Here's a preview of my book that I'm writing. Let me know what you think, and please BE COMPLETELY HONEST. I'd rather know up front that it's awful, than be told later after I'd spent a lot longer on it.
This book cannot be published, because of Erin Hunter's copyright and other technical stuff that's hard to explain, but even still, please do not copy any part of it. If you want people to read it, refer them to my blog, but please don't copy any of this. It's my work. Thank you for understanding. :)
* * *
Duchess bounded out of the kitty-door and onto the low back porch of her owner’s house. The morning sunshine made her newly-cleaned blue-gray tabby pelt gleam. She blinked to adjust her blue eyes to the bright light, then hopped off the porch and into the tall, dewy grass. Her short legs were quickly soaked as she raced around her yard, stopping to investigate every leaf and stick that she came across, her curious eyes taking in everything she saw. Suddenly she stopped, ears perked and tail erect. She sniffed the air, trying to catch a whiff of the scent that had so alerted her. A faint whiff was all she needed. Slowly she crouched down, crawled towards her target, careful to keep her shiny new collar from jingling. Then... at just the right moment...POUNCED! Perfect timing! The intruding squeaky toy mouse was quickly caught between her tiny paws.
Duchess was just barely out of kitten-hood. She had been adopted when she was 8 weeks old a few months ago. She was now 6 months old, and still just as full of energy as ever. Her fur was still kit-soft, and she wasn’t very big. In fact, she was small. But size didn’t bother Duchess!
After wrestling with the squeaky toy for a few minutes, Duchess got bored. She wanted real playmates, and real prey--not just squeaky toys! No cats lived in the houses on either side of hers, and she hadn't been able to get near the fluffy white Persian who lived several houses down. She had seen him through the fence a few times, but had never talked to him. Longingly, she glanced over her shoulder at the woods beyond the metal fence. I bet there are some real mice in there, and I'm sure there are other cats... she thought. She missed the companionship that being around other cats provided. There was a sense of belonging when you had others around you to keep you company. Here, she felt completely alone. There was no one to talk to, no one to play with, and no brothers and sisters to snuggle up with when she went to bed.
Sighing, she climbed onto the porch and lay down in the warm sunshine. Wistfully, she thought of the days she had spent with her brothers and sister in her old home with her Mother....
* * *
“Did you see the way she crept through the grass, Silverpaw? With some practice, I think she could be a great hunter!” a sleek reddish-brown she-cat whispered to the cat next to her.
“I agree, Ravenstar.” Silverpaw meowed. He was an average-sized black cat with a patch of brown fur on his forehead, and a silvery-gray underbelly. “Do you think she would ever come with us?”
“I never said anything about her coming with us,” Ravenstar hissed.
“Oh, uhh, well I uh.. I just assumed...” Silverpaw stuttered.
Ravenstar smiled. “Not yet anyway.”
Silverpaw relaxed. He hated making his mentor angry, especially since she was also the leader of their clan--ThunderClan. He turned his attention back to the gray tabby sleeping on the Twoleg nest porch.
“Follow me,” Ravenstar beckoned.
Silverpaw followed her as she began walking closer to the fence that separated Duchess’s world from the world of freedom.
When they reached the fence, Ravenstar began digging. She scratched the ground near the edge of the fence. “Help me. We need to make this big enough for her to squeeze through, but small enough that she’ll have to work at it a bit," she instructed.
Silverpaw joined his mentor and began digging. The cool dirt felt good between his toes, and he longed to just go right on digging. But a nudge from Ravenstar stopped him.
“That’s enough,” she nodded.
Slowly, the two cats crept back into the forest to wait...
* * *
“Oh, I bet I can!” Duchess mewled. The smallest of the litter, Duchess was often far behind in skill for games like wrestling, but in this game--tag--she was excellent! Her small size allowed her to take shortcuts where her larger siblings could not go, and her quick thinking made up for her lack of strength.
Ginger raced around the couch, her brothers following her. But Duchess crawled under the couch. She peeked out, waiting for her sister to race by. Just before she did, Duchess sprang out from under the couch right in front of Ginger’s nose.
Ginger stopped--startled. That moment’s hesitation was all Duchess needed. “Surprise!” she squealed before promptly pouncing on her sister’s head. She nipped Ginger’s ear, and Ginger threw her off gently. Then she pounced on Duchess and the two kittens were wrestling with each other, tumbling and rolling all around the living room floor.
Finally, they stopped. Both panting and happy.
The they heard the sweet voice of their mother, Tilly. "Time for you kittens to be in bed now," she purred. "You need your rest."
All four kittens slowly made their way towards the fluffy pillow that served as a bed for the five cats. They snuggled up to each other, and the boys were quickly asleep.
“Wow, Duchess!” Ginger praised. “That was great! You really had me fooled when you came out from under the couch like that!” She gave Duchess a friendly lick on the ear.
Duchess smiled, and shrugged. “It was nothing, really." She closed her eyes, and was soon fast asleep...
* * *
She padded over to the kitty-door, and walked into her owners’ house. She trotted up to her water bowl, and wrinkled her nose. Yuck! The water smelled stale. She shrugged and went back outside. It had rained during the night, and she knew there would be a puddle she could drink from at the back of the yard near the corner of the fence.
She scampered through the grass, which was no longer wet, and stopped in front of the puddle. Slowly, she drank her fill.
Duchess lifted her dripping muzzle into the air, and sniffed. Whenever she was at the back of the yard, the most tantalizing smells greeted her. Today, the sweet scent of catmint called to her, and the earthy smell of moss beckoned her along with dozens of other smells that she couldn’t put names too. She yearned to find some way out of the yard and into the woods.
She eyed the metal fence with hatred. She could see through the fence, but the holes in the mesh were just small enough that she couldn’t get out. It was as if it was taunting her, just the way her sister used to. Only there was no way to outsmart a fence. She’d tried to climb over before, but her small legs and tiny paws weren’t strong enough yet to propel her up and over.
Back home, Mother had always warned Duchess and her siblings of the dangers of wandering out of their yard, but Mother wasn’t here to stop her this time! She walked along the back edge of the fence, searching for any sort of escape route. She had done this many times in the past weeks, but not ever so carefully before.
Then something caught her eye. At the bottom of the fence, she spotted something that hadn’t been there before--a small hole. Well, not a hole, really, but the grass and some dirt had been scratched away under a tiny part of the fence. Carefully, she sniffed it. It smelled like something she had never smelled before. The smell reminded her of her mother and siblings, but it was much more wild-smelling. She nervously flicked her tail and peered into the woods behind the fence. She could see nothing, but just to be sure, she sniffed the air. Nothing.
Cautiously, she looked behind herself, scanning the windows for any sign of a spy. After a few moments, she was satisfied that no one was watching her, so she got down on her belly, and edged her way towards the hole. She squeezed herself through it, and just as she was almost all the way on the other side, she felt a tug at her neck. She puled harder, and felt her collar tighten around her throat, cutting off her air-supply. Help me! she thought. Gasping for breathe, she finally backed up, and the pull on her collar lessened. She could breath again. Dumb collar! She thought.
Let me know what you think. :) It's been fun writing this much, so far, and I hope to continue.