1He showed up on the worst day possible. Cold, windy, and lots of snow. The poor little furball was so covered he looked like a white cat, not the gray tabby that he was. Frozen and half starved, he showed up on Amy’s back porch just as the wind kicked up. No way Amy could let him freeze out there.
A new home and a new name, Tiger the tabby cat wasn’t as friendly as Amy would have hoped. He never hissed, but he liked to hide. Under the bed, in the closet, and especially under the tree. And the kids didn’t help, either. They had been crying for a pet for months, and now that they had one, they weren’t going to leave it alone. Maybe a puppy would be a better choice for them. They needed a young animal they could play with. Four noisy children were too much for one tired out old tomcat.
Tiger showed up at the beginning of December. And the beginning of a harsh winter. Amy often sat near the fireplace enjoying the warm glow after the kids were in bed. Tiger joined her, lounging on the carpet. Poor Tiger. He must have been starving a long time. He would gulp his food so fast, his belly would balloon out when he lay on his side.
Christmas came quickly, and Amy had lots of presents under the tree. She would often find her kitty nestled under the tree with the gifts. Luckily, he never climbed the tree. Lots of people told stories of how their cats got up in the Christmas tree and knocked ornaments off or even knocked the whole tree down.
The cat was nowhere to be found on Christmas morning, but Amy had a hunch he was curled up under the tree. Again. That poor kitty was in for a shock when four eager children started tearing into the presents.
“Mommy, mommy! Come look!” Her eight-year-old bounced in Amy’s bedroom doorway. Usually, the two youngest jumped on her bed on Christmas and forced her awake too early. Amy rolled out of bed and slipped into a bathrobe. Why couldn’t she smell coffee? Her twelve-year-old usually made her coffee on Christmas.
In the living room, the four kids were gathered around the tree. Or, more specifically, one side of the tree while most of the presents were ignored. “Mommy, lookie!” One of the kids whispered and pointed to the presents. Something squeaked. Amy’s breath caught in her throat. Did a mouse get in? She peeked over her kids’ heads.
Under the tree, in a gap between the gifts, was Tiger. And four newborn kittens.