A Sleepless Night by Michelle Arnold

I don’t know about you, but the world seems to be getting pretty (insert your favorite colorful word here) intense. While I like to stay informed, I also like to laugh to deal with stress. And, I need some chuckles these days.

Today, the wonderful Michelle Arnold is here to help us laugh with an embarrassing story.

Take it away Michelle.

A Sleepless Night

Vivid dreams have been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. As a child, I had to be put back to bed after sleepwalking on multiple occasions, and as an adult, I’ve had detailed stories pop up in my dreams, appearing so clearly that I had to write them just the way I’d dreamed them or it felt wrong. Dreams can provide lots of inspiration and entertainment, but sometimes, they seem so real that it takes a moment upon waking for my mind to comprehend that it didn’t really happen.

It’s that twilight moment between sleeping and waking when disaster can happen – or hilarity!

One night, in the summer of 2018, I woke from a sound sleep to a strange noise from above. I rolled over to see that a hole had been cut in my bedroom ceiling and someone was lowering a net through it, right down to the place where my cat Lily was curled up asleep! Someone was trying to steal my sweet little cat!

I screamed and snatched up the sleeping feline, running for my life to the living room. No one was getting this furball on my watch! As I ran, I mentally chastised myself for screaming. Now the cat-snatcher knew I was aware of their presence, and they might pack up their net and leave before the cops arrived. I wanted to see this person behind bars!

Fortunately, I am old-fashioned enough to have a landline in my house. I have never been willing to give it up for exactly this reason: I don’t want to be caught in a break-in and realize my cell phone is in a room I can’t return to. I put my bewildered cat onto her living room window perch and grabbed the landline extension in that room, quickly dialing 911 while keeping one hand on the cat. I was still prepared to defend her at all costs.

That was when my brain fully clicked on.

It hit me that the entire situation was ridiculous. How could there be someone sitting in my attic, sawing a hole in my ceiling and lowering a net to steal my beloved cat while I slept? The scenario was a bit cartoonish. It had to be a dream! Quickly I hung up just as the first ring was starting, hoping the call hadn’t quite gone through.

To reassure myself, I went back to the bedroom, turned the lights on, put on my glasses, and looked around. The ceiling was fully intact, and the house was quiet. Nobody was trying to break in at all, let alone take my cat.

I went back to find Lily sitting patiently where I had put her. I picked her up and carried her back to bed, where she curled up in her usual spot and went back to sleep. I got in bed too, waiting for my heartrate to return to its normal level.

And then the phone rang.

I knew exactly who it had to be, so I grabbed it quickly. I told the 911 operator that I had called on accident. He probed for more information, no doubt picturing some kind of domestic violence situation in which I was afraid to tell the truth, so I elaborated that I’d had a nightmare about someone breaking in and had called 911 before realizing it was a dream. I assured him I was positive I did not need the police. He sounded like he believed me, so I hung up and tried once again to go back to sleep.

And then the doorbell rang.

Sighing, I got out of bed and went to the door in my pajamas. A young police officer, probably forced to work the night beat because he had no seniority, was standing outside.

“So you had a bad dream?” he said sympathetically, as if talking to a seven-year-old.

“Yes,” I told him. “I dreamed someone was breaking in, and I jumped out of bed and called 911, but then I realized it was only a dream.”

“Do you want me to come in and look around just to be safe?” he asked.

“No,” I assured him. “It was a ridiculous dream. There was no way it could have been real.”

“Okay,” he said with a chuckle, and then he left.

I went back to bed, where my puzzled cat was still curled up by the pillow, waiting for things to calm down so she could sleep. There was little chance of me going back to sleep after all that excitement, however. Fortunately, I have a good friend in Australia, where it was afternoon, so I was able to chat with her for a bit to calm myself down. I knew eventually I would look back on the situation and laugh.

I’m fortunate that I have such a trusting, laid-back cat who was able to tolerate being yanked out of bed and spirited off to another room in the dead of night. If only we could hear her side of the story!

Look at that face. Who wouldn’t want to steal her?

I’m happy to report that I’ve had Lily for nearly five years now, and so far, no one has ever tried to catnap her!




by Michelle Arnold
Available in Kindle Unlimited

When Abi Okafor moves to New York to start a job as a makeup artist on a TV series, she is assigned to a highly introverted and quirky actress, Greta Lang. Abi and Greta quickly form an unshakable bond, but Abi, though usually bold, is afraid to act on her romantic feelings for Greta. Makeup artists don’t get involved with actresses, do they?Just when they are prepared to admit their feelings for each other, however, tragedy strikes: Greta’s plane crashes, leaving her life in the balance. Now Abi must be there for her in more ways than she ever imagined. She is determined that her love for Greta will pull them both through.But Abi is keeping a horrible secret: Greta is the only survivor of the plane crash. Will Greta be able to handle it when she finally finds out?



I grew up in the Midwest, graduating the University of Illinois in 2004. I’ve been making up stories for as long as I can remember and began writing them down sporadically when I was about six. At the age of 17, I finally decided to get more serious about writing stories down, and I’ve been addicted to writing ever since! I currently live in Illinois with my cat and work in special education. My hobbies include reading, writing, and geeking out over stuff.



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About TBM

TB Markinson is an American who's recently returned to the US after a seven-year stint in the UK and Ireland. When she isn't writing, she's traveling the world, watching sports on the telly, visiting pubs in New England, or reading. Not necessarily in that order. Her novels have hit Amazon bestseller lists for lesbian fiction and lesbian romance. She cohosts the Lesbians Who Write Podcast (lesbianswhowrite.com) with Clare Lydon. TB also runs I Heart Lesfic (iheartlesfic.com), a place for authors and fans of lesfic to come together to celebrate lesbian fiction.
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