The phone on my desk at work rang at lunchtime – it was my other half. Miss 18 was at home (she goes back to work tomorrow) – and was freaking out, because she couldn’t find the cat – the 1 year old nutcase we took delivery of from the local rescue centre before Christmas. I called home in response and spoke to her.
“When did you last see him?”
Given that I woke her up a little after 8am this morning, and that Kaspar (the cat in question) had been dancing around at breakfast time like a lunatic, along with George – our 8 year old ginger tabby, I wondered exactly what time Miss 18 had got up. I suspect lunchtime.
Anyway. While talking to Miss 18, Miss 14 (who doesn’t return to school until tomorrow) piped up with “I saw him when I went to the bathroom”.
“Five minutes ago!”
Cue laughter around the office – they heard the entire conversation.
As the afternoon wore on, I got on with what I could, but worry gathered in the back of my mind. Had the cat really done a runner? Where might he be? I called home again.
“Any sign of the cat?”
“Do you want me to come home, and help look?”
Half an hour later, after cycling home at quite some speed, I set about turning the house inside out – quite a task, given that the Christmas decorations were still up, and the children had pretty much trashed the place between me leaving this morning, and arriving back.
Three hours later I had taken all the decorations down, eaten dinner, washed up, and checked every room in the house for the elusive cat. I walked the garden three times in the dark with a torch, and the front drive. I even spent some time in the attic – the hatch had been open. I’ve never seen a cat climb a ladder, but you never know. We even reported the cat missing on the local area Facebook group – in the hope he might show up in a nearby garden over the coming days.
After my other half and the girls left for rugby practice, I finished tidying up various rooms around the house, and did a final walk of the back garden before resigning myself to perhaps having lost the cat. I made myself a coffee, grabbed my notebook, and sat in the lounge in silence – half wondering if I might hear something.
After sitting for a few moments, the couch next to me creaked quietly. I thought I was hearing things – we had already looked inside it and under it twice with a torch. I checked again – nothing. It must have just been settling after taking the christmas decoration boxes off it a little earlier.
I sat down again, and began writing. The couch again made a noise – the vibrating sound a cat makes when they stretch. What the hell? Then I noticed a gap in the material at the back – a gap perhaps four inches long that lead to a cavity between the cushions of the back, and the cushions you might sit on. I pulled it open with my fingers, and pointed the torch into the innards of the sofa – and two enormous green eyes emerged from the dark – staring straight at me.
The next few minutes were spent calling my other half, and updating Facebook. A few minutes later the whole family arrived home, and I broke the news.
“I’ve found him!”
“Where is he?!”
“Inside the sofa!”
I then pointed at the sofa, that he was still hiding inside. We arranged a bowl of leftover chicken nearby, and I set about waiting for him to make an appearance.
He left it another hour before finally extracating himself. Little shit.