Literary Journal – Spring 2016

The Five

Novel Excerpt by Jennifer Klepsch

Chapter Five: The Long Day

Today is going be a busy day, but just how busy I don’t know. It is a grocery-shopping day, “Yuck.” Double “Yuck.” I look down and see Xena barfing on the floor. I turn my head and then look again at Xena, who is now sitting up straight as if to say, “Sorry.” “It’s okay; I know you might have eaten something outside, no worries.”

I get dressed quickly and open the door to get some clean up stuff. No one is downstairs, so I don’t have to give an explanation. Returning to my room, I clean up fast.

Xena follows me downstairs and oddly does not go to her food bowl. You know it, don’t you, you’re a smart cat, no food yet.”

Looking out the window, I could see the sun coming up. “Oh, it’s got to be very early.” I am not hungry now so I’ll just sit on this cozy couch. As I gaze downward, I see my drawing book on the end table. Reaching over I grab it and the pencil inside the neat pouch. Stroke by stroke, I began to draw the sun in the early bright sky. The picture is starting to resemble the sun and sky outside the window. Reaching for the crayons, I feel this picture should be in color. I randomly pull out of the colors the shades of yellow, orange, and red to use. I take my time until the picture is in color. “Yes, it is taking shape.”

Xena rubbed against my leg and she seems to smile as she jumps up on my lap. Her body starts to jerk, and I can’t seem to take her off my lap quickly enough. She starts to barf again. “Oh no, Oh no! right on my new jeans that Mom and I embellished ourselves.”

I stand up and grab a paper towel, but that’s not enough. So upstairs I go to change my clothes. Again, going downstairs I turn to Xena, who is following me. “You can’t eat anything Xena, and no breakfast for me yet.” I turn around to head back up the stairs. “I’m not going down there yet.” Leaping on my bed, I decide to take a nap.

“Get over there! Get over there!” I hear a man’s voice and a truck outside as I open the front door. The back door of the truck slams. It is a pet collector for stray animals,

“Who called them? Oh no, you don’t, stop, stop!” I keep running after the truck that is going slowly and checking for other lost animals. I run up to the driver’s window and bang on it, “Stop.”

The driver stops the truck. “Whatever, do you want?” he says.

“I want my cat you just grabbed.” “No, she is a nuisance,” the animal collector says. “Why she threw up several times out on the street already.”

“She is not a nuisance, she is just sick, give her back, please.”

The driver chooses not to listen and takes off again. Again I run after the truck and throw a ragged stick in front of it to get the driver’s attention. The driver gets out of the truck and he is mad. His face looks distorted like a zombie.

“Give me my dog back, you monster, or I’ll use my fish line to pull you back.” While he is looking for the fish line that I don’t have, he trips over a rock. I open the back door and see Xena, grab her out of the smelly truck and take off. Inside my house, I feel safe and this monster I thought was an animal collector starts to twist his distorted ogre face and becomes human-looking again. As he walks back to his truck I yell from inside the house, “And don’t come back.”


Jennifer Klepsch has several indigenous backgrounds. She has skills in teaching and office administration. Jennifer loves the art of storytelling. “Why don’t you just write it?” was often spoken to her, so she began her writing career. Presently working on a children’s book series and a young adult futurism novel.