Absolute Write Musical Chairs BlogFest


Over in the blogging forum of Absolute Write, a post caught my eye:
Why don’t we do a blogfest related to genres? A sort of musical chairs.
As in, why don’t we all list our names, websites and preferred genre. Then through a fair and scientific method *cough* drawing names from a cup *cough* we’d each be assigned to a genre different than our own. Each of us would be responsible for writing a flash piece (under 1000 words) in our assigned genre during the month of January.

It sounded like a lot of fun so I signed up. As most of you know I normally write poetry, fantasy, science fiction, romance, erotica and a little horror. The genre chosen for me was children.

Something for children, eh? Children like erotica, right? ;-)

Oh, don’t have a cow. I’m only joking. Below you’ll find my offering for the blogfest and below that you’ll find the list of my fellow participants. Just to make it more interesting, I’ve included their preferred genre as well as the one they were assigned. There’s lots of great reading in that list, so make sure you visit them all.

The Great Detective
by C.R. Ward

The screen door slammed behind Sam.

“Sam, don’t slam that door!”


Sam followed the sound of his mother’s voice to the kitchen.

“What’s the matter, honey?” she asked as he sat down.

“There’s no one to play with. Joey’s at day camp, James is at swimmin’ lessons and Buddy and Rick are away.”

“Oh.” Sam’s mother sat down at the table with him. “Why don’t you ride your bike?”

“No fun, by myself.”

“I’ve got some stale bread, you could go feed the ducks.”

“Don’t feel like it.”

Percy, the family cat, sat down at his food dish and meowed loudly.

Sam’s mother sighed and got up. “You could figure out why Percy keeps getting fatter even though he’s on a diet.”

Sam looked at Percy waiting patiently by his dish.

“Give up,” he advised the cat. “You can’t win against Mom.”

Percy meowed, softly.

Sam looked closer. “You are getting fat.”

The large, orange cat sneezed, then left through the cat door. Sam waited a few seconds, then followed.

Percy stopped at the edge of the rose garden. Sam waited until he moved again then quietly opened the back door and quietly shut it behind him.

Percy went to the fence between their house and the Randalls’ next door. He sharpened his claws on the fence post. Sam watched from behind the roses.

A huge yawn and a quick wash of the whiskers. A starling landed on the bird bath. Percy stared up at the bird and crouched, tail twitching.

Clank! The starling flew off, Percy straightened up, and Sam jumped. Sam’s mother started taking her gardening tools out of a bucket.

Percy wandered off. Sam darted behind a tree, then a bush. Percy jumped up onto the Butler’s picket fence. The Butler’s dog, Murtle was tied out in the yard. Murtle took one look at Percy and started barking furiously. Percy sat down on the fence and started to wash his face.

Sam, hiding behind a composter, tried not to giggle.

From inside the Butler house someone yelled at Murtle to be quiet. Percy stretched and continued on, walking on the fence until he reached the end, then jumping down again.

Sam almost lost sight of Percy as he scooted between some garbage cans. He looked left, then right, and spotted Percy walking along the sidewalk towards the park.

Percy followed the sidewalk almost to the park, then turned a corner. They came to a narrow lane that divided the backyards of a row of houses.

A grey cat was coming up the lane. Percy arched his back and hissed. The grey cat did the same thing. Percy growled, his fur puffed up, and stalked forward. The other cat growled, but Percy spit and the grey cat backed away.

Sam was amazed. He’d never seen Percy so angry. Percy glared at the other cat as it turned and ran. His fur started smoothing back down.

He continued on his way, finally turning into a back yard that was mostly garden. His first stop was a large bushy plant that had grayish, fuzzy leaves. He sniffed the leaves thoroughly. Sam crept around the other side of the small plot.

“Well, Ruffles. You’re late today. I’ve been waiting for you.”

Sam almost fell over backwards.

“And I see you’ve brought a friend,” the small, white haired lady smiled at Sam. “It’s all right. Any friend of Ruffles’ is a friend of mine.”

Percy strolled over and rubbed up against his legs.

“My name is Mrs. Edwards,” said the white haired lady.

“I’m Sam,” Sam whispered.

“Sam,” she repeated. “Sam Peterson, am I right?”

Sam nodded.

“You might not remember, but I’m a good friend of your mother’s. In fact, I’m going over to your house later this afternoon for tea.”

Sam did remember her now. He felt better, knowing she wasn’t a stranger.

“Were you following Ruffles?’

“Yes ma’am.”

Mrs. Edwards smiled again. “I was just about to have a glass of lemon aide, would you like one too?”

Sam nodded again. He sat on the step, patting Percy. He didn’t have to wait long. She brought a whole tray out. There were two tall glasses of lemon aide, a plate of cookies, and another dish with something brown in it.

“Here we go.” She set the tray on the top of the steps. “One for you, one for me -” Percy meowed impatiently.

“Don’t worry Ruffles, I haven’t forgotten you.” She set the dish of cat food on the grass.

“His name is Percy,” Sam said shyly.

“Is it now?” Mrs. Edwards looked Sam.

Sam nodded. Feeling braver he added, “He lives with us. Mom put him on a diet, but he keeps getting fatter.”

“Well you rascal,” Mrs. Edwards said, looking at the cat. Percy was gobbling down his food.

Sam giggled. “Mom’s going to be surprised.”

“I should say so.”

After they finished their lemon aide and cookies, they went to Sam’s house. Percy strolled along with him. On the way, Sam told Mrs. Edwards about all the things Percy had done.

“Mom,” Sam yelled, running to meet his mother. “You’ll never guess, not in a million years!”

“I’m sure I won’t,” Sam’s mother laughed.

“I followed Percy, like you told me to, and he teased a dog and scared off another cat and then pretended to be a stray so Mrs. Edwards would feed him!”

“It sounds like quite the adventure.”

“Indeed it does,” replied Mrs. Edwards. “I must apologize, however. I thought Percy had been abandoned. I’ve been feeding him for quite a while now.”

Percy sat on the back porch, a picture of innocence.

“There’s no harm done, except to Percy’s weight. Why don’t I get that tea I promised you.”

Sam listened as the ladies had their tea, and he had a glass of milk. His mother and Mrs. Edwards worked out a feeding schedule that left everyone happy. Everyone, that is, except Percy.

Week 1
Regan Adult/Young Adult ~ writing Horror
Gary Horror/SF/Weirdness ~ writing Romance
Claire Romance/Urban Fantasy/Suspense ~ writing Humour
Hillary Urban Fantasy ~ writing Contemporary
GradyHendrix Speculative Fiction ~ writing Mystery

Week 2
Amanda YA ~ writing Romance or Poetry
Dolores Horror/Romance/Sci-Fi/Erotica/Children's ~ writing Urban Fantasy
Ben Sci Fi/Horror~ writing Mystery or Historical
Agnyl78 YA/Romance ~ writing Erotica
Jamie Urban Fantasy/Erotica/Mystery ~ writing Young Adult
Cole Literary ~ writing Erotica
Scarlett Erotica/Erotic Romance ~ writing Children’s or Historical

Week 3
IdiotsRUs Fantasy/Romance ~ writing Fantasy/Humor/Mystery
Janine YA/Steampunk/Contemporary ~ writing Children's or Romance
Aheila Urban Fantasy/Steampunk/Cyberpunk/Poetry ~ writing Romance or Young Adult
Mike Horror/Fantasy/Speculative Fiction ~ writing Historical Fiction
CScottMorris Sci Fi/Steampunk/Cyberpunk/Horror/Fantasy ~ writing Children's Lit

Week 4
Sianshan YA/Fantasy/SF/Thriller/Contemporary ~ writing Poetry or Contemporary/Lit
Ralph Pines Urban Fantasy/Sci Fi/Contemporary ~ writing Erotica or Historical
rmgil04 SF/Fantasy/Futuristic Military ~ writing Romance or Mysetry
Proach Historical/Suspense/Thriller ~ writing Young Adult or Sci-Fi
Regypsy Sci Fi/Fantasy/Humour ~ writing Horror or Mystery
Me, Lady Cat ~ writing Children’s
LadyMageUrban Fantasy/Mystery/Adventure ~ writing Horror


Nofretiri said...

Percy sat on the back porch, a picture of innocence.

*lol* OMG! I can so imagine that picture!

Carol, I love that story and how it's written, even when I got quite early how the story ends ... I guess, somehow every 'Can Opener' knows that! =^..^=

I wonder, if I should think if I could write something in a genre that is not close to my regular writing ... like crime stories? I should keep that in mind!

Hillary Jacques said...

What a cute story. I like the naive astonishment at Percy's "anger" in the alley encounter. Not bad for your first crack at children's.

Anonymous said...

I can so see a little boy doing this.
I can see a cat be this smart too!

Great story! I loved it.

Diane Dooley said...

Cute children's story.

Well done!

C R Ward said...

This story is based on a cat I had named Valentine who conned a couple of old ladies into believing he was a stray. They fed him for a year before his ruse was discovered. Too bad the truth didn't come out before they had him neutered. ;-)