The challenge: The main character wakes up with his cat sitting on his chest and it starts talking.
"He did it again."
"What?" Carlos mumbled, still half asleep.
"That dumb dog did it again."
Carlos pulled his arms free of the covers and rubbed his eyes. The sun hadn't yet risen. It was the beans. Had to be the beans. Nothing else could explain waking to find his cat atop his chest and talking. And he'd eaten three helpings before he turned in for the night.
"I'm telling you, I'm gonna claw that mutt."
"Go to sleep, Abigail. You're scaring me."
"I've got work in the morning. I don't have time for nightmares." He rolled onto his side, but Abigail shoved her nose into his face, her whiskers tickling his cheeks. He brushed them away only to hear the feline voice again.
"I can take that Chihuahua down in under seven seconds."
Carlos looked straight into Abigail's yellow eyes. He knew he was dreaming. Only in dreams could cats wear scowls. Her black fur rose along her back. "No more beans after midnight," he whispered to himself.
"Listen, Carlos, you either get rid of that dog or I will. I'm tired of him eating all my stuff. The Gravy Train's his. The Meow Mix is mine."
"You really are scaring me. Go to sleep, please?"
"You always did like that overgrown rodent better than me, didn't you?" She hissed and leaped off the bed.
Carlos took a deep breath, gave the room a quick glance and closed his eyes. Sleep came swiftly, but so did the morning sun. He rose and sat on the bed's edge. Abigail lay in the bedroom's corner, curled and content in her bedding. Just a cat, he thought. Just a dream.
Making his way into the kitchen, he pulled the milk carton from the refrigerator and the Rice Chex out of the cupboard. Reaching into the cabinet for a bowl, his toe kicked the empty metal dish and sent it sliding across the floor. Empty. He poured his cereal, put the milk away and set his bowl on the table. A quick trip to the bathroom was in order. Lifting the lid, he saw the impossible. Stuffed butt first in the toilet was Henri, his Chihuahua, his bulging eyes pleading.
Abigail pranced into the doorway. Carlos could swear she was grinning. She stretched and peered into the toilet before looking back up at him. "Don't forget to flush."