Monday, November 13, 2006

The cat. And the rain.

I woke too quicky, torn from sleep, rising and gasping like one rising from the ocean. Behind me, the windows shook from the power of the storm. Pale light flashed beneath the blinds as lightning split the night sky beyond.
Cats were screaming. The sound tore through me. I ran to the conservatory at the back of the house. I could feel night air and smell the mud and rain as I moved. Where was storm air coming from?
Outside the rear door, through the long, slim panes of glass, I could see my two cats rushing to the door. I let them in. They stood frozen, fur bristling despite its sodden state. I looked to the conservatory behind me and saw why they were afraid.
The neighbourhood tom, a violent and muscular tabby beast, was crouched in the corner of the room. It had fallen through the glass roof of the conservatory. It looked at me with wild eyes and bawled. I went to it, slowly, picked it up by the scruff of the neck. I felt its thick claws sink slowly but surely into my wrist. Its eyes rolled as it curled its body around my arm like a wet, bristling, nightmarish glove. I was appalled. It had wounded my pets numerous times in the past. It had also attacked me. Now it terrified me. In the loud, confusing rush of the storm I could not think straight. I wanted it out of my house. It was like a creature from a horror film.
My cats flew in opposite directions as I took the hideous creature to the door. I stopped for one moment and threw it against the brick wall that faced the door. Why did I do that? I was terrified, horrified but why did I do that? Bile hit my mouth. I slammed the door shut and looked through the glass. The cat, the thing, reared back, seemed to grow in height like a human being, its eyes rolled in its head, shot through with much blood. It stared at me and its mouth opened wide. I could hear no sound above the thunder. I ran.


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