cat gave another short meow and then took off running, not even looking to see if she was following behind. Feeling a little like Alice chasing the white rabbit, Sage shadowed the cat across the road and through the neighbor’s yard.

“Where are we going?” Sage, not really in the best of shape, choosing to sit in front of the T.V. watching reality television, while avoiding her own painful reality, huffed as she chased the feline through yards, streets and even an alley. “Why the heck did I even climb out the window,” she wondered, stopping at the end of a road and looking left and right to determine where the cat had gone. He’d turned onto this street just a moment ago, but when she had reached it, the creature had disappeared. She’d gone to the end of the street and still no sign. Then she saw him, not the cat, but the boy, still completely naked, standing in the middle of the road. The child bent over and pulled a manhole cover off the entrance to the sewer, then turned to climb in.

“Hey, stop,” Sage yelled, wondering how he had lifted the disc. It was her understanding they were heavy and screwed into the ground; the child never should have been able to lift it. He was maybe eight years old at most. “Stop,” Sage yelled again, “it’s not safe down there!” The boy paused a moment, looking at her with eyes that looked strangely yellow, then disappeared into the hole.

“Just lovely,” Sage griped, “and I’m wearing my good tennis shoes.” Looking into the opening, Sage saw that the boy was gone again and the orange cat was back. “What the hell kind of twisted dream is this,” Sage thought. Not waiting for the cat to call her, she turned and climbed into the sewer, wondering why Alice got a nice rabbit hole and she got a smelly urinal.

“Where are we going,” Sage asked, calling out to the cat that was running ahead of her down the tunnel. The creature didn’t answer, but she hadn’t thought he would. Turning, the feline led her into another section of the sewer and then another until she was completely lost within the labyrinth. She was surprised though at how clean it seemed to be, amazed that she hadn’t once seen a single rat. She had always imagined the sewer to be filled with vermin. Then the passage they were in emptied into a large room and the answer to why there were no rats stood before her in the form of hundreds of cats.

“Woe,” Sage said, trying to comprehend the amount of felines in front of her. A huge black cat stepped forward and cocked its head at her, large green eyes conveying a welcome. Then suddenly it morphed, growing larger and taking on the shape of a woman. Her skin, dark, the woman was naked, her long jet hair covering her breasts. Sage blushed, wishing it was long enough to cover the nether regions as well.

“Welcome Sage,” the woman said, “we have been waiting for you.”

copyright 2011 Lisa McCourt Hollar, All rights reserved.

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