Effing Feline bestows forgiveness

Photos: DepositPhotos

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

I, Effing Feline, returned from Toronto and began my search for a mouse — any mouse, just one little mouse so I could earn the glorious title of Good Mouser. In case you’ve forgotten, this was my plan:

  • Scatter the cheese all over the house.  You know, for bait.
  • Rip apart the couch cushions to see if mice hide there
  • Claw Mr V’s computer screen to see if computer mice are inside.

But I got in huge trouble! I’d clawed into only one couch cushion when Mrs V (wife of Ed the Pet Human) caught me. I never thought I’d say it of the dear woman, but she has a foul temper. I mean, really — I was just trying to rid the place of mice.

Today, another selection from The Trial of Tompa Lee. Last week Tompa was  framed for a deadly act of terrorism. She’s injured in the explosion and is transported back to Navy Ship Vance, where policeman Dante Roussel is assigned to her case.

In this snippet, the stakes get higher.

A lazy Alabama drawl sounded in his ear: Pradeep Singh, Assistant VP of Ship Operations. “Company for tea, Dante. Two Kalikiniki dreadnoughts just popped into the jump zone, headed for orbit around Zee Shode. Thought you might want to help us break out the good china.”

A weight descended on Dante’s shoulders, accompanied by a spark of anticipation. Tompa Lee, who was now his responsibility, might be central to any confrontation with the Klicks.

The spark sputtered and died. Two dreadnoughts meant the Klicks were treating this incursion into their trading territory with deadly seriousness. The Vance’s mission was against the laws of intergalactic trade, so the Klicks had both might and right on their side. In its seventy-year history, the Navy had never lost a cruiser or even been involved in a battle in space, but there was always a first time.

Effing Feline here again. I just got off Mrs V’s lap, where she petted me for an hour. I guess I’m a big enough cat to forgive her. Heck, in the spirit of social media (meaning friendly media), I’ll even show you a picture of her:

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

Effing Feline divider

The Trilogy of Tompa Lee

The Trial of Tompa Lee is the first book in The Trilogy of Tompa Lee.  Here are the sequels.

The Tribulations of Tompa Lee

Goddess or madwoman? Even she isn’t sure.

Tompa now serves as ambassador to the Shons’ planet and is hailed as their goddess — even though she’s paranoid about fellow humans and has a dead man living in her head. When the Klicks, mankind’s deadliest enemy, destroy the embassy, a ragtag group of Shon and human survivors expect her to save them.

The Triumph of Tompa Lee

Triumph_ruins_i_thumbnailNow the prey stalks the hunter

Because Tompa forges an upstart alliance between humans, Shons, and Klicks, the Galactic Trading Council hires Earth’s most feared bounty hunter to kill her. The hunter lures her to deserted ruins by kidnapping her fiancé and her best friend. Tompa can save her loved ones only if she can finally tame the goddess — and the madness — she carries inside.



  1. Thought you might want to help us break out the good china.

    Just loved that line!

    Interesting history for a 70year old Navy.

    1. I liked that line, too. This chap was supposed to be one speech and done, but I liked him well enough to bring him back later in the trilogy.

  2. That does raise the stakes a bit.

    Nice photo of you and and your wife. You look so comfortable together.

    1. Raising the stakes like this is intended to make it more believable for the mission commander to back down and use Tompa as a scapegoat.

  3. nancygideon · · Reply

    Hope you had a great visit with your son, Ed. Nice snippet. Love the tone and the dialogue.

    1. It’s been awhile since I wrote this — long enough that I’m a bit surprised and pleased that Dante feels ambivalent about the possible demise of the ship. Despite the brain damage that has forced him to take a lesser role than he used to have (ship’s captain), he’s still energized by the chance to be in the center of the action.

  4. Looks like their first space battle might be looming now…excellent excerpt!

    1. Unless, of course, the person in charge of this mission capitulates to the Kalikiniki and finds a scapegoat to blame. I wonder who that scapegoat might be?

  5. Yes, the stakes are definitely rising! There’s a first time for everything, and it will be interesting to see how the Navy does in its inaugural battle! Hope you had fun in, Toronto too!

    1. We had a marvellous time. Even high temperatures of 14 (Fahrenheit) didn’t dampen our enjoyment.

      1. I live close to Toronto, so you’ll have to let me know the next time you are in my neck of the woods.

      2. I’ll keep it in mind, Frank, though at the moment we have no plans for a return to TO. With other sons in Vancouver and Amsterdam, it’s hard to make as many visits to one place as we might wish.

  6. Hadn’t better be a battle coming if they “break out the good china” – lol.


    1. That flippant comment says a lot about how some of the sailors view the arrival of the enemies.

  7. I think that spark of interest is going to rekindle itself. I am wondering what his real feelings for Tompa Lee are at this point. Nuisance or need to protect? Nice snippet.

    1. At this point he’s sort of rooting for her as someone who’s experiencing the same injuries he endured. Because this is the first time he’s seen her close up, his feelings aren’t very complex — yet.

  8. Author Jessica E. Subject · · Reply

    Oh, I hope there never is a first time. I want to knock on wood after the last part of that snippet. That’s a beautiful picture of the two of you! Hope you all enjoyed your time in Toronto! 🙂

    1. You’re an outlier, Jessica. More people seem to be looking forward to a battle.

      Thanks for the comment about the picture. It’s hard to get a good photo of even one of us. Both of us at once, as here, is vanishingly rare.

  9. The dearest couple ever except for my first love and I. Thanks for allowing us into your life for just a moment.
    Re: Snippet is so fine. Love the descriptions prior to battle.

    1. Thanks so much, Charmaine. As you know, there are special rewards that come with long-lasting relationships.

  10. I foresee trouble ahead. Mrs. V looks so sweet, Effing must have been very evil indeed to make her lose her temper!

    1. It’s rare indeed for Judi to lose her temper.

  11. I just want to say “Kalikiniki dreadnought” over and over.

    1. I guess it does have a bit of rhythm. Kalikiniki dreadnought, Kalikiniki dreadnought, Kalikiniki dreadnought.

  12. I liked the tea references and suspect the china will be cracked.

    1. I hope readers won’t think the whole thing is just a tempest in a teapot.

  13. A tea party! Nice. Lapsang souchong, anyone? Something with a little smoke. 🙂

    Lovely photo, Ed! 🙂

    1. The tea possibilities are endless. Maybe Earl Grey? Or Boba Fett?

      No, that should be boba chai. Silly me.

  14. The more I hear of her, the more I like this Tompa Lee. I rather wish I had read the first two in the series before getting this one, so I might have to rectify that. Lovely pic. Your wife doesn’t look anywhere near strict enough to take on Effing Feline with his haughtiness! But I suspect she has inner steel. Effing really doesn’t stand a chance.

    1. Fret not, Rachel — this book, The Trial of Tompa Lee, is the first book in the trilogy.

      As for Judi’s ability to handle Effing: she may not look it in this pic, because I’m kinda tall, but she”s also much bigger than any cat.

  15. elainecsc2013 · · Reply

    Great except. The stakes are rising, aren’t they?

    1. Yes, they are. And as the stakes rise, Tompa’s importance as a potential scapegoat rises also.

  16. Siren X Star · · Reply

    I’m still cringing at cheese being scattered all over the house, what a mess that will be!

    I adore Tompa, such a good strong female character. Enjoyed this snippet and the ‘break out the good china” line.

    1. She’s a strong character, but she also has strong weaknesses … if that contradiction makes sense.

      1. Siren X Star · ·

        It sure does!

  17. Nice pic. My cat was scratching the couch earlier, too. He also wanted to go out because the weather is so nice. Great snippet–love the dialogue!

    1. Cats do have an affinity for upholstered furniture.

  18. Humans don’t get your vision, Effing. You have to execute it when they’re out of the house!

    The opposite side having “might and right” on their side doesn’t look good at all.

    1. You’re encouraging him? Shame on you, Caitlin!

  19. Ooo love that ending. Great snippet!

    1. Yeah, nothing like a little foreshadowing.

  20. Interesting snippet. I liked “break out the good china”. And a lovely photo with your wife!

    1. Thanks, Iris. I recently had the chance to meet a couple of writers from these blog hops at a local book fair, and it made me wonder yet again about the people behind these short messages we exchanged. I decided to take a chance and reach out with a picture of my long long term wife and me. It helped, of course, that my son took this great picture of us while we were in Toronto.

      1. Great idea, Ed 🙂

  21. Karen Michelle Nutt · · Reply

    Great banter with clever remarks. The last line makes me curious to find out if there will be a battle or not.

    Cats do love the furniture. They’re just fancy scratch posts to them. lol I have three felines and have to shoo them away once in a while from clawing the sides of the couches. They’re indoor cats. Two were strays. One is sixteen years old and the other two are fifteen. But I have to say, my little dogs have done more damage to furniture than my cats have ever done. lol Gnawing on chair legs. Jumping on the furniture when they know they shouldn’t, but then the animals have us well trained and we give into their bad behavior of sleeping on the couch. lol

    1. You’re sure right about cats and furniture. It doesn’t pay to buy expensive new couches. Interestingly our dogs have never done much, if any, damage to the furniture.

  22. angelicadawson · · Reply

    You are quite generous for all you are misunderstood, my feline friend. The snippet is very engaging as well!

    1. Effing is trying to be generous. Man, is he trying.

  23. Uh oh. That doesn’t sound like it’s going to go well for them.

    1. That’s right. As I mentioned in the into, the stakes are rising.

  24. Battles never bode well for either side in the long run. Hope they use the china instead. Negotiations are less costly.

    1. Peace is ALWAYS a good thing … except perhaps in novels.

  25. I’m glad they can find the funny in what looks to be a stressful situation. Great scene.

    1. Thanks so much, Jennifer!

  26. There’s always a first time for everything.

    1. Such as a first time for you to visit here, Misa. Thanks for stopping by.

  27. Great snippet! I really liked the ending. There is always a first time…

    1. It’s a nice, threatening way to end, isn’t it? When I select a snippet, I always aim to have a ‘kicker’ at the end.

  28. And poor Tompa has no say in any of this…

    1. You got it. Her status in the Space Navy is so low that she’s isn’t at the bottom of the totem pole, she’s at the bottom of the hole in which the totem pole is planted.

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