An Unlikely Pair

This is the first day of the Story a Day challenge and here is the prompt from Neil Gaiman about trying to get home.

I stuck out my thumb and walked backwards along the early morning highway as the rain streamed down soaking me. Occasionally a car went by and splashed me but no one offered me a ride. My hair was wild like a scarecrow and I’d been wearing the same dirty jeans and jean jacket for over a week now.  I imagine I smelled pretty bad, too. 

When my parents divorced, I didn't want to move and stayed in Vancouver with my dad while my mom moved to Ottawa. Big mistake.

Why did Canada have to be so huge? I was only in Saskatchewan and I wanted to get to Ontario to my mom’s place.

A pathetic meow took my mind off my own predicament for a moment. I looked down at an orange tabby cat rubbing against my leg. He looked in worse shape than me, all dirty with a ripped ear and he was limping.

“Go away. You’ll get run over.” I gently nudged the cat away with my boot. The cat wasn’t easily put off and kept following me. I picked him up and put him into some nearby bushes. “Trust me, kitty. You don’t want to hang out with the likes of me. Shawn Gibson is going nowhere.” That’s what my dad always said. Finally I’d had enough of my dad’s constant verbal abuse. I packed a knapsack and walked out shouting. “Look Dad, Shawn Gibson is going somewhere. See ya!”  Of course my dad never even followed me or anything. He was probably happy to be rid of me.

I trudged along, a weariness making me feel much older than eighteen. Another pathetic meow came from behind me and I turned to see that dumb cat there again.

“You don’t give up, do you?” I said, looking at the soggy looking excuse of a feline. I couldn’t leave him there but he was going to hurt my chances of getting a ride even more.

I picked him up and he purred and snuggled against me. Well, now he’d done it. I couldn’t just leave him here, could I?

“You need a name. I’ll call you Max.”

Continuing to walk, I tucked Max into my coat and he seemed content to peek out at the world going by. It was nice to have some company.

A truck driver stopped but when he saw the cat, he shook his head. “No way.”  He drove away, splashing me with mud.

We’d been walking for two hours steady and I’d pretty well given up hope.

A PT Cruiser with a middle-aged woman driving pulled up beside us.

“Where are you going?”

“To Ottawa to see my mom,” I said, not getting my hopes up too much.

“Is that your cat?” she asked.

“He started following me and I didn’t want him to get run over,” I said.

The woman looked me up and down as she pondered the situation. 

 “So do you have a name for him?”

“I call him Max.”

“Come on. I'm going to Winnipeg. I’ll give you and Max a lift,” she said finally.

 “Thanks, Ma’am,” I said with a half smile. As I got into the car with Max, I realized that maybe having that cat was a good thing after all.


  1. Oh Cathy… I loved this story… so sweet… brought a tear to my eye… keep the writing coming...

    1. Thanks so much, MA/Chocolattez. Appreciate the support. You're such a great friend!

  2. Great character! You're really good at using very little to convey a lot, plus you have incredible power with voice.

    So is there going to be a new story every day then?

    1. Hi Loni. Yes, I'm going to try it. I want to continue the momentum I got going with the blogging challenge. Thanks for the encouragement. Means a lot from you as you are an excellent writer, yourself, girl. Hope you posted more of Cera Chronicles as I was looking for more.


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