I love to write. I often overthink. I often overreact. I have come far. I am not there yet. I have no idea where I'm going to end up.
non-binary (she/her or they/them is cool, thanks),
with anxiety

Message to Readers

This thing seems to be a series of short stories. I think there will be more.

The Old Woman, the Young Cat, and the Wall in the House MOUSER AND THE HOUSE OF GLASS

September 23, 2020


Mouser was as quiet as a mouse. After all, that's how you caught them. He slunk smoothly through the unkept fields of grasses and wild flowers, stalking. His eyes focused, his ears perked, his mind bent on the hunt. And there was his prey, an unsuspecting vole. Mouser crouched low, anticipating, readying himself for the pounce, and with one last little butt-wiggle and caught the prey and killed it quick. Triumph! Victory for Mouser! A what a lovely meal it would be, but first he must show the lady. So he returned to the house to find her. She was outside, making a very loud noise every now and then. She was chopping some old, bone-dry wood in half and half and half until they were small sticks. Her axe was rather dull, but her swings were strong and determined. Mouser approached carefully until he was right next to her. She finally saw him.

    "Oh, there you are," the woman exclaimed, wiping the sweat from her forehead. "And what've you got there?"
    "A vole!" he replied with pride, his tail high and proud. "I hunted it dead."
    "I can see that. Well done," the woman said, patting his head.
    "I eat it now." Mouser declared.
    "Do, do," the woman encouraged, gathering up her wood bits. "And would you care to come on a walk with me after?"
    "Sure," Mouser agreed, his mouth full of delicious vole meat.

The woman dropped off her sticks inside, grabbed some gear and her bag, and said goodbye to the Wall in the house before shutting the door behind her. Once Mouser had finished his meal, they took off into the tall woods.

    "I've got to find myself some food too," the woman explained to Mouser.
    "What you eat?" Mouser asked, figuring she must hunt something much larger than mice and voles.
    "Rabbits, berries, and seeds, but really, whatever I can find," she answered.

Mouser found the rabbit part impressive; they were so fast! How did she do it? But Mouser didn't ask her. After all, he'd wouldn't share his hunting prowess with anyone else.

    "So, I've got to look for berry bushes and Rabbit trails," the woman explained.
    "Easy," exclaimed Mouser, "Follow."

Using his superior sense of smell, Mouser led the woman to a couple of trails nearby. At each one she set up two sticks and some wire between them. She'd then make this loop with another bit of wire from her bag and hang it down the middle.

    "This is a snare," the woman informed Mouser at the first one. "It traps the rabbits when they run into it and kills them."
    "Ha!" Mouser laughed, "Clever!"
    "Thank you," the woman said. "Just be careful when you come this way, alright Mouser."
    "Yep," Mouser promised, still giggling.

They kept on their walk after that. It was the furthest Mouser had been from the house where he was born, so he made sure to mark the new territory, brushing against trees and bushes, and spraying too. Something caught the woman's attention.

    "Mouser, do you see that bright light?" she asked.
Mouser followed her gaze and caught a glimpse of something glimmering in the evening sun. They moved towards it through the trees, and as they broke out of the tree line they found themselves in front of an overgrown glass house.

    "It's a greenhouse," the woman marvelled, staring in awe at the shining, forgotten place.
    "I'm going to have two houses!" Mouser exclaimed, prancing towards the building as he called back, "Come on!"

They made their way inside the building. There was much "inside" to be had. Part of the roof had collapsed with the fall of a tree, and the floor was covered in glass.

    "Let me carry you here," the woman suggested to Mouser, who obliged.

Once they'd gone further in the broken room, the light cast through the glass ceiling came with a gentle warmth. It was dappled by vines that grew in and around the whole building but it didn't fail to be bright all the same. Mouser couldn't wait to mark the warm house as his own.

They passed through the strange door made of heavy plastics ribbons that were covered in beads of water. In this humid room there were lines of raised garden beds overflowing with huge leafy things. Mouser dove into his own personal jungle to explore with glee. The renegade squashes, pumpkins, cucumbers, lettuce, and carrots were bringing tears to the woman's eyes. How had no one raided this place? How had it survived? An old memory came to mind as she stared; it was a memory of a large glass container full of earth and small plants. It was her mom throwing a fit after she opened it once, just for a second, explaining how the plants could die if too much moisture got out.

    "It's a terrarium." she finally thought aloud. "This place's a giant terrarium."

She harvested a bit of everything, taking just a bit. Clearly, she wasn't the first creature to do so; many of the squashes were chewed up by various rodents' teeth and most vegetables were nibbled by bugs, but there was plenty to go around. Her bag and arms full, she decided it was time to head home.

    "Mouser," she called.

Mouser, popped out of the pumpkin patch and scampered over to her.

    "Can you hop on top of the pumpkin I've got here," she asked. "I'm not sure how else to carry you out."
    "Sure, but get closer," Mouser instructed.

So, the woman bent over for Mouser to hop up, and she carried him and her load over the broke glass and out of the Greenhouse. Mouser hopped back down and they made their way back home in the light of the setting sun.
Part One: The Old Woman, the Young Cat, and the Wall in the House


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  • September 23, 2020 - 3:32pm (Now Viewing)

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