I, Effing Feline, complained about not being able to open cat food cans . . . but Twiggles the Dog laughed at my complaint. She said pets like us get food in exchange for love, loyalty, and a pledge to defend our beloved owners with our own lives if necessary.
But I am NOT a subservient idiot like Twiggles. I lay down my life for no man — and I’m such an intelligent cat that I know of a way for me to become completely independent!
You see, I’ve heard Ed and Judi discuss their early marriage, when they had five acres in Canada and grew much of their own food. So I ordered the book Five Acres and Independence: A Handbook for Small Farm Management. Smart of me, eh? Soon I’ll be dependent on no one. It’s absolutely brilliant.
Now a word from our sponsor, The Solid Gold Aliens. Tresky Buffrum is a naive young shepherd from the mountains of planet Jones. When he visits the Jones’s largest city, seeking adventure, he meets Ebbril and marries her the very next day.
But on his wedding night in the Spaceport Hotel, she gets him drunk. He awakens in an open-sided hovel in a place called The Happy Louse Inn. Here he is the next morning.
He emerged, squinting, into sunlight.
Pain exploded as a man slammed into him. When Tresky groaned, the man spun around as though insulted. Tresky backed away and bumped into a woman who hissed at him. This place was as busy as Market Square.
No, it was Market Square. There was the three-story clock tower. Beyond it stood the distant spire of the Spaceport Hotel, its concrete walls shimmering with holographic images of Sloths turned into golden statues. How had he gotten from there to here?
In a wheelbarrow, apparently.
Effing Feline here again. Twiggles (drat her deadly doggy breath!) just reminded me that I don’t have five acres. And that I’m a carnivore. Growing beans and carrots would never make me independent.
PS — Anyone want to buy an unread copy of Five Acres and Independence?
The Solid Gold Aliens
For 500 years, the aliens were no threat. But they were just waiting . . .
All Tresky Buffrum wants is a taste of adventure before resigning himself to the simple life of a shepherd. What he gets instead is a mysterious wife, fiercely chaste, who drags him to a trek to the Midas Crater where some of the planet’s intelligent natives have been transformed into gold.
Everyone on their caravan has an ulterior motive — except Tresky, who just wants to make love to his wife. Spies are everywhere. An Offworlder hero runs mad and murders people. A grim policewoman becomes attracted to Tresky while struggling to capture the psychotic sniper.
Observing this bizarre trek across the desert is an old, mute, lion-like alien. After befriending Tresky despite the taboos, Virtrillica seeks a reason for her people to spare humanity from a war of extinction. Can the two of them save humankind and defeat the interplanetary conspirators who seek to destroy the Midas Crater and its sinister yet liberating secret?