Okay, maybe it was more like a thunderclap. Either way, almost as soon as the tool roars, I feel something hit me right in the forehead. There is a sensation that I don’t really recognize, and then a tiny metal disk falls to the floor in front of me. The eyes of the human whose tool roared are very wide now. I get the sneaking suspicion that that was supposed to kill me. It certainly caught me off guard– I’ll have to be more careful next time something is pointed at me. But more importantly, I am pissed. These guys were already pushing it with all the yelling and now this? There is another roar, but this time I’m ready, and I watch the little metal spike that is launched as it flies toward me, rotating as it comes. It’s a simple task to step to the side, and then I let out a roar of my own. Well, more of a scream, really. I pounce at the hand holding the tool and knock it across the room. Pretty sure I broke his wrist, too. He falls on his butt, crying and yelling. What, did you expect me to be happy about you trying to kill me? Stupid sap. I jump again, planting my feet on his chest and pushing him to the ground. There is a satisfying clunk as his head hits the smooth, shiny surface. My tail whips back and forth as I stand on him and, once I’m satisfied that he is no longer conscious, I turn to his friends and hiss, throwing in a spit for good measure. Their eyes are wide and mouths handing open as though panting from heat, but I’m pretty sure this response is due to their never having seen a cat like me before. I step down from their downed comrade and walk toward them, back arched and fur flared. They turn to run away and I briefly consider letting them go before anger gets the better of me and I dash over to their retreating legs, knocking them out from under them with two quick swipes. The swipes have the side-effect of shredding the loosely hanging and curiously smooth blue fur hanging from their legs, revealing skin below. Maybe it’s not fur? I mean, I’ve already seen Chuck switch out her colors and markings at least once, though it’s a mystery as to why you’d want to do that. Would make it hard to recognize people, though I guess I can see how that would be advantageous.
In my musing, the anger of the attempted murder drains away and I realize that I have sat down. The two humans who tried to escape are laying on the ground groaning, and the others that were just standing around while all of this was happening are in much the same state of shock, though after a few moments one of them starts whacking its hands together, and then others join in. I’m assuming this is a gesture of gratitude or happiness, and sure enough they start to approach me, grinning and chattering. So much for remaining anonymous. At this rate, the humans might even try to make me their ruler, which, though it would be a wise decision on their part, is way too much responsibility for me. I’d much rather remain free, so I run to the entrance of the building and into the rotating machine, pushing it with my front feet. I push it a little too hard, and it spins rapidly, one of the glass panels coming up from behind and slamming into my butt. This dreadful cycle continues for a bit until I get the timing down and shoot out into the open air again, almost landing in the road. I don’t want to look back, but compulsion takes no prisoners. Sure, enough, the humans inside the building are all hiccuping and pointing at me. I act as though I do not see them and walk away, head and tail held high.
Not much else happens before the sun starts to go down. Though I wander quite far, nothing catches my attention enough for a thorough investigation before it starts to get dark, just the same stampeding humans interspersed with the cars charging along their roads and yelling at each other. Honestly, I’ve had enough excitement for today anyhow. Time to head back to Sophia’s building.
I spring along the high ledges and am there in a flash. There are a few times where I jump before looking where I am headed and have to claw my way up the side of the buildings, but it’s kind of fun. And, once on up there, jumping across the tops of the buildings is easier than trying to find ledges, anyways. Thankfully for navigation purposes, my nose has become quite accustomed to distinguishing the various smells of the city whether it’s the smoke from the cars or the smoke from the tubes sticking out of the tops of buildings, the food and objects that are strewn about on the ground, all manner of flowery smells from the humans, and then the more familiar aroma of other animals that hide where they can. Once I reach Sophia’s building, instead of leaping up from the ground I drop from the top down to her window, taking no small enjoyment from her reaction to this sneak attack.
Sophia jumps up from where she was laying near the window and hisses at the sight of me. “What in the world, Cat? Must you be so insufferably bombastic?”
I blink at her. “I guess I can’t help it. More importantly, is your human home?”
She turns her head away from me and closes her eyes. “They should be back at any moment. You may not want to be out there when they get here, they might not take too kindly to your presence, not to mention throwing a wrench in any plans you have for a productive education in human-speak.”
“Throwing a wrench? What does that mean?”
“Uh… honestly, I’m not really sure about that one. I know it’s a bad thing, though. Maybe some sort of small, disruptive creature.” Her head flicks backward and her ears twitch. “They’re here! Quick, hide! I’ll stay close to the window so we can talk, but for now get out of sight.”
The door at the other side of the room opens and I back away from the window, peering around the corner in spite of Sophia’s warnings.
( ©2017 Sean Dorsey )