All Stories, Science Fiction

Cat Of Hanley by Doug Hawley

I’ve been fairly happy since I re-animated Wendy.  She wanted to leave me to get back to her bad boys after the first time I brought her back to life.  I still believe that because she owed me her life, it was OK to conk her with my baseball bat for a second re-animation.  Her first death was in an accident of her own making.  It’s all turned out for the best, at least for me.  I had to make some sacrifices to keep the relationship going, like getting those ugly tattoos and settling for sex once a week on Wednesdays, but if you could see me, you would know that it is the best deal I could make.

If you don’t know anything about re-animation, my father Duke learned the process from a document hidden in the first draft of “Frankenstein” by Mary Shelley.  Let’s say that I borrowed a copy.  I’m David Hanley, the son of Duke Hanley.  I have been trying to get rich off the process, but rumors of possible re-animation caused our anti-science government to outlaw re-animating humans, the same as they did with cloning, so all of us Hanleys have kept the process secret.

The tattoos and the infrequently doled out sex weren’t my only problems.  I had to be good to her monster cat Jaws.  When he wants anything – food, water or affection, he has to be pleased immediately.  Scratching me isn’t the worst.  The time that his food was an hour late, he shit in my shoes.  That’s shoes.  Somehow he managed to parcel out his load into both.

Things turned around in late May.  Wendy went off to visit her mother for a month with strict instructions to keep Jaws happy while she was gone.  She said “If I find anything wrong with Jaws when I come back, you will feel my wrath.”  Yes, that is what she said.  I know it doesn’t sound like anything anyone would say outside of a horror story, but she said it and I believed her.  I like feeling parts of her, but do not want to feel her wrath.

The second day that she was gone dumbass Jaws tried to jump on a bookshelf and pulled it down on top of himself under a hundred pounds of books.  Dumbass was deceased.  Panic caused me to think of Stephen King’s Pet Sematary and evil re-animated pets.  As scary as that was, the wrath of Wendy was scarier, so I re-animated him.

The result was not what I expected.  The re-animated Jaws seemed not only completely healthy, but he had become completely civilized.  The new Jaws was respectful and reasonably affectionate without being clingy.

When Wendy returned, she didn’t notice the change because Jaws had always treated her well.

Except for the change in Jaws, everything was the same old until one day about a month after Wendy returned.  I asked Jaws if he wanted out, knowing that he would not respond.  He looked at me and picked up his left front paw and put it down.  As a re-animator, I’m used to the weird, so I then asked him if he wanted me to poke him in the eye with a needle.  He very clearly tapped his left front paw twice.  I could see that we were getting somewhere.

Now I understand why he had concentrated on the TV, radio and all of our conversations.  He had been learning English.

Over the next few weeks Jaws and I worked over what I now call CSL, or cat sign language.  CSL involves ears, tails, legs and blinks.  I wish that it were easier, but cats don’t talk and their faces are not very expressive.  Wendy observed the whole process and was very proud of her cat.  I had no choice but to admit to the re-animation.  To my surprise, Wendy was very pleased, rather than hating me for letting her cat die.  I even got a treat that Saturday.

Congress had never dealt with re-animating animals, so I saw my opportunity.  I now had a way to not only save the lives of pets, but to get them to communicate.  To start the ball rolling, I made a video of Jaws and I communicating through CSL.  Sure there were skeptics, but I got a few people to try it for free, and it worked beautifully.  Next there were the talk shows.  We got on Ofir, Eileen, Dr. Pill, Connor and all of the big shows.  People were not happy that their pets had to be dead for the process to work.  However there were enough recently deceased Boomers and Boots with rich owners lined up to pay $1000 to bring their non-human companions back to life with new communication skills, to make me rich.

Wendy and I are now up to four times a week.  As much as Wendy likes bad boys, she likes rich boys even better.

Doug Hawley

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7 thoughts on “Cat Of Hanley by Doug Hawley”

  1. Funny stuff Doug – the imagery and idea of a cat having the requisite bowel control and precision to portion out an offering between two shoes will stay with me always.


  2. Hi Doug,
    You can’t go wrong with horror and a cat!
    I enjoyed this and having had one of the wee freaks for over nineteen years, it really did make me smile.
    All the very best my friend.


  3. Delightful! Love all the humour, too. I like how the effects of the reanimation are well thought out, but the focus remains on the human relationships: a man who refused to let his girlfriend die, the girlfriend’s attachment to her cat, and how monetising this not-yet-illegal tech has improved the man’s relationship with his girlfriend. Science in the background, human relations in the foreground — in my view this is what makes for the best science fiction. Wonderful!


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