The Love of a Cat Named Ortoloni ~ Chapter 3

Even though there were four other cats in the house, Ortoloni chose the non-feline member to become friends with. Mephisto, a Bearded Dragon, was taken out of his tank once a day and allowed to roam around as he pleased. He enjoyed basking in the sun – often found hanging with one or two of his feline friends – and would allow Ortoloni to climb all over him. Ortoloni was very gentle in his play and never once used his claws.

It took a little longer for Ortoloni to warm-up to the other cats, but his sunny purr-sonality quickly won them over. Despite being “the new kid on the block”, he and I formed a bond right away.

Not yet a year after we adopted him, the unthinkable happened.

Down the block from where we lived was another apartment complex that boasted a man-made pond. Large congregations of geese and ducks made it their permanent home, raising their families in and around the neighborhood – including my complex which had two swimming pools on the premises. Once a year ducklings would be paraded through the complex and I got into the habit of putting corn out for them. One morning I heard familiar quacking at the front door. Sure enough, a family of ducks were there waiting for their hand-out.

I cracked the door open just enough to deliver a handful of corn not noticing that Ortoloni had come up behind me to investigate. Next thing I knew he had bolted out the door towards the ducks. Of course, they scattered while Ortoloni took a left down the walkway – with me in hot pursuit.

As we raced down the walkway surrounding the pool, I was a mere 4 feet behind him. Our laundry facilities sat at the end of the fenced-in pool and this was where he took a right. Turning the corner I expected to see him in the grassy area in front of the laundry. Nothing. He was gone! I didn’t see him anywhere. Frantic, I began calling his name and continuing around the other side of the pool. He was nowhere to be found.

I was devastated.

ℳ –

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