WIPpet Wednesday: Nosy Neighbor

Happy Wednesday! Sorry I flaked out last week. I knew I didn’t have time to post or read the other entries, so I skipped it. Good thing I did—I ended up with all five of my beta-reading projects in my inbox at once! I also managed to get my second draft of my novel back to the publisher. Whew! Now that those things are done, I’m back to working on my new-ish story (the Puss in Boots one). Or, rather, I’m staring at the screen and wishing the words would magically appear.

I’m renaming this novel. The working title was A Worthy Inheritance, which is cheesy and doesn’t fit the tone of the story. But I had to name my file something. So now I’m deciding between Passing on Faith and A Passable Faith. The reason behind both is the double meaning, which is very important to the story. If you have a preference, let me know in the comments.

When we last left Micah, he had just met his neighbor—the mightily irritating Cat. We join them again, still on Micah’s front porch. My math is pathetic today: 7 + 2 + 2 (from 2014) = 11 short paragraphs.

Micah hesitated He scrubbed the side of his face, trying to think of an explanation; he felt tired and far older than his years. After a minute or two he said, “I inherited this house, and I haven’t been here in—” he calculated quickly in his head “—twenty-two years. I’m pretty sure no one else has been here in at least the last few.”

Cat nearly choked. “What? That’s crazy! Well, now that you’re here, I’ll show you around. You’ll like Debbie, she’s great. And Angie and Mark, in the house at the end of the lane, and—”

Micah cut him off. “I’m really only here to fix this house and sell it,” he said, trying to make it clear the conversation was over. “I don’t plan to live here.”

“Oh. Okay, then.” Cat almost sounded disappointed. “How long will you be staying?”

“Just for a couple months. I have a job to get back to.” Micah turned toward the door.

“Really? What kind of job?”

Micah ground his teeth together to keep from swearing at Cat. He lowered the hand holding his key and glanced over his shoulder. “I’m a teacher.”

“Ooh!” Cat’s face lit up. “Yeah? What do you teach?”

After taking a deep, calming breath, Micah replied, “Fifth grade. Look, I really don’t want to talk right now. I need to get inside and see what state the house is in.”

“Got it. Well, I’ll leave you to it, then. See you around?”

Micah shrugged, relieved to be nearly rid of Cat and his incessant questions. “Probably.” Under his breath, he muttered, “I’ll be here all damn summer long.”

Yeahhhhh. Is it wrong for me to be glad he’s not my neighbor?

All the thanks to K. L. Schwengel for hosting. Link up with us here, and don’t forget to enjoy the other entries.

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18 thoughts on “WIPpet Wednesday: Nosy Neighbor

    • Ha! Yeah. I’m pretty good with waving to my neighbors if we happen to be outside at the same time. Otherwise, get off my lawn. LOL!

  1. Cat seems to have a little, umm, trouble, with social boundaries and reading cues. Not sure I’d want him for a neighbor, either, but he’s certainly, uhh…interesting. =)

    • Yes, he does. There’s a reason for that. 🙂 He’s a bit difficult to write, actually—he needs to go from annoying to endearing to…well, more than endearing. We shall see. He has layers even I have yet to discover.

  2. Cat or Micah? Personally, I think I’d like Micah for his stand-off-ishness because it’d give me an excellent reason to not bother about getting over my shyness and Cat for his perfect willingness to take my shyness in his stride. 🙂

    • Ha! Truth. Micah’s very closed off at the moment, and Cat’s a little pushy. They both have their reasons, but they’ll eventually meet in the middle. Micah’s going to need Cat’s help, after all (like in the story that inspired this).

  3. Well, Cat’s just a little bit enthusiastic isn’t he! Poor Micah, but also poor Cat, he clearly is just trying to be friendly! I really enjoyed this excerpt though, it was definitely easy to relate to!

    • LOL! Yes, Cat’s trying to be friendly. Micah’s probably a lot less friendly than he could be. They both need to try a little harder. 🙂

  4. I’m with Micah. I’m not a people person. People I don’t know, asking a lot of questions, puts the wind up my back really quickly.

    Also, I’d lean more toward Passing on Faith. It just seems to roll off the tongue better.

    • That’s the title I went with. It’s the one I liked, too.

      I sat next to a guy on my last flight who insisted on having a conversation. I’m talkative, but only with people I know. I’m definitely not a people person.

  5. I had a neighbor who invited herself into my home and insisted on trying to ‘get to know me.’ I highly, highly dislike her. She knows now not to come back to our porch. So yeah, I am soooo Micah right there.

    I like Passing on Faith 🙂

    • In fairness to both of them, Micah has a lot of unresolved issues. Cat is very much like his animal counterpart, and I think he’s picked up on that. He’ll tone it down, and Micah will eventually trust him.

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