Rumpleteazer stretched lazily, kneading her front paws in the pile of the Oriental rug on which she lay. She began to clean herself, running her tongue purposefully over her black, orange and white stripes—a very small but pretty tigress.
Her black eyes darted to the sound of nails clicking on the marble floor and a low purr, that she knew, if the family didn't, was asking playfully, "Where are you?"
Her tiny heart beating just a little faster, she licked her whiskers and, with an inward smile, feigned sleep, curling up into what she knew was her most adorable pose.
Mungojerrie entered the drawing room, still rumbling his sing-song call for her. Bedraggled and hurt after a fight with another young tom, (who looked much worse) he'd allowed himself to be brought in from the street a few weeks ago by the family's ten year-old boy. Since then, he'd adapted to the new-money atmosphere of the home.
This room, in particular, was his domain. The dark walnut, curved legs of its furniture now bore his scratches. He'd marked his territory on the sapphire blue settee and its accompanying paisley chairs. He'd made snags in the satin fabric of the young mother's daybed, situated to enjoy the morning sun, that poured in the front of the large clapboard house in the center of Victoria Grove.
He knew the parlor maids hated him, as did the kitchen staff, because of his penchant to leap onto the table and steal food—presents for the lovely young cat who had captured his heart since his arrival.
He saw her now, a sweet, multi-striped ball on the carpet in front of the unlit fireplace.
He laid in front of her the chunk of Argentine joint that he'd managed to bite off just before Cook swatted him away.
Rumpleteazer's cute nose twitched and whiskers danced at the aroma and she slowly opened her mahogany eyes to smile at the spiky-furred, equally striped cat appreciatively.
She took a portion of the morsel in her mouth, then moved her head close to his, as if to kiss, so that she could share with him the warm, juicy meat.
They watched each other as they ate the treat, then Mungojerrie placed a paw on her back, scanning her with eyes that had closely appraised many young felines and found her most favorable.
She rolled over, offering herself to him, with a slow, seductive meow.
He grinned and lowered his head to nuzzle from her stomach to her ear and purred, "The family's gone. Do you still want to see Macavity's lair?"
She jumped up quickly, her eyes sparkling like the night sky. He'd promised her that he'd take her to meet the infamous criminal mastermind of the city's animal world. He'd been one of Macavity's trainees practically since his orphan birth.
She followed behind him, almost knocking over a precariously placed, purportedly Ming vase, as she ran faster than she ever had in her life, through the open door of the kitchen and out onto London's streets. The wind blew across her fur and the peaking sun heated it. Her senses hummed with excitement for another adventure with the beautiful, rogue cat, who had changed her pampered world.