Now for something different. You all know Joel, the great story teller. He tries to portray what life is like on the streets that I feed the kitties on... From the kitties viewpoint. Here is Chapter 5!
WARNING ! Street life is hard, and does not always have happy endings. This chapter contains sad events and describes injured animals…
… what would the cats Janine cares for think of her ? What would it be like to eavesdrop on them on a cold winters night ?
A Guardian Angel - Chapter Five
… We have been following the unfortunate and critically injured grey tabby tiger Scooter as he made his way to the shelter on Fourth Ave for a badly needed meal ….
Scooter had finally made it down a snow covered Fourth Street to the human females shelter, limping his way through the thickening snow and bitter chill wind. He wasn't sure if he should feel better or worse than he already did. On one paw (he did not think in terms of hands, like a human would) the biting winter wind was numbing the pain of his injuries, but on the other paw the thick layer of snow forced him to pick up each foot higher than he wanted to as he walked, sending fresh stabs of pain from the bite wounds all along his undersides. He could see the two humans, the one he recognized with the bright light around her neck, and the other he did not.
The frosty winter air was whipping the snow around his feet and sensitive nose in fitful bursts, so he could not catch a reliable sample of their scents. He froze in place, hesitating for only a few seconds, but it looked like both humans were backing away from the shelter with the blue plastic tarp for a roof.
Despite a strong reluctance to come closer, he was so hungry that he kept creeping forward toward the enticing food smell inside. He could see the two orange tabbies that also came to feed here plowing through the snow toward the shelter now as well, and his competitive male instincts pushed him forward so that he could get his share of the food before they did. He wasn't in any shape to fight them for it, so he was counting on using his body to block them off long enough for him to get a few mouthfuls. He pushed his way through the edge of the snow and unto the bare dirt floor under the shelter, the smell of fresh rat urine now sharp in his nostrils on top of the mouth-watering food smell. He dipped his head to eat, hoping he had a few seconds before the rest of the local crew arrived. He'd gotten his first mouthful of the crunchy human made cat food down when his ears picked up the stealthy dry snow crunch, crunch of approaching footsteps. Human footsteps.
He jerked his head up from the paper plate, suddenly aware that the two orange tiger tabby's he'd seen coming in were not sandwiching him as he had expected. In fact, he was alone on the cold bare earthen floor of the shelter, closed in on both sides as well as the front by a motley collection of rat chewed plastic storage boxes. (the human put straw inside them but that didn’t keep the rats out)
He swiveled his ears back toward his aching rump, trying to isolate the danger from behind, at the same time he felt his lips peel back from his teeth and the beginnings of a warning hiss building up in his throat. But it was apparently already too late. He saw the light from the human female splash painfully bright across the dirty plastic cargo bins in front of him, and he felt a dull THUMP as metal tubing slammed down all around him on the frozen dirt of the shelter. He felt something like a thick spiders web tickling the fur along his back and the top of his head.
He made an instantaneous silent vow to himself right then and there that he would never trust any humans again - If he got out of this latest disaster alive that was. He spun around with a guttural snarl, the sudden cramp of adrenaline surging through his body bringing fresh pain to the deep bite wounds along his lower body. He came face to face with the human and her gods cursed light - she was making loud noises and trying desperately to keep whatever evil trap she had sprung on him pinned to the ground. He lunged ahead anyway, and managed to get his front half out from under the hollow metal frame. She jerked her net forward and covered his head again, and he felt any hope for escape evaporate as he saw the second human female come running up behind her.
He crouched down instead, hugging his wounded belly to the frozen earth, hissing and growling his hardest to make the humans back off and let him go. It didn’t work though. The second human female slowly bent over him as the first with the bright light leaned to the side to allow her to reach for him. She was wearing thick gloves, so he knew that he would not be able to sink his sharp teeth into her hands like he so badly wanted to do. He pushed himself down tighter to the ground instead, hoping the humans would not be able to lift him up. He knew that once he lost contact with the earth, he would have no leverage to push away from them.
He felt the humans gloved hands encircle his waist, surprisingly gentle and not at all like the crushing pressure of the dogs jaws he had felt earlier that week. He allowed himself to be lifted and extracted from the mouth of the shelter, not resisting much, saving his strength. He was quickly transferred to a cold plastic cage. At least the humans had placed a soft towel on the bottom, which felt good on his raw, painful belly. He was carried gently over to the human females car, which was nice and warm inside. For that he was grateful, since being trapped in this enclosure meant he could not keep moving to stay warm. He could smell the faded and dusty scents of many other cats as he stared about with wide eyes. A few of them he thought he recognized. This human must capture other members of the neighborhood frequently.
He hoped whatever she had planned for him would not be too bad. He crouched down into the soft fluffy towel, feeling the rumble of the car underneath his feet and watching the alternating stabs of yellow light and the comforting shadows between as the streetlights rolled past overhead. He didn’t think it would be possible, but he found himself getting a little sleepy in the warm air and soft towel of his plastic prison. He tried to stay awake, to be ready and alert to bolt if he got the chance, but he eventually slipped into a fitful doze. He awoke with a start sometime later, as his prison was lifted and moved out from the humans car and into the sharp cold winter air. He tried to find a familiar scent as he snuffled in a big nose full of the current environment, but all he got was the faint mix of animals (dogs, cats …birds ?) before he was brought inside one of the humans buildings.
Now the heady mix of animal scents was much stronger. Most were dogs, but there were a few cat smells mixed in. His plastic cage was set down on the floor for a few minutes, and he listened carefully to the soft mummer of human voices as he waited. He wanted to speak, to plead with the humans to let him go free, but he didn’t think it would do any good, so he just laid there, pulling himself in as tight as he could. Soon he was brought inside another room in the humans building, and a male human carefully removed him from the plastic cage. He thought about trying to run then, but by now his wounds were becoming very painful again in the warm inside of the humans building, so he had to settle for some hissing and growling instead.
The humans gently looked under his belly and between his rear legs - all the while murmuring in soft voices. He wished he knew what they were saying. What were they going to do with him ? Would they ever let him go ? Now the human male was wrapping him in another warm towel - this one actually felt good. He felt a sharp sting on his neck, and he felt himself hiss again involuntarily. After a few minutes he felt himself getting sleepy again. This time he didn’t fight it. He slipped his eyes closed and followed the fading darkness down deeper, away from all this pain and strange human smells. He just hoped the next time he woke up he would be free ….
… To be continued ….