Curiosity killed the cat. That was it, that was that.
She really didn’t know what to do, her mind was whirling and twirling in pirouettes. Which, as she paused for a moment and thought, was quite impressive considering she had never had ballet lessons. But she needed to pay attention to the matter at hand. There was a dead cat in front of her. She would swear but really she didn’t think it respectful to the cat. So she knew what she was not going to do, but she had not a clue what she was going to do. It hadn’t been her fault, or so she hoped, but she certainly felt responsible for it. When putting out the rat poison the night before, she may have just perhaps gotten kind of partly maybe distracted, and possibly perchance left the poison on what may or may not have been the front lawn. And the cat had definitely gotten to it. And now it was dead.
She couldn’t be entirely sure whose cat it was. It could be a stray, it had no collar, but it looked far too well groomed for that. The girl watched the dead cat.
Inside she heard the phone ring. Taking a glance at the cat, which was clearly not going anywhere, she hurried to answer it.
“Hey is that you?”
She sighed into the phone at her friend. “You could mean anyone. But yes, it is me Nick. See, wasn’t that easy for me to just put your name in there. Why don’t you try it; hey is that you-”
“Oh don’t bother. Have you got the milk yet?”
She made her way out onto the front steps, sitting down where she could look at the lifeless body of the cat.
“Why, it’s dead already, I don’t need to feed it.”
She realised that the milk in question was not for the cat, nor did her friend now about the animal.
“Oh nothing, just joking.” Perhaps she should tell her friend, and they could fix the problem together. “Actually Nick, I need your help, can you come over?”
“What is it?”
“You’ll see when you get here.”
“And bring some milk.”
She waited for Nick on the steps, twirling the phone in her hands. At least, she thought, when her parents came home they’d be milk in the house like they had wanted. Her one chore for the day was to get milk, not to kill a cat.
Soon enough, she saw a boy rounding the corner, a bottle of milk swinging in his hands.
“Hi Nick,” she shouted down the road, waving furiously.
Her friend jogged to her. “Why do you call so much when you see me, it’s not like I’m going to forget where you live.”
“I’ll stop waving when you start using my name when you call. But that doesn’t matter now, see.” She pointed to the cat on the lawn.
“Oh.” Nick moved forward, crouching down and putting the milk beside it.
“What do you think?”
“I think I really didn’t need to get such a big bottle of milk.”
They crouched over the lifeless animal, both unsure of what to do.
“We could bury it,” suggested Nick.
“But what about the owners, I’ve killed their cat.”
“What did you do to it?”
“Rat poison. You haven’t heard about any missing cats have you?”
“No, but I’ll listen out.”
The girl and the boy looked over the dead cat. They were still there contemplating what to do when the postman passed by the house.
“Hi there,” he called out to them.
“Hi Mr Baggard.” She got up and went to take the mail from the young man.
“What’s that you’re peering over?”
She looked back, wondering if she could hide it. But the fact that there was a dead cat on her lawn wasn’t the most inconspicuous thing.
“It’s a cat.”
“Must be a tired cat not moving like that.”
“It’s a dead cat.”
Mr Baggard’s face fell into a frown and he moved across her lawn to take a look.
“You’re right on that.”
“Do you know anyone missing one?” Nick asked.
“Not a peep’s been mentioned about missing cats.”
“Well if someone does, tell them it’s here,” she said. She had decided the best thing to do would be to confront the owners with a sincere apology.
“I’ll be sure to do that.”
The girl, the boy and the postman stared at the dead cat.
“Did a bandicoot get your lawn again?” A voice suddenly called.
She looked around and saw her neighbour looking over the fence.
“No Mrs Kellie, it’s cat.”
“Oh I do love cats, let me come and take a look.”
“I don’t think you want to do that.”
But the elderly woman had already disappeared back behind the fence.
Soon she was making her way across the lawn.
“Oh my,” she said when she saw the animal, stopping in her place. “That’s not a very good look.”
“No it’s not Mrs Kellie. Do you know anyone missing a cat?”
“No dear I don’t.”
The girl, the boy, the postman and the old woman gazed at the dead cat.
“You folk alright there?” A voice came from behind.
She turned, seeing the owner of the local shop standing on the sidewalk.
“Uh, kind of Mr Humphrey, we’re alright.”
“Well that doesn’t sound very convincing.” He made his way over the lawn. “Ah well I suppose you won’t be buying any milk soon.” He spied the milk still sitting nearby. “Well definitely you won’t be buying any milk soon.”
“Do you know anyone missing a cat?”
“No, but I’ll put a notice up in my shop I will.”
The girl, the boy, the postman, the old woman and the shopkeeper eyed the dead cat.
She saw the Timmy standing almost already behind her.
“It’s nothing Timmy, you ride you scooter along,” she told the young boy, not wanting him to see a dead animal.
“Oh cool, is that dead?”
She sighed. “Yes. Have you heard about anyone missing a cat?” She was beginning to think that this cat must not belong to anyone.
“No, but I’ll see if my friends are.”
The girl, the boy, the postman, the old woman, the shopkeeper and the young boy examined the dead cat.
“You folk haven’t a cat around here have you?”
She turned and there a woman stood, looking at the six of them curiously.
“Uh yes, we have actually.” She took a step to the side.
As the woman peered closer, her face changed from worried to smiling.
“Oh Lucy-belle, you found her.” The woman began to make her way forward and she wondered the best way to break it to her what had happened.
“Perhaps before you see her..”
But it was already too late.
“I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to do it. I left the rat poison out and they must of eaten it and I didn’t mean it, I really didn’t, I’m sorry,” she bumbled.
The woman was kneeling over her pet.
“Don’t worry, you probably did her a grace, she was due to die any day now.”
Six people looked down at the woman and the dead cat.
“Lucy-Belle was an old cat, she really didn’t have any more time in her anyway. I bet she just found a nice lawn and curled up peacefully.”
“But the rat poison…”
“Ah rat poison?” Nick was holding up a small packet. “This is a sugar sachet.”
As soon as she saw the packet she realised. She had meant to put the rat poison out but was first going to make herself a nice sugared drink. She must of still had the sachets in her hand when she went to put the poison out.
“So I didn’t kill the cat.”
Nick laughed. “No Curiosity, you didn’t kill the cat.”
© Copyright 2016 Archia. All rights reserved.
Short Story / Other
Miscellaneous / Non-Fiction
Short Story / Other
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