The Vanishing Cat Trick

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?”

“I haven’t”.

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”.

“When?”

“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?”

“Nope”

“Do you want me to come home, and help look?”

“Maybe”

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!”

“What?!”

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.

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