My whole life all I ever wanted was a kitten.
It was my seventh birthday. I went to bed extra early the night before, just so that I could get to my birthday even faster. My mom and dad had promised that it was going to be my favorite birthday ever, and I believed them. I could just feel it in my belly.
That morning when I woke up, the sun was just rising. I looked at my alarm clock, Hello Kitty of course, and saw that it was only a little before seven. Mommy and Daddy probably weren’t awake yet, and I didn’t want to do anything to get into trouble, so I tried to distract myself for a while by coloring in my coloring book of kitten patterns. Mommy was always so impressed with my pictures, she thought I’d be an artist when I grew up.
About an hour had passed, I’d finished two whole pictures already, and I couldn’t wait anymore. I jumped off my bed, leaving the book and crayons behind and raced to my parents bedroom. They usually kept the door closed, but this morning, it was open. I peeked inside. The bed was made, and they weren’t there.
I tiptoed my way down the steps, not quite sure where I should go next. I heard some rustling noises towards the kitchen, so I headed in the direction. Just as I was about to hit the doorway, my Daddy came around the corner and almost bumped into me.
He scooped me up into a big hug. “Well good morning, sugar! We thought you were going to sleep away the whole day. I was just coming to wake you up.” he said.
“Daddy!” I playfully whined. “I’ve been up for almost an hour!”
“Well then let’s get your super birthday started, silly goose.” He ruffled my hair and set me down again.
I went into the kitchen. Mom was setting a plate on the table full of a stack of strawberry pancakes. There were Hello Kitty balloons everywhere. Pink streamers and ribbon hung from the ceiling. I absolutely loved it - it was beautiful. I almost noticed in the center of the table, in front of my plate, was a big, massive box, covered in Hello Kitty wrapping paper. The top was open, but it was so big that I couldn’t see over the top of it - not without standing on a chair.
I sat down and ate my pancakes as quickly as I could. Mommy had even given me a cup of strawberry milk, and that only happened on the most special of occasions. A few times while I was eating my breakfast, I could swear I thought I saw the box shake a little, but boxes can’t shake, so I must have been imagining it.
When I finished up my breakfast, as Mommy cleared away the dishes I had dirtied, Daddy came and stood next to me. “Okay sweetie. Why don’t you climb up on your chair and take a look inside the box?”
“On the chair, Daddy?!” I cried. I couldn’t believe he was actually telling me to do it.
“Yes, sugar.” he said. He very carefully moved the box closer to the edge of the table. Mommy was on the other side of the chair now.
I didn’t waste any time. I scrambled up onto the chair as fast as I could. Daddy helped me a little because it was awfully wobbly. I took a deep breath and looked over the edge of the box. I couldn’t believe my eyes. Inside was not one, not two, but three little kittens, fast asleep.
Mommy spoke softly. “These little babies are all from the same litter. They are brothers and sisters. And they were so precious, we just couldn’t bare to separate them. So you get to pick the one you like best, and then me and Daddy both get one. Take your time, sweetie.”
Two of the kittens had a beautiful broken brown, black, and yellow fur. There was no real pattern, it almost looked like camouflage, but on a kitten. The third kitten left me breathless. It was all white. As white as the whitest snow in the middle of Christmas. It had little pink beans on it’s paws, and a little pink nose. I reached down to stroke it, and it stretched and yawned. It was so cute I wanted to cry. When it opened its eyes, I saw they were red and it scared me quite a bit. I drew my hand back.
“Don’t be scared, sweetie.” Mommy said. “This kitty is the most special of all of them. It’s called an albino kitty.”
I watched it for a little longer. Mommy explained that both of the brownish colored ones were boys, and that the albino kitty was a girl. I pet the two brown ones, and they shifted a little, but then when I reached to pet the white one, it gave me a soft little meow and reached out towards me too. It’s like she knew. She was my kitty.
“I want her mommy. And I’m gunna called her Kitty. So then all the time I can say, hello Kitty!” and I picked her up and snuggled her close to my chest. She looked at my face, like she was trying to remember it, and then pushed her face against my cheek. I kissed the top of her head. She licked my nose, started purring, and fell asleep right in my arms. The rest was history. We were the best of friends after that.
The next few months flew by pretty quickly. I was in school, but I made sure to put some pictures of Kitty in my desk because I hated being away from her all day. Tin Man and Scarecrow (stupid named Mommy and Daddy picked out) played together all the time in the house, but Kitty didn’t spend too much time with them. I hated thinking about her being alone all day without me.
One day when I got home from school, Mommy was very sad. I asked where Daddy was, and she said he was in the backyard. I gave her a big hug and a kiss, but she didn’t really say anything else, so I went to find Daddy. He was in the backyard, and he was digging a hole in the ground. There was a shoebox next to him.
“Daddy what are you doing?” I asked. He stopped shovelling, and took me hand, walking us away from the hole he was digging. Away from the shoebox.
“Sweetie,” he said, “There was some kind of accident today. We aren’t really sure what happened, but Tin Man got… hurt.”
“Is he gunna be okay?” I asked. I was glad he didn’t say Kitty. But now I understood why Mommy was sad, Tin Man was her kitty.
“No, sweetie. He isn’t. We found him in the kitchen, and something hurt him really bad. We tried to take him to the vet, in this shoebox, but he didn’t make it.”
“Didn’t make it?” I asked.
“No, sweetie. Tin Man stopped breathing while we were driving. He… he died, sugar. So now Daddy is burying him here in the backyard, so he can be at peace and go to kitty cat heaven.”
“Oh. Will he hurt there?” I asked.
“No, sweetie. He will be okay.
I took a few steps towards the shoebox. “I want to see him before you bury him, so I can say goodbye.”
Daddy rushed to me, stopping me from going to the box. “No, sweetie. You shouldn’t see him… he doesn’t look too good. Let’s not disturb him in his box. He needs to be at rest now.”
I went back in the house. I snuggled Mommy for a little while. That seemed to make her feel better. Kitty watched me while I snuggled Mommy, and when I was done she ran right up to me and jumped in my arms.
For a few days, Scarecrow wandered through the house, meowing for Tin Man. It was a little sad. I tried to see if Kitty would play with him more, but she never wanted to spend time with anyone but me.
About a month went by. It was a weekend, so I didn’t have school, but I woke up early anyway. Kitty was fast asleep right next to me. I pet her a bit until she woke up, and decided to take her downstairs for a treat. A little weekend surprise. As soon as I walked into the kitchen, I dropped Kitty right away.
Scarecrow was laying on the floor, in front of the sink. I thought he was asleep at first, but when I took a few steps forwards, I started crying and yelled for Daddy. He rushed into the kitchen and saw what I saw and tried to pull me away. Mommy was there at that point too. I wouldn’t let Daddy pull me away. Scarecrow had a pool of blood underneath him. And his tummy and some other stuff was outside of his belly, laying on the floor in front of him. I threw up on the floor.
Mommy picked me up and tore me out of the kitchen. Kitty followed. Daddy was rushing around the house getting a shoebox, and cleaning supplies. By the time my crying had slowed down, he was halfway through digging the hole in the backyard. Mommy explained that that’s how they found Tin Man, too. So they knew Scarecrow wouldn’t make it to the vets. I was scared the same thing would happen to Kitty now. Mommy promised nothing would happen to her.
About a week went by. I was feeling okay. Kitty seemed fine, and Mommy and Daddy weren’t really sad about Scarecrow, but they seemed awfully concerned about Kitty. They said I should try to spend more time with my friends and not her. I yelled at them.
I got home from school, and was walking up to the door when I heard an awful, loud meowing. I looked around and eventually I saw that Kitty was up in our tree. It was way too high off the ground for her to jump. I dropped my bookbag and started climbing the tree to save her while I yelled for Mommy and Daddy. I got to the top of the tree and grabbed Kitty. She started purring right away.
It took me a few minutes to realize that Mommy and Daddy were yelling at me that a fireman was on the way to get me out of the tree. They didn’t have a ladder to rescue me. I didn’t care if I had to wait. I had Kitty, and Kitty was okay. It took an awful long while for the firemen to get us down. They kept telling me to put Kitty down - they promised they would get her - but I wouldn’t let her go.
Later that evening during dinner, Daddy said something that made me so angry. He said that Mommy had put Kitty outside on purpose. They had a strong feeling that it was Kitty’s fault Tin Man and Scarecrow got hurt, and they were scared Kitty might hurt me by accident. I screamed at him that Kitty didn’t even pay attention to them. I played with Kitty for the rest of the night in my room until it was time to go to bed.
I liked to talk to Kitty. We talked a lot. I told her that I would never let Mommy and Daddy take her away again, and that we would be together forever. As I drifted off to sleep, I felt Kitty hop of the bed and wander out of the room. A little while later I heard her meowing, and growling, and hissing. It sounded like it was coming from Mommy and Daddy’s room. Then I heard Mommy and Daddy yelling, like they were hurt, for a long time. And then it was quiet. Kitty came back in my room a little while later, and hopped on the bed. She started licking herself, and purring. I pet her, and felt something wet. When I looked at my hand, there was a little blood on it. I guess I’d be the one digging holes in the morning. But they wouldn’t be shoebox sized. They’d be Mommy and Daddy sized. Now I’ll never have to worry about them separating me and Kitty ever again.