Crop Circles

Science Fiction Ramblings

The Blah-Blah-Blah of Old Flat Head: Part Four

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Most of the time, I enjoy my autonomic nervous system. It’s nice to have a regular heart beat and breathing is good. I even like the occasional sneeze. I mean, accelerating snot from 0-35 mph in 0.55 seconds? That’s better acceleration characteristics than a Porche 911!   But involuntary bodily functions are only the tip of the iceberg here. My subconscious brain sometimes coughs up some real gems — leaps of logic, free association, day dreams, and other things that make writing so much fun. Unfortunately, it also coughs up some things that cause my writing to crash. Take this story.  The subconscious is not squeamish. It thinks writing about scalping a cat is just peachy. There’s no use arguing, it won’t let go of the idea, so my output crashes. I haven’t posted in a while due to this ick-induced form of writer’s block. To get past it, I’ve forced out a few more paragraphs and my subconscious may have redeemed itself. I wanted space ships. Instead, Polly cat gets a metal plate in her head. That metal plate might eventually become very important….

Featured image from: http://www.personal.psu.edu/afr3/blogs/siowfa12/2012/12/why-do-we-sneezewhy-does-it-feel-good.html

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Thirty minutes later, the youngest boy was back out in the yard digging. He wasn’t entirely sure why. The cat didn’t look good. Her ears were mangled stumps and her head was missing a flap of skin, but there was some movement down by her nose — a bubble of blood that kept growing and shrinking. That must mean that she was breathing . The boy dug faster and pulled out the limp little cat. He could feel a thrum through the fur on her chest. Her heart was beating quickly. The boy wasn’t sure if that was normal for cats. He needed to do something. He could take her to his parents, but then he’d have to tell them what had happened. His brother wouldn’t let that pass. He could try hiding her in his room. She might recover if he put some band-aids on her, but that just made him shake his head. Wasn’t a band-aid big enough to cover all that.

“I can’t keep you,” he told the cat, “sorry.” He knew she was the neighbor’s cat anyway. He’d seen her sitting on their porch. He took her back to that porch and laid her down on the welcome mat. Then he stood there staring down at her for what felt like forever. She wasn’t blowing bubbles anymore. She might be dying or dead for real this time. The boy slowly reached up and pressed the doorbell. Then he ran like hell.

When the neighbors got done screaming they took Polly to the vet.  The vet grumbled about ‘idiots letting their cat out on Halloween’ but he promised to do his best. His best was expensive. The family balked and there was some discussion over whether it might be more humane to euthanize her. “By humane, do you mean affordable?” the vet finally snapped. “This little one wants to live.” The vet wasn’t sure how he knew that, maybe her eyelid had twitched, or she’d curled a paw. Whatever it was, the vet found himself saying, “I’ll do it for free. Just don’t let her out again.” Then, he used a metal plate to repair her fractured skull , stitched up the skin on her head, bandaged her ears, and handed her back to her family. “Remember. She’s an indoor cat now.”

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Author: KMolyneaux

Author, Knitter, ex-Academic

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