Tandem Story: Claire Decides Not to Write

Here is another tandem story. Anchorite wrote the first two sentences and I wrote the rest. You might remember Claire as the fictional author of the wildly-successful novel Dark Millenium. True to its name, Dark Millenium is a bleak shadowland where trouble anti-heroes battles monsters in human form. One can't blame two fictional cats for not wanting to be in any story written by Claire.

Anchorite wrote this part

"Mr. Kitten, Mr. Kitten!  I've just heard some terrible news: Claire Guang has been assigned to be the guest writer for our next chapter."

"Oh dear, Twitch, that is a most dire situation so brace yourself for the most depraved scenarios that emerge from the darkest depths of an author's mind."

Chris Hugh wrote the rest

"Actually,  Kitten, I've got a better idea..."

After a while, Mr. Kitten slowly blinked his golden eyes. "That's good, Twitch. Very good indeed."

* * *

Claire coughed and shook more smoke out of her hair. She stood on her front lawn in a housecoat and tattered chenille slippers that were slowly sinking into her muddy, singed and boot-tramped grass.

"It's a miracle you got out," the Fire Captain was saying. "Your cats are heroes. They saved your life."

Claire blinked.

A firefighter walked up to the Captain carrying a melted keyboard and the two men spoke quietly for a few minutes. Then the younger man slipped the keyboard into a plastic bag and put it in the fire engine's cab. The Captain turned back to Claire.

"Well, I guess we've found the cause of the fire," he said. "Two hairballs in your keyboard. They apparently short-circuited the electronics."

Claire's lips trembled and she blinked again.

"I'm a big fan of your work," the Captain said consolingly. "I guess this will interfere with your writing. You'll want to get a new computer and a new, um,"--the Captain looked around--"house."

Another firefighter came up, cuddling two black cats in her arms. She seemed surprised when Claire didn't reach for them. "Well, these little guys might have caused the fire, but they saved your life, ma'am. You've got insurance, right? The only real harm done is that you won't be able to 'ghost write the next chapter' or whatever."

Claire stared at her.

"You babbled while you were delirious." The firefighter bounced the cats in her arms and gave the green-eyed cat a kiss. Claire shivered. "Anyway, your cats are heroes."

"But...." Claire's voice was barely audible.

"You sure are lucky to have such wonderful cats." The firefighter kissed Twitch again and Mr. Kitten looked at Claire through half-closed, golden eyes. 

"But..." Claire's voice sank to a ragged whisper. "But I don't have any cats."

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