The Writing

11 January, 2018

my murdercats are broken

Skugga started 2018 off by catching a hummingbird. He did this in the dark pre-dawn (cue early-bird jokes), when I am practicing yoga in the dark (lights, feh) and Skugga's doing his early patrol of the patio. The regular hummingbird at that hour is an asshole. It's buzzed me before. Evidently it buzzed him, too. I didn't see the deed. I heard this strangled chirp! and then Skugga came scuttling inside.

He saw me, I saw him, and he dashed into the bedroom and under the dresser. Hooray.

Got the bird back, somehow still alive and intact, and delivered it back outside. Did it survive? I don't know. It wasn't there an hour later, once the sun actually came up and we could see anything, but it was mad and intact enough to flutter out of my hands and hide in the bushes, so maybe. Point is: Skugga didn't kill it.

the murdercat fails at murder
Same day, later: Skugga caught a mouse. That time I got to the door in time to keep him outside. He sulked on the patio, occasionally tossing the mouse and pouncing. Eventually he watched it crawl under the laundry room door. I yelled. Skugga seemed confused.

Next morning, another mouse. The same? Maybe. It was trying to hide in a pair of empty, nested flower pots. Skugga patiently peeled the pots apart and pounced (alliteration, for the win). That mouse also escaped eventually, this time off the patio and into the bushes.

And then the third mouse, same day. This one, Skugga brought inside. This is a small apartment, and he was not about to take his treasure into a place I'd already pursued him, so he went into the bathroom. Aha! A door. Which we promptly shut.

But did Skugga kill the mouse? No, he did not. He tossed it. He chased it. And when it went catatonic from terror, he... sat down. Looked at it. Poked it with a paw ("Will you move? No?") and then tried a bite and got a mouthful of fur, ew! and let go.

Terrified mouse. Puzzled cat. I was feeling sorry for both of them.

But there is a second cat in this house, Louhi the Toothless, and I thought--well maybe she'll have a clue about mouse-killing. I did not hold out too much hope, fortunately. Louhi saw that mouse and started growling, stalking, creeeeeeping up on it. She made one of those long, loud, nostril-exhales that means "Oh what the actual fuck", and then repeated it, longer and more loudly, the closer she got to the mouse. She growled. It cowered. She tapped it with a paw. It cowered. She looked at me with utter disgust and stalked about of the bathroom.

I think she thought we'd gotten another pet.

"It's cute," said Nous.

Oh no. Oh no no.

The mouse continued to pray to the mouse gods, face in the corner, shivering. Skugga continued to look confused. I finally got a flower pot and piece of cardboard and scooped the mouse up, and Nous took it outside, far, far away, and let it go. It was entirely undamaged. No cuts. No blood. Just wet fur, from hanging out in Skugga's mouth for so long.

 Evidently Skugga is a catch-and-release mouser. At least the mice are staying off the patio and out of the laundry closet.