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After forever, p.5
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       After Forever, p.5

           Krystal George
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Puss and the Bone of Riches

  By S. Cu’Anam Policar

  ©by S. Cu’Anam Policar

  “Hey Puss!” The voice is almost childlike with a pseudo mobster twang as my name passes through his lips.

  My orange ears pique as I turn the upper half of my body to look at the owner of the voice, who I know from experience, is none other than Valdez, my boss.

  I’m definitely unique in this town of hounds. Standing five foot even, I’m not what one would call tall. I keep myself in tip top shape, I have to in my line of work. It shows too as my sleek orange furred form twists almost completely around. I lift a white furred paw and brush the orange fur on my face as my amber depths fall on Valdez.

  “What?” I practically hiss to the large Doberman who’s dressed in a charcoal colored pinstriped suit.

  Valdez adjusts his wide brimmed hat, which matches his suit, and brings it lower on his head almost covering his left eye. The butt of a cigar teeters dangerously as his sharp featured muzzle opens. “I have a job for you Puss.”

  My amber depths roll dramatically as I command my legs to twist and realign with my upper body. “Look Snoopy I told you I’m out of the business. I have better things to do than play fetch for a bunch of flea ridden mongrels... Present company included.”

  Valdez growls low in his throat as he first plucks the cigar butt from his maw then flicks it in my direction. Both of our gazes watch the arch of the butt’s ascent before it begins its descent to land a few inches from my black boots. I lift a black leather clad leg and stomp on the butt as I smirk to my former boss.

  “You walk a fine line feline. If it wasn’t for me you’d have been mauled the day your sorry excuse for fur arrived here. This place ain’t called Dog Walk City for nothing you know.” Valdez reminds me as he seems to every time I try to deny him a job.

  I drum the claws of my right hand on my left arm, my tail swishing in agitation. “It won’t work this time. I told you last time Valdez, I’m done. I have enough respect earned in this town to stay or go, either way I won’t be your lap dog anymore. Get that new recruit of yours, what’s his name? Fido? To do it for you.”

  Valdez actually chuckles at this comment. “His name is Filipe. And he can’t do it; you know how nervous Chihuahuas are. He’d crap himself before he got near the mark.”

  “I don’t care Valdez. I’m done.” I spit as I turn back around and begin to walk away. My hips sashay causing the holstered belt on my waist to jingle. I never leave home without my pieces. I’d be dog food out here if I did. Respect or not, without my guns, I’m nothing but a snack to the mutts in this city.

  “Don’t be so hasty to leave Puss. I don’t think you’d want this little one to grow up like you did.” Valdez says with a laugh.

  That stops me dead in my tracks. I turn around quickly. My paws itching to grab the guns from their holsters as I see Valdez dangle a very small kitten in the air. He swings it around for emphasis and I cringe hoping he doesn’t drop it.

  A sigh leaves me causing my whiskers to twitch. “What do you want done?”

  “I knew you’d see things my way Puss... That’s why you’ve lasted this long out here. You’re smart.” Valdez praises.

  “Just get on with it Valdez. The faster I get it done, the faster I can leave.” I remind him.

  “The museum the next town over has a new exhibit. It’s some rare bone that’s supposed to grant whoever possesses it riches beyond imagination.” Valdez explains.

  “Why would I help you get a bone? Get one of your lackeys to do it.” I counter.

  Valdez shakes his head. “None of them are agile enough. None of them can maneuver with the grace of one of your particular race.”

  “If I refuse?” I question arching a brow.

  “If you refuse, or fail in your mission, then the fur ball here gets a one way trip through the back door of the pound… If you get my drift.” Valdez states.

  Paws to my hips, my midriff clad chest heaves as I exhale. I cock my head to the right. “Why would you think I care what happens to some kid that wandered where it shouldn’t have?”

  “I’m not stupid Puss. Beneath all that hard tough girl exterior, you’re still the gentle kitten I swiped all those years ago.” Valdez says as if he could possibly know anything that goes on in my head.

  However, this time, he’s pretty much on the mark… Damn…

  “Fine. I’ll get your stupid bone and then I’m done.” I announce as I walk off toward my small house to plan how I’ll do this.

  It takes me three days to figure out exactly how I want to do this. Valdez sends Filipe to me two days prior with a blueprint for the museum, he wasn’t kidding. Filipe stands half my height and was shaking so hard, I think for sure he is having a seizure and is going to just fall out dead on my carpet. His large brown eyes are watery, and his massive ears keep flattening to his head every time he speaks.

  “Meester Valdez say you need print of de place. I bring for joo.” Filipe says in what can only be defined as Spanglish.

  I arch a brow and nod. Filipe produces a large rolled up blueprint and hands it to me with a nervous hand.

  I unroll it and spend the rest of the day pouring over it looking for the best way in and out. This is definitely going to be a tough one.

  Now that it’s the day of the heist, I’m definitely having some reservations about doing this. I mean what the hell? Why should I care about a fur ball Valdez got from god only knows where? But I do care. And one of these days caring is going to be the end of me.

  With a sigh, I clad myself in black, from the rubber soled slippers, which keep my steps silent yet still maintain traction, to my one piece leather “uniform” that hugs my body like a second skin, it even has a space for my tail that still allows it to swish around normally. The last thing I put on it the mask that covers my eyes and nose. The only orange pieces left are my ears and some of my face. My paws I clad in rubber grip gloves, these are not your everyday gloves. I flex my toes unsheathing my claws, then open and flex the ole paws a couple of times getting used to the feel. Slipping my holstered belt on, I’m ready to go. Almost.

  As I’m leaving I remember I’ll need to cut glass. Rushing back into my house, I open the top drawer of my nightstand and trip the lock on the hidden compartment. The top of the drawer drops down revealing several different types of claw extensions. I grab a diamond tipped one and slip it into my belt with the other everyday use claw extensions I carry. Now I’m ready to go.

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