Redquarters has become a kitten playground, or at least the garden has. A few weeks ago DadRed noticed two mostly white kittens having a grand old time in the corner back flowerbeds, playing hide-and-find, batting at waving stems, leaping over dormant plants, and generally being kittens. They departed after a few minutes, but returned the next day. And the next. And the next.
Since Gato-del-Diablo (GdD) disappeared in November, we have had relative few outdoor cats passing by. Now granted, any cat with a lick of sense will not sit on a wall, exposed to the north wind, when it is 5 degrees F with a wind chill of “GeeeEEEEEEEzuz! D-mn, it’s cold!” Doughball has waddled through on occasion, and a slender brown tabby who likes to perch on my bedroom windowsill and watch Athena.
I discovered the last one when I heard Athena spring a leak at 0500. I kid you not, that’s what the hiss sounded like – like air coming out of a tire. Given her rotund presence, you can see why a half-awake-at-best Alma might assume that the cat had sprung an air leak. Then I heard the descending, back of the throat “Mroooowwwww,” and another hiss. I peered at the window and saw a cat’s head against the neighbor’s security light, and went back to sleep.
So now two kittens have decided that the yard at RedQuarters is their personal playground. They never stay still enough to determine if they are he, she, yes, or whatever. Both are about 60% white with tabby blotches, one grey and one red. MomRed is delighted and has named them Stars (red) and Stripes (grey). Athena is NOT impressed. the kittens keep getting closer and closer to the house, peering in the windows, napping on the windowsills, and I wonder if I am going to come home some day and find Athena attacking the mud-room door, two kittens in the mud-room, and Mom looking a little sheepish.
(Gato del Diablo, a smokey Persian with yellow eyes, was at least 12 years old and lived a hard and ferocious life. He’s been badly injured at least once, leaving a long scar down one flank that always sloughed off the fur in spring and looked terrible for several weeks. We have not seen him since November, and I suspect we will not encounter him in the yard again.)