I didn’t believe it at first, but after reviewing the security camera footage, I knew the truth.
I sat at the motel desk watching the Bears losing and browsing through a magazine. My extra-smart cat, Violet, had fallen asleep on the counter beside me. A special news report came on the TV about a killer. I didn’t pay attention because hearing about a killer in Chicago is like hearing the sun would rise tomorrow. Boring. The TV played on.
Police are looking for syndicate hit-man Jacques “Frenchie” Gambon in connection with the disappearance of mob informant, Willie “Fingers” Coughlin. The suspect is driving a white SUV, license plate: H04 7481. If you identify the suspect, contact the police immediately!
They showed a pic of Frenchie, but I wasn’t looking. A big guy had walked in asking for a room. He had a bald head and a heavy beard. His rolled up sleeves, revealed heavy, corded forearms. I knew he was trouble when I saw him, but you can’t be picky about clientele at a motel on Route 66. Not many folks ever visit Mt. Olive, Illinois so I never turn anyone away.
While he was signing in as Joseph Smith (right), Violet was paying closer attention to events than me. The ragdoll feline suddenly sat up and her attention flitted back and forth between the special TV news bulletin and “Joseph Smith.” It looked like she was watching a tennis match. I noticed her doing this but thought she was doing cute cat things like tracking a fly.
Smith left the office with his room key and Violet started meowing at me. While she hissed at the door I ignored her, trying to finish processing the room on the computer. She knocked over a cup of pens and meowed at me even louder. “Knock it off, Violet!” I said, and returned to the computer.
Then she did that classic human gesture, she face-palmed. In her case, she face-pawed. I mentioned she’s really smart? I think she learned this from me, while I cleaned out the motel rooms. There’s often cause to face-palm when seeing what people leave behind. Violet not only learned the gesture, she knew what it meant. Up until then, I didn’t realize she was doing more than performing cute cat antics.
Trying to get my attention by being annoying, she jumped on my lap and kneeded my thighs with her claws. I threw her off. She pounced on the keyboard and pranced. The computer crashed. I got pissed and took her outside.
She glared at me, and face-pawed from outside the door.
She must have came in through the cat door and left again. Later, I was searching for my cell phone.
Obviously, Violet had it. I saw it all later on the security cam. She propped it against the curb so it was aimed at Frenchie’s (aka “Joseph Smith’s”) SUV. She took a few selfies (getting annoyed in the process) before she got a pic of the license plate. She’s extra-smart but my new Samsung phone was tricky, so she had trouble texting. She sent her selfie to 311/suicide-line, American Idol, and Frankowski’s Towing before she sent the license-plate pic to the cops.
The cops wanted more info, so they texted back:
Hello, Rosie Campo. Is your car stolen?
Violet texted back:
baaRD gGhuy &%$#]]
Do you require assistance?
%@$& oKIuLLuR!! ?@#$–*]’
The police must’ve figured it out. Five minutes later a line of cop cars arrived—sirens blaring, lights flashing…and they passed right on by.
I really need to update my address info.
Violet decided to take the issue into her own…paws. She scratched at Frenchie’s door until he opened it. She slipped in like a flash. By this time, I was outside looking for my phone. I found it at the curb. American Idol called me back, but I don’t sing. 311 called to talk me down from killing myself. That’s when I heard the ruckus in Frenchie’s room. I don’t know what Violet did, but when she wants to be annoying, she’s extra-smart.
With all the crashing, banging and swearing, I called the cops…and gave them my exact address. They showed up after the tow truck.
When they arrested Frenchie, he was covered in blood. I thought that was Violet, but then the cops found Fingers Coughlin in the tub, in pieces.
Violet’s a hero, but only I believe it. Now, when she does a face-paw, I pay attention.
Historic Route 66 (So famous, songs were written about it): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/U.S._Route_66
The Chicago Mob (Chicago Outfit): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chicago_Outfit
Each week, the Grammar Ghoul Press holds a writing challenge for flash fiction. This week, the word prompt is: Motel. The media prompt is another animated “Simon’s Cat.” Please do watch it below. All those animations are hysterically funny. The meow’s are recorded from the animator’s actual cat. Look here for more stories based upon the prompts: http://www.grammarghoulpress.com/gg-writing-challenge-12-open/