Life meets death… literally. As in, Baylor meets the Grim Reaper, and his supernatural cat, during a horrific accident. Her life hinges on their help fighting a psycho killer seeking revenge… Baylor is his target. The more time The Reaper spends with Baylor, the more his own fate entangles with her future. As the clock ticks and lives unravel, his cat reveals a heartbreaking secret. Do you believe in miracles? They do. But sacrifices must be fulfilled in order to win the battle against evil and to stay with the one you love… And to survive.
The Reaper’s Cat
Dixon stops breathing. I totally lose it, hugging him tight against my chest and burying my face into his hair. I reach to touch the cat and she places her paw on my hand.
“Dixon, it’s time to go. I’m here to help you.”
What? Who said that? I focus my bleary eyes on a young, blond guy who’s suddenly kneeling next to us. Where’d he come from? A few feet away is the older man who had helped pull Dixon out of the car. Is this a paramedic maybe?
The composed blond is not trying to revive Dixon, but his full attention is definitely on him. He’s ignoring me, but speaks to my brother, while rubbing the cat’s head. His other palm flattens on Dixon’s chest.
Then I almost pee my pants and gasp to hold back a scream… I blink several times and can only guess that the ghostly image drifting out of Dixon’s body is his spirit. The blond guy stands and Dixon (or his spirit) lingers next to him.
The stranger looks at me, raises an eyebrow, and says, “You can see me, can’t you? That’s not good.”
I nod repeatedly, glancing down at Dixon’s body then up to the filmy version of him and over to the blond.
He says, “Stop staring. No one can see me or Dixon’s spirit. Except you. If you keep looking at us, people will think you’ve lost your mind.”
I shift my gaze and pet the black cat, who purrs from the attention. She’s still curled up on Dixon’s stomach, but her golden eyes remain glued to me.
“Great,” I hear the blond say. “Now I’m an interpreter. Your brother says he is sorry. He thinks he blew through a red light. And he’ll miss you and your parents. That’s all. We have to go now.”
I keep looking at the cat, hiccup from sobbing, and slip in, “Wait. Tell Dixon I’ll miss him, too. But… but what’s happening here?”
I allow my gaze to dart up at them briefly. The blond grits his teeth and ruffles his hand through his hair. He sighs, “Isn’t it obvious? I’m a reaper. Your brother died. I’m his guide to the other side.”
Dixon wiggles his fingers and watches them in awe. The bloody gash in his side is gone. He looks so alive, except for the fact I’m nearly able to see through his body.
“What’s your name?” I push the reaper for more information. I don’t want them to go. And yet I know they can’t stay.
“I’m Riley. And before you ask, because I can see the question forming in your beady little eyes, the cat is mine. Her name is Gwennan. And now we must go before Dixon’s spirit gets trapped here as a ghost. Goodbye, Baylor.”
I start to stand but Dixon’s body weights down my legs. He can’t be gone.
And why in the world was I able to see and talk to a reaper? And see Dixon’s spirit?
The black cat, Gwennan, steps off Dixon and nudges my arm. The paramedics arrived and rush to us. They lift Dixon off of my lap and begin checking his vital signs.
Another one asks, “Have you been hurt?”
I only then notice the pain in my neck and back. I reach for my shoulders and mumble something to the paramedic. He starts inspecting me for any injuries.
The EMTs working on Dixon place him on a stretcher and cover him with a white sheet. All of him, including his face. That’s confirmation. It’s too late. But I already knew that.
They turn their attention to me and wheel out another stretcher. I guess I’m going to the hospital. Normal operating procedure after a car wreck, I’m sure.
The cat padded off when the EMTs arrived, but I see her sitting calmly about thirty feet away. I’m assisted onto the stretcher and wheeled into the back of the ambulance. I keep my eyes locked with hers, wondering if I’ll ever see her again. I swear her little head nods at me, although I’m probably not thinking straight. It’s so odd how she isn’t running off and doesn’t break our mutual stare.
Riley the Reaper – I can’t get his image out of my thoughts. And Dixon… my brother is dead. I can’t believe what’s happened.
On the other side of Dixon’s wrecked car, another ambulance is parked in the middle of the street. EMTs administer CPR to the lady who had been thrown from the pickup truck that crashed into us. Her husband, boyfriend, whoever he is clenches his fists and drops his head to his chest.
It doesn’t look good for her, either.
With tonight’s tragedies (and mysteries), everything will change. I can feel it in my bones.
The Reaper’s Cat Review
“I’m really enjoying this. You are a good writer… It flows really well, keeps you engaged and wanting to know what is going to happen next. I like the details… Makes one feel like they are experiencing what Baylor is.” ~~Monique M., reviewer