Saturday 16 April 2022

The Sherlock Saga-Episode 5



My new life settled into a comfortable rhythm in my Forever Home and bar one or two obstacles I was more or less content with my station in life. The monster proved to be relentlessly fixed in her determination to blank me. The only time I could elicit a response from her was when I intruded upon her personal space, like taking a swipe at her tail when she sailed by, her imperious snout raised in regal fashion declaring herself to be the Queen pin of the establishment.


One tactic of mine that never failed was to join her on the couch in a gingerly, sheepish fashion that suggested subservience on my part but which really served to force her to vacate the much coveted spot, whereupon I took up residence there for the afternoon.


She treated me with the same attitude that she would afford a fly buzzing about her ear, with distain and distaste but eventually with a note of resignation and acceptance.


Grump was a different matter. He too ignored me but he was very vocal about my bad behaviour.


“Does that cat have to sit on the table.” It wasn’t a question, and only strengthened my resolve to sit more firmly on the Sports Page of The Irish Times. Any attempt to remove me resulted in a battle for which he was ill Equipped and unprepared.


“Get that cat off my paper,” he hollered after feeling the back of my claw.  He should have asked me nicely, or do what Mum did and wave a slice of cooked ham in my face.


Mum was great for slices of ham. Slices of anything. Every misdemeanour on my part was rewarded with a treat. I became skilful at misbehaving. But Mum’s choice of name for me was not much to my taste. She was a great fan of some London sleuth and had even visited his fictive den in Baker Street so she insisted on calling me Sherlock Holmes. While I didn't have to smoke a pipe and wear a deerstalker I gathered from this epithet that I was expected to be hyper vigilant and solve every crime in the neighbourhood.


“More likely to cause trouble!” This from Grump. Well, he would say that…


The younger family members however were pushovers.

Longfellow’s neck was a great vantage point from which to view the world. He was over six feet tall, six and a half in fact, so from that perch I could eye up every rodent and winged intruder in the garden.

"He loves me!" Longfellow would declare swinging me around on his shoulders.

"He'll take the ear off you!"This from Grump of course.


Red was a soft touch as well. She fancied herself as an animal whisperer, berated Grump for his lack of understanding, filmed my every ninja move, posted pictures of me to all her friends, suggested making YouTube clips of my antics guaranteed to propel me to fame as great as my namesake's and best of all she let me take swipes at her long red hair.


But there was one obstacle that did bother me: the vet’s directive that because of my compromised vision I should be indoors before dusk. Now what self respecting cat does not want to night prowl?


I did of course break the curfew. But Mum was soon out with a torch and a can and spoon, banging vigorously on the tin and calling for the sleuth and making enough of a din to alert the whole street to my errant ways. After ten minutes or so of this harassment I would spring out of the bushes, feigning relief and delight at my rescue, ascribing the delay to my poor lateral vision, purring and rolling at her feet and all that jazz that humans love, for besides there was always tuna in that can.


One night however Mum and Grump were off on a mini-break and the chance to be a real cat was within a whisker. Without hesitation I hopped out through the skylight window left carelessly open by my two caretakers and set out on my night prowl into the big wide world.

To be continued...

Copyright 2022 Cathy Leonard All rights reserved

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