All Hail and All Bow
Impatience mounted each time Munkustrap had to turn his head to see what was delaying those two.
Mr. Mistoffeles seemed to find every plant or object in their path simply fascinating and the Rum Tum Tugger would stop whenever he caught brambles in his fur to remove the offending foliage.
Munkustrap look up at the sky. The sun was already traversing westward and he still had to find his vagabond friend, Rumpuscat.
"You're sure she said Macavity," Munkustrap asked for clarification again as a freshly-groomed Tugger and Misto ran up beside him.
Tugger nodded. "Etcetera told me that Bomba told her about a stray that she'd shared some 'nip with. Etcetera said she was quite excited about the possibility of meeting the "Mystery Cat."
Munkustrap shook his head at the recklessness of Bombalurina, who seemed determined to lead sweet Demeter astray with her.
"No more stops, understand?" he ordered in as close to a bark as a cat could manage. "Mistoffeles, the trees will still be there on the way home and you..." He saved a scowl for Tugger. "If I see you try to comb twigs out of your hair again, I'll shave it off you." He made the threat real with a slash of his razory claws, then resumed his rapid clip toward London and his wayward love.
The chastised pair followed dutifully and they all soon arrived in the den of iniquity that was London.
In the vicinity of the park, Munkustrap slowed his pace and began a steady yowl, moving from one brownstone building to another. Tugger and Misto trailed him along the well-swept sidewalk, with cats' curiosity, as he looked over the iron bars into the small basement flats.
A caterwaul came from one, in response to Munkustrap's cry and then, who should stalk out but the blazing-eyed and shaggy Rumpuscat.
"Munk, my friend," he boomed, approaching the only other cat who stood as tall as he, "what are you doing in London? Why, you haven't been here since we defeated that..."
"Never mind," the Munk interrupted him, casting his eyes toward Misto and Tugger, who stood gaping at the muscle-bound animal. "I'm here to find someone. She and her friend might be with Macavity."
Rumpuscat lifted his eyebrow in surprise. "It wouldn't be that sweet kitty with the golden eyes, would it? What would she be doing with the Napoleon of Crime?"
Munkustrap rolled his head. He'd always hated all of the appellations given to Macavity, which seemed to elevate him from a rather clumsy cat burglar (Who couldn't infiltrate a greenhouse without breaking the glass?) to some kind of super-villain.
"Yes, it's Demeter," he finally answered. "She's with a friend who is a bit...uninhibited."
Rumpuscat's mouth stretched in a lascivious grin. "Ah, the other tam I saw in your garden, with the red pelt and strategically-placed spots, Bomba-Lure-Me-Inna."
Munkustrap shook his grey and black head in disgust and sneered at his friend.
"That's right," piped up Tugger, who had been quiet for as long as he could. "Someone told Bombalurina about Macavity and she talked Demeter into coming here with her...we think."
Rumpuscat squinted and arched his back in hostility. "And who are you?" he asked, quite unimpressed with the know-it-all young turk and the silent, nodding, black and whiteface.
Munkustrap saw Misto flex his paws and, fearing an explosive response, hurried with introductions.
"Old Deuteronomy's grandson, eh?" said the London native. "Well, you can't be all together bad, then. And you're magical?" he asked Mistoffeles, his voice going higher with skepticism.
The original conjuring cat maintained a steady gaze with Rumpuscat but didn't answer.
"He can play any trick with a cork, or a spoon and a bit of fish paste," Tugger claimed.
Munkustrap sighed and raised his head, as if seeking help from the denizens of the Heaviside layer. His rescue team seemed neither compatible nor competent.
"Hmph," Rumpuscat snorted. "You'll need more than fish paste to get the better of Macavity."
"Do you know where he is?" Munkustrap growled.
Rumpuscat shook his head. "No, but don't worry, Munk," he said, laying a supportive paw across his compatriot's black-striped shoulder, "we'll find him...and her."
Tugger and Misto moved closer as well in a show of solidarity. Strength, charm, magic and determination—perhaps they had a chance after all.