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The importance of flossing a cat

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A man comes home one day to find that his wife has gone away for the weekend, leaving him some chores. One of them to "floss a cat" only, he doesn't remember having a cat.

Humor / Horror
Age Rating:

The Importance Of Flossing A Cat

John's day at work had been bad. Not because he had managed to sort through several hundred complaints over various issues ranging from Blasphemy on Television, to why certain childrens programmes were not staying true to reality and attempting to pervert physics. He was forced to sit there at his desk. and one-by-one, read through and each and every single complaint that had been logged. He didn't have to do anything with them, he just had to read them so that the company he worked for could legitimately argue that they had "someone looking into it" over any problem that might become a serious issue.

What made his day truly bad, was that this was all he ever did. His day did not vary in any way at all and the dull monotony of it all was beginning to drag him down, almost breaching the surface of depression. He had tried to make the day more interesting by breaking wind in time to his favourite advertisement jingles. Particularly for air-fresheners, such was the boredom of his job.

Finally the end of his day had happened and he greatfully pulled himself out of his chair and dragged his sorry self over to the elevator where he quickly rapped out the last few notes to the "Fresh Air Plug-in" advert through his 'instrument'. The ride down in the lift was accusingly silent, hanging in the atmosphere like a pungent fart, everyone quietly stared at him in mute discontent. He didn't care though, he was going home and he had a whole weekend to himself coming up.

Stepping out through the doors of the office-building, he marched across the tarmac of the carpark to his economy car, the sunlight fading behind the first few storm clouds of the weekend. Already not back home and his weekend was going downhill. He had planned to spend the days in his garden either pottering around with his plants or just reading his newspapers while doing a spot of sun lounging. Now he would have to sit in doors with the radio on, or god forbid, the television. He knew he wasted too much time in front of that thing if he felt compelled to repeat various adverts via the medium of flatulence. His co-workers certainly didn't appreciate it, but he never felt any remorse for them. He was nearing his retirement and quite frankly, didn't give a damn.

But he did. His weekend was now ruined, the only redeeming quality was that his wife was going away for the weekend to some big time Bingo session. He wasn't concerned and while he had to cook for himself for a few days, he welcomed the prospect of being solitary, if only for a few days and nights. As he was about to find out, nothing was going to be simple for him, especially during the next few days and nights.

His ride home was relatively uneventful, even the blaring horn of someone who he inadvertantly cut off with his car as he switched lanes unsuccessfully, was unimportant to John. He had the weekend to look forward to, and a period of uninterrupted bliss. While the weather may have been conspiring against him, he was going to enjoy himself as much as he could with what was available. Be it through watching the sports, or listening to older musical hits through his radio.

Finally he pulled into his drive and went through the sequence of actions to safely park the car. Finally he unclipped his seatbelt and opened the door before stepping out into the pouring rain. Shielding his balding scalp from the hard hitting droplets with his briefcase. It took him a few seconds of fumbling through his pockets to find his doorkeys, before he slammed then into the lock and clicked the latch open. Finally he had access to his own house and home, in a few seconds he had thrown his coat and briefcase onto the floor and was already tearing open the door to the fridge in an effort to pour himself a fruit juice.

Seconds after the first few drops had splashed down into the glass, he realised that he need not drink this rubbish. After swishing the tumbler out, he marched across to his secret stash (which his entire family knew about) and grabbed the first bottle of whiskey he could lay his hands on. He poured himself a double shot of the drink and sipped it gently, afraid that if he hurried the liquid down his throat, he would lose the tranquility that he had waited so long to welcome and embrace.

Nothing stopped the calm and euthoria he had managed to slip quietly between. That is until he saw the note.

"What the..." he managed to cut himself off, while realising that he had been about to talk to himself, he saw the little reminder his wife had left him. Although, he thought to himself, a reminder would have been a way of making him recollect something he had forgotten, this was the first time he had ever seen or known about it. His 'other half' had decided to leave him a list of chores to complete while she was away.

'Empty the bins for pickup day'. A bit easy, he thought to himself, nothing too difficult there.

'Vacuum the upstairs and the hallway'. That's reasonable enough, he considered inwardly, the task was something that would take a few moments although his wife would never call the machine a hoover like everyone else who knew did.

'Wash the floor, and use REAL cleaner'. John had been infamous in washing the floor with just hot water. He argued that the floor was wiped clean from stains but his wife knew when the bleach had been used. He would be forced to use it this time but it wasn't going to be a real impossible task. Just one that he would resent while performing it and grumbling under his breath while he did it.

'Floss the cat'. Silence. Complete silence.

He read it again. This time making sure to check each letter completely, but found it to have the same letters it had the first time around. He contemplated calling his wife, then remembered he hadn't had a phone for several weeks since they had decided to make a budget cut and removed one of the most technologically gifted forms of communication known to humanity. Now he realised he might still need it.

'Floss the cat'. The words still sat there, with a sort of tongue-in-cheek attitude that laughed at him in a queer sort of way. Was this a joke? A trick of the light? No, he tried reading it in every room of the house and still got the same result.

"Floss the fu.." once again he cut himself short. Not because he was talking to himself but because he was about to swear in his own house and expected a torrential downpour of scolding from his wife. Only she wasn't here!

"Fuck?" he almost asked the word to emit from his mouth, having to tease it out while the inhibitor on his brain slowly understood that he could do it. Pretty much do what he wanted. But the chores had to be done first and so with steely determinism, he began to perform them.

The black bags split as he pulled them from the bins. His feet were rewarded with several foul smelling liquids rained down upon his slippers. Despite wiping them as soon as he had tied the bags up in new, unsplit black plastic, the smell remained. He cursed once again, smiling as he spouted the vulgarity, relishing in his new found freedom of expression. He admitted to himself that he was not behaving as a man of his maturity should be, but he was enjoying himself.

Until he began to 'Vacuum' the stairs and halls instead of 'Hoovering' them. He gritted his teeth as he dragged the tool up the single flight of steps. He grumbled as he pushed the head back and forth across the carpets and then had to unplug the thing and take it back down to it's abode under the stairs. He was not going to do the stairs themselves, he was going to complain that as the breadwinner of the house, he couldn't risk his health and safety to do such a dangerous task. He was gong to leave it to his wife when she got back.

Washing the floor was a simple enough task, except that he complained loudly despite the simpleness of the job. This was meant to be his time to himself, not slaving away for his wife. Even though he never really did anything while his wife was there, he still thought she was being evasive from such a task.

But his real problems began when he looked at that last request once again. 'FLOSS THE CAT'. While it hadn't been written in capital letters, the words did seem to scream at him with their absurdity. Other questions began leaping to his mind; "Where is the cat?", "Why does it need flossing?", "Am I meant to use my floss?" and the most absurd of all "Why floss it now?".

Eventually his mind rationalised these questions that began to threaten his sanity. He managed it one spectacular sentence which scared him with it's volume.

"We don't have a cat!". He was proven wrong when something made a mewling noise in the front room. Slowly he walked out of the kitchen, past the fridge/freezer combination unti and through the doorway of the front room. The couches were spread around the edges of the lounge, each pointing towards the twenty inch television they had purchased several years ago. While the volume was a little touchy from time to time, the picture was still as clear as a bell. The cat on the other hand sat in the middle of the room with it's back to him.

As he approached the feline it suddenly became aware of his existence and twisted its neck round to see what was approaching. The cat did not rise from it's sitting position, but kept looking at John as he came closer. In a sudden idea to try to get a better view of John, it turned it's head round to the other side, and looked at the middle aged man with bright, wide-eyed curiousity.

John stopped when he was not more than a few feet from the kitten. To him it looked not really old enough to have left its mother. Perhaps that was why it need this sort of attention, but wasn't that 'worming' instead of 'flossing' and wasn't it dogs instead of cats? He didn't know the answers, reminding himself that he was not a vetinarian but just a man with a boring desk job. He had a job to do, and he meant to complete that job. Despite how ridiculous it sounded.

"Hello puss-puss" he soothed towards the kitten. He crouched towards the animal and reached out to pet it on the head, the cat responded by looking away from him, displaying it's back to John in what looked like an act of defiance.

"Fussy moggy." He told the animal before standing up and heading for the bathroom. There he rifled through his cabinet of bathroom tools, several toothbrushes, some half used bottles of mouthwash, a pregnancy testing kit that had was no longer useful and hadn't been for many years, a box of earbuds, a few razors and a roll of flossing. He reached inside and dragged the floss out, but not without knocking down a few toothbrushes. He replaced them quickly before descending the stairs once again to the kitten in the lounge.

The cat still hadn't moved, although if he had been watching it when he dislodged the toothbrushes, he would have seen the kitten prick its ears up at the noise before relaxing those muscles and remain staring at the wall opposite the doorway. It did strike him a little odd that the cat had not moved, but thought only that it was still adapting to it's new environment. He then became aware that his wife would force him to install a 'cat-flap' at some point when she returned. Another job that came with such a bundle of cuteness.

"Here kitty-kitty, come here puss." He coaxed once again, this time while on his knees beside the feline. It didn't respond to him, not even when he gently placed his hands around it's soft body and lifted it into the air. Only when he put his hand on it's mouth to pull the cats lips back to see why it needed flossing did the cat mewl in quiet protest. John scratched the animal behind the ears to comfort it and made the familiar and soothing shushing noise to calm it down. When it had settled, he tried again, this time it put up no resistance as he revealed the tiny, pointy and gleaming white teeth.

As he turned the kitten to the side, he could see that right at the back of it's mouth, stuck between the final and penultimate teeth, that something small was lodged there. Considering the size of the bundle of fluff that had been labelled a cat, and the size of the teeth, this 'something small' was large enough to stand out quite comfortably as a green mass.

"Looks like she tried to feed you some veg." he mused to the kitten as he prepared to open it's mouth and extract the offending article. The tiny creature splayed it's claws as it tried pitifully to resist the comparitively huge hands. John simply told it that 'this will all be over soon' as he parted it's mouth and went to reach inside.


John suddenly found himself pinned to the wall under the force of something horrendous. With great effort he managed to look down and see the kitten with it's mouth open making one disgraceful noise. Nothing came out of it's maw except a great volume of voice and an immense blast of wind. Just when John began to identify the cat with the strange occurance, it stopped and he slid to the floor. His legs gave way beneath him as he touched down and he collapsed in front of the feline. He lifted himself onto his hands and stared straight into the bright eyes of the kitten. he watched as it kept looking around the room without moving it's head, the eyes darting from side to side, as if mimicing his own thought.

"What on earth just happened?"

He never got to answer it as John's nerve broke and he ran from the lounge, up the stairs and into his bedroom. Not even waiting to change his clothes, he dived straight into bed and hid beneath the sheets, quivvering in a mixture of terror and confusion.

He didn't leave his bedroom until the next morning while the kitten slept on the couch during the night.

The next morning John awoke and went about his normal saturday-morning routine. He got out of bed, he undressed his clothes, and went to take a shower. Soon after he dried himself and began to dress himself again in clean, fresh clothing before walking downstairs to have breakfast. His choice of food was limited to cereals since they had run out of bacon and eggs, reaching into the cupboard he extracted a box of 'Wheatie flakes' and set to pouring himself a bowl full before adding milk. It was only when he sat down at the kitchen table that he noticed his company.

Sitting on the table, staring straight at him, was the kitten. Beside it was the note John's wife had left for him, the issue of performing certain dental hygine upon a feline creature was very much clear. Most strange of all though, was that the dental floss was also beside the cat.

"Are you going to give me any trouble if I try this again?", John asked the cat while pointing at it with his breakfast spoon. The cat didn't respond, but instead cocked it's head on it's side in a quizzical fashion. John wasn't sure what to make of all this, but he supposed that maybe yesterday had been a result of too much boredom at work and that his mind had made it all up to keep him interested. But why would his brain rebell to that extent and terrify him? Finally he decided it was all a dream and today he would floss the cat. Just as soon as breakfast was over.

John eventually approached the kitten at dinner-time, just as he put a microwave meal into the oven and regretted not having such a powerful cooking appliance. When he turned back towards the kitchen table, his eyes came upon the cat once again. It hadn't been there all day, but had followed him from room to room, except when he had fed it. Once the kitten had finished eating it had rejoined him and sat looking at him the whole time, until he moved again, where upon it would repeat the same actions.

Now he had to floss the beast. He repeated his question, this time while holding the floss in one hand and pointing towards it with the other. The cat didn't respond, it just kept staring at him as he approached it while the moggy sat on the table.

Once again he reached out, but didn't get to touch the creature when something happened. Just before he could hold the kitten and reach for it's mouth, the maw opened up and he braced himself to be hurled across the room once again. Instead nothing happened, it seemed as if the feline was going along with his task and lending a helping hand. The hand he got instead wasn't of the "helping" kind.

A green hand shot out of the cat's mouth and grabbed John's in a firm grip. He almost screamed in surprise and would have done if the hand wasn't trying to force him over. Quickly, John sat down and placed his elbow on the table, from there he began to push back against the freakish green hand as they began to wrestle each other. The kitten didn't move.

"My god what is going on?" John's brain screamed. "What is going on here? Why am I wrestling a green hand that's protruding from this cat?" then for a few seconds his mind went blank, until it spoke up again in a stranger way than before.

"Why am I letting it win this?" Suddenly John's brow became thick-set and he braced himself before pushing back harder against the hand. Somehow it hadn't expected this, if it could expect anything at all, and was losing the arm wrestle.

"YES! YES! I'm going to win!" John yelled at the green hand as he nearly pressed it's green knuckles to the surface of the table. Just before he could punch the air in jubilation with his free hand at the point of victory, the green hand suddenly pushed back with explosive force and not only slammed John's hand to the surface of the table, but also threw him out of the chair and across the floor.

Normality seeped back into the cracks of his sanity as he looked at his hand and saw it smothered in lumps of broccoli and cabbage, most of which was old and mouldy. In seconds he had raced to his feet and over to the sink where he proceeded to turn the hot water on full blast and scald both his hands as he tried to scrape off the greeness. In his mind it took him hours, hours of searing pain as he kept cleaning himself over and over again. The kitten was just as terrified as him, darting it's head back and forth as it tried desparately to comprehend what was happening to it and how it had just won an arm wrestling match. Finally it gave up wondering and went back to staring at John as he backed out of the room, not taking his eyes from the cat.

There was no sign of the green hand.

After a bout of television to calm his crumbling nerves, John decided to retire to bed. Although not before taking one very big drink of spirits. With the alcohol in his system, he found it easier to go to bed and forget about anything weird that had happened in the last two days. Once again the kitten slept on the couch, it had already forgotten about the hand that had come from it's mouth and the arm wrestling match it had emerged victorious from.

As John woke up on Sunday, he realised his wife would be home. Instead of running for the nearest exorcist, he went to the garden shed after dashing through the rain, and hunted for a pair of pliers. The ones he found were very old and rusted, but still functional. But his nerves failed him and he sat for three hours in the leaking shed, too afraid to return to the house where the kitten was sitting on the window edge, staring out of the glass towards John's shed.

It was the fear of his wife scolding him for not completing his chores that drove him from the shed. He came running back towards the house with the pliers in one hand and the packet of floss in the other. Bursting through the door, he quickly scanned the kitchen for the cat and saw it sitting back on the kitchen once again. Not stopping to act daintily around such a tiny creature, he lunged forwards and reached for it's mouth. Once again it opened and this time the old sound came blasting back out.


John fought to keep on his feet and found that he could only just resist being thrown backwards once again. As he neared the mouth under such stress, the hand emerged once again and it reached for his own.

"NOT THIS TIME SONNY!" he yelled at the fingers and thumb which were still green. "I'M TAKING YOU OUT!". John wore a frenzied little grin as he grabbed the palm with the pliers and began pulling on the weird appendage. The kitten still looked as if nothing out of the ordinary was happening, despite it emitting such a horredous noise and sitting there with a collection of digits poking past its muzzle.

John still held the pliers down on the green hand. He could hear the windows cracking from the blasting voice that erupted from the cat's mouth. In his own strange little way he couldn't stop himself from uttering the peculiar phrase of "CAT'S GOT YOUR TONGUE!" and laughing at his own joke. Finally the inevitable and something gave way. John was sent hurtling to the back of the kitchen but not without the hand clamped firmly int he pliers.

As soon as it had started, the voice stopped. As did the freakishly powerful wind. The green hand went limp, but not before forming an 'O' with it's forefinger and thumb. From there it paled in colour and turned grey. At the same time it lost it's strange moist feeling and became as dry as bone before crumble to dust, still while be held in the pliers. John watched in silent facination as the hand dissolved away. When it was all gone, and nothing more than a pile of ash on the floor, he looked back at the kitten to see it rubbing around his feet as he sat on the floor.

They remained that way for a while until the sound of a key in the lock broke their silence. John and the kitten both snapped their heads round to see John's wife come walking through the door. She folded up her umbrella and placed it beside a radiator. She was already talking before she had closed the door.

"Bingo was a disappointment, I nearly had a full house on every game but that Mary from over the road always got her last number before I could. I swear she had cheated. She always manages to upstage me and if I catch her doin..." her voice trailed off as she saw the chaos in the rooms.

"What in blue hell happened here? I asked you to clean a few things, to take out the rubbbish and see to the new cat." she marched up to him as he lay sitting on the floor.

"I did them, but the cat made this mess, but I did manage to floss the kitten." John finally said with an almost pathetic level of meekness.

"Let me see then" came the reply as John watched the cat be lifted into the air and held inches from his wifes face. She then prised the animals jaws apart and stared inside. A few seconds later she was launched out of the kitchen, past the lounge and exploded out of the front door and into the rain.

John watched in astonishment as she exited the house and felt the cat land in his lap. Slowly he turned back towards the kitten, who was already staring at him with the faintest of smiles across it's face, and began laughing. His whole body rocked as the guffaws burst from his body and when he finally stopped to wipe the tears from his eyes, he thought that maybe having a cat would be a worthwhile change to his life. The kitten began purring as if in agreement with his thoughts.

John laughed again.

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