I, Effing Feline, am a very neat, and careful eater, even for a cat. You’ll see why I mention this when you read today’s snippet from Pandora Uncaged, my pet human’s WIP.
In previous snippets, you’ve met the story’s main characters — Pandora (heroine with a murky past), Aidan (hero through and through), and Booker (a 7-foot tall apprentice cupid). Now you’ll meet some of the alien animals at the Colonial Wildlife Containment Center, aka CWCC or Quak.
It’s part animal hospital, part research facility. Unfortunately, the planet’s humans are too busy colonizing the planet to give full attention to the native creatures, so Quak is woefully understaffed. There’s no longer even a full-time director. Instead, Pandora, as Quak’s longest-term employee, is acting director.
Here we meet one species of native creature called slytherins. Pandora is calling them out to eat.
Round holes in the cage’s back wall came alive. Seven warm-blooded, two-foot long, otter-shaped beasts shot out of the dens and flattened their bodies to help them glide safely to the cage floor.
Well, almost safely. When they landed, they fell over each other in haste to get to their food. They slithered across the floor as though it was a race—and for them, it was.
The winning slytherin jumped into the food trough and rolled over, coating itself in gelatinous slop until its glossy, dun-colored fur was hidden. Other creatures leaped into the trough to lick the food off the first slytherin, which writhed in pleasure. Half the food splattered out, dirtying her clean floor. A slytherin leaped toward the splatter and rolled in it, spreading the mess farther.
Effing Feline here again. I want all of you to know that I find these creatures eating habits disgusting. One should eat fastidiously, shouldn’t one? And lick one’s own paws after eating?
Ed wants me to warn you that he may be dilatory in commenting on your posts this week. Life does sometimes intrude, it seems.
Pandora Dayle is her family’s black sheep. Ten years after running away from home, she’s rebuilt her self-respect at an isolated facility for saving animals native to her colony’s planet. Her redemption feels as fragile as a dream, but she’ll be okay if nothing traumatic happens.
But when the best friend from her innocent childhood arrives, her insecurities mushroom.
Aidan used to be Pandora’s best friend. Since his teen years, he’s held heroic jobs—police officer and now Search and Rescue leader. He adored innocent young Pandora so much he compares every woman to her idealized memory, and finds them wanting.
But when he rediscovers the real thing, she’s not at all what he expected.
Booker, a naïve Apprentice Cupid for a secret organization, receives his second assignment: get Pandora and Aidan to mate. They’d been close friends, so his strategy is simple: He flies Aidan to her island and orders him to impregnate Pandora.
What could possibly go wrong?