Tuesday, November 4, 2014

A kitty's place in "Temporarily Employed" by Vicki Batman

Cats and Dogs Fight it out for our Love

When I was a little girl, a mama cat had babies between our stockade fence and the chain link fence belonging to the next door neighbors. It was so much fun to see these little creatures develop into their four-legged walking self. And I wanted one. I even picked out the gray, super furry guy. Eventually, Mom let us keep him and she named him Smokey.

As newly marrieds, Handsome came down with a serious illness and staying home from work spelt one thing: BORED. My mom volunteered to take him to the doctor for a check-up and I agreed to pick him up at her house. But I didn’t tell what I’d planned: to go to the nearby shelter and adopt a kitty. Handsome needed someone to play with. So I did and brought home another gray furry babe, Snuffer. He grew to be a big cat! He loved going outdoors and would sit on the neighbor’s driveway, watching for our maroon Cherokee to turn into our drive. Then he would fly home.

But Snuffer passed when my boys were 4 and 7. While visiting Handsome’s parents, a mama brought her two little ‘uns to his dad’s house to eat. Instantly, my little guys wanted to keep them. I had a hard time as Snuffer hadn’t been gone that long, but agreed. We brought home a brown and black girl, Scooter, and a smooth gray tabby, Romper. Romper lived for 17 years. Scooter is now 21.

Four years ago, we adopted two malti-poos, Champ (white) and Jones (gray).

When my hero, Allan from Temporarily Employed, is working one day, he spies a kitty by his 4-Runner and rescues him. Here’s a bit:

Everyone knew this story. I wished my complex allowed furry pets. Cats were much better than fish at following. They could talk and have a sense of need, knowing precisely when to graze their body against a human’s or sit in the middle of an unfolded newspaper for attention. They didn’t have to be walked like a dog. They fed, bathed, and pottied all by themselves.
I said, "I lost my cat, Snuffer, when I was little. I missed him for a long time. He was very affectionate and big. He bumped heads.” 
“Mine, too, a sheepdog. Baxter.”
I stared, my jaw dropped open. For sure, I had misheard and felt stupid asking, but did so. “You named your dog...Bastard?”
A. Wellborn howled with laughter. He just about dropped down dead on the floor, laughing so hard.
Confusion swamped me. Undoubtedly, Mom had hit the nail on the head when she’d said loud rock and roll would ruin my hearing. Who would name a dog Bastard, especially one for kids?
Finally, his hysterics ended. “Not Bastard, Baxter. B-A-X-T-E-R.”
“I knew I misunderstood.” Trying to shake the humiliation enveloping me, I moved on. “I don’t remember your dog.”
“We had him when we lived in California before we moved to Sommerville. A long time ago.” He sobered and silence settled while we thought about our lost friends as the cat walked across our laps and then back again.
“So you’re keeping him. Did you get a cat box and kitty litter? Food? Toys? A brush?”
“Yes, yes, yes, everything you mentioned but the brush. Cats like to be brushed?” 
“Big time. They walk everywhere and rollover so you can reach their tummy. It reduces excess hair and fleas. And since his fur is long and silky, hairballs.”
“Good to know. I’ll get one.”
“Isn’t he lucky?” Lucky. Hmmm. Lucky just might be the perfect name. Softly, I sounded it out loud, “Lucky.”
His gaze drilled into mine. “Lucky?”
“Yes, Lucky.” 
“Let me get this right. You want to get, uh, lucky?”
How embarrassing! How humiliating! How stupid! The horror of the double entendre. I fisted my hands to keep from burying my face. Will these kinds of situations never end? A. Wellborn thought I’d propositioned him. He'd completely missed my train of thought. I'd hit a big two-in-a-row jackpot of mortifying misunderstandings, winning the mother lode in Vegas.
If only I could disappear.
“Not that kind of lucky,” I said in a squeaky voice. “I’m thinking the cat’s name could be Lucky, as in isn’t he lucky you found him?”
He laughed again. “Are you sure? I can arrange the other if you want.”

I hope you are howling with laughter! What kind of pet do you have?

Here's what the book is about:

New Job. New Love. And Murder.

Hattie Cook's dream job is down the toilet and her new SUV violated. Desperate for cash to cover the basic necessities of rent and food, she takes a temporary job at Buy Rite Insurance Company where she uncovers an embezzling scam tied to the death of a former employee--the very one she replaced. The last thing she wants is to clash with By-the-Book Detective Wellborn, no matter how much he makes her heart pound.

Detective Allan Charles Wellborn has secretly adored Hattie all his life. When the police determine there's more to the death of a former Buy Rite employee, he steps in to lead the investigation. Overly dedicated, always perfect, he puts his job first, even if doing so ultimately hurts the one he loves.

Can the killer be found before Hattie's time is up?

Author bio:
Like some of her characters, award-winning author, Vicki Batman has worked a wide variety of
jobs including lifeguard, ride attendant at an amusement park; a hardware store, department store, book store, antique store clerk; administrative assistant in an international real estate firm; and a general “do anything gal” at a financial services firm--the list is endless, giving her plenty of crazy material for her writing.

Writing for several years, she has completed three manuscripts, written essays, and sold many short stories. She is a member of RWA and several writing groups and chapters. In 2004, she joined DARA and has served in many capacities, including 2009 President. DARA awarded her the Robin Teer Memorial Service Award in 2010. Most days begin with her hands set to the keyboard and thinking "What if??"

Links for Vicki Batman
Find Vicki at:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/VickiBatman
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/vickibatman
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4814608.Vicki_Batman  
LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=116288777&trk=hb_tab_pro_top
Google+: bit.ly/1zUggDF
Plotting Princesses: http://plottingprincesses.blogspot.com

Buy links for Temporarily Employed
Amazon paperback: http://www.amazon.com/Temporarily-Employed-Vicki-Batman/dp/1628304979/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1412359358&sr=1-2&keywords=temporarily+employed
The Wild Rose Press paperback: http://www.wildrosepublishing.com/maincatalog_v151/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=191&products_id=5896


  1. Hi, Suz and thank you so much for having me and sharing a bit from Temporarily Employed. I kinda like this scene. VBG

  2. Thanks for stopping by, Vicki :)

  3. My first poodle was the runt of the litter. This name was Little Bit. He never got over 6 pounds and I had him for 18 years. I REALLY loved that dog. Then I had another poodle six months later, Cinnamon. So named because of of his red coat. I had him for 16 years and he was a challenge for me his entire life. We constantly fought over who would the Alpha. I don't think that was ever resolved.

  4. Hi, Phyllis! Poodles are very smart dogs. So maybe that's why they can be headstrong. And they don't shed. lol thanks for posting.

  5. My pets have always been named after book characters.

    1. Hi, Angela! You are going to have to share with me those names. I very curious!

  6. My pets have had varied names. There's Tuck Everlasting the cat--he's had more than nine lives. Shadow who has turned into Squirrel. Checkers who turned into Chicken. And the list goes on and on. I have dogs and cats, all mutts, like me!

    1. LOL, Lani! I love the one my sister picked for a *future* dog - Hoover. Thank you for being with me today.

  7. We have one cat and two dogs. The cat we call the crawl space cat because he has the entire short basement. He literally rules the house and thinks he is a dog, but we love Thunder!