Effing Feline teases a dog

Photos: DepositPhotos

Fart-Fueled Flying Feline, Effing for short, writes the Weekend Writing Warrior / Sunday Snippet posts on Mr. V’s behalf

smaller-judi-twiggles-at-hoffman-park-d-10-01-14I, Effing Feline, have been enjoying a cartoon that my pet human, Ed Hoornaert, reads daily — Garfield. The intrepid puss teases Odie, a dumb dog.  It’s encouraged me to tease Mr V’s dog, Twiggles, about her lack of a tail. A tailless dog — ridiculous!

Want the truth, though? I’m jealous.

You see, Twiggles appears in Newborn, Mr V’s upcoming science fiction romance. Why aren’t I in the book? Grumble, grumble.

Jo Beaverpaw is born fully grown and well armed, with a compulsion to kill her alien nation’s most wanted fugitive. Today I’m skipping ahead to the middle of the book. Our assassin heroine is recuperating from a fall in the same remote hospital as her target, named Squitt.  But Squitt is guarded by Darby Lapierre . . . handsome, sexy Darby, whom Jo is falling for.

To avoid him, Jo climbs onto the roof at night, intending to sneak over to Squitt’s room. But the &^%!@ dog causes problems, as dogs often do.

Arf,” the dog yapped unhelpfully, “arf arf arf!”

Accustomed now to the dark, I made out a dim animal shape in the center courtyard, dashing from left to right and back, making an unholy racket. Twiggles was pretending to be a brave watchdog, bark bark bark, and I could do nothing about the noise. Soon lights would pierce the darkness. People would shout. Darby would find me—a wet, pathetic failure crouching for dear life on the roof.

“Shh,” I whispered to the dog. “It’s me, your friend. Are you barking because I said your breath stinks? I apologize.”

Effing Feline here again. This scene captures the essence of dogs. They’re noisy nuisances!

Be sure to visit the other Weekend Writing Warriors and Snippet Sunday posts.

Effing Feline divider


She was born to kill

Jo Beaverpaw is born fully grown, well-armed, and impatient to tackle her Destiny … which is to kill her alien nation’s most wanted fugitive. Her life is pre-programmed and straightforward – until she meets the sexy bodyguard of her intended target.

Newborn is the third exciting book in Edward Hoornaert’s near-future romance series, Alien Contact for Idiots. If you agree that The Terminator should’ve starred a bad-assed yet petite female, don’t miss Newborn.


The Trial of Tompa Lee, Mr V’s biggest selling science fiction novel, is free this weekend!




  1. The extent of your imagination is amazing. Darned dogs. They do cause trouble sometimes. And I agree with Effing. It’s about time he was in a book too. I have taken advantage of your generous free offer, thanks.

    1. Want to know something dumb about me? I was nearly forty before I realized I was at heart a creative person, and then a few years passed before I got the courage to try to do something about it.

  2. Wow, the tone of the characters, albeit of the effing feline variety, seeps through this piece. ALso love your pacing for this, really brings it all together for such a creative snippet!

    1. Give Effing all the credit. He works hard trying to find 10-sentence passages that work well on their own.

  3. Leave it to a dog to spoil a good assassination. However, if Jo had the true heart of an killer, she would have killed the dog before it could bark. But then all your readers would hate her.

    Effing may not be in the book, but he’s on your blog every week! Lol.

    I assume the dog photo is your real life pet?

    1. 1) In context, you’d realize she didn’t have the chance to do anything about the dog.
      2) Effing’s ego isn’t satisfied until he takes over the world.
      3) Yes, that’s the real-life Twiggles.

  4. Effing, it’s true, you’re famous already, long before that dog got into a novel. You’ve been running — er, helping Ed run this blog for some time now so don’t worry about that. Be careful teasing that dog, they have teeth too!


    1. Re: the dog’s teeth, I think Effing is counting on Twiggles’ exceptionally friendly disposition.

  5. This scene is great, and I love the last line. 😀

    1. Ah. You can empathize with a dog having bad breath.

  6. Lol – that last line is perfect – and often so true with a dog. Tweeted.

    1. We’ve tried but failed to teach our dogs to hold a toothbrush and brush in five circles per tooth.Sigh.

  7. Ed, your imagination and sense of humor is delicious. Thanks.

    1. Humor creeps in on its own, often without my permission.

  8. You captured a truly authentic canine bark. I suspect he’s barking about something else, and not because of his bad breath. Nice snippet!

    1. Hmm. All I did was use ‘arf’ and ‘bark’.

      1. Arf was what I meant that was excellent!

  9. Foiled by the arfing dog! 😀

    1. Effing Feline, meet Arfing Dog.

  10. Effing, you are much more important and famous than the dog. We see you every week, not just in one book. But don’t tease the dog–they make noise, but they also bite.

    As to Jo’s predicament, I think Cara’s right, a true assassin would have killed the dog first. That she didn’t speaks to her character, perhaps not as irredeemable a killer as she might think. But I do wonder how she’s going to escape from the roof.

    1. Ah yes, escaping from the roof turns out to be very difficult. The overnight rain increases from drizzle to a downpour, and it’s cold rain — this is Canada in May, after all — she’s still recovering from two broken legs, she can’t reach Squitt’s room, and she’s a couple floors up.

  11. Diane Burton · · Reply

    Love the last line. Dogs can be such pests. Cats bite, too. I have the marks to prove it.

    1. Interesting. I’ve never had a cat bite me. Scratch, yes, but not bite.

  12. Karma… Never offend the dog that holds the keys to whether you get outed or not. 🙂

    1. This is another example of Jo’s clonish lack of experience. Otherwise she’d know that watchdogs bark.

  13. A cat would never give away an assassin’s location! Poor Effing, never getting the credit (and fame) he deserves!

    1. “Poor Effing” never gets credit or fame? Are we talking about the same Effing Feline?

  14. Andrea R Huelsenbeck · · Reply

    Don’t they always pick the worst possible time to make a racket?

    1. For me, that’s usually early morning, 9:00 or 9:30, when the dog wakes me up. (Yes, I’m a night owl.)

  15. LOL! That dog is definitely going to mess things up. And don’t worry, Effing. You shouldn’t appear in one of Mr. V’s books. You should BE one of his books!! Effing Cat: Hero of The Universe has a nice ring for a title, don’t you think?

    1. I sure hope he doesn’t read your comment, or else he’ll be hounding me … catting me? … to write the book.

  16. Sorry, Effing, but Twiggles is adorable. Nice that you picked a snippet showing off his bravery!

    1. Uh oh. I think you just got yourself crossed off Effing’s Christmas card list.

  17. Author Jessica E. Subject · · Reply

    Well, I don’t think Jo is going to get past Twiggles. Sometimes I wish our dog would bark like that. She only barks when she sees people she knows outside, and they don’t come inside fast enough. Great snippet! 🙂

    1. The real Twiggles isn’t much of a barker. The fictional Twiggles is a wilderness watchdog.

  18. This story sounds like one of your most amusing yet!

    1. Thanks, Aurora.

  19. Haha, delightful as always! Love the surname Beaverpaw, but I think I love the dog’s name even more. 😀 So amusing and creative!

    1. People from the Beaverpaw clan have been minor characters in previous books in this series; they’re native Americans from the future of an alternate Earth. This is the first time a Beaverpaw has starred, though. As for the name Twiggles, I can claim no credit. My wife named for our dog.

  20. Maybe the dog is saying hello? Come down off the roof and play! Or maybe he is angry about her comment. He can’t help his breath, after all.

    1. We’ll never know, because we never switch to the dog’s POV. On that topic, this is the first book I’ve ever written from first person.

  21. He just wants her to know he sees her. Dogs are nothing if not redundant. I see you. I see you. I see you. Then it becomes. Hey, did you guys see her? Did you see her? Did you see her? Did you see her? Oh, wait. She doesn’t want them to see her. LOL! That doest present a problem.

    1. I like your description of how dogs are redundant!

  22. Karen Michelle Nutt · · Reply

    Realistic scene. Dogs do like to alert others when they spot someone. Heck, my dogs bark when they know who has arrived at the house. lol

    1. It sounds like your dogs have decided that they earn their dogfood by functioning as doorbells.

  23. An amusing scene in the midst of a grim reality! I could certainly visualize everything clearly – great snippet…

    1. The scene is set at night, yet you can visualize it. I guess I’m a fairly good writer after all.

  24. Aww….

    Our late Corki-dog had a tail – an adorable little bulldog tail with piggy curls. It was impossible for him to wag it and be seen wagging it unless he wiggled his whole posterior. Thing is, he was half pit bull, and that half was all up front (the other half, we suspect, was Viszla, which gave him a very slender back half. Where that bulldog tail came from, no one can say; none of his eight littermates had it – but I digress). People who didn’t know him would see his pitty grin and assume he wanted to eat them, because they saw lots of teeth, and no tail cues. Meanwhile, when he was young, we called him “The Walking Tongue”…all he wanted to do was lick people and be loved.

    Poor misunderstood canines.

    I hop Jo and Twiggles work out their differences!

    1. Since we got Twiggles from a rescue organization, we have no idea whether she was born without a tail or somehow had it cut off. The vet said either was possible. Like Corki, she kind of shakes hers whole rear end, and Judi coined the word ‘twiggling’ for the shaking. Hence the name.

  25. I definitely agree with EF on that one, they are noisy nuisances. Great, humorous play on an attempted assassination. I hope she gets her guy, whichever one she decides is more important, if it can’t be both 🙂

    1. Well, the guy she’s falling in love with is a straitlaced former policeman who now works as the bodyguard for the fugitive she’s programmed to kill. That makes it kinda hard for her to fulfill her implanted Destiny. She’ll have to choose.

  26. chellecordero · · Reply

    My daughter used to have a cat without a tail, probably lost it in a fight or an accident – but it makes me feel for Twiggles.
    I love the conversation Jo is having with the pup.

    Oh and Effing, I adore all animals but I am very much a proud cat-mommy, and I agree, you do deserve your own story.

    1. But Effing tells his own story every week!

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