Jeanne Owens, author

Blog about author Jeanne Owens and her writing


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That Fuzzy Thing – Stream of Consciousness Saturday #SoCS

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“Julius!” called Lisa as she came into the living room. “Come here, Julius! I have something for you!”

Down the hall, Julius was napping. His ears perked up at the sound of her voice and he got up from his bed. He ran into the living room excitedly, eager to see what Lisa had brought him.

When he got there, he saw Lisa standing in the middle of the room with something small and black in her hands. “What is that fuzzy thing?” he thought. “Is is a toy? It must be a toy. Yay! A new toy!”

Having decided that, his tail began to wag and he panted expectantly.

Lisa approached the fluffy white dog. “I’m glad you’re happy, Julius,” she said, holding the fuzzy thing towards him. “Here you go.”

Julius sniffed the black thing in her hand, and reared back slightly in shock. “That doesn’t smell like a toy!” he said to himself. “That smells like a…”

The fuzzy thing stirred in Lisa’s hand and two small yellow eyes popped opened and a small mouth opened wide in a yawn.

“…cat!” Julius finished his thought.

“Say hello to your new brother, Marcus, Julius!” Lisa said, setting the black kitten down in front of him.

“What?!” thought Julius, staring at the kitten.

Lisa stepped back to watch the two interact, hoping there wouldn’t be any fighting but ready to intervene if needed.

The kitten faced Julius and gave him a stern look. “Look here, dog,” he warned. “I may be new here, but let’s get one thing straight. I’m a cat and you’re just a dog. That means I’m in charge here. Got it?”

Julius crouched down on the floor and stared at the kitten. He could tell that it had tried to tell him something, but he didn’t understand what it’d said. He did pick up that the kitten seemed to have a bossy air about it, though. He decided he’d humor it, for now anyway.

Taking the dog’s silence and peaceful attitude as acceptance, Marcus simply said, “Good”, and wandered off to begin exploring his new domain.

 

From my Pinterest

 

 

This post is part of the Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, “zz”:

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS June 20/2020


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Spay/Splay/Spray – Stream of Consciousness Saturday #SoCS

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“Where’s Gidget?” Lana asked as she dragged the carrier out of the closet. “It’s almost time for her spay appointment.”

“I don’t know, Mom,” called Jenny from her bedroom, where she was splayed out on her bed and scrolling on her cellphone.

“Well, could you help me find her? I don’t want to be late getting her to the vet.”

“Fine,” Jenny said with a huff, setting her phone aside and getting up from her bed.

Lana put the carrier by the front door and joined Jenny in the hunt for Gidget. They looked in every room of the house, in every nook and cranny they could think of, but couldn’t find the calico cat anywhere.

Lana was frantic. The time for the vet appointment was growing closer and closer. If they didn’t find Gidget soon, she’d have to reschedule and that would be quite a hassle. She grabbed the phone and as she got ready to call the vet, she was mentally tried to figure out when would be a good time for a rescheduled appointment, when her busy schedule might be open for an appointment around the time it would be okay again for Gidget to be spayed.

Just as she was about to hit the dial button, Jenny called out, “Found her!” from the kitchen.  Lana ran in and Jenny pointed at the refrigerator. Gidget was crouching on top of the refrigerator, doing her best to hide from them, having sensed the vet trip coming.

“Oh, great!” Lana groaned. “How’re we going to get her down?”

“I have an idea,” Jenny said, and she ran from the kitchen. A minute later, she returned with a spray bottle in her hand. “I’ll spray her with some water to chase her down. Then when she’s down, you grab her and put in the carrier.”

Lana gave her a skeptical look, but agreed, having no better plan of her own.

Jenny walked up to the refrigerator, reached as high up as she could, and sprayed water in Gidget’s direction. Gidget hissed as some of the water reached her. She tried to back away from it, but the wall blocked her. With no other option, Gidget jumped down from the side of the fridge to the small counter area beside the sink. Lana quickly grabbed her before she could get away.

Gidget yowled and squirmed as Lana carried her from the kitchen. Jenny followed and hurried in front of them so she could get the carrier and hold it for her mother. Gidget tried to fight back, but Lana won and stuffed the calico cat in the carrier.

“Thanks, Jenny,” Lana said over the plaintive yowling from the carrier.  “I couldn’t have gotten her without you.”

“You’re welcome, Mom. Good luck at the vet. I hope you won’t be too late.”

Lana thanked her again and walked out the front door with the carrier. Jenny could still hear Gidget’s yowls as she shut the door behind them.

 

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This post is part of the Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, “spay/splay/spray”:

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS May 30/2020

 


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Want – Stream of Consciousness Saturday #SoCS

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What I want

I have found

Has slowly changed

As I have grown.

What I wanted

When I was little

Was simple enough.

Things like toys

And candy

And other things

That could be bought

From the store.

But now I’m older

And my want list

More often than not

Contains things

That can’t be bought.

Good health

Security

Love

Peace of mind

Happiness.

These sorts of things

Are what we all

should really want

From life.

 


This post is part of the Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, “want”:

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS May 16/2020

 


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Kitchen Chaos – Stream of Consciousness Saturday #SoCS

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“Preheat the oven to 350 degrees,”  Susie muttered as she read the directions for the cake. “Okay.  Then grease the pans and coat them lightly in flour. No problem.”

She set the box aside and turned on the oven to preheat. Then she gathered the eggs and oil and set them aside on the small kitchen island where she was going to be preparing the mix. Then she got the shortening and flour and pans out and set them aside.

As she was gathering everything together, her black cat, Sable, came into the kitchen, curious to see what she was doing and if there was any yummy food involved.

Sable approached the kitchen island as Susie was greasing up the cake pans. She watched Susie set the greased pans down and pour some flour into the sifter. Intrigued, Sable stood up on her hind legs and reached up to the island’s counter top, trying to get a better look at Susie’s actions.

Unfortunately,  Susie has inadvertently put the bag of flour very close to the edge of the counter top and Sable’s paws bumped it. The flour bag tipped over. Sable jumped away quickly, but not quickly enough. Flour still managed to cover the curious kitty’s head. With a startled cry, the cat darted away to cower in a nearby corner

“Oh no!” Susie cried out, setting the sifter down and staring at the mess. “Sable! What did you do?!”

Susie looked around and spotted the cowering cat. She chuckled. “Oh, Sable! You look like you belong to the Uruk-hai now!”

Sable glared at Susie as she continued to laugh. When she stopped laughing, Susie cleaned up the mess, then cleaned up Sable and gave the kitty a treat in apology. Then she went back to baking her cake. Sable continued to supervise, but from a safer distance.

 

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Image found on the Me.me website

This post is part of the Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, “directions”:

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS May 2/2020


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Prince…Valiant? Valium? – Stream of Consciousness Saturday #SoCS

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Princess Valerie and her retainer, Ingrid, had gone out for walk in the royal gardens to enjoy a lovely spring afternoon. The weather couldn’t be better, and the various flowers were beautiful to behold.

As they walked, they chatted about different things, as women will do. They were having such a nice time and not paying close attention to their surroundings that they soon found themselves outside the castle grounds.

A large field filled with wildflowers was spread out before their eyes. Princess Valerie gazed at it, taking it all in with a huge smile on her lips. Ingrid, however, urged the princess to turn around, knowing how dangerous it was for them to be away from the castle grounds.

Princess Valerie ignored her and ran off into the field and began picking wildflowers. Ingrid shook her head and walked towards her, intending to talk some sense into the princess.  Neither noticed the dark spot high in the sky coming closer and larger with each passing moment.

Just before Ingrid could reach her, the black dragon swooped down from the sky and scooped Princess Valerie from the field in one its huge claws. The princess screamed as the dragon flew off with her.

Ingrid cried out after the princess, and as the dragon got farther and farther away, she heard the princess call something out to her. It was hard for the older lady to make out clearly what she said, though, because of the distance.

As Ingrid ran back towards the castle the sound the alarm, she tried to figure out who it was the princess had asked her to summon to rescue her.

When the dragon returned to its cave, it stuck the princess high up on a ledge where she would be hard pressed to escape from, then settled down on the floor next to its large pile of gold and jewels and stared up at its new trophy.

“You won’t get away with this,” Princess Valerie told the dragon.

“Oh, really?” the dragon replied, its rumbling voice echoing in the cave.

“Yes. Once my champion, the prince Valiant, arrives, I shall be rescued and you shall be dead, oh dragon.”

The dragon chuckled. “We will see about that. I have dispatched many a ‘champion’ in my time, girl. I shall do the same for yours.”

The dragon settled down and began to nap, and the princess settled down to wait.

After a while, the princess wasn’t sure how long, she could faintly hear the sound of a horse’s hooves outside the cave entrance, followed by the sound of armor clanking, and she quickly got to her feet. The dragon also heard it and woke up, it’s bright yellow eyes intently watching for the intruder.

Princess Valerie watched as her armored rescuer came inside the cave, eager to see her champion fight to save her from the dragon. But as he came into view, her eagerness fell to disappointment. “P…Prince…Valium?” she said. “What are you doing here? I told Ingrid to summon Prince Valiant!”

He turned to look up at her and raised the visor on his helmet. He stifled a yawn and replied, “Yes, well, I was surprised by the summons as well, my lady, and thought there must have been some mistake. But one such as I can’t refuse a royal summons or refuse to come to the aid of a damsel in distress.” He stifled another yawn. “So here I am, come to rescue you.”

“But…but…” she stammered.

He lowered his visor and turned to the dragon. He raised his sword and said, “Now then, dragon! Prepare to die!”

The dragon opened its large mouth. Flames flickered at the back of its throat.

Valium, the valiant would-be rescuer, suddenly dropped the ground, startling the dragon. The dragon stared in confusion, wondering what trick he playing. Then the sound of snoring reached its ears. The dragon shook its head sadly and decided what to do. There would be no real fun in just killing and eating him like this, the dragon thought, so instead it picked Valium up and left the cave, flying off and leaving Valium to sleep in the middle of the woods far away.

Upon returning to the cave, the dragon told Princess Valerie, “I hope your next champion is more of a challenge.”


This post is part of the Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, “val”:

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS April 25/2020


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Practice Makes Purrfect – Stream of Consciousness Saturday #SoCS

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The sun had started to rise and the birds began their morning songs after waking from their nightly slumber. Below them, in the bushes and grass growing around the trees, the other forest creatures began to awaken and begin their morning routines.

Not long after the forest awakened to a new day, a warning cry from some birds rang out, followed by a loud and frustrated mew.

“Dang it!” spat the young ginger tabby kitten as he sat underneath the tree, staring at the spot between two roots where the mouse he’d tried to catch had been before it slipped away.

“Don’t worry,” said the long-haired silver cat as she walked up to the kitten. “You’ll get the hang of it soon enough, Rusty. You’re doing fine. You just need more practice. Remember what I’ve taught you. Now, stand up.”

“Yes, Misty,” said the kitten, doing as he was told.

“Good. Now, listen closely. What do you hear?”

The kitten was quiet as he listened to the forest. “Birds are chirping high in the trees,” he said after a few moments. “There are some squirrels chattering in some trees nearby.” He paused a moment and focused his gaze on a bush close by. “There’s something moving under that bush.”

“Good. Now, sniff the air and see if you can catch its scent and identify it.”

Rusty did as Misty instructed. “It’s another mouse,” he said.

“Good. Now, remember what I’ve told you about stalking and pouncing, and get ready. And don’t be so impatient this time.”

Rusty crouched low to the ground, making sure his belly and tail didn’t drag and make noise. He slowly made his way towards the bush, keeping his pawsteps light and noiseless on the ground.

“Good, good,” Misty said softly and encouragingly as she watched her pupil.

When Rusty got close to the bush, he paused and watched for the mouse. The leaves and grass near him began to move, and Rusty crouched and prepared to pounce, his back end moving slightly as he adjusted his legs just so to give him the correct strength and lift.

The unsuspecting mouse darted out from under the bush, and Rusty made his move.

The mouse never knew what hit him.

Rusty looked down at the mouse caught in his claws and purred.

He picked up the mouse in his mouth and carried it back to Misty, his tail held high in the air.

As he dropped the mouse on the ground at Misty’s feet, she purred and said, “Well done, Rusty. As I told you, practice makes purrfect. You are going to be a fine hunter.”

 


This post is part of the Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, “practice/practise”:

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS April 18/2020

 


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Of All The Gin Joints – Stream Of Consciousness Saturday #SoCS

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Liam and Mick sat beside each other at the bar with half-empty beer steins in front of them. The place was rahter crowded, even for a Friday night. There was hardly an empty seat in the room, and Liam and Mick had to almost yell to be heard over the din of conversation and loud music.

During one of the rare lulls in background noise, the door to the pub opened. Liam and Mick turned to see who the newcomer was, and Liam almost spit out the swallow of beer he’d just taken.

Terri, a strikingly pretty redheaded young lady, walked in and headed their way.

“Of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world, she had to walk into mine,” Liam said, quoting Humphrey Bogart’s famous line from Casablanca.

“I know, right?” Mick replied. “What are you going to do, Liam?”

“She’s my ex-girlfriend, Mick, ” Liam said, watching her weave her way through the crowd towards them. He tried to sound tough, but didn’t quite pull it off as he added, “She broke my heart. What do you think I’m going to do?”

“I know what you probably should do,” Mick said as he watched Liam watch Terri with a look of longing in his eyes. “And I know what you’re probably going to do instead.”

Terri walked past them and took a seat at one of the few empty tables in the back, and a few moments later Liam got up and walked over to her. Mick watched as Liam talked to her for a moment, then sat down across from her at the table. They talked for a few minutes, then got up and slipped out the back door.

“And I was right,” Mick said, shaking his head sadly. “He just never seems to learn.”

Mick sighed and turned back around to finish his beer.

 


This post is part of the Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, “joint”:

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS April 11/2020


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Welcome – Stream of Consciousness Saturday #SoCS

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“Welcome!” said the little old man behind the counter as Jakob walked in through the aged hotel’s grimy glass doors and across the scuffed marble floor. It was stormy out, and Jakob’s steps left damp footprints in his wake. “Welcome! How can I help you?”

Jakob stepped up to the dusty counter and set his suitcase down beside him. “I need a room for the night,” he said as he tried to brush his soaked brown hair out of his face. “I got a little turned around on the road thanks to this storm, it’s getting late, and you’re the first place I could find that I could stop at.”

The old man gave Jakob a toothy grin. “Of course, of course. I understand completely. It’s our off season, so we have plenty of rooms available. Do you have a preference?”

“No preference. Any room will be fine.”

“Then how about room 113? It’s our most popular room. We have many people request to stay in it.”

“That’s fine,” Jakob replied, stifling a yawn.

“Great!” the old man said as he placed a ledger book with a faded leather cover in front of Jakob. “If you’ll just sign in here, I’ll get you your room key.”

Jakob grabbed a pen from a caddy on the desk and signed in the ledger book while the old man grabbed a key from a desk drawer.

“Here you are, sir,” the old man said, taking the ledger book and handing Jakob the key. “The room is right down the hall there to your left. Check out is at 10:00 in the morning. Have a good night!”

Jakob grabbed his suitcase and made his way down the dimly lit hallway to his room. It was a small room, with just the basic necessities like a twin bed, a small dresser, nightstand with lamp, and a small desk. Like the rest of the hotel, it was a bit dingy and dimly lit, but Jakob was tired and paid it no mind. He set his suitcase down and went into the tiny bathroom to take a quick shower.

After his shower, Jakob decided to sit at the desk with his notebook and see if he could get anything written more on his manuscript before going to bed. But he still couldn’t find a way around his writer’s block, as he’d hoped the change of scenery from the short trip he’d taken would have helped him with.

Closing his notebook, Jakob headed to bed with the hopes that a good night’s sleep would help instead. But a good night’s sleep wasn’t in the cards.

Jakob was about to doze off when the sound of the doorknob rattling woke him. Thinking someone was at the door and trying to get in, he got up to check, but no one was at the door or anywhere in the hallway. With a shrug, he went back to bed, but a few minutes later the door opened on its own. Jakob stared at it, surprised, and heard footsteps walk towards him, but there was no one there. Then he caught the faint scent of a flowery perfume. It lasted just a few seconds, then was gone.

Jakob didn’t know what to think. There was a ghost here. His room was haunted. Maybe even the whole hotel. He was scared, of course, and was tempted to leave the hotel right then and there. But then the inkling of an idea for story came to him.

He jumped out of bed and went over to the desk. He opened his notebook and started writing.

In the morning, Jakob went to the desk to check out. The old man was still there. He eyed Jakob with a bit of surprise as he said, “Good morning, sir. Did you sleep well? How was your night?”

Jakob smiled as he placed the key and some cash on the counter signed himself out in the ledger. “It was good,” he said. “I didn’t sleep much, but I managed to get a lot writing done for a change, so thank you very much.”

“You’re welcome,” the old man said with a touch of bewilderment as Jakob walked towards the lobby doors, whistling a happy tune.


This post is part of the Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, “welcome”:

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS March 21/2020


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The Phantom Meow & Purr – Stream of Consciousness Saturday #SoCS

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Jenny stared at the wand toy and catnip mouse lying on the floor next to the kitty bed in the living room. She still couldn’t believe Mister was gone. She’d had the orange tabby since he was a kitten. Time certainly flies by. Before she knew it, Mister was an “old man” of fifteen and had developed cancer. She’d had to make the difficult decision to have him put to sleep.

He’d been her constant companion and loving lap cat. She didn’t know what she do without him now.

Tears filled her eyes as she looked at his favorite toys. She didn’t have the heart to pick them up at the moment, so she decided to just leave them there for now.

She tried to go about her afternoon like normal, but she kept expecting to see him or hear him. When she sat on the couch, she expected him to jump up and snuggle next to her or curl up in her lap and purr. Or to bring a toy over to her to play with him. When she went to the kitchen, she expected to see him trot along beside her and meow for a treat while she fixed something to eat.

Now she sat alone on the couch and fixed food in the kitchen in silence.

Somehow, she managed to make it through the rest of the day without Mister by her side. As she laid in bed, she thought about him again and how he’d jump up on the bed and curl up beside her to sleep. She felt tears trickle down her cheeks.

She was just about to doze off when she thought she heard a meow from the foot of the bed. Then suddenly, there was a soft bounce on the mattress, as of a cat jumping up on it and what felt like small kitty feet walking across it, followed by the sensation of a cat lying up against her legs. Then she thought she heard low purring.

Somehow, she knew it was Mister, coming to comfort her by curling up beside her again, letting her know everything was all right and that he’d always be with her.

 


This post is part of the Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, “animal sounds” – write about the sounds animals make and how you experience them:
The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS Feb. 22/2020


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Surrounded By Boxes – Stream of Consciousness Saturday #SoCS

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I know I usually use Linda’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompts as means to get my creative juices flowing and come up with a short little story or practice writing poems, but when she gave this week’s prompt of “pack” or “unpack”, all I could think about is all the boxes that are sitting here around me that I have left to unpack from when I moved apartments back at the end of December. I hated having to pack everything up to begin with and move, and I hate having to unpack and find where things got boxed up to begin with and then find where to put everything. Aside from all the work involved, it’s so time-consuming. The one good thing to come from all the packing and unpacking, I suppose, is that I’ve been able to downsize some of my stuff and get rid of some things that I decided I didn’t really need or want anymore. And I’m sure I’ll be finding more stuff that I will decide I don’t really want or need anymore as I get around to unpacking more stuff.

And I hope that after more unpacking gets done I’ll find more free time to be able to get back to writing more and finally get back to working on my WIP. Hopefully, that will be sooner rather than later. I know what I need to do – unpacking;  it’s just hard sometimes to find the will and energy to do it, especially when working full-time during the week.


This whiny post is part of the Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, “pack/unpack”:

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS Feb. 8/2020