“Heeeeere, kitty kitty kitty…”
The tabby was grey, like a ripple of smoke, and hunkered low as it turned to stare at the florist who balanced his chair on two legs against the trailer door, one hand held out languidly toward it.
“C’mon, kitty, don’t you leave me too,” Ken groaned. It was hot. Hotter than it should be, surrounded as he was by concrete and asphalt. He knew he should water the plants, but he didn’t feel like moving. “Fucking shop,” he muttered, drawing his hand back and draping his arm over his forehead to shield his eyes.
At the edge of his vision, two more tiny faces appeared where there had been only one. “Aww, kitty,” Ken drawled. “You got friends! C’mere and play with me. I’m bored…”
The cats edged forward, but turned and ran at the sound of high heels on the pavement. “Ken?” said a familiar voice.
“Manx!” said Ken, perhaps too loudly, and much too eagerly. “Do we have a mission?”
“Shh,” the woman hissed angrily, but also with concern. “Don’t speak of missions so casually!”
“But do we have one?” Ken sat up straighter, every nerve alive.
“No, I came to check on the shop,” Manx told him. Her lips thinned into a tight line of displeasure. “What on earth were you doing?”
“Ah, you know. The usual,” said Ken, smiling. He slumped back in his chair and didn’t resist when Manx gently pried the shears from his fingers. “Trimming some pussy willows.”