Demalurina's Tale: Part 3

Demalurina’s Tale Part 3

As Bombalurina and Plato were sitting in their pipe, talking, in walked Demalurina and DoubleTugger. The instant Bombalurina saw her daughter’s face, she knew that something was wrong. "Kitten, what’s wrong?" She asked worriedly.

Demalurina looked at her mother and Plato, and burst out wailing "Why didn’t you tell me that Macavity was my father? How could you lead me to believe that I was Plato’s daughter?! Heaviside knows that I love Plato, as my father, but, he isn’t my father! Why didn’t you tell me? Why?" Demalurina broke down crying, and fell into DoubleTugger’s arms. He set her gently down on the floor, and sat next to her.

Bombalurina rubbed her eyes with a paw "Oh kitten, I’m so sorry! I knew that I had to tell you someday, but you’re still too young! I led everyone to believe that Plato was your father, because, if you were Macavity’s daughter, you would never have any peace! Everyone would be scared of the ‘demon’s spawn’ and you wouldn’t have had a normal kittenhood! I did it only to protect you. I love Plato dearly, and you have no idea how happy it made me to believe that you really WERE his kitten!"

Plato put an arm around Bomba’s shoulders comfortingly "How did you find out?" he asked quietly.

DoubleTugger decided to answer, since Dema obviously didn’t want to say anything for the moment. "Jemima told us, Cori and Tanto found out that she’s been working for Macavay and Selerity. They have her in custody right now."

Plato shook his head, and Bombalurina looked up and hissed "Figures, that kitten has always had her eye on you, ever since you came here, Double. So it figures that she’d go do something idiotic like join up with Selerity’s gang. You know, sometimes I don’t think that kitten ever grew up."

Plato nodded and shifted, so he was a bit more comfortable. "Double, why don’t you drag some of those pillows over here, I think we have a long night ahead of us.

StarrlaRai snuck into the dungeons, and tapped on the door of Mjaum’s cage "Ey ‘Jaum, you ‘wake in t’ere?" She hissed quietly. Mjaum sat up with a start, his gray fur glinting golden in the torchlight.

"Yes, lady, I’m awake." Starrla nodded "O’tay, now, roll in th’ soot ovah theah, and look real battered up." Mjaum frowned in confusion, but did as he was told.

Soon, he looked rather dirty. Starrla grunted in satisfaction. "Tha’s great, now, I’mma drag you outta here, loike you’re a corpse, no one’ll question that." Mjaum started "Er….okay, um, what would you like me to do?" Starrla grinned "Jus’ lay down on th’ ground."

Mjaum laid down, and winced slightly as Starrla grabbed the scruff of his neck with her teeth. "Now ‘old still." She mumbled, between her teeth.

Starrla dragged him out of the dungeons, and out of sight from any of the watchtowers. When they could no longer see Selerity’s fortress, Starrla gently let go of his neck. "Sorrah, made ‘at as genteel as Oi could."

Mjaum stood up and rubbed his neck. "Quite all right, dear lady. Totally understandable, given the conditions."

Starrla grinned "Jus’ folla meh, and we’ll ‘ave you ‘ome free in no toime!" Mjaum nodded, and followed Starrla, as she led him through the dark streets of London, that were just beginning to fill up with fog.

Just when the fog was getting almost too thick for Mjaum to be able to see Starrla just ahead of him she stopped. "This ‘ere’s neutral territ’ry, none of Selerity’s baddies c’n get ta ya, nor the Jel’cles. Yew jus’ stay ‘ere till you desoide if ya wanna join up wit’ Selerity, or stay a free-roamer. An’ if ya e’er desoide ta join Selerity, jus’ tell the guard ‘at you was told ta r’port ta me. E’ll send ya ta me, an’ Oi’ll give ya some easy work. Nothin’ too bloody though, yew don’ look loike yew could ‘andle ‘at."

Mjaum nodded, and then impulsively hugged Starrla "Thank you, lady, I don’t know what I would’ve done with out you." Starrla grunted. "Yew woulda rotted in Selerity’s dungeons, ‘ats what. An’ stop callen me ‘laydy’ Oi aint no laydy, jus’ Starrla."

Mjaum nodded "Goodbye Starrla, I hope I’ll see you soon." Mjaum could hear Starrla muttering to herself, between the thick blanket of fog that now lay between them. Then he heard her voice getting softer as she ran away "Luck be wit’ ya, Jaum."

Mjaum turned around, and slowly, attempted to see his new surroundings.

Electra walked through the various alleyways of the neutral cats, simply thinking.

:I can’t believe that Jemmy betrayed us. What happened to her? Me and Her and Viccy and Etcy, we all promised that we’d grow old together, with a dozen grandkittens. Now she’s gone and betrayed us, and has to wait for the council to decide on what to do with her. And Demalurina….poor Dema, who would’ve known that she was Macavity’s daughter? Jays, when I walked by her parent’s pipe a little while ago, I heard more wailing, and arguing in that short moment, than I have in all my life. I hope she’ll be okay. She’s a nice queen, it’s odd that Jemmy wanted to hurt her so much though. Although….Jemmy has wanted to get DoubleTugger ever since he came. DoubleTugger. Now *there’s* a tom that a queen can rest her eyes on easily. Lucky Dema.:

Electra’s thoughts were interrupted, when she bumped into a warm, furry object. She looked up, startled, and was even more startled when she found herself looking into the most wondrous pair of bright blue eyes, with gold flecks in them.

"E-Excuse me. I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to bump into you." She stammered. Through the fog, she could only make out the eyes, and a large form, that appeared to be catlike.

"It’s quite alright, I don’t expect anyone to see very well in this mess." Electra blinked at the warm baritone of an older tom. "Well, I’ll just be on my way then…" She started to move off when the cat spoke again "I’m sorry, may I inconvenience you, by asking you to show me a safe place to sleep tonight?"

Electra blushed, and was glad of the fog. That voice made her think of certain things that she’d like to hear from a tom. "You can stay with me tonight, er, you can stay in the junkyard I live in, rather." She made out the impression of the cat nodding. "Please? Show me?" Electra smiled "Sure, so long as you don’t work for Selerity or Macavay…"

The tom came a little closer to her "No, I am Mjaum, just moved here from Norway. I’m lost, and can’t seem to find my humans."

Electra nodded in sympathy "Yes I know how that can be when you are new. My name’s Electra, by the way." She motioned for Mjaum to follow her, and noted with satisfaction that he was close at her heels, when she looked back. "So, Norway eh? That’s a long way away, isn’t it?" Electra said conversationally. "Yes, very far. I miss it very much." Electra hushed at the sadness in his voice, and decided to try to not make him any more uncomfortable.

They walked the rest of the way to the Junkyard in silence.

When they reached one of the various entrances to the Junkyard, Electra let out a meow/purr, and was greeted by a running white cat-form.

:Almost ghostlike: Mjaum thought.

"Leccy! Where have you been?" Electra giggled at the demanding tone in the cat’s voice. "I’ve been out picking up strange toms." The white cat gasped "You what?"

Electra batted at the white cat playfully. "Viccy….he needed a place to stay for the night, he’s new here, and can’t find his way home." Victoria sighed. "Fine then. He doesn’t work for Macavay or Selerity?" Electra shook her head. "Nope…like I said, new. Now, why don’t you get your tom out here, so he can shed some light on our mystery cat."

Victoria smiled, and purred softly "Misto…love…can you give us some help with something?"

The fog next to Victoria shimmered, and then, there was the form of another cat next to her. "Misto, could you light a witchlight for us?"

Misto grinned "Now what would you ladies need a witchlight for?" He asked teasingly. Electra coughed and looked over her shoulder at the dim form of Mjaum.

Mistoffelees blinked. "And who might this be?" He asked softly, with a hint of danger in his voice.

Electra glanced in the general direction of Misto warningly. "No, he’s a friend, and needs a place to sleep tonight, and I’d like to know what he looks like." Mistoffelees fidgeted for a moment. "Well…alright then. Brace yourselves."

Mjaum followed the kind queen, Electra; she called herself, that had so graciously offered to let him stay with her, in the junkyard that she lived in.

:That voice, it makes me think of so many things that I’d given up on years ago. But she’s probably too young for me. Besides, we’d be better as just friends.:

But deep in his heart he knew that that wouldn’t be possible.

When the magicat appeared, Mjaum waited expectantly to be challenged, or chased away, but when the tom seemed to be content to just stay next to the queen that was apparently HIS queen, Mjaum relaxed. Until, that is he heard ‘brace yourselves’. He covered his eyes with his paws, and could still see the flash of bright light that came almost immediately after he had done so.

When he uncovered his eyes, the sight before him dazzled him beyond words. He found himself staring at a mischievous looking, tan and brown queen with black stripes, and random patches of red. She was whining to a black and white tom, that he assumed was the magicat that had lit the witchlight.

"Mistooo! That hurt! Can’t you make it dim at first, and THEN make it bright? My eyes are killing me!" Mistoffelees grinned. "Sorry Lec, no can do." Misto then looked over at Mjaum. "So you’re the new one." He said "Welcome to the Junkyard"

Electra looked up, after her vision had cleared, only to find herself face to face with a *very* handsome tom. He was stocky, and well built. His coat was a steely gray, with orange highlights, and the gray shaded into black at his paws. His eyes though, they were remarkable. They were a deep blue, with gold flecks. Electra stared into Mjaum’s eyes in wonder, unable to look away.

Mjaum gasped when Electra looked into his eyes.

:She’s the one! She must be! But she’s so young! Oh Heaviside, after all these years, I’ve found the one queen I was meant to be with, and she’s too young!:

Mjaum almost burst into tears, until Electra spoke. "Oh…. my…" She said softly. She blinked a few times, then gracefully passed out.

After many hours of arguing, DoubleTugger took his leave of Bombalurina and Plato, and picked up his weary queen, and carried her to their box.

"Dema, love, we’re home." He said softly. Demalurina looked around and then looked up into his eyes. "Heaviside….Double….they…." DoubleTugger hushed her, with a paw against her lips. "Hush, love, it’s time to sleep. We’ll talk about it in the morning. Demalurina nodded, and drifted off into sleep.

Starrla paced around the dungeons, looking for someone to torture. She was in a horrible mood, especially after the dreams had come back, the dreams of HIM.

:Oh heaviside I miss him so much. It wasn’t just getting some…even though that was wonderful. It was the way he would look into my eyes, and everything would be okay…those wonderful green eyes.:

Starrla snarled and struck out at the empty cages

:Damn Selerity! Damn her to the Fireside Lair! Why did she have to drive him insane? Why did she have to goad him into attacking the Jellicles? If she hadn’t he’d still be with me!:

During her fuming, Starrla had not noticed that she had wandered into a older part of the dungeons, where the dungeons connected to Macavay’s chambers….the chambers that used to belong to Macavity, when he wanted to torture a victim himself, in privacy.

Starrla hissed when she bumped into another cat. Thinking it was simply a night guard patrolling the dungeons, she unsheathed her claws, and struck at the cat.

She looked up when a black furred paw caught her paw in mid-swipe. She gasped when she realized who she had struck at. "M-Macavay…Oi’m terr’bly sorrah suh, ya see…Oi was in a bit of a mood, an’ Oi was jus’ walking off me anger. I dinna know it twas you suh, please don’ kill meh." She pleaded.

Macavay eyed Starrla as she pleaded for her life.

:The queen is quite beautiful when she is angry, even with that atrocious accent. Maybe she’ll be of more use than that idiotic Jellicle.:

Macavay licked his lips and sensuously bit Starrla’s wrist. Starrla writhed in pain, and surprise. "Suh…? D’ya want…?" Macavay licked at the blood that dripped down Starrla’s wrist. "Of course I do, my dear. You are quite ruthless….and I find that very attractive."

Starrla blinked in surprise, and her posture turned from cowering, to seductive. "Well…’f ‘ya see it ‘at way…" She moved closer to him, and pushed her body against his. "en Oi’ll ‘ave ta show ya wot Oi know."

Mjaum rushed over to Electra when she collapsed, and took her paw in his. "Electra, dear, wake up." He pleaded. Misto frowned slightly and glared at a spot between Electra’s eyes. Electra groaned, and sat up groggily. "Whu…what happened?" She mumbled dizzily.

Mjaum supported her back with a paw. "You passed out. Are you all right?" Electra looked up at Mjaum, with a look of wonder in her eyes. "What are you? I’ve never felt this way before."

Misto coughed slightly and looked at Victoria. "We’d best be on our way dear. I’ll just leave the witchlight here, so you two can *ehm* get aquatinted better."

Electra looked over at Misto "Just what do you mean by that?" Misto shook his head, and teleported himself and Victoria out.

Electra grumbled about magicats being more trouble than they were worth, and looked back at Mjaum. "I seem to need a bit of help getting up, would you mind?" Mjaum hastily helped Electra to her feet, and made sure she was steady, before letting her go. "Lady, will you be all right?" Electra nodded. "Yes, but, would you mind helping me to my box? I don’t know if I’ll make it there, without passing out again."

Mjaum frowned slightly "You pass out often?" Electra smiled sardonically. "No, just that whenever I think of you, I seem to get a bit lightheaded."

Mjaum blushed, tinting his gray fur a light pink. "Are you sure that’s it? I mean, it could simply be fatigue.." Electra shook her head "No, I’m pretty sure that it’s you." Mjaum smiled and looked into Electra’s warm golden eyes "Quite the heartbreaker, you are."

Electra blinked as he looked into her eyes and muttered something. "What was that Mjaum?" Mjaum shook his head "Nothing, come, I’ll help you to your box."

Electra smiled and walked beside him, in a non-direct path to her box. Mjaum impulsively put his paw around her shoulders, and smiled down at her. Electra nearly fainted again, as she felt his arm around her shoulders.

:Heaviside… have those arms around me always…..would be a dream….how is it that he can make me feel this way? I’ve never known an emotion like this before….is this what mother was trying to explain to me? About what would happen when I found the one? I hope so, he’s so incredible….I…I think I love him:

Electra looked up at Mjaum and bit her tongue, to keep from saying all that out loud. Mjaum looked at her in concern. "Are you all right You seem a bit distant." Electra looked at the ground, as her arm snaked around his waist. "Well…the thing is….I ehm….well….you see…." Mjaum smiled "Just spit it out."

Electra laughed softly "It’s really quite ridiculous, you see….I…I think….Heaviside why is this so hard for me to say? I think I love you."

Mjaum stopped walking and looked at Electra, amazed. "Electra….it’s not ridiculous….because….well….I think I am too….er..…I think I’m in love with you too….not I think I’m in love with me, because I’m not, really I’m not that self centered….."

Electra cut his nervous babbling off with a soft kiss. "Good" she murmured softly "Now, if you’ll excuse me, I think I’m going to faint again." Mjaum put his paw at the small of her back in case she should have the volition to fall over. "Dear queen, if it enables me to be with you for a prolonged period of time, then faint away my dear." Electra laughed and put her paws around his neck, and kissed him again.

Starrla walked away from Macavay’s chambers, leaving him sated, and drowzing.

:I have to talk to someone….but who? Heaviside if only Brittnila were here….but she isn’t…..hardly anyone of the old tribe is left….not even Flame….but who cared about Flame? Certainly not me. Good thing she’s dead or she’d be at odds with Selerity, and only the Everlasting Cat knows how that would turn out. Maybe I just need time to think.:

Starrla started walking aimlessly around Selerity’s grounds. Eventually she found herself at the clearing past Selerity’s tower, where she had dragged Mjaum the night before.

:Wonder what he’s up to?:

Starrla tracked Mjaum’s pawprints to a place where they met up with another set of pawprints coming from Jellicle territory.

:Uh oh…looks like he got himself mixed up with the Jellicles…Maybe I can warn him off before it’s too late…:

Starrla followed the set of prints, until they reached the edge of the junkyard. Starrla stopped, but the tracks went farther in….and she didn’t dare go in alone… She ducked when she saw a pair of cats emerge from a cardboard box, and start walking out of the junkyard.

One was a multi-colored queen who looked extremely upset, and the other was an extremely handsome tom, who seemed to be trying to comfort the queen. Starrla gasped when the queen came closer.

:Great Heaviside!! That’s Demalurina! I would recognize those markings anywhere! That tom must be DoubleTugger, her mate, Marzi told me he was quite the looker.:

Starrla’s first impulse was to race out there and kill Demalurina, and take her chances with DoubleTugger, but then, after watching the two talk, while standing on the edges of the junkyard, she felt sorry for the queen. All the strays had been informed, of how Macavay’s one time lover Jemima, blurted out the whole thing and was taken into custody by the Jellicles. The poor queen was probably still trying to cope with the shock of finding out that her real father was Macavity. Everyone knew how much of a shock that would be to a Jellicle.

:Poor thing, maybe she needs a friend too…..she may have a tom, but a tom will never compare to a sympathizing queen. Maybe it’s because Macavity was her father, or because she could’ve been the kitten we never had……Macavity knew how much I wanted a daughter….:

Starrla got over her initial ‘shyness’ and stood up, where Demalurina and DoubleTugger could see her.

DoubleTugger looked over, at a movement behind a crate, and hissed at the unknown female. "Who are you? Why were you spying on us?" Demalurina looked at Starrla and gasped. "I know you, I must know you, but from where?"

Starrla came a little closer to them "Oi wasn’t eavesdroppin’, Oi was makin’ sure Oi knew who yew were b’fore Oi came out, an’ made meself a target."

DoubleTugger growled deep in his throat, and muttered "You may know us, but I’m positive that I don’t know you."

Starrla scowled at him "’Course ya don’ know meh! D’ya think Oi would be stupid enough ta let yew know who Oi was, when Oi know Oi’m not welcome ‘ere?"

Demalurina stepped towards her, silencing her. "Who are you? I feel like I know you…."

Starrla hung her head "M’ name’s StarrlaRai, but ever’one calls meh Starrla. In a way, ya do know meh, kit. Ya see…Oi…..Oi was your father’s queen. ‘Is main gal."

Demalurina gasped "You were Macavity’s queen?" Starrla nodded "’Eavisoide knows Oi miss ‘Im more ‘an yew could ‘magine, tha’s why Oi came ‘ere, I know yew jus’ found out bout ‘Im bein your da an’ all, and Oi wanted ta talk ta ya bout it."

DoubleTugger stepped between the two queens and glared at Starrla "What makes you think that I’d be stupid enough to let you be alone with her? For all I know, you have a dozen hench-cats out here, ready to catnap her the moment I leave."

Starrla sneered at Double. "Get outta me face pretty boy, if Oi wanted ta catnap ‘er, Oi woulda done it when yew two were talkin, ‘stead of makin meself known ta ya. Oi may be evil ta yew, but Oim not stupid."

DoubleTugger nodded reluctantly and stepped aside. "I’ll stay out of earshot, but I’ll keep my eye on you." Starrla nodded "fair ‘nough."

Demalurina sat next to the crate where Starrla had first hidden herself. "Did you love him like they all say you did?" Starrla sighed and sat next to her "Oi did, an’ Oi still do. ‘E was’na always a bad cat, sure ‘e did things ‘e prolly shouldn’ave, but mainly kept ‘Imself clean, ya know, buggin’ Jel’cles ever’ once in a while, stealin the odd can o’ cat food. T’en Seler’ty started gettin on ‘is case about puttin fear inta’ th’ ‘earts o’ th’ Jel’cles, an’ bein more evil. ‘E list’ned to ‘er, b’cause she’d taken care of ‘im when they were abandoned by their mothah, so, ‘e sorta’ worshipped ‘er a bit, always wanted ta be loike ‘er, Everlastin’ Cat knows ‘e wanted ta be loike ‘er. ‘ Ventually ‘e did b’come loike ‘er….. too much loike ‘er." Demalurina put her paw on Starrla’s shoulder "I’m sorry, I didn’t know…." Starrla shook her head "’Ardly anyone knew….Oi only knew b’cause Oi saw ‘im change, day by day, ‘e became a little more ‘eartless ever’ day. Th’ day ‘e took your mothah…..well……’at was th’ day Oi knew Oi’d lost ‘im forevah."

Demalurina looked down at the ground. "My mother, she told me that he was pure evil….but now I’m not so sure about that…" Selerity sighed "Look, kit’ Oi know ‘at Oi’m s’posed ta be listnen ta your prollems wit dealin’ wit findin out bout Macavity an’ all, but would ya listen ta my prollems fer a bit? Oi never ‘ad anyone ta really talk to, only my brothah, an’ ‘alf th’ toime, I’m sure ‘e didna e’en care."

Demalurina nodded at Starrla "Of course I will…..every queen needs a friend to talk to. Didn’t you have friends when you were a kitten?" Starrla sighed. "’Ell…Oi guess ‘at Brittnila was me friend….’f ya could call ‘er a ‘friend’. But, th’ way you’re thinkin’, nah….Oi nevah ‘ad any friends." Dema shook her head sadly "I’m sorry, a kittenhood without friendship doesn’t seem like much of a kittenhood at all."

Starrla nodded "All us strays, ‘ell, none of us was allowed ta ‘ave much o’ a kit’n’ood. We all ‘ad ta obey Seler’ty an Mac, an’ learn ta kill wit’out gettin’ squirmy ‘bout blood an all."

Demalurina’s jaw dropped in shock. "They exposed you to blood and gore when you were kittens??" Starrla nodded, "Yup, an’ ‘ventually we all learned ta not worry ‘bout the stink. Jus’ ta do our job, an’ do it roight."

Dema rubbed her paw against her ear, hardly believing what she was hearing.

:Heaviside….it’s amazing that she’s not as heartless as the rest…but what if they aren’t heartless? Maybe it’s just because we’re enemies we think that they’re heartless, and they think that we’re spineless.:

A sudden thought occurred to Dema at that moment.

:Heaviside…..what if I could sneak in there, pretend to be a stray, and see what their life is like….that would be incredible!:

Demalurina looked up at Starrla with a light in her eyes "Starrla! Would you want a friend?" Starrla looked at Dema suspiciously "Wot are ya get’n at?" Demalurina grinned "Well….I was thinking, maybe I could disguise myself, and pretend to be a stray. That way, I could live with you, and learn how you live."

Starrla glared at her suspiciously "Is t’is a trick, ta get insoide our territ’ry? ‘Cause if it is…Oi moight ‘ave ta ferget at yer pretty boy is ovah theah, and kill ya."

Dema shook her head. "No no, I think that it would be immensely interesting to find out how the strays live, and in the process, you would be getting a friend." Starrla narrowed her eyes "Oi still dun see wot’s in it fer ya?"

Dema grinned eagerly "We might be able to defeat Selerity and Macavay and get the strays and the Jellicles united!"

Starrla saw the light in Dema’s eyes when she mentioned uniting the Jellicles and the strays

:Hell….it just might work, and she’s got the right idea, killing Selerity and Macavay…damn…the worst they could do to me is kill me, and they wouldn’t get to me before I killed myself. Mac sired himself a pretty sharp queen there.:

Starrla nodded at Dema "Yew’ve got th’ roight idea ‘on, an’ Oi think ‘at Oi could ‘elp ya." Demalurina frowned suddenly. "What about my parents? And DoubleTugger? I’d have to leave him, oh Heaviside….I’d miss him so much."

Starrla almost cried when she heard Dema express her concern about missing her mate.

:Heaviside…it’s how I felt every time that Mac went on a raid. Worrying if he’d ever come back.:

Starrla scuffed her paw in the dirt. "’On, Oi dun know….maybe jus’ tell em at yer visitin’ a relative." Dema nodded "Yes…that’s what I’ll do. Uhm…what about a disguise? I’m positive that everyone there would recognize me."

Starrla grinned "Oi ‘ave a bit ‘o dye ‘at will make yer fur black, wit a ‘int of red in it fer about a month. Will ‘at do?" Dema nodded ecstatically. "Perfect…..shall I meet you here tomorrow morning?" Starrla nodded. "Tamorrah t’en."

DoubleTugger watched the two queens converse.

:I can’t believe that Dema is trusting that evil queen. Well…..she’s smart, I’m sure she’ll be smart about what she says.:

Demalurina walked towards DoubleTugger, a satisfied smirk on her face. Double looked at Dema suspiciously "And what might you be up to, my lovely queen?"

Dema giggled and poked him in the side. "Queen stuff, and I’m not to enlighten any toms either." DoubleTugger shook his head "Queens, you always have to be so mysterious don’t you?" Dema nodded "Of course, it keeps you toms on your paws." Double laughed and kissed his queen.

The next morning, Dema met up with Starrla just outside the junkyard, she had left a note with her family, and snuck out while Double was still asleep. "Starrla…..will I be able to see him, during the month that I’ll be with you?" Starrla shook her head "Prolly not dearie, e’s a good fighter, an it twould look suspicious ‘f Oi brung ‘Im in fer no reason atall." Dema nodded sadly. "All right, I suppose you’re right. Well….lets go. I’m ready to meet my new family."

Starrla nodded and led her into one of the emptier alleyways, and began combing the dye into Dema’s fur, as she told Dema of the background she had worked out for her.

"Yer name is Kiahna, yew are a street cat from New York, yer fam’ly jus moved ‘ere, an’ t’en t’ey des’erted yew. Yew ‘ate bein noice ta toms, an’ dun ‘andle author’ty well. Oi found ya ere in th’ alleyway, an’ yew decoided at yew’d be a good prisoner torturer, loike meh, an decoided ta join up."

Dema shook her head "Starrla… I really have to torture cats?" Starrla nodded. "It fits th’ description, yer a real mean queen, an Oim gonna teach ya ‘ow ta beat ever’ tom in th’ gang." Dema nodded, and sighed. The next month would be long, and interesting.