It’s a dingy room with a low ceiling that your head could bump into if you weren’t careful. The smell of soot covered every inch of the house, every crack in the red lacquered floor and every cobweb in the corners. You forgot about it, until it nudged you as the steam rose from the large pot where Grandma brewed tea all day long. Another thing snapped you back to attention in this old house, with its old soul and old soot – the cats. Constantly forming figure eights between your ankles as you sat in a low chair sipping the stale tea.
I’m brought back to the present as I watch your ginger cat stretch languorously on his pillow. I want to approach him, pet him, but I hesitate. I’ve never had pets. You bring him over and place him in my lap. He seems comfortable as I stroke him. He purrs, which is a funny sound to my ears. A few moments later, I lift him up and walk around the room. It comes so naturally to me that I’m surprised. I see wonder in your eyes too.
“What is it?” I ask.
“Nothing,” you reply with a small shake of your head, “It’s just that he doesn’t let any of my other friends carry him around like that. Or even pet or stroke him, for that matter.”
You mean nothing by it, there’s nothing between the lines, nothing beneath the surface. You’re quite simply amazed by your cat’s behaviour, his liking towards me
I look up, wondering if it’s a joke. You seem genuinely clueless. It stings.
“You texted me last night telling me to meet you in the morning. Don’t you remember?”
“I didn’t text you.” You pick up your phone and go through your texts. You see the text I’m referring to. I see shock wrap itself around you as you realize a mistake has been made.
“I’m sorry… I was… it was… I was drunk,” you fumble. It’s a lie. What you mean is, “That text wasn’t meant for you.”
My cheeks grow hot even as my mind desperately tries to reconcile the man you’ve become and the man you used to be.
Hi everyone! I’m working on a minimalist fiction project for this year’s #AtoZChallenge. The story will be shared in snippets, and the events occur non-sequentially. It is for the reader to interpret and form the “whole”. You can read all the posts here. Join me, and do share links to your AtoZ posts as well!