Please Come Back, Pumpkin - All is Forgiven

Submitted into Contest #187 in response to: Write about a human and a cat that come to some kind of mutual understanding.... view prompt

7 comments

Fiction Contemporary Speculative

LOST CAT

Missing: Pumpkin, the Cat

$250.00 Reward

Missing from 267 Braeburn Street on early evening of September 27th, Pumpkin, large (21 pounds) five-year-old neutered male ginger cat. Orange in color, with white striping. Left foot and forepaw white, up to the knee knuckle. Four small black dots on nose. Tail has white rings and a slightly (30 degree) angled crink approximately one-inch from tip. Developing a fat-flap.


Pumpkin has had all his vaccinations, rabies, distemper, etc. Last seen wearing his new red-leather collar with metal ID and rabies tags; he is quite friendly if approached.


Please share this notice around the neighborhood, as well as on Facebook and other social media and if you see our Pumpkin, please contact Emily Bellingham or Ken Warner at 267 Braeburn Street, or by e-mail at: embkenw@greensource.net. Reward gladly paid for his safe return. We love him and miss him very much. 😊


P.S. Pumpkin might have taken shelter under a porch, but he really likes to CLIMB. If you are out and looking, please check in the trees, too. Thanx! 😊

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From: CG&M@Legad-team.com                                    29 September

To: embkenw@greensource.net

Cc:

Subject: Reply To Your Notice Regarding Lost Cat


Cogswell, Garton and Millcroft, LLP, Lawyers and Solicitors

Delivered via: e-mail

To: Emily Bellingham and Ken Warner


Ms. Bellingham and Mr. Warner,

This is in reference to the LOST CAT posters that are pinned up on area community bulletin boards and telephone poles, as well as in Overmeyer’s Convenience Store, on the Eagle Line bus shelter and in the 7th Street Laundromat.


The posters offer a two-hundred and fifty dollar ($250.00) reward for a “five-year-old neutered male ginger cat”, considered lost.


Please be advised that my law firm and I have been retained by a client, Pumpkin Bellingham (referred to hereinafter as Client P.), to contact you regarding these posters and the information they are presenting as fact. This letter constitutes notice to you of Client P’s concerns regarding this matter.


My client first wishes to inform you that he does not consider himself “lost”. He advises that he “…had his reasons…” for vacating the premises at 267 Braeburn Street and they “…involved ‘Darling Kenny’…”.


Secondly, he wishes to enter into a discussion regarding the terms and conditions, upon which he would be willing to return to what he has stated as his “...rightful domicile…”.


To address my client’s concerns, please contact this office within seven days of the date of this letter. If we do not hear from you within that time, Client P. has stated that he will assume that you “…do not care...” and will pursue alternative living arrangements.


Thank you for your courtesy and cooperation.

Respectfully,


Brian Cogswell, B.A., LL.B., LL.M., J.D., J.S.D.

Senior Partner, Cogswell, Garton and Millcroft, LLP, Lawyers and Solicitors 

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To: CG&M@Legad-team.com                                       29 September

From: embkenw@greensource.net

Cc:

Subject: Re: Reply To Your Notice Regarding Lost Cat


You FOUND him!!! 😊😊😊 Pumpkin, you’re alive and OK!!! We’re SO happy!!!😊😊😊


Mr. Cogswell, is there a good time for us to meet you? Or if you like, if you will bring Pumpkin around to the house (267 Braeburn St.), we’ll pay you the reward there. 😊


E. 😊

Emily Bellingham


P.S. I was a little confused by your letter…..not sure what there is to discuss…??? 🤔

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To: CG&M@Legad-team.com                        30 September

From: embkenw@greensource.net

Cc: kwr67@tempserv.com

Subject: Yesterday’s Misunderstanding


Mister Cogswell,

 I am broken-hearted. 😢 I was shocked and appalled at what happened when you arrived at the house with Pumpkin. And please tell my big cuddly ginger ball of fur that I am sorry for the confusion. I had no idea that the reason that he left Braeburn Street, and then ran off again yesterday after the scuffle, was because of Kenny.


You should also tell Pumpkin that Kenny has moved out of the house until this misunderstanding can be cleared up, and will get in touch with you him on his own, to make amends.


Em 😢

Emily Bellingham

P.S. I do hope that the scratches on your face do not get infected.

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To: CG&M@Legad-team.com                            30 September

From: kwr67@tempserv.com

Cc:

Subject: Message for Pumpkin


I feel ridiculous, but, if it will make Emily happy, here goes.


OK, I’ll say it! I forgive you for running away and making our lives miserable, as well as for attacking me yesterday. It’s unfortunate that your lawyer caught the worst of it when he got between us to try and break it up. But, you need to apologize to him.


And the reason that I locked you in that cage the first time is because you persisted in using that new sofa that I bought, as a scratching post. That’s definitely not on!


Come on, we should patch this up, for everyone’s sake. What say, old fuzzy buddy? 😊


Ken W

Kenneth Warner

P.S. I did leave the cat door unlocked all night when I realized that you had run off, even though the house might have been invaded and taken over by any old alley-cat, raccoon or skunk. That’s how much I care!

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From: CG&M@Legad-team.com                              01 October

To: kwr67@tempserv.com

Cc: embkenw@greensource.net

Subject: Re: Message for Pumpkin


Cogswell, Garton and Millcroft, LLP, Lawyers and Solicitors

Delivered via: e-mail


To: Kenneth Warner


Mr. Warner,

This is in response to your 01 October e-mail message to my client, Pumpkin Bellingham (further ref. Client P). Please note that I have cc’d Ms. Emily Bellingham at Client P.’s request. He wishes to remind you both, that he was “…there with her first, before you came and horned in!”


He has also advised me that before he will even consider moving back into what he has twice-stated is his “...rightful domicile…”at 267 Braeburn St. “…there are issues that must be addressed!” In the interests of presenting his case clearly (the language barrier being a serious challenge here), his principal concerns are listed (underlined) below, and they are expressed in detail in his own words.


Errors, exaggeration and monstrous slurs on the LOST CAT poster

“…you wrote that first paragraph, didn’t you, Kenny? …typical!! First of all, get your facts straight! It’s only 20 pounds, not 21, and I won’t be five for two more months.”


“…the neutered business happened before you were around, but why advertise it to the whole neighborhood?”


“…orange in color is an understatement and an insult. It’s really a gold-y sort of tangerine, with creamy stripes.”


“…and it’s FIVE small black dots on my nose….hello!!!


“…we all know why there’s a now a crink in the end of my tail….remember slamming the bathroom door…?...own up, Kenny!!”


“…a fat-flap…?...puleease! It happens to be called a primordial pouch…first of all it’s just developing and barely noticeable, so why mention it? But if you must promulgate the intimate details of my anatomy out there for all the world to see…..get it straight!!!


“…and sorry, Emily, but this is for you. I would never voluntarily go under a porch…all kinds of nasty creatures hang out there….and I don’t actually like to climb…it’s tiring, really, and then you have to get down again, but the few times that you’ve seen me up that tree is because I was chased by the Kellartons’ dog. So, if you want me to come back, please ask them to keep that mutt chained up. Thanks. P. 😻 ”


General grievances

“…let’s talk about you taking over My Chair, Kenny!! The one with the comfortable quilted throw, for watching TV. I want it back!!”


“…ditto about the bed! I was there long before you were in the picture, Mister usurper!!”


“…and then there’s the cage business. How would YOU liked to be locked in a cell every night, and not be able to get out to prowl around, exercise your vocal chords and go get a nibble or a drink of water, at four in the morning?”


“…since, in order to further ingratiate yourself with Emily, you volunteered (remember?) to be my personal chef and scullery minion, would it hurt to wash my food bowl out every once in awhile?”


“…the litterbox…see above point…need I say more?!!!”


“…on the other side of the personal care spectrum, I can’t remember how many times I found my water bowl as dry as the Gobi Desert…what about that, Mister attention to detail?!!!”


“…and what’s with the vinyl, Mister-trying-to-be-retro-cool?! Most people stream their music these days. The thing with the record-turntable was an accident. I’m a cat. I saw it moving and just reacted. So sue me!”


“…and as for that incident with the Christmas tree…it never would have fallen over if you’d bought a heavier stand!”


Please be advised that my law firm and I are steadfast in continuing to act for Client P. in this matter. General statute: Title 13 § 357-06 requires you to make a good faith effort to effectuate a prompt, fair, and equitable settlement of this case. Failure to do so will inevitably cause continuing emotional hardship to our client. Please, therefore, give full and fair consideration to Client P.’s concerns, and let us hear from you shortly.


I will reiterate the position stated in my previous correspondence of 29 September. To address my client’s concerns, please contact this office within seven days of the date of this letter. If we do not hear from you within that time, Client P. has stated emphatically that he will assume that you “…are continuing to ignore his feelings...” and will pursue alternative, “…permanent…”  living arrangements.


Thank you for your courtesy and cooperation.


Respectfully,


Brian Cogswell, B.A., LL.B., LL.M., J.D., J.S.D.

Senior Partner, Cogswell, Garton and Millcroft, LLP, Lawyers and Solicitors


On a personal note, Mr. Warner, I wish to also state that I take no umbrage and bear you no rancor regarding the unfortunate incident with Client P. that took place when I brought him to 267 Braeburn Street, on 29 September. I realize that in these tense and potentially volatile domestic situations that tempers often run high on both sides. I trust that you did not require medical attention for the multiple lacerations that you sustained during the regrettable physical encounter with Client P. For my end, I was merely acting in good faith for my client, as a neutral third-party. Self-administered Iodine, bandages and sterile tape worked fine on mine, post the incident.

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To: CG&M@Legad-team.com                                          01 October

From: embkenw@greensource.net

Cc:

Subject:  Pumpkin, Please Come Back!


I had no idea what you were going through, my big huggable furball. And I am so sorry that you are feeling neglected and left out. Having your tail caught when Kenny slammed the bathroom door, was an accident, but I am sorry that happened too. You are right that Kenny and I did work on the Lost Cat notice together, because we were both worried about you, and wanted to get the details just right. Of course there are five black dots on your cute little nose, it’s just that the one is so small that Kenny probably didn’t notice it. 


And you are such a big handsome boy! I am sorry that you were offended about the mistake with your weight – 20 or 21 pounds, what’s the difference? – it’s just more of you to hug. 😀 Also, there’s no need to be sensitive about a primordial pouch, my dear Pumpkin. Frankly, I didn’t even realize that you were getting one, but if it will make you feel better most of us put on a few extra ounces as we get older. It’s just Mother Nature doing her job. 


Regarding the chair and your special spot to cuddle on the bed, of course they were always rightfully yours in the first place, and you can have them back!


In the future, I plan on taking back some of the duties for preparing your meals and attending to your personal grooming schedule. It’s only fair, and I’ll feel that much closer to you when I am doing it. 😀


Think no more about that awful cage. It will be taken away immediately, and locked up in the basement storage room!


Of course the damage to Kenny’s record-turntable, and knocking over the Christmas tree were accidents, don’t give them a second thought!


Oh, and you won’t have to worry about the dog anymore because Mrs. Kellarton told me today when I went to see her, that they are moving to Cincinnati. I am really, really, really sorry about all this, and I know how you must feel, Pumpkin.


Please come back now, sweetums.😀 I will talk to Kenny!


Your Em 😀😍

Emily Bellingham

P.S. I bought extra cans of chunky tuna at Food Lion today, just for you. 😍😘

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To: CG&M@Legad-team.com         01 October                   

From: kwr67@tempserv.com

Cc:

Subject: Re: Re: Message for Pumpkin


OK, I’ll admit that I may have seemed a bit harsh and inflexible, at times. And yeah, about the cage. First there was the business with the new sofa. Then there was the prowling and caterwauling in the middle of the night. Finally, the thing with waking up in the morning every couple of days to find a cat sleeping on my face, was too much.


The business about his wanting a clean food bowl makes good sense. So why not wash it? Sure. Same goes for a full water dish. Gotta stay hydrated to be healthy. And I’ll bump up raking out the litterbox, to twice a week. OK?


Catching the cat’s tail in the bathroom door was an accident. I swear I didn’t see him following me in there to use the john. 


The turntable can be repaired and it’s no big deal regarding the Christmas tree. But what still sticks in my craw is that he deliberately urinated on the cover-sleeve of my original, vintage, David Bowie album. Do you know how difficult and expensive that old vinyl is to come by? Although, thinking about it now, that did happen a half-hour after he caught his tail in the bathroom door, so I’ll let it pass.


Let’s just say we’re all even regarding the tussle at the house, two days ago. The cat definitely started it, and my scratches are healing OK, so there are no medical expenses to worry about.


And I agree to pay the $250.00 reward, and cover the legal bill.


So I apologize, and Emily wants you to come back.


Ken W

Kenneth Warner

*                                         *                                       *


To: CG&M@Legad-team.com                                    01 October

From: kwr67@tempserv.com

Cc: embkenw@greensource.net;

Subject: I Apologize


OK you win, cat. I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I’m sorry. I’ve been an insensitive ass. Sorry, sorry, sorry. If you come back, I’ll try and do better. -😊


Is that OK, Em?


Ken W

Kenneth Warner

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To:  kwr67@tempserv.com                                   02 October

From: pkn-roamer@catnet.org

Cc: embkenw@greensource.net; CG&M@Legad-team.com


Subject: Message for Kenny


Apology accepted. I’ll think about it, but I have to wash first. Leave the cat door unlocked, and keep your distance.

PB.🐈

Client P.

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March 02, 2023 21:38

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7 comments

Will Willoughby
12:59 Mar 04, 2023

I really love the form here! Feels both authentic and giggle-inducing. Just a really engaging piece all around. Well done!

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Richard E. Gower
21:43 Mar 04, 2023

I very much appreciate your taking the time to read the piece and for your positive comments. They mean everything....

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Marty B
03:21 Mar 04, 2023

Is it bad that my favorite part was when the lawyer got scratched up? Pumpkin does have a point, he was there first and that Kenny dude seems like he is not pulling his weight. good story!

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Richard E. Gower
21:41 Mar 04, 2023

Thanks so much for the positive encouragement. It means a great deal. Re the lawyer: Some might say that you may be channeling some aggression, but I'm on your side.-:)

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Wendy Kaminski
02:32 Mar 03, 2023

omg if they COULD, I think a cat totally would do this! I bet they'd make great lawyers, no compromises! haha :) This was so adorable, Richard, and ever-increasingly hilarious in the "love triangle" going on in text, rofl. "own up, Kenny!!” hahaha So many great chuckles in this - loved it, Richard!! :)

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Richard E. Gower
10:44 Mar 03, 2023

You mean that cats can't anthropomorphize humans, Wendy? 😀😉 Or be vain, jealous, petty and vindictive, just like some humans? 😊 Awwww, you've shattered all my preconceived biases....back to the old keyboard for me. 😀 Many thanks for the read, as well as your appreciation. To get hand-claps from peers that you respect for their own prodigious talent, means everything....

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Wendy Kaminski
14:52 Mar 03, 2023

Well thank you, Richard! You are extremely talented, as well, so happy to have you on Follow! :)

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