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Saturday, September 8, 2012

Sweet Saturday Sample: Wendy

Yesterday was a dreadful day for my family.  We lost our good brown dog Wendy, and we are all truly devastated. We got Wendy the same year my grandson was born, almost fifteen years ago.  I have many pictures of a little toddler followed by a devoted, loving dog. Unfortunately, the animals we love don't live as long as we do, so we have to go on without her.  I don't have much heart for a post today, but I remembered that in one of my unpublished manuscripts I have a passage where my heroine lost her cat, so I guess I'll share that today.  It fits my mood.  The manuscript is titled The Captain and the Cheerleader.  I've really got to edit it and see if it can find a home. The picture was made a few weeks before Wendy died.


***

Susan hated to get up on Friday morning.  The last couple of days had been so emotionally exhausting she would rather have slept in, but she didn’t think she should use her sick days now.   Once the baby came she’d probably need them more. 

She flung the covers aside and forced herself to sit up.  In spite of her fatigue, she had to smile when she saw she had covered Samson up.  Only the tip of his tail stuck out from under the blanket. 

“Kurt, you’re going to be late,” she warned.  She gave his shoulder a shake and pulled the covers off of Samson.  “Come with me, kitty,” she crooned.  “You get some tuna for breakfast.”

Samson didn’t move.  “Samson, aren’t you hungry?” Susan demanded.  She touched the old cat’s head and started to cry.  One touch had told her that her old friend was gone. 

“What’s wrong?” Kurt sleepily muttered.  “Why are you crying?”

“It’s Samson,” Susan choked.  “He…he’s dead.”

Kurt rolled over and looked at Samson.  “I’m sorry, baby,” he comforted.  He snuggled Susan against him and patted her back.  “Don’t feel bad.  He had a great life.”

Susan agreed, but it didn’t help much.  Samson had lived with her for a long time.  She couldn’t imagine what she’d do without him.

“Would you like for me to bury him?” Kurt gently asked.

Susan nodded because she couldn’t speak.  She found a pretty enamel box that her father had given her for Christmas one year and lined it with a soft, fluffy towel.  It wasn’t good enough for Samson, but of course nothing would be.

“Where do you want to put him?”

“Underneath the oak tree in the back yard.  He loved to nap there.”

They took Samson outside where Kurt dug a hole for the enamel box.  “I think it’s big enough now,” he finally said.

Susan stroked Samson for the last time; her eyes blurred with tears.  “Sleep tight,” she whispered.  She might have said more, but her throat closed up, and she couldn’t make a sound.

“I’m sorry, Susan.  He was a fine cat.”

Susan nodded and put her arms around Kurt.  Why couldn’t pets live longer?  It wasn’t fair they had to die so young.

Kurt kissed the top of her head and solemnly walked her back into the house.

7 comments:

Creations by Laurel-Rain Snow said...

So sorry about Wendy. Your excerpt is a very touching tribute.

Thanks for visiting my blog.

Sandy Nachlinger said...

A lovely, well-written scene full of heart.
It's amazing what a large gap is left when we lose a pet. They're so much a part of our daily lives. I share your sorrow.

Elaine Cantrell said...

Thanks, Laurel and Sandy. We do miss her something awful.

Jenna said...

So sorry to hear of your loss. Pets are family members too, and their passing leaves such an emptiness in our lives. But Wendy had a terrific life with you and will live on in your memory. Your scene is a touching tribute to her.

Elaine Cantrell said...

Thank you, Jenna.

Carrie-Anne said...

Very sorry for your loss. I love animals and hate when they pass away so young in comparison to humans. I love the emotions of your scene.

Jessica K said...

Very touching and appropriate. I hope we get to see some of the cat's personality in that story.