Effing Feline prefers *fresh* salmon

Photos: DepositPhotos

I, Effing Feline, talked last week about whether my potent feline allergens made any of my fans itch over the Internet. Today I’d like to talk about something I’m allergic to.

Cat food.

Oh, it doesn’t make my body itch or anything like that. But it does make my pride itch. Sneeze, even. I am worthy, you must agree, of eating salmon (fresh, not canned) every day. Except, of course, when I want mahi-mahi or swordfish as a change of pace.

Another snippet today from Ed’s WIP, which now has a (very tentative) working title: The Man She Trusted, book five in his Alien Contact for Idiots sci fi romance series. He hopes to finish it during Camp NaNoWriMo this month. Yeah, right. We’ll see about that.

In last week’s snippet, Audra Verhailey said out of the blue to her alien companion: “I don’t care how helpful you’re being, I’m not having sex with you.” Today’s snippet continues from there.

This was the first time either of them had spoken during forty minutes of climbing through a dense yet kinda sickly evergreen forest. She’d been meaning to state her terms for at least thirty-nine of those minutes, ever since they started up this mountain. But the steep trail and his damned silence had robbed her of words.

He was being so over-the-top helpful that he obviously wanted something from her. All she had was her baby and her body, and of those two she assumed that he, well . . . .

She’d met him when he climbed out of a construction company pickup near where she was sitting with a map spread out on dirt that would one day be a paved street, or a sidewalk. Maybe a house. She remembered thinking they might have to build whatever-it-was around her dead body, because she was at the end of her hopes, almost quivering with despair.

And then came an unexpected ray of not-despair. Baby Roxie smiled up at this stranger and dropped the keys Audra had given her to play with, and instead of pretending he hadn’t seen, he picked them up, then let Roxie play at grabbing his finger.

Effing Feline here again. Is there anything that makes your pride itch or sneeze? Tell us about it in a comment, and be sure to visit the other writers in the Weekend Writing Warriors and Snippet Sunday.

News Flash!

Effing Feline here again. Ed just got an e-mail with a picture taken this morning, April 15. Ed’s better half is in Toronto, visiting two of their sons who  have moved back north. She left warm, dry, sunny Arizona — for this!

There are several things to notice and abhor.

  • First, the snow. In April?
  • Second, the dog. This is Brett’s mutt, Sadie. Okay, okay, she isn’t his, but an ex-girlfriend’s, but he got co-custody or some reason incomprehensible to my superior feline brain. And she isn’t a mutt, but a pure breed, which means she was expensive. Of all the things humans can spend money on, surely a dog has to be at the very bottom of the list. Right?
  • Third, the dog. They had to wake up, get bundled up, brave freezing weather — to walk a dog! Ridiculous!

Brett, some advice: Make sure your next girlfriend is sane enough to belong to a cat.



  1. I like him so far. wonder, though, as well why he’s so over friendly.

    1. There are reason, Iris, there are reasons.

  2. Sweet little bit of backstory. 🙂 Now we know how they met, and it’s makes him likable.

    1. Some writing books talk about a “Pet the Cat” moment, in which a character is nice to an animal to show he’s likable. Playing with a baby has to make him even more likable, right?

  3. There are some people–and I’ll extend this to aliens as well–who just want to help out of the goodness of their hearts. We don’t know much about him at all yet, but maybe he’s one of them. I hope so for her sake.Nice snippet!

    1. Innate goodness is indeed part of his motivation . . . but not all of it.

  4. Alas, 40 minutes of mountain climbing through dense and sticky forest — with so much delightful humidity? — can kind of quell conversation. Nice to encounter a likable alien …

    Happy Weekend, Effing Feline. Here’s hoping you get better rations this week. How do you feel about hunting rodents?

    1. Especially when you’re climbing said mountain with a baby strapped to your chest.

      Re: Effing and rodents. He deems himself a mighty hunter, but my wife and I keep far too clean a house to have mice. He’s reduced to catching mice in his dreams.

  5. Sounds like a mostly comfortable silence though!

    1. On his part, yes. On her part, though, she has these words she’s been dying to get out.

  6. julieevelynjoyce · · Reply

    Aww, so maybe he doesn’t just want to have sex with her. Which is great, but I also want him to want to have sex with her too, just not yet. 😀 Great excerpt!

    If I could afford to, I would eat fresh salmon every day, Effing. And I’d even share some with you.

    1. In my youth, I lived on a small, up-coast island in Kwakiutl country (which helped inspire the First Nations aliens in this series). Our house was about 20 feet from the ocean, at high tide. At low tide, a quarter of a mile. If we’d had a cat on Gilford Island, it could almost have caught its own fresh Pacific salmon.

  7. Diane Burton · · Reply

    Effing can have my salmon any day. Not my fav food.

    I like how you portray him in just a few sentences. You can tell a lot about a person by how they treat babies/kids. Is she being presumptuous by assuming he wants sex? He might be helping her because he’s a nice guy.

    1. Yes, he might be a nice guy, but life has conditioned her to expect otherwise.

  8. These few sentences raise so many questions on so many levels. The one I’m most curious about right now is what is she doing here in the first place.

    1. That’s a great question, Ian. Keep it in your mind, and you’ll get a partial answer soon.

  9. Aw, that’s so sweet. I like him already.

    1. That’s the general idea!

  10. You’ve certainly got me wondering how she ended up in such a pickle, and why she’s so suspicious of his motives. I’m guessing the suspicions extends to all helpful men. I hope your Camp NaNo goes well ’cause I want to read this!

    1. Camp NaNo is going okay. I’m on track to get my 50K words, but that won’t be enough to finish the book. So far I have 28K (not all of them written during NaNo), but I’m just partway into Stage III, Progress — in Michael Hauge’s terminology. In other words the book’s less than 3/8 written.

  11. Well this snippet answered some questions – but raised several others. No doubt all will be revealed in due course – well at the end of the story anyway, if not before! Loved this bit of backstory.
    Effing, I tend to agree about the salmon, a lot of cat food probably isn’t up to your standards, or even that of cats lower in the pecking order. I have to pull you up on the swordfish though – don’t you know this unioorn of the seas is an endangered species?

    1. Hywela, do you really think someone like Effing cares that swordfish are endangered?

  12. The story is certainly developing in an interesting,, unusual way! Another curiosity-inducing, well done snippet!

    1. I don’t try for ‘interesting and unusual’. Well, interesting certainly. Unusual, though? I’d just as soon have the romance part of my stories be the usual thing that readers are looking for. Might sell better!

  13. Author Jessica E. Subject · · Reply

    This is very intriguing from her point-of-view. I like to know his, too, to know his intentions. Great snippet! 🙂

    1. Your curiosity about his intentions is an excellent reason not to show his POV at this stage of the book. Keep ’em guessing, you know?

  14. Considering how they met, she seems incredibly suspicious. I wonder what brought that on? My cats would join Effing for the daily fresh salmon. Actually, so would I!

    1. Effing echoes my own preference for fresh salmon. In my youth, I lived briefly on the BC coast. The really, really fresh salmon we got there, directly off an incoming fish boat, spoiled me for any other kind.

  15. Yum. I like this a bunch. Best to all. I may write next week. What a time it’s been for this friend of yours

    1. Hey, great to have you back, Charmaine. I hope to hear from you next week!

  16. Karen Michelle Nutt · · Reply

    I like the bit of backstory. Makes me curious to know more about him.

    1. That’s how you’re supposed to feel, so that’s great, Karen.

  17. There’s a lot of more things he could want, I suppose. But it is a little suspicious that he’s being so kind without clear reason.

    1. A little bit of help for a stranger is one thing. A whole lot of help, though, and you do start wondering why.

  18. Many women are taught to be suspicious of men — with good reason.

    What I’m wondering about is HER motivations.

    Oh, and Effing — I have to agree with you about the dog….

    1. She has pretty good reasons, mostly one particular man who has a lot of friends. But this is a good reminder that I need to say a wee bit more earlier on about the emotional and legal problems that have driven her to Kwadra.

  19. I’ve always loved your descriptions and way of spinning sentences, they never cease to amaze me. This stranger perhaps doesn’t sound like the kind who would want something in return, at least not sex, but it does make me wonder why she’s helping him then. And also why she’s out on her own needing that help. What brought her here, with a child especially?

    1. You have lots of great question after only 10 sentences. Lovely!

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