The Thought Mouse

Mousie (3).jpegWhere’s a real mouse when you need one? Still… you get the idea…

The old lady sat in her chair and looked out of her window, over her back garden. The front garden was little more than a token, a slip of green and a stone step, enough on which to set a pot of cheerful seasonal bulbs. But her back garden brought her pleasure: crammed with old fashioned roses that lounged against the walls or reached joyously upwards, spilling silky petals and heavy scent.

The potted jasmine threw lacy designs against the trunk of the old lilac tree, growing delicate white flowers, the shape of an elegant lady’s shoe that overflowed with perfume. As the old lady’s sight had failed, she had come to value her other senses more dearly and had taken care to grow plants that spoke to her with their smell and touch. She reached absent-mindedly down to the side of her chair, reached for the soft warm ears and rounded head of her dog, then sighed as she remembered. He had passed from this world and into the next a couple of months earlier, lying in her arms while the nice young lady vet spoke soothingly.

The old lady felt a shove of grief, as vicious as a mugger but pushed it aside and resolutely peered into her garden, seeking distraction at the bird table. Bold starlings chattered and bustled, while little brown sparrows darted in to seize a beakful of seed and deliver it to their half-fledged babies, chirping sweetly and fluttering their wings imploringly

But what was that? A sudden scurry, a swift rush, sharp enough to catch her old eyes. A little mouse! He looked cautiously from behind the geraniums and darted a little closer to the food. The old lady smiled to see him select a sunflower seed, holding it in his tiny pink paws and nibbling at it delicately. She watched as he wiped his whiskers fastidiously and left, following an obviously familiar route along the old brick wall. Weeks passed, and it grew to be a regular event.

“Come on then, cheeky,” she would call and a small brown head would pop out of a crevice in the wall, black beady eyes alight with interest, The old lady waited for his visits and he brightened her hours, for as summer progressed, she knew she hadn’t long left.

One day, she left a little piece of chocolate by the bird table, a particular treat for herself and something mice preferred above all else, she recalled hearing somewhere. She waited for the little mouse. He arrived, following his usual route, but instead of seizing his chocolate and retreating, he sat up on his haunches and regarded her steadily.

“What is it then? You’ve got a look in your eye like my old Rex when he wanted a stroke!” Gently the old lady reached out and touched the tiny head. Smooth warm fur, soft as silk met her fingertips and the old lady smiled.

A sudden flurry of wings startled the mouse and he left rapidly, with a whisk of his tail. The old lady got to her feet – for all her age she had remained fit and limber, thanks in part to careful eating and regular walking. Suddenly tired, she returned indoors to sit in her chair, and enjoy the evening sun as it set over her garden.

“I’ll just close my eyes a minute, then I’d better see to dinner,” she thought. As her eyes closed, she felt again the warmth and fragility of the little mouse head under her fingertips and smiled, as the last of the evening sun fell upon her tired old face.


The house was empty and clean. Airy and welcoming. The young couple marvelled at the price and high ceilings, loved the mortgage and picture rails.

“All untouched, so perhaps if you fancy a good make-over project, rip out the garden and extend the kitchen into this area…” The man and woman looked at each other. It was peaceful, happy and welcoming. No one had lived there for months and it would be a lovely house to raise a family, pleasant and untouched.

And yet, if anyone had cared to look, as the smart young estate agent swept the hopeful young couple out of the room, they would have seen a trail of tiny pawprints, along the old skirting board and disappearing outside.

Words and drawing Copyright © 2016 Samantha Murdoch

28 thoughts on “The Thought Mouse

    1. I’ve never actually tried drawing a crystal. That would be interesting…I only really draw occasionally, but I’ve done a couple of Charlie and Ting. Black cats are! I managed a little mouse because I don’t have any ornaments of mice, I couldn’t find any and a catnip mouse didn’t seem right! Thank you for reading and commenting
      : )xxx

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You are welcome and I would encourage you to practise drawing crystals as you can let your imagination run free about the qualities of the crystal and incorporate this in the drawings. Have a great new day xxx

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Love your drawings. It reminds me of our kitty Mimi which we adopted a few months ago. Yesterday I heard that sound of something being tormented at the garden and when I looked, there she was with a mouse in tow, her third one in a week. She held tight to the mouse’ neck parading it for me to see.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love the story! I can close my eyes and your words are there, dancing in my head 🙂 You’re the Queen of harnessing emotions in your stories. Get an agent? Publish a book? (I don’t know how you do things like that, but I’m sure there’s a way) x

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I got goose-bumps! Sad, but heart-warming at the same time. I totally agree with the suggestion about exploring the options towards getting published. You have great writing talent; plus you are smart, kind, and amazingly funny. Also your mouse drawing is really cute:-)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh my, thank you! I’m so pleased you liked the story and I’m also really touched by your comment – virtual tissue please…such positive words really mean a lot! The mouse drawing was an mouse population has currently gone into hiding, I couldn’t even find an ornament of a mouse in the charity shops!
      Thank you for reading, as always, and your lovely compliment 🙂 x

      Liked by 1 person

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