by Stephen King
Incomplete novel that King was writing for his son Owen in 1983. King had written several pages of the story in longhand in a notebook and then transcribed them. While on a trip to California, he wrote about 30 more pages of the story in the same notebook, which was lost off the back of his motorcycle (somewhere in coastal New Hampshire) on a trip from Boston to Bangor. He mentioned that he could reconstruct what was lost, but had not gotten around to it (as of June, 1983). The only part that still exists today is the 5 typescript pages that had been transcribed. The 5 pages, plus a 3-page cover letter to a senior editor at Viking are now owned by a King collector.
Once upon a time--which is how all the best stories start-- a little boy named Owen was playing outside his big red house. He was pretty bored because his big brother and big sister, who could always think of things to do, were in school. His daddy was working, and his mom was sleeping upstairs. She asked him ifhe would like a nap, but Owen didn't really like naps. He thought they were boring. He played with his G.I. Joe men for awhile, and then he went around to the back and swung on the swing for awhile. He gave the tetherball a big hit with his first--ka-bamp!--and watched the rope wind up as the ball went around and around the pole. He saw his big sister's softball bat lying in the grass and wished Chris, the big boy who sometimes came to play with him, was there to throw him a few pitches. But Chris was in school too. Owen walked around the house again. He thought he would pick some flowers for his mother. She liked flowers pretty well. He got around to the front of the house and that was when he saw Springsteen in the grass. Springsteen was his big sister's new cat. Owen liked most cats, but he didn't like Springsteen much. Hie was big and black, with deep green eyes that seemed to see everything. Every day owen had to make sure that Springsteen wasn't trying to eat Butler. Butler was Owen's guinea pig. When Springsteen thought no one was around, he would jump up on the shelf' where Butler's big glass cage was and stare in through the screen on top with his hungry green eyes. Springsteen wuld sit there, all crouched down, and hardly move at all. Springsteen’s tail would wag back and forth a little, and sometimes one of his ears would flick a bit, but that was all.I’ll get in there pretty soon, you cruddy little guinea pig, Springsteen seemed to say.And when I get you, I’ll eat you! Better believe it! If guinea pigs say prayers, you better say yours! Whenever Owen saw Springsteen the cat up on Butler’s shelf, he would make him get down. Sometimes Springsteen put his claws out (although he knew better than to try to put them in Owen) and Owen imagined the black cat saying,You caught me this time, but so what? Big deal! Someday you won’t! And then, yum! yum! dinner is served! Owen tried to tell people that Springsteen wanted to eat Butler, but nobody believed him. "Don’t worry, Owen," Daddy said, and went off to work on a novel that’s what he did for work. "Don’t worry, Owen," Mommy said, and went off to work on a noivel—because that was whatshe did for work, too. "Don’t worry, Owen" Big Brother said, and went off to watchThe Tomorrow People on TV. "You just hate my cat!" Big sister said, and went off to playThe Entertainer on the piano.