Beastly cold

I have a terrible cold. My largest ambition is going to the grocery store to get DayQuil (I’m not completely out of those little orange capsules of DOOM, thank God), milk, and coffee. (Because I used the last of the coffee this morning OMGBBQLLAMA CRISIS AVERTED…) The common cold is actually rather an interesting little thing, when you consider how long it’s been with us, how successful it is, and how ubiquitous too. (This could, of course, be only the fever talking.)

So today is for pottering about and letting the next bit of the story cook. The book broke free last night–that’s the point in a work where I can feel it taking its own shape, where the setup has been done and now it’s just a matter of seeing where the dominoes fall. It’s much more comfortable than the first long slog after the freshness of the idea has worn off and the last long slog where it becomes the latest iteration of the Book That Will Not Die Stab It Quick.

Of squirrels I have only one more thing to report: Squirrel!Neo is the unchallenged master of our yard. Yesterday I was reduced to hysterical laughter as the youngest and silliest of our cats–the one so long and lean and big-eyed we call him the Lemur Cat–threw himself at my writing window to get at Squirrel!Neo. (There is still a little noseprint there.) I will swear to my dying day that Squirrel!Neo, calmly hopping about in the yard with his tail flicking unnecessarily but very aesthetically every few bounds, shot Lemur Cat the finger. He didn’t even flinch when Lemur Cat hit the window, either. He just flipped him off, as if to say “Bitch, I know kung fu.”

The funny thing is that Lemur Cat staggered back from the window and across the living room, where he somewhat drunkenly but very viciously attacked the mild-mannered, inoffensive little scratching post I spray with catnip oil every now and again. (Head trauma in felines is fun to watch.)

When he had taught that sorry inanimate object its place, he tore around the room twice, leaping from THE CHAIR to the couch and knocking various things over. Then he calmly sauntered back to my writing window (the window that even now bears a noseprint), hopped up, and settled down on his haunches, staring unblinking at Squirrel!Neo, who was digging around in the lavender under my window like he owned the place and was going to take a nosegay back to the Squirrel!Oracle.

I laughed so hard I coughed and choked. Which produced (or moved around) an incredible amount of phlegm. So I lunged for the tissues, desperate to avoid spraying my laptop with contagion, and almost fell out of my chair. Almost. Lemur Cat shot me a filthy look, but I did not fall over. And I was actually rather pleased about that, even though that would have made the story much, much funnier. I wasn’t sure whether or not to count that as a victory over Squirrel!Neo.

In the end, I think I’d best call it a tie between me and that fuzzy little bastard. But it’s Squirrel!Neo 3, cats 0; or cats .5 if I let them claim me not falling and cracking my fool head open.

I can’t decide if that makes me the referee or the scorekeeper. Further bulletins as events warrant…

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