My cat killed Fievel. Fievel came in singing “There are no cats in Greg’s house,” and my cat chased him across the living room and murdered him. She didn’t bite or claw Fievel; she beat him to death with the pads of her paws. So it appeared, because I got home to find the most adorable adolescent mouse curled up in the fetal position, looking as if I might startle him awake by picking him up in a paper towel. I didn’t. Fievel was dead. Fievel was away from home on his first adventure into the world and discovered Ebullience, my cat.
Coincidentally she’s been sitting in my lap ever since, which she hasn’t done since she was a kitten. Or maybe that isn’t coincidence. Maybe my cat has realized on some level her uselessness, in the grand scheme of life, as a domesticated animal. Even though I only bring home a new bag of food every few weeks, maybe she has made some connection that my leaving five days of the week and returning tired, in some way, allows us to exist. Perhaps her self-esteem has been spiraling ever since. What use am I? she wonders. I nap. I sit and preen. For twenty or so minutes every night, I gallop across the floor imagining I’m chasing the prey of my ancestors. Killing Fievel was the first real accomplishment of her life.
She’s proud. She feels she’s earned her keep. So she sits in my lap. I pet her. She purrs. And I try to understand. She did the right thing, really. We can’t allow wild animals to live among us.