Genre: Addams Family, Man from UNCLE(original character)
Word Count: 1834
Prompt: – Gomez Addams, Aunt Amy, A pet
Gomez Addams was a man on a quest. It wasn’t a casual one, no, it was important. In fact, it was one of the most important quests that a man could set upon in his lifetime – that of finding the perfect pet for his children.
It had seemed so easy to his way of thinking. He’d visit a pet store, explain what he wanted and that would be the end of it. Except it wasn’t. When he did that, the clerks displayed dismayed or even panicked expressions and one went so far as to call the police.
Now his feet ached, his head was pounding and, worse, he was no closer to finding something suitable for his children.
He found a bench in the shadows and lamented the fact that the storm which had been predicted skirted by the city. They had a few clouds, but mostly it was just sunny and warm.
“Miserable weather,” he muttered.
Gomez realized he’d been joined by someone. He looked over at the older woman. She was what his wife referred to as put together just exactly right, down to the veil over her face. “Good afternoon,” he said, managing a smile.
“Well, suffice it to say, afternoon. With all this sun, I draw the line at good.” She extended a hand to him. “How do you do? I am Amy Solo.”
“Gomez Addams. Solo, eh? I know a Napoleon Solo. Strapping young man and he has a bit of the devil in his eyes. I can always tell such things.”
“My nephew, in fact, and more than a bit, I assure you.” Amy laughed. “The stories I could tell about him growing up, but that would be telling tales out of school. What brings you out on a day like today?”
“My son has his 13th birthday coming up and I’d like to get him a pet, but you would think I was asking the world.”
“No success, I take it?”
“Perhaps it’s the wrong time of the year for komodo dragons, but you would think I was asking for the sky.”
Amy tapped her lips thoughtfully. “Getting the perfect pet is such a trial. I remember trying to find Napoleon something. It was nearly impossible. What are your requirements?”
“Quiet, clean and preferably able to protect itself.”
“So, not your usual assortments… a bird?”
“Cleopatra ate the last one.”
“Cleopatra is your cat?”
“A carnivorous clinging vine. My wife was a bit late with her dinner one night and the bird cage was a bit too close. She ate an entire vulture in one sitting and was burping up feathers for a week after.”
“Oh, dear, not exactly an unqualified success, then.”
The last bit of their shade retreated and Gomez mopped his face with his handkerchief. “That sun.”
“I know, let us retire to the museum. They have air conditioning and I hear a new mummy on display in the Egyptian wing.”
“I wonder if it’s anyone I know,” Gomez said, as he stood and offered her his arm. “My folks used to go there every summer before we came along. Imhotep was quite the comedian, according to my mother. He was always trying to bury her alive.” He pulled a cigarillo out of a pocket and began to puff away at it. If Amy found it odd that it was already lit, she said nothing as they walked along the sidewalk.
“He was an architect, wasn’t he?”
“And about everything else. I remember my father saying there wasn’t a job he couldn’t do… although it did take him a few tries with the pyramids. I remember once…”
What had once been a burden was now a pleasure as they wandered among sarcophagi and ushabtis of the Egyptian wing. The afternoon flew by and Gomez watched with a certain amount of sadness as the sun began to dip behind the buildings.
“Oh, dear,” Amy said, looking at her watch. “We’ve spent the entire afternoon gawking and talking, as my dear departed husband used to say. “And you still don’t have a pet for your son.”
Gomez sighed deeply. “Well, some things just weren’t meant to be. Perhaps it was too much to hope for, even here.”
“When is his birthday, Mr. Addams?”
“In a week.”
“Then why don’t you leave it to me? I think I have a good idea of what you are looking for and I do love shopping.”
“You… you wouldn’t mind?”
“After this lovely and entertaining afternoon, not at all. And you are a friend of my nephew’s and that rascal of a partner, Illya, after all.”
Gomez smiled at the memories. “We are very fond of them both, but I don’t want to burden you with my problem.”
“Nonsense. Consider the matter resolved.” Amy took a piece of paper out of her purse. “Now, what are your children’s names and where do you live?”
The week passed in a blur and Gomez found himself forgetting about the whole pet incident until breakfast that morning.
“Pugsley, dear, what would you like for your birthday?”
“Yes, it isn’t often that your young man turns thirteen.”
“Who would have thought he’d survive,” Wednesday murmured, glaring into her cereal bowl. The cereal glared back.
“A pet! I don’t care what kind.” Pugsley grinned.
“You ask for that every year,” Wednesday pointed out, stabbing a piece with her fork. Only losers and klutzes used spoons. She pinned it against the bottom until it finally stilled. The rest of the cereal moved away a discreet distance. “And there’s always Kitty.”
“Kitty is everybody’s pet. I want one just for me. This is the year, I just know it is going to happen.” Pugsley refused to let her pessimism dampen his mood. He picked up his knife.
“Dreamer.” Her fork was ready.
“Children, what are the rules?” Morticia’s was kind but firm. “No bloodshed at breakfast. That’s for the afternoon.”
“Yes, Mother,” they chorused, but their eyes promised something very different.
One got up slowly from the table and the other mirrored the actions. Pugsley broke first, racing for the back of the house, nearly bowling over Fester in his haste to get away.
“Get back here,” Wednesday demanded as she ran after him. “I’ll gut you.”
“Aw, to be young again,” Fester sighed, watching them flee. “How are the arrangements coming for tonight?”
“I’ve been told all is well, but I’m still a bit concerned.” Gomez set his steaming cup aside. “It would take a miracle to find what we were looking for. Mrs. Solo said she was good at such things, but…”
“Do you have a back-up gift in case of failure?”
“Yes, a week in the sewers under Paris.”
Fester beamed. “Aw, a young man’s first trip to the City of Lights. I remember mine fondly.”
“I thought we agreed to wait a bit longer for Pugsley. He’s such a late bloomer.”
From their position in the parlor, the children listened.
Wednesday turned in the direction of her parents’ voices. She had trapped her brother beneath her. “Late bloomer. That’s adult for idiot.” She aimed her fork for his eyes.
“Is not.” Pugsley parried the blow and tipped Wednesday to her side. “Victory is mine.” He pulled back the knife, then paused at the loud resounding knock to his front door. They exchanged glances and scurried away to a good hiding spot. When dealing with strangers, it was better to let the adults go first.
Lurch entered, leading an old lady in. She was dressed in muted colors and wore both a hat and used a walking stick. “Mrs. Amy Solo.”
“That’s Napoleon’s mother? She must be as old as Grandmamma,” Pugsley whispered to his sister.
“It’s his aunt,” Wednesday corrected. “I recognize her from what Napoleon said was her force to be reckoned with.”
“Oh.” Then he added, “I thought it was just a walking stick.”
“Amy, how good to see you again! You’re all right, aren’t you?” Gomez strode into the room and gave her a warm hug.
“My rheumatism is acting up a little today.” She let Gomez escort her through the room.
“May I introduce my wife, Morticia?”
“Why, Gomez, I thought you were exaggerating, but now I don’t think you went far enough when describing her beauty. Mrs. Addams, this is indeed an honor. Thank you for letting me spend a quite enjoyable afternoon with your husband.”
“Not at all. Gomez told me all about your trip to the museum.” Morticia smiled lovingly at her husband. “Perhaps the next rainy day, I should take the children.”
“Next month there is going to be a special exhibit on the Spanish Inquisition.” Amy had obviously been coaxed by her nephew. She was rewarded with shouts of delight from the children as Pugsley and Wednesday sprang from their hiding place and rushed to their mother’s side.
“May we, Mother?”
“I hope they have a working dungeon.” Then Wednesday’s eyes widened. “The gift shop.” Her voice drifted into a sigh.
“If I might, I would love to attend with you.” Amy dropped her gloves into her matching purse and gestured over her shoulder. “Now I believe there is a birthday boy here?”
Pugsley raised his hand. “That’s me. I’m thirteen.”
“A teenager.” Amy sighed. “I remember being a teen. What a time it was.” A man pushing a crate appeared at the top of the stairs and she took a step or two away from the wooden box. Inside was a very large lizard.
“Is that a Komodo Dragon,” Wednesday asked, obviously transfixed.
“Sadly, no, there is a quarantine on them at the moment. This is a green iguana. It’s the largest of the iguana family and the adults typically get to over five feet long. This young lady is a merely child yet with lots of growing to do.”
Gomez knelt beside his son. “Now, Pugsley, having a pet is a great responsibility. You have to care for it, feed it and play with it. If you don’t, it’ll go back to the pet store. Do you agree to this?”
“Yes, sir.” Pugsley nodded gravely, then he looked at Amy. “What’s her name?”
“Why that, my young friend, is up to you.”
“What’s your name?”
“Then that’s what I’ll call her.” He raced up to the crate and opened the end. “Come on, Amy. Let’s get you something to eat.” He picked the iguana up, well, most of it at any rate and carried it away. Wednesday followed, anxious for her turn with the creature.
“No one we know,” Morticia called after him anxiously, then she turned back to the little white-haired lady. “Dear Amy, how can we ever repay you for this?”
“Well, I’ve been thinking about this since Gomez mentioned it. I would love to meet Cleopatra.”
Morticia tilted her head back in pleasure and Gomez beamed. “What did I tell you, Cara? Just like her nephew. Welcome to the family."