The door scanned her card with a beep and swung open with a synthesized greeting.
“Welcome home, hot sauce.”
She froze. That wasn’t the term she entered the first and only time she adjusted the setting for her smart lock. Either she had accidentally stepped into the wrong house, or she’d been hacked.
Swapping her handbag for a long umbrella, she toed off her shoes and stepped onto her laminated flooring. Bathroom, empty. Kitchen, same. Living room, empty. Bedroom, same. Study…
A cat stared at her, one paw frozen over the keyboard, while a coding program she had never seen before blinked on her computer screen.
“I can explain,” the cat said, voice low and undeniably male.
In the future, they’ll laugh about this when their kids ask how they met. But right then, he was a stranger in a single woman’s home.
She screamed and yeeted him off her desk with her umbrella.
Genre: slice of life, fantasy