Miss Autumn is a fine protector, always doing her best to keep me safe even from myself. She’s also a good supervisor, keeping an eye on whatever I’m doing whether it’s baking bread which she can get close to, or mowing the lawn which she can’t. She’ll look and sniff at any food I’m preparing on the counter next to which is the kitchen garbage can where she sits to watch, but she’s never put paw, tongue, or tooth to any of it. I put food on the table without worry that she might get to it; she’ll sit in a chair and look, lean forward to sniff or examine, but will go no further.
When I arise in the morning (or early afternoon as it sometimes is) she’s always right there waiting for me, dutifully, to keep me out of harm’s way. The routine is this: We go into the kitchen to make my coffee, and then it’s down the stairs to the office. Autumn insists that she be the first to enter, and her first order of business is to look behind the door. Finding no monsters there, she checks under the glider rocker where Amethyst sits when she visits me in my office. From there she investigates under the desk, then under the shelves where my workstation and servers are. Satisfied that all is well in those locations, she looks at the window. Depending upon, well, whatever it is that it depends upon, she might or might not jump into the window to look outside.
Except for brief forays upstairs for a snack or a drink, The Awesome spends most of her time either in the office or in the family room which is just outside the office. When I go upstairs for more coffee or a bite to eat she comes along. She reaches the foot of the stairs ahead of me, then pauses to determine whether I’m going upstairs or out into the garage. Once I turn to climb the stairs she races ahead, turns on the landing, and waits on the second or third step above the landing to be petted. That’s important, the bit of affection in the middle of the journey. After all, if there’s a monster up there requiring her to put her life on the line in my defense she might never get another chance.
Once that’s done, she finishes the trip to the top of the stairs, looks left down the hall in case there’s some peril there in need of an Awesome vanquishing, looks quickly around the living room (just in case), and waits for her slow moving two-leg to arrive.
A few minutes ago I was on the sofa reading, with Miss Awesome on the love seat napping, when a noise or an imagined noise brought her to alert. She looked all around, and seeing nothing, leapt onto the window sill to examine the outside world more closely. Finding nothing there out of the ordinary, she crossed over to the sofa to reassure me that all was well, and then resumed her station on the love seat.
In about an hour when I retire, she’ll lead me down the hall and insist upon being first into the room. Once there, she’ll check behind the door, make a quick turn around the room, and check on Amethyst — should Amethyst’s breathing be too quiet, Autumn will jump onto the bed for a closer look, otherwise she’ll take up her station in the laundry basket at the foot of the bed. She’s got cat beds but won’t have a thing to do with them. We keep them around in case she might some day change her mind, but so far she’s quite content with the laundry basket so we leave it there for her. If she becomes concerned about either of us for some reason known only to her, she’ll get on the bed and, just as quietly and gently as she can, make her way to the head of whichever of us she’s worried about. Once satisfied that her people are still breathing she’ll leave as respectfully quietly as she came, blissfully unaware that there no such thing as sneaking across a waterbed.
When Amethyst arises as the very unheathenly hour of 3:30AM to prepare for her workday, Autumn will be there, and will lead her out from the bedroom, taking the lead so she’s first into harm’s way should there be any… what? Monsters? Mean little kids who carry kittens by their faces? Potentially poisonous insects or arachnids? Whatever it might be that she’s defending us from, she does a very fine job of it. And the proof’s in the results: We’re still alive and well. 🙂
I’ve never been protected by a cat before. I feel loved.