It’s time for the May Blog Chain! This month’s prompt came in handy! I wrote a scene that will (in some form) be used in my novel Withdrawal. I really struggled with the tense in this. I’m so used to writing in present tense…hope it came out alright! If not, at least I managed to keep the word count less than 1000. :p Before me was aimeelaine and after me will be jkellerford, please do check them and the rest of the participants out (a list is at the end of this post)!
This month’s prompt: Relationships
Show a character’s approach to relationships in a short scene. A harmless exchange between mother and daughter? A submissive character overwhelmed by a dominant partner? A passionate lover’s quarrel? A forlorn, unrequited letter?
Use your characters’ interaction to show the dynamics of their relationship, show how they’re growing together or growing apart, or just have silly fun. Character descriptions at the beginning are forbidden this time around–let them speak or act for themselves!
Here we go:
From behind the counter she pointed a finger at him, mouth agape. “Hey! You thief! That’s my cat!”
Collin took a step back, dropping the organic cat food he’d intended to buy on the floor. “I beg you pardon?”
“I said that’s my cat, you cat-napper.” Collin’s accuser handed the elderly lady in front of him some change, then slammed the cash register shut. The old woman shuffled out the door, leaving him alone with the open-mouthed psycho.
He cleared his throat and squared his shoulders. “I’ll have you know this is my cat. I’ve had her for a year now. What could possible make you think she’s yours?”
“Besides the fact that I recognize her, she’s struggling to get to me, her tail is bent in the exact same place as my missing cat and that she’s probably the only black cat with blue eyes in the state of Kentucky?”
Collin looked down at the twisting cat in his arms and tightened his hold. “Yes.”
She pointed behind him. “That.”
He turned around to a board littered with pictures of a black kitten with blue eyes, a tuft of white fur on its nose, and a crooked tail. Collin took his time and searched the board from top left to bottom right, looking at each photo for a discrepancy that would prove the kitten wasn’t Layla. When he reached the end, he nodded his head then twisted around to face his opponent. He made eye contact for a moment before looking off to the side. “Could be her twin,” he mumbled. Really brain, is that the best you could come up with?
She shook her head, the ends of her curly black hair bouncing with the movement. “You can’t be serious.”
He stepped closer to the counter and his eyes trailed down to her nametag. “Yes, Carolina. I’m serious. It’s not impossible…just highly unlikely.” Not proving my point. Think fast. “And why do you have a collage of a cat? She’s not a kid. You’re not one of those crazy cat ladies are you?” He raised a brow and cradled a now calm Layla to his chest.
Lips tightened, Carolina tapped her fingers against the counter. Her eyes narrowed—one much more than the other—until it was almost closed.
That certainly doesn’t make her look murderous.
In an instant, Collin surveyed the room and found his escape route. Dodging paparazzi finally comes in handy. “Well. You know what they say. Finders, keepers.” He darted down a small isle and squeezed past a turning display. Something fell to the floor behind him, but he kept for the exit. He pushed the door open and looked back just in time to duck a projectile pooper scooper. “Losers, weepers.” The curses she volleyed at him were muted only by the door shutting behind him.
He took off down the street with Layla tucked under his arm like a football. After a mere two blocks of running, his calves begun to burn. Damn legs still haven’t healed. A brown sign with the words Rock Creek Park came into view. He slowed to a jog and turned down a dirt trail leading into the park. He ignored passersby and followed a few twisting paths before coming to bench in a remote area of the park.
He loosened his grip on Layla and let her settle in his lap. He winced as he stretched his legs out and leaned back on the bench. Eyes closed, he concentrated on breathing and not thinking about the pain that shot up his legs. The sound of feet stomping against gravel broke the quiet. Alerted, he opened his eyes and sat up straight.
Carolina stood before him, hair tousled, fist clenched and breathing at an even pace.
“Lonely cat lady and a crazy stalker? You really have a lot going for you.”
She stepped closer to him. “I want my cat”.
“Then you shouldn’t have lost her.”
“Ah hah!” She folded her arms and grinned. “So you admit she belonged to me first.” Her brows crease, then she scowls. “And I didn’t lose her. My ex got rid of her while I was at work.”
“Take it up with him, not me.”
“I did, trust me. And I still would, but the restraining order I still in effect.”
Collin half-smiled and pressed his back to the bench. I do hope she’s kidding. He took in his surroundings: semi-secluded alcove in the park, pissed off woman to his right, no others people in plan sight, a wooded area to the left—the perfect place for dumping a body. “I’m sure we can work something out. Let’s discuss this back at the store.” He motioned toward the path with his free hand.
“Don’t tell me what to do you crook.”
“I’d never.” He fixes his grip on Layla. “It’s just, err…didn’t you leave the store unattended? Your boss may be upset.”
She lifted her head higher. “I am the boss. I can do what I want.”
“Oh.” Can nothing get this woman to move? Then…there’s another worker there? I didn’t see one. Perhaps they’re in the back?”
Her arms unfolded and her face blanked. She blinked a few times before her eyes widened and she took in giant breath of air. “Shit.”
Eureka! Time to make my escape. Before he could stand from the bench, Carolina stepped forward, grabbed his left arm and yanked him to his feet.
He staggered and barely managed to hold onto Layla. “Wait. What—”
“Shut-up. Just you wait. I’ll have my cat by the end of the day.” Her nails bit into his arm as she pulled him down the trail.
orion_mk3 – http://nonexistentbooks.wordpress.com (link to this month’s post)
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AuburnAssassin – http://clairegillian.com (link to this month’s post)
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