Dirty Laundry

Submitted into Contest #159 in response to: Start your story with a character accepting a bribe.... view prompt


Crime Funny

It might as well be a deal with the devil himself. The fallout was going to be torture for sure. Fred was going to hang this over my head for God knows how long but what choice did I have?

“What’s it going to take for you to bury the evidence?” I say, knowing whatever it is, won’t be enough.

“More than this, that’s for sure.”

“It’s all I have right now. I can get more later.” He knows how hard it was to get this much, the jerk.

“You got that right.”

“So, we have a deal then?” Please, let us have a deal. I can’t believe I’m thinking this right now. My, how the tables have turned.

“Yeah…we have a deal.”

“Just to be clear, I give you all you see here, plus more later, plus the other stuff we agreed upon, and you keep your mouth shut about what you think you saw.” I didn’t want him coming back later trying for more.

“Not what I think, what I know I saw.”

Time to get tough. “Whatever. If you don’t—” Maybe this deal wasn’t worth it. Maybe I outta just take my lumps like other burglars when they get caught.

“You seem awfully cocky for someone who can’t even step outside.”

“Fred, look, I’m not… bribing you…”

“Oh really? What would you call it?”

“I’m greasing the wheels of your brain to take a long trip down the “it never happened” highway.” I wish I could be greasing the wheels taking him to a nice place out in the country. 

“I got you, but I’m gonna hold you to our agreement. You know that, right?”

“Yeah, I know. Believe me, I know.”

“Imma be king of the castle around here—”

“Yeah, yeah…” Great. Here it comes…

“The big cheese, the head honcho—”

“Don’t get ahead of yourself…” He’s so annoying.

“Lord of the flies—”

What?! “Now, hold on—”

“Captain of the ship—"

“Oh jeez…” How many more of these do I have to be subject to?

“Commander in chief!”

“I knew this was going to be a bad idea.” Maybe it isn’t too late to get out of this.

“Big Kahuna! The grand pooh-ba!”

He’s going to make me say it. He’s not going to shut up until I say it. “Okay! Enough! You are the Lord high of everything else! You happy now?!”

“Yes…quite happy…”

He’s so smug sitting there with that big grin on his face. Just once I’d like for him to get caught. Then, maybe he’d see…nah, he’s too dense. “I’m going to regret this… What was that?” I thought I heard a door or something. Damn it, I knew we were in here too long.


“I dunno, yet.” I say as I lean my body against the door with my ear near the opening. I can hear muffled footsteps down the hall. Shit. We’re busted. We’ll never be able to slip out of here in time. “Shh! Mom’s coming!” All that negotiating for nothing. I can hear her muffled voice calling for us. There’s nowhere to hide in here. God, I did not want to go down like this. I promise to stop stealing if you get me out of this. Please God!

“What about my bribe?!”

Typical Fred. So busy worrying about himself and his payoff. Can’t he see the bigger picture here?! We’re about to go down, who cares about the loot? “Eat it, sit on it, I don’t care! She’s right outside the door!” His yapping about being king of the world is probably what tipped Mom off to where we were. I’ll make him pay for that later. Then, I’ll be the head honcho - the big dufus.

“Fred! Mimi! Now, where are those two?”

“Act natural.” What am I saying? Nothing Fred does is natural.


“SHHH!” I say as I scurry away from the door and hop onto the counter to make myself look casual just as the door opens.

“Fred! Mimi! Here you are!” Mom says with relief and wonderment as if we all had been playing a game of hide and seek. “How did you get in here? Did you lock yourselves in the laundry room again? I’m going to have to get that door looked at.” Kind of a dumb question, I thought, considering she’s the one who changed the door knobs to handles to make it easier for her to open it when her hands are full. “Ah, come here my sweet Mimi…my sweet girl…so soft…” The pets…yes…gimmee the pets…they might be my last ones for a while.  

“Purrrr…” Act natural…aw yeah, behind the ears…yesss… “Meeeooow (Stay cool, Fred.)”

“Oh, you like that, do you Mimi? A little scratchy scratchy behind the ears. Okay, come on you two.” Oh crap. Once he moves, the jig is up. I gotta do something but she’s still holding me.

“Come on Fred, let’s go.” Mom says as she turns toward the door.

“Go?!” Fred yapped excitedly.

Oh crap. That dumb dog thinks she means go like “go in the car” but she just means out of the room. “Meeoow (Stay! The loot!)”

“Come on, Fred.”

“Meow (Stay!)”

“Yip! Woof! Woof! (What do I do?)”

“Come on! Come. On.” Mom says slapping her leg thinking it’ll make Fred listen to her and follow her out the door.  “Ugh, come on buddy, let’s go, Fred…” Mom says sweetly as if  he can’t tell she was just yelling at him two seconds ago and now she thinks he’s the greatest. He might be dumb but he’s not THAT dumb. I gotta hand it to him. He’s staying strong sitting there covering his loot. His stubbornness has finally come in handy.

“You CAN’T stay in here…come on Fred, let’s go. Outside!”

Maybe if I wriggle in her arms and distract her, I can buy him some time. “Meow. MEOOARRGH! (Now’s your chance! Do something!)”

“Mimi, what are you doing? Stop climbing up my shoulder. Ack! What are you doing?! What the heck has gotten into you two?!” I can’t keep up these gymnastics for long and finally Mom lets me go. I jump from her and land back on the counter while Fred just sits there. “Meorrwww (You idiot!)”

“Why are you two being so difficult? Out of the laundry room. Now!” Mom sounds serious. We may have pushed this too far. She has her arm down at her side pointed at the floor. This is the line in the sand. If we don’t listen now, the punishment…I don’t want to even think about the punishment…

Oh no! Sheila’s got Fred’s collar. “Meooorrww (Fred!)”

“Why are you being so stubborn? Come…on…” I decide to leap in between Fred and Mom just as she gets in one great pull on his collar. We end up in a pile in the middle of the laundry room all tangled up with Fred and I trying one last ditch effort to escape before Mom is able to realize what was going on.

Just as we get to the door, we turn around to accept our fate, but she’s not looking at us. She’s looking at the spot where Fred had been sitting. And there it is…Fred’s loot has been exposed…we’ve been exposed.

“Stop you two! What is this? How?!” We stood frozen in the doorway. Mom was stumped. This was my biggest heist yet and I could feel my world was crashing down with every passing second.  

“Fred, how did you get all of these dog treats?”  

August 19, 2022 20:54

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VJ Hamilton
00:28 Aug 20, 2022

LoL, the fun you had with this piece shines through. I liked how the apparent point of view switched twice. (At first I thought, "comic human burglars" then I thought "kids" and then finally I realized "pets".)


Jeannette Miller
14:31 Aug 21, 2022

Haha, thanks for reading it! I'm glad you liked it :)


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Victor K
09:07 Sep 01, 2022

This is incredible! I was pleasantly surprised to find out that Mimi and Fred are pets. The suspense is good. I could read this type of writing all day long.


Jeannette Miller
15:47 Sep 07, 2022

Aww, thank you so much!!!


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Avery Crescent
19:16 Aug 26, 2022

Very engaging story. I thought they were kids at first until it was revealed that they were pets.


Jeannette Miller
14:17 Aug 28, 2022

Thanks! That was the plan :)


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A. Vaughn
16:23 Aug 22, 2022

This is pure joy to read and very cleverly laid out and written! The payoff of the reveal is well earned. No doubt fur babies everywhere are wheeling and dealing like this right under their humans' noses.


Jeannette Miller
00:03 Aug 23, 2022

So glad you liked it! I know my cats and dog are capable, lol. Thank you so much for your kind words :)


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Michele Duess
21:06 Aug 21, 2022

Cool turn. I thought it was human criminals at first. Cute story!


Jeannette Miller
22:34 Aug 21, 2022

Thanks for reading! Glad you liked it :)


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Tommy Goround
04:22 Aug 20, 2022

Love the intro


Jeannette Miller
14:32 Aug 21, 2022



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Lily Finch
21:40 Aug 19, 2022

Jeannette - pretty cute story. I figured it must have been dog treats once the characters were revealed. Great read! Thanks, LF6


Jeannette Miller
14:30 Aug 21, 2022

Glad you liked it! Thanks for reading :)


Lily Finch
14:44 Aug 21, 2022

Yes. I like when people write about pets as characters. :). LF6


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