Adventure Cat


Adventure Cat (Crazy Cat Lady Mystery)
by Mollie Hunt

About Adventure Cat

Adventure Cat (Crazy Cat Lady Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
8th in Series
Independently Published (November 17, 2021)
Digital – Print length ‏ : ‎ 263 pages

An elfin recluse, a handsome feline archaeologist, a stolen artifact, and one very special cat…

Five years ago, cat shelter volunteer Lynley Cannon discovered a gym bag in a warehouse. Inside the bag were a kitten, a cat toy, and ten thousand dollars. Then shots began to fly. Now, half a decade later, Lynley is thrown back with the very people from whom she’d been running.

Adventure cats, those fantastic felines who go boating, hiking, and traveling into the wilds! When Friends of Felines cat shelter starts their own adventure cat group, taking cats for strolls in the quiet parks of Portland, Lynley can’t wait to join up.

Then disaster happens! Dirty Harry slips out of his harness and runs up the Mt. Tabor hillside, leading Lynley on a merry chase. Finally she finds him resting in the arms of an enigmatic stranger named Carry. Carry lives a solitary life in a bungalow at the top of the hill, surrounded by an amazing red-foliaged garden. Carry has a cat of her own, the very kitten Lynley rescued five years previous and been shot at for the effort! Suddenly Lynley finds herself embroiled in the caper that precipitated that long-ago encounter. She survived the first round, but can her luck continue to hold?


Chapter 1

Five Years Later

 “Harry!” I called after the brawny tuxedo cat who was eagerly tearing up the side of the hill.

Rats! I thought to myself. I can’t believe this is happening! With one Houdini move, old Dirty Harry had slipped out of his purple harness and was off at a gallop. It was the first time he’d done anything like that. He usually enjoyed his adventure walks and had never tried to run away—until now.

Something had caught the old boy’s attention. A squirrel? Another cat? A will-o-the-wisp? Who knew? I didn’t care so long as I could catch up to him before he disappeared into the wilds of Mt. Tabor Park.

My name is Lynley Cannon, and back in my youth, I could have sprung up that incline like a tiger. Now that I’m sixty-something, the dash left me winded before I’d made the first plateau. Was it too much to ask for Harry to pause on that grassy plain? Apparently it was, because there he went, skimming through the tree shadows, ever upward.

“Harrrreeee…” I cried again.

Harry paused and peered back at me.

“Harry,” I said softly as I continued my climb, careful not to spook him now that he was within reach.

I was almost there.

I held out my hand, a friendly greeting.

“Harry kitty dear…”

With a purrumph, he gave me a sweet love blink, then took off down a side path that skirted the hilltop. At least it was level going and not difficult to track.

Sighing, I adjusted my glasses and followed through the cathedral corridor of ancient Douglas firs and ruddy maples. The approach of summer had brought the leaves to their full measure, shimmering, tender and green in the cool of the day. Flowering currant bloomed in fiery profusion; the native Oregon grape that flourished on the forest floor was putting forth blossoms of brightest yellow. A few leftover daffodils persevered, their gray-green spikes shooting from the loamy soil, but I took no notice. I just wanted to catch my cat.

The adventure cat program, a fast-growing faction of felines who accompany their humans on outdoor excursions, had sounded like so much fun when Blake put out the word. Blakely Brooks, fellow volunteer at Friends of Felines cat shelter, started the group as a way to get indoor cats outside for exercise and enrichment. The club’s first meeting had thoroughly covered the safety issues of harnessing your cat. Number one was to make sure your equipment fit snugly so said cat couldn’t wiggle out of it. The fact that Harry was now free and running amok was no one’s fault but my own.

Dirty Harry was a mere ten feet ahead of me but keeping speed—the moment I moved to catch up, he trotted that much faster. He was teasing me; to him this was a game. At least he didn’t seem to be chasing the whatever-it-was anymore. I hoped he would tire—after all, the guy was coming up on his sixteenth birthday. That would make him older than me in cat years. So how was he able to run like the wind when I could barely hobble?

I stopped to catch my breath. He looked at me with what I’d swear was a challenge, then took off again, cutting from the nice, level pathway to scamper up the hill once more. Resigned, I followed. What else could I do?

In leaps and bounds, he pushed over the rise and disappeared. I panicked when I lost sight of him. Spurred by adrenaline, I made it up in ten long strides. When I got there, he was nowhere to be seen.

Desperately I scanned the quiet street that marked the border between the parkland and the adjoining neighborhood. Across the lane, a stepping-stone trail led up a gentle slope to a wrought-iron gate set in the center of a brick wall covered with rose vines. The gate was open, and in its hollow stood a figure. The sun was at their back so all I could see was a silhouette, but it seemed as if they were holding something about the size of a cat.

The person broke from the backlight, and I saw the bundle was Harry.

“Is this yours?” she asked.

At least I assumed it was a woman. The voice sounded female, but the look and dress gave no clue—boots, shapeless dark brown pants, a Carhartt jacket, and a wide-brimmed straw hat putting the face in complete shadow. A short woman or a very small man, this person was nowhere near so tall as the wall, which I gauged to be six feet at the most.

She took a few steps nearer, exposing an intriguing feminine face.

“I see you’ve found my Harry,” I said, closing the distance between myself and my cat.

She passed me the big boy, and I slipped on his harness, this time making sure to fully tighten the straps.

“I assumed he was here to visit Hermione,” said the woman. “She’s very gregarious and sometimes attracts the neighbors.”

Stepping aside, she revealed one of the most beautiful felines I’d ever seen. And one of the most unique. The predominantly white fur was marbled with marks of the deepest gray. The closest I could come to a label for that mesmerizing pattern of stripes and spots was paisley. She was like no other cat I’d come across.

No, I take that back.

There had been another.


About Mollie Hunt

Cat Writer Mollie Hunt is the award-winning author of two cozy series, the Crazy Cat Lady Mysteries and the Tenth Life Paranormal Mysteries. Her Cat Seasons Sci-Fantasy Tetralogy features extraordinary cats saving the world. Mollie also pens a bit of cat poetry. Mollie is a member of the Oregon Writers’ Colony, Sisters in Crime, the Cat Writers’ Association, and Northwest Independent Writers Association (NIWA). She lives in Portland, Oregon with her husband and a varying number of cats. Like her cat lady character, she is a grateful shelter volunteer.

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  1. This is right up my alley we have two cats and they are brothers and get into mischef! I would love to read and review on a few sites wishing you many new readers while you are on tour. peggy clayton

  2. Thanks so much for featuring Adventure Cat on your blogsite!


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