Rae Elliott Williams
Ginger's Not So Big Mistake - Installment 2
Ginger Beasty is a main figure in Matilda's new life. She loves to bully the wildlife and she considers Matilda a wild life interloper. But how did she get to be such a bully?
The human carried me inside the building next to that metal box. The warmth was immediate and the smells were amazing. Maybe this had not been such a big mistake after all. I was soaking wet, shivering and so very hungry, and now I was warm, dry and I could smell bacon.
“Johnny, get me a box, we have a litter of kittens under the dumpster.” Next thing I knew I was being rubbed vigorously by this human girl that smelled like bacon! I tried to wiggle out of her hands, I swatted at her and did my best hiss. I wanted to lick her but I couldn’t get close enough. Once she figured I was reasonably dry she plopped me into a cardboard box with a dry towel. A small bowl of milk was placed in the corner as were some food scraps, not bacon unfortunately. I scurried towards the smell of food but I was not quite to the bowl when it went dark. I looked up and could see only a crack of light shining through the top of the now closed box. Oh ohh!
I was worried about my litter mates, but I was also very hungry. I licked some milk and felt my whole panicked little body begin to relax. I had not realized how very famished I was. I tried to think back, we had been 2 full nights without our mother. So it had been 2 days since we had anything in our bellies. I was nibbling my first piece of chicken when Pretty dropped into the box next to me.
We fought over the biggest chicken scrap, which I won of course. In between bites she told me that they had caught her when she had tried to rush them and hiss at them. “I should have stayed as far back as I could but they were poking at us with a long stick and it made me mad.” She confided. She was a feisty one, no match for me but definitely my second in command.
It wasn’t long before the light came again and Stripes was dropped in. “Strips will be along soon, she won’t want to get stuck with the boys for too long.” Sure enough Strips and Stripes were reunited by the milk bowl within minutes. By the time Sunny joined us, I was busy cleaning my luscious fur to its finest glean. Nelly was the last to appear.
The box top was opened and we all hunkered down together and looked up. Nelly looked nearly drowned. His coat was soaking wet. The human was rubbing him with a towel and he was meowing as loud as he could. At first we thought she was hurting him but we watched enviously while she fed him a nice crispy bit of bacon. When she finally placed him in the box with us he seemed in perfect, in fact, very dry and well fed shape.
One at a time we were each lifted out again and dried off more, inspected head to foot, ohh’ed and ahh’ed over, then returned back to the box. We huddled together, trying to keep Nelly quiet. I thought about trying to escape but after an attempt or two it was obvious that the sides of the box were too tall for my short stature and it was dry and there was this magical bowl of food that seemed to never empty.
The milk bowl was continuously refilled all day long and treats were added to the other plate. We dined on chicken, fish and finally bacon over the course of the day, the box was placed under a warm lamp and the top was left open.
I wasn’t sure if this adventure had been a mistake or not, we were fed, we were warm, we were dry. But we would probably never be reunited with our mother. I wondered if she would worry when she got back and found us all gone.
Or had she decided that we were old enough to be on our own anyway and that was why she had not returned, or if something more dire had happened to her that prevented her from coming back to us.
Sunny was sure this was the case but I had to wonder, 5 mouths to feed was a lot of responsibility for a young mother.