I sat down with the note and the cats sat with me so we could all read the note at the same time. Meow,meow.=Note not make sense, just bunch of words. Meow.=Yep, can’t read that, just nonsense. They were right, just a random list of words, but perhaps by rearranging those words it might make sense. I suggest that possibility and Lara said she had been trying that for hours without success. “Do you mind if I hang onto the note?”, I asked. “Go right ahead, doesn’t do me any good,” she answered, “well, I should go and get some dinner started for us.” “I’ll come and help,” said Lena. While we ate Lara told us more about the cat. Apparently every owner of that cat has had something serious happen, one member of the family always dies a violent death. And every single person who has owned it has died a violent death within 2 years of inheriting it.
When her parents owned it someone had broken into their house and when her older brother went to see what was going on, he was shot and killed. That was 5 years ago. Both her parents died in a car accident about 2 years ago and that’s when Lara inherited this cat statue. In a week it will be exactly 2 years, and she’s scared, that’s really the main reason she hired us. And the cat wasn’t really stolen, she hid it, but she didn’t think we would come if she just told us the legend of people dying. She has a point, we might not have come, it isn’t really what we do. I didn’t tell her that however. After dinner she went and retrieved the cat to show us. Apparently no one has ever seen the jewels inside because no one can figure out how to open the cat. I checked it but there was no sign of a secret door or any way to get into that cat.
Meow, meow.=Let us look. “Okay, you two, go at it,” I said. “If you two cats can open that cat I will give you each one of the jewels,” said Lara. The cats ears went up on hearing that news. Muffin kept at it for quite awhile, mostly touching the diamond collar. The it was Mr. Cat’s turn. He is our locksmith so if anyone can open it, he should be able. After about 15 minutes we heard a distinct click. I pulled on the head, it moved a bit, then I turned it and off it came! Lara’s eyes got very big at that point and she put a small tray on her lap that was sitting on the table beside her. I poured them out carefully. There was quite a nice assortment of beautiful gemstones.
“Wow,” said Lena, “you really are a wealthy woman now.” Lara just sat there looking and touching each stone, like she couldn’t believe they were real. “Okay, you cats,” she said, “I promised you each a jewel, so pick out what you want from this pile.” Meow,meow.=Oh, like this pretty green one. And she picked it up in her mouth and jumped to the table. Mr. Cat looked at them and picked out a nice diamond and jumped over to the table with Muffin. He put the diamond on the table and pushed it gently to Muffin. Meow?=You my Muffin for always? Muffin looked. Meow,meow.=Yes, for always. They touched noses, then sat beside each other wrapping their tails around one another. Mr. Cat looks at me. Meow?=See? Lena blushes. “If I didn’t know better,” said Lara, “it looked like those two just got engaged.”
“Yes, that is what happened,” I said, “for always.” Most of the jewels were still ‘rough’, but it was easy to see they were excellent quality gems, even by an amateur like myself. I told Lara we would stay around until after that 2 year date to make sure nothing happens. She seemed quite relieved. Once in our bedroom for the night I put my special lock on the window, locked the door and set up the scrambler. “Okay, you two, now we can talk,” I said, “what do you think about all of this?” Meow,meow.=Something not right, seem too good. Meow.=Yep, not trust Lara. She nice, but I think she hide something. Meow,meow.=Yep, that true. She real though, not wear mask, but something about her not right. Just then Lena knocked on the door and wanted to talk, so I let her in.
To Be Continued.
©2021 Steve McLeod.