Codeword: Kitten

Liza was just living her average life, great job and even better friends, but things might just be about to change.

(This isn't set anywhere in particular, in fact I don't even think the place exists.)

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1. Chapter 1

“Liza, come on let's go!” My friends called from downstairs, again I wanted to reblog just one more Tumblr post that turned into twenty as they grew increasingly impatient. I grinned when I finally put my phone away, holding my hands up in surrender as I made my way down the staircase.

“Sorry guys, but you know how I need to reblog and reply for my followers, all we’re going to do is gossip in the cafe about random crap anyway, right?” They rolled their eyes at me, they were too used to my attitude, I grabbed the keys to my apartment and the set to my pretty Camaro, my pride and joy. I got that car in deep black. It had to be a Camaro (because I love the character Danny in Hawaii 5-0) with two Red stripes over her bonnet and the matching red leather interior, she was called Kitten. The name was given to her because my best friend Kat had bought a new pet kitten and she was a shy little ball of fur but whenever she was in the car she turned into a ball of energy for no reason that we could figure out, maybe it was just the car smell? It reminded me of how when I was behind the wheel of the car, I felt more alive since then the name just stuck. I unlocked the car to let the girls in, and settled in my drivers seat. The drive to our local coffee shop was pretty quick and didn’t even take two songs on the radio to play before we arrived. The best way to describe this place was like a modern Central Perk from “FRIENDS” another great show, i’m sure that i’ve watched all the episodes over a hundred times, and I even have the box-set.

 

“We’ll grab a table, Liza will you grab the drinks?” I sighed and nodded, following Eb to our table. I’d only known Ebony for 5 years now, and at first it seemed like I was too crazy to be her friend, but she’s just as mad as me and we hit it off. Kat on the other hand was a different story, I'd known her since high-school, she was the shyest person i’d ever met but I think my madness rubbed off on her and now all of us are three crazy peas in a pod. I was always tasked with getting the drinks on a Tuesday so I waited for them to decide what they wanted today.

 

“I’ll have a hot chocolate today I think, no sugar OK Liza, it’s not supposed to have added sugar!” I rolled my eyes at Kat who nodded in agreement to Eb’s statement, I liked things sweet and if I want to add sugar to my hot chocolate I god-damn will, I looked over at Kat as she pondered over what type of tea to have today, that girl and her tea.

“I’ll have um … I think I should just have a plain cup today nothing special.” With my orders given I headed to wait in the short queue and get our drinks, leaning against the bar bored.

 

“Hey Liza, what can I get you today?” I smiled at Dani, she’d been working part-time here for a while and was one of the regulars that served us, she was a uni student so wanted to get as much extra money in her pocket as usual, and she was always pretty upbeat which is great for business. I could describe her as a non homicidal Harley Quinn (because she wore the pigtails) though she was always seen with a lollipop in her mouth, like Penny from Hairspray, and she has an obsession with Dr.Pepper Jelly beans, and had a large bowl full on the bar.

 

“Hot chocolate, no added sugar, one plain cup of tea and I’ll take a cappuccino please. Pass on our hello's to Nigel for us later” She went ahead to fixing our drinks, knowing how we each liked them before ringing up the till, I handed over the money and made my way back to the girls, who by now were already deep in a conversation that I was completely confused by. Soon I was able to join the conversation and we carried on chatting until Eb checked the time.

 

“Crap, we better get going, I need to get to work soon, thank for coming today Liza.” She stood up gathering her jacket and bag. Doing her triple check for keys and phone. She often left one of them here by accident, luckily for her the staff knew what her things looked like and kept them in a box behind the bar specifically for her. Today she seemed to have everything with her.

 

“Did I really get a choice.” I replied sarcastically, I turned to Kat and threw my keys her way and giving her a smile. She looked up confused, I hardly ever gave someone my car keys. My kitten was my precious, like Gollum and his ring. Sometimes I even hugged the bonnet and hissed at them, what can I say, I’m protective.

 

“Start her up, I need to pop to the bathroom and since you’ve already been. Meet you out there, put my ipod on ready for me.” I headed into the bathroom to fix my hair a little and wash my hands, it was a slight obsession with clean hands but I never went of out my way to wash them if I didn’t need to. On my way out I waved goodbye to Dani, turning quickly bumping into somebody, the impact making me take an unsteady step back before I felt a hand catch onto my waist stopping me falling backward, nice save. I looked up quickly and stared at the guy that had stopped me falling. Damn. Thats the only word I could use right now, he had dyed red hair but you could see the slight brunette he must’ve been before undeath, an eyebrow piercing, lips that were slightly opened with the surprise he’d bumped into me, and lastly were stunning green eyes that kept me trapped in his gaze. I had always been a sucker for green eyed guys, but this was beside the point, I needed to get going and stop staring a the poor guy I’d bumped into.

 

“I’m so sorry, I guess I should have been looking where I was going instead of waving goodbye to a friend.” It didn’t take long for my brain to finally figure out the situation, I rolled my eyes at myself and sidestepped away from him offering a small smile before leaving the coffee shop beelining for my car. I felt a small blush on my cheek. I’ve never had that issue before, Kat had seen me blush twice in my life, neither times was because I was near an attractive friend. No, I friend-zoned most of my male friends because they’re like brothers to me. I waved at the air by my cheeks in an attempt to cool them before getting into the car, hoping the blush would have faded.

 

“Liza you OK?” I snorted at them, I was always OK. Unless I was great because on those days I was more like a child with ADHD that didn’t have their medication and was fed a hundred sherbet straws, I would practically be bouncing off the walls on my hyper days.

 

“Yeah, just saw a hot guy in the coffee shop, you guys needing me to drive you to work just cock-blocked me is all.” I joked with them, I knew that they wouldn't believe that, even if it was a little true, it wasn’t that they didn't think I wouldn’t find somebody attractive but that I’ve never been in a relationship, the whole idea of “needing somebody” has never appealed to me, I wanted to have a good career and and be sure I had a life before finding somebody to share it with. I’d rather be alone and successful than stuck in a relationship and depending on them. Not the life for me.

 

Ebony was a teacher at a local school, teaching English. Today happened to be a non-school day so she didn’t need to go in as freakishly early as she regularly did, Kat and I waved her off as she carried all the work she was due to mark for her students. That was something I’d never be able to do, I could barely spell things right at my age.

 

Next stop was dropping off Kat at the flower shop she owned. This girl studied science … and became a florist. Honestly, she was so ass-backward sometimes I though that I was the sane one in the group. Nonetheless she now had an established store filled with every flower imaginable half I couldn’t even name. Her shop was always so colourful that on my only wear black days I felt I made the place look even better. The drive there was full of us singing along to whatever music was next when my ipod was on shuffle, we could go from rocking out with Halestorm, to listen to something classical in a matter of minutes. I pulled up outside the shop, and as always I felt swag. Sometimes I wish I’d drive to her shop with my windows rolled down in my “Stahp” snap back hat and just head-bop to my music, but apparently that was too childish for me to do.

 

She smiled and waved back at me before going to open up shop for the day, I waved her back before flipping on my Fall Out Dragons playlist, a mixture of some F.O.B with Imagine dragons because I swear the bands need to write a song together, I mean have you heard how epic the Radioactive in the Dark mashup is. I needed to get changed for work, now my boss Pandora, whom I call Panda because it’s cute (and I like to give my friends animal related nicknames) doesn't mind what I wear to work, but I don’t think she’d appreciate my “Fuck year Fire-type!” pokemon T that I had made for me.

 

I parked my Kitten outside the house, heading in to throw on something decent enough, opting to wear a plain black T with my jeans; mens jeans, they were much more comfortable and actually fit me. Satisfied I was presentable, I nodded at myself in the full length mirror attached to the door. Heading back to to my car I sighed as I turned to check all lights were off, this place was so empty I might need to get a pet, but the amount of time I spend away, I’ll have more luck with a kitten. Kittens seem to be a reoccurring theme now, even if I was way more of a dog person, I often relished in the time I spend with Eb’s newfoundland Tom he was so cute and fluffy and well behaved I just loved him.

 

I got into my car again, I spent so much time in this car I could call her my second home. The drive to Panda’s house was longer than the usual trips I took, but she lived further into the city than everybody else. Her job meant she travelled a lot but this was her home base. She ran her own line of clubs, and worked as an author on the side, though she still wouldn’t let me know her pseudonym. My car looked much more fitting here in the city. Don’t get me wrong, I love how much attention she gets, I just don’t want the wrong kind of attention.

 

I pulled up near where she lived, grabbing all the scrapbooks full of designs that I had waiting on the backseat for me. All I was missing was trying to balance a coffee on top of them to fit that classic P.A look. I had my own set of keys to her house; though she’s my boss we were like great friends and I happen to get paid for it. Ok, that came out wrong, though I work for her and she pays me for that, our relationship is much more like a friendship than a business one. Upon my entry her cat Tilly gave me a warm welcome, rubbing herself against my leg. Tilly is a ragdoll and is a really sweet cat, if she likes you. Those she doesn't like tend not to go near her unless they want to lose a finger.

 

“Hey Panda, I’m here.” I called through her place, walking toward her kitchen to put my work down and grab a drink. Like I said we were good friends, we’d even sit watching movies and eating ice-cream together on days when she was in town and didn’t have much to do. I was one of only a few people she trusted enough to look after the cat.

 

“Hey Liza, ok so I want to redecorate this place from bottom to top.” OK, now I’m going to have Linkin Park stuck in my head all day. I walked just out of the kitchen as she came down the stairs looking like the businesswoman she was, other than the few cat hairs that clung to her, though she’d have those cleaned off before she left.

 

“Ok, and what's your grand plan this time? Though, I have to say, I’ve always wanted to take a crack at decorating this place rather than the club.” She laughed at me, walking to her fridge to get her own drink.

 

“I want something new, clean. White with a few accent colours maybe?” I nodded, pulling one of my design books toward me and flipping through the pages.

 

“Something like this OK? Striped back white and minimalistic, and those areas could all have colour on them, I can even get a matching litter tray” I pointed to everything I told her, though I couldn’t help but laugh about the litter tray and neither could she.

 

“And this is exactly why you’re my designer, I like it, as for the colour accent, I’m thinking red?” I nodded at her, settling myself on one of the stools beside her breakfast bar, I grabbed a clean sheet of paper and began drawing up my plan, she looked at the page sipping at her coffee. I started with her living room, drawing all the basic furniture out before grabbing my red pen Now the fun would begin. I coloured in two of the three pillows on the sofa and added an elegant pattern to the third still showing the white, the vase on the small side table got a similar pattern as well as an matching arrangement of red and white flowers. I looked through my pencil collection, and lightly coloured over any glass furnishing, so that it would be lightly tinted red, and a cat ornament to match.

 

“Ok, what do you think of this, pretty much any room you want done will have this theme, though this kitchen doesn't need much work, it’s mostly white decor anyway.” She grinned at me and nodded. Her eyes scanning over the page to see if there was anything she didn’t like.

 

“Yup, everything looks great, just let me know how much the furniture and materials will cost and I’ll write up a cheque. Just leave all the links by the computer, I’ll need to check over my more personal rooms’ furnishings. I better head off to work so you can do yours. Oh, and as soon as everything’s good I’ll call the removal guys to get rid of what I have here so you can arrange everything.”

 

She smiled at me, finishing the dregs of her coffee before petting Tilly until she began to purr. I chuckled when she had to pick up the roller to clean the cat hair from her. Upon her departure, Tilly came to sit next to the laptop Panda left here for me to find all the furniture I needed. She would meow at me for attention while I worked, or sometimes lay over the keyboard to disrupt me, only causing me to love her all the more. Pets with personalities are great.

 

I soon found that hours had gone by and I’d complied a full list and categorised into the room it goes into all ready for Panda. Tilly had noticed I was done and began to rub against me, refusing to let me go home.

 

“Come on. Can I go if I get you a treat?” Her ears pricked at the the mention, she bolted to where her treats were kept, meowing loudly so I would get there faster. Damn cats run a tight ship in any house. I made sure to get her treat extra slowly, because of her impatience before feeding her. She purred again when finished as I petted her tip to tail. I made sure to check her water bowl was filled before grabbing all of my stuff and heading to the door.

 

“I’ll see you in a few days Tilly, try not to destroy the furniture, it may be going soon but you know your mom doesn't like it.” I rubbed her head and along her ear before leaving, noticing how the sky was going to get dark soon, I better grab the girls from work. Kat’s shop stayed open pretty late compared to most and Eb was always one to stay behind to get things done at the school.

 

The drive to the shop was nice, I had some varied music playing from my theme song playlist, and I would sing all of the instrumentals because nobody can stop me! When I pulled up I saw she was just finishing up, her keys at the ready as she left the shop. Turning to pull down her shutters before making her way to the car, settling herself in the front seat.

 

“Good day?” I asked as usual, pulling away from the shop and heading to get Eb, she nodded at me looking out the window.

 

“As good as usual, though I had to help some poor guy out, his bouquet was not going to tell his girlfriend he loved her.” I rolled my eyes at her, this whole flower language thing confused me, all I would care is if they actually looked pretty or if they didn’t. I’ve never been much of a flower girl. She huffed knowing how uninterested I was.

 

“At least Ebony has some class, she understands!” I snorted at her, turning more attention to the road glad that there was little traffic making the journey to the school faster. We pulled up into the teacher parking, getting out to fetch her from the classroom, or else she’d forget the time and just like, not leave.

 

We walked the lonely halls to hear the music she was playing, ah another Piano Guys day, but they were great to listen to, Beethoven's 5th with One Republics ‘Secrets’ is one of the best mashups ever.

 

“Hey Eb, you ready to go?” I asked as I stepped into her room, almost being blinded by the colour on the walls, apparently it helps them learn, I disagree as a true creature of the night.  I turned to look at her and away from the assault upon my eyes as she began to pack up books and that other learning stuff. I was never a fan of my education, paying attention to something I cared little about was such a drag.

 

“Yup, just let me get the last of these. How were your days?” That sentence began a spiraling conversation that lasted the entire journey to Eb’s house; how they could talk so much about this flower language astounded me, they both got so into it, and then began to talk about all the ways you could say you loved somebody and how if he came in the shop looking to ever get his girlfriend a  Hydrangea again she would “flip her shit” as I would sum it up. Eb then left to get inside, though Tom almost knocked her off her feet when she opened the door, the dog was too funny.

 

Last stop before my own was then dropping of Kat,who seemed to be much better now she had bitched out the customer with somebody other than me. Her entry wasn’t nearly as funny, instead her cat Mash just sat there looking up at her with an expectant look on his face, guess he wanted to get fed. I waved goodbye before setting off home, parking Kitten in her very own spot and walking up the short path.

 

I sat straight on my sofa, stretching my neck, I spent way too much time on that computer today. Finally deciding that I was tired enough, I climbed up my stairs grabbing my flannel shirt style PJ’s and threw myself into bed. Waiting for sleep to claim me as it’s prey till tomorrow.

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