It started with the one cat.
Jenny was working four ten-hour days a week, which meant she wasn’t really home enough for a dog. But she was in a new city, in a strange neighborhood, and when she was home, she was home for days at a time, and it was lonely.
So she got a cat, a black kitten from the shelter with a kink to one ear. She named him Sable, and he and she became close friends.
But the work hours turned into 12-hour workdays, and Sable was lonely at home. So Jenny bought Azure, another rescue from the pound, grey tabby with a missing tail-tip.
Two’s enough, she told herself. Two’s fine. But then there was this kitty mewing on the front step of her apartment, so into a cage when the skinny orange thing, and to the vet. The pound would have destroyed the kitten, so Flame came home with Jenny.
Three was more than enough for her small apartment, so she started looking for a bigger place. More responsibility at work had come with a raise and then another one, but it also meant she was working sixty-hour weeks. She didn’t have time for socialization; she came home and petted the cats while she watched TV until she fell asleep.
The bigger place came with a cat the owner couldn’t take with him. Well, this place had a whole second bedroom and bathroom, so of course Pearl could stay. And then a co-worker was moving, begging someone to take care of their favorite cat, and it already had a color name, so Charcoal came home to meet the clan.
When she found herself picking up Ice, Jenny realized she needed a bigger place. She bought a little farm out on the edge of town, and paid a college boy to feed the cats on days she couldn’t make it home, and mow the lawn and rake and shovel. He wasn’t an unattractive boy, either…
…and she was living on a farm, so people dumped cats there when they couldn’t handle them anymore. Ember. Chestnut. Splatter. Carrot.
…and the boy, whose name was Cordovan, which went perfectly with his hair.
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