WRITERS WRITE... WRITING PARTNERS FEUD ~ SHARING A SHORT STORY
FINCHES FEAR CATS
Angelica Hart and Zi
From: The Sin-Sin Cinderella Series of Feghoots and Groaners
In a kitchen...in a small home...in a homey community...in a quaint village...in a hidden valley...far, far away from Hamlet there was a conversation.
“Why don’t we live in the city?” asked Ronny.
“That shocks me,” he remarked, as he gazed out the kitchen window into the wide expanse of a lush backyard, tire swing, birdbath ready for birds, detached garage, a trellis with vines, and a beehive bustling with bees.
“People fear people. Sadly, cities seem to breed a fear that one cannot trust others. I also know that people are people, built to have the same instincts. It is the environment that may cause this fear. I don’t fear the people but the fear. It is treacherous and jades the beauty of human spirit.”
His mother stirred the soup, aromatic, chicken noodle soup. The scent popped into the air, inducing a stalking hunger to anyone near.
“Still I’ve never known you to be afraid of anything.”
“Let me relate a story to illustrate my point.” She put her ladle into the pocket of her apron. Ronny snickered thinking she reminded him of the alien coming out of Ripley’s chest.
Ronny sat on the edge of the table and bit into a red apple he grabbed to quell his appetite. Some juice from the fruit dripped out the side of his mouth, it was wiped away onto his shirtsleeve.
Mrs. Matters looked at him with that use a napkin, please look then she began, “A couple swooshed-out the side door their cat, covered the finches’ cage they still chirping, quickly showered, called the restaurant, made reservations, dressed, and called for a carriage. They were going downtown to enjoy a nice dinner, something they did most Saturday nights. They heard the carriage arrive, left one light burning to present the appearances of someone being home, and opened the door at which the cat ran back into the house. The husband told his wife to let the driver know that he’d be right out and went to find the cat. They never let the cat stay in alone with the birds. She would torment them.”
“Yeah, cats like birds but they were in the cage,” interjected Ronny.
“Torment is torment. She returned to the stove, stirred the broth, tapped the spoon on the pot, and then put it aside as she shoved biscuits into the oven. “Where was I? Torment is still torment. They respected their birds’ well-being as we all should do for living things. It is a cosmic harmony thing.”
Ronny smiled knowing that subject was better left unvisited.
The oven door closed and she shook her head as if tossing away a thought. “Let me finish my story. The wife slipped into the back seat of the carriage and immediately told the driver that her husband would be right out. Feeling that she did not want to let him know that the house would be empty she stated that her husband was helping her mother before they left.”
“Do you catch the fear thing? The lights? The worry about the home being vacant?”
“The husband finally arrived and scooted along beside his wife. He said, “Sorry. Thanks for waiting. I finally was able to corner her upstairs after she had run from me and hid under the bed.” The driver’s face flashed astonishment. The husband continued, “I used the dust mop to push her out, she fought but was able to catch her in the corner. Grabbing her by the scruff of the neck, though she screeching, scratching, and fighting, I was able to drag her to the back door and throw her out into the backyard. She’ll be fine until we get home and let her back in the house.”
Ronny smiled at the dilemma that the story painted.
His mother returned to stirring soup. Steam painted curly wisps, spreading appetizing enticement, though she still continued with her story. “At that moment the driver, who was captured by every word the man was saying had to swerve quickly to avoid a cart.”
“Is this a true story?” Ronny tilted his head in that disbelieving manner.
“It is a story to illustrate a point. True or not really does not matter. My point is that people trust so few people these days. What a sad fear to hold.”
“Yeah, it is sad,” Ronnie agreed, his apple nearly gone, juice splatters creating a new pattern on his shirt, his feet on the floor as he pondered what it would be like to be that worrisome all the time.
“I wonder if that specific fear results in the perpetuation of the concept that people are unworthy of trust. I believe that we create what we fear. Believe that if people are perceived not to be trustworthy then in your mind they are not, your actions dealing with them invariably send messages that they are thought to be not and ultimately I believe that the interactive dynamic becomes that of mistrust.”
“So what does that mean?”
“Treat people the way you expect them to be. Treat a friend as if they are important and they feel so.”
“So city people are different?”
“Aye and nay. It is the fear that changes some.”
“The country mentality that we reap what we sow is more simplistic. Not that the people are better. Just that I believe they have a better process. Country folk depend upon each other. Expect a certain code of behavior. Believe and trust in that. And I see that the result is that people trust their neighbor and have good reasons to do so. Ask for respect and you shall get it. Give respect and others shall feel its power in their lives. Abstain from all that and uncertainty fertilizes fear.”
“Was that a true story about the cat?”
His mom offered a small non-committal smile. “Finish your apple and take the trash out, please. As soon as you are done, take a quart of this soup to Ben Campbell, he is ill. See if he needs anything. We’ll eat when you get back.”
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