The Furry Matchmaker
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Purchase from DSP
Blurb: Dave Wallace is on his way to work when the sight of a tiny kitten stranded on an interstate overpass nearly breaks his heart. After he stops to save her, he goes to the nearest vet and meets Dr. Christian Prince, a gorgeous man David assumes is straight and completely uninterested in him. When Dave leaves he knows he'll never see the vet again... until Christian calls him about the kitten, and maybe more.
Dave had a list a mile long of things to do today, and, much to his regret, not one of them involved him getting laid. That was not happening anytime soon after his boyfriend of two years left when they’d had fight a few months ago. Time had run together since as he threw himself into his business, keeping busy even though that had been the reason for the argument in the first place.
As he drove along, he gazed across the road, marveling at how it could be sunny on a January morning but still just above freezing. He crossed the bridge and was nearly to the other side when something caught his eye. It looked fluffy, like a stuffed animal someone had left there by accident. It was one of the most realistic toys he’d ever seen.
Too realistic. His gut churning, he drove down to the next light and got in the left hand turn lane. All it would take was five minutes to check it out, and then he could be on his way. It was probably some pranksters with a video camera attached somewhere nearby who would be laughing their asses off when he stopped to “rescue” the poor kitten.
The light turned green and he turned his sporty little sedan around to head back. He was back to the spot on the bridge where a tiny little ball of fluff sat on the concrete barrier that stopped cars from flying off onto the busy interstate below.
She was tiny if she was real, her calico fur ruffled from the wind. He wondered why she might have gotten up there. He figured it was to get more sun, although there were thousands of places safer to do so. Kittens were cute but not always the brightest creatures.
She was sitting in the sunshine, which meant there was a fair chance she didn’t have rabies, a part of his mind told him. Another part of his mind told him to get back in his car and call animal control. Instead he took off his jacket and stepped out of the car slowly, not wanting to startle her. He threw the jacket down on the seat, knowing he would need something to wrap her in to keep her warm.
He closed his door and approached her. She was sitting on the barrier with her rump facing him, so he couldn’t see if she was real or not. He moved slowly toward her, and as he got closer he realized with a jolt of fear that he was directly over the interstate below.
Determination replaced the panic as adrenaline rushed through his system. He took another step closer, and suddenly she turned her head a little. He couldn’t breathe, shock choking the air from his lungs as he realized she was real and alive.
He hadn’t realized he’d been worried she possibly was…. No, he couldn’t even think about that, not inches away from saving her. He had to do something, and he had to do it fast. Remembering his training from volunteering in an animal shelter during college, he reached out, quick as a snake, and grabbed her scruff.
Her fur was soft as could be, but she was ferocious and a fighter. He could tell she was scared as she swung her paws around, her claws unsheathed. He tightened his hold on her and a few seconds later her instincts kicked in and she went limp, as if her mama were carrying her.
“It’s okay, little one,” he cooed as he took her quickly back to his car. He opened the car door and set her gently down on his jacket, wrapping her quickly in a makeshift carrier. He picked up the bundle and set her down in the passenger seat.
He got a better look at her in the car, and he realized she was hurt. His heart twisted, and he felt sick for a second, looking at this tiny baby that was having such a rough start in the world. He took a deep breath to steady himself and grabbed his cell, needing to find the nearest vet’s office.
He found a local one, just down this same road, called Royal Veterinarian and Boarding Services. He knew where it was located, having seen it a couple of times on the way to the home improvement store.
He pulled away from the barrier when it was safe, driving as quickly as he could down to the small shopping center on the outskirts of the town he lived in. He had to stop for a red light once, and he looked over to the passenger seat to check on her. She was shaking, probably still scared from being on top of the concrete barrier for who knows how long in the bitter cold.
Then she looked up at him, her little blue eyes still cloudy, and let out a tiny little squeak. He was a goner. He lost his heart to the tiny munchkin wrapped in his jacket like a burrito. “Just a bit longer, little princess.”