“We saw it too,” a voice from the tree line said. “We have been sitting and watching.”
The crows all looked in that direction as a very large female cat emerged slowly walking with several like it following. “We all saw it,” they said in unison. “A young girl with magic like we have never seen before,” the lead cat said.
“Listen, is that you?” Cawkin called out.
“Yes. We’ve been sitting here at the edge of the wood watching all of this play out.”
“Just like a cat hiding in the grass ready to pounce,” Tender said with a bit of sarcasm. “Are we to trust you now?”
“Oh come now,” Listen began, “I thought we had this all worked out. I don’t chase you and you don’t chase us. Isn’t that how we worked this out? We have nothing but friendship to offer you.”
“And we you,” Starter joined the conversation.
“Yes,” Cawkin said. “We haven’t talked in a long time, Listen. How have you been doing.”
“Just fine, Cawkin, just fine.” She and four others had managed to cross to the center of the Glen where the crows opened a path and let them enter the inner circle.
“My name is Nouveau,” the Ragdoll Man said proudly introducing himself.
“Yes,” Listen said and closed to the point where she could sniff him. “Yes, you are quite Nouveau.” She then turned to Cawkin. “So, what to do with…” she hesitated with a sideways glance at Cawkin, “it….I mean…that….I mean, him?” She pointed with a paw.
“Is there anything that needs to be done?”
“Well, I mean, I don’t know.” She sat down. “I’ve never been in such a situation as this. I mean, a Ragdoll Man in our midst. What do we do with him?”
“Do,” Nouveau said, interrupting Listen, “what do you mean what do we do with him.” His head tilted to one side.
Listen continued, “He is obviously alive.”
“Alive,” Nouveau echoed, “yes, obviously.” His eyes were wide with curiosity trying his best to follow the conversation that was about him and yet he wasn’t sure if it was.
“Exactly,” the old cat said. “Has anyone thought this through?”
“Thought,” Nouveau said and rubbed his chin as his nose twisted to the side. “What is there to think about? Do we need to think? I find that it gives me a headache to — uh—think. I think.”
“No, I think not, Listen” Cawkin said ignoring Nouveau who he knew was just trying to be a part of the discussion but not realizing they were really talking about him. Cawkin’s brow furrowed in thought. “How could it be? We have never run across such as this.” He raised a wing and pointed it in the direction of Nouveau.
“No, not,” Nouveau joined in smiling and raising his arms and hands. “Who would have thought? I never would have thought. Would you have thought?” He put his question to Listen who moved a bit away from him.
“How could we?” Tender also asked. “We just now came upon him.”
“Just now,” Nouveau added shaking his head up and down. “It just happened. How could we when it just happened.”
“Well, don’t look at us,” Listen said and stepped back further waving a paw in front of her in dismissal of the situation.
“Yes,” Nouveau said, “and don’t look at us either.” He pointed to Cawkin and then to himself. And then he added, “What gypsy girl?”
Copyright 2017 Gordon Kuhn
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