1:10 a.m, like clockwork, he comes to sing us the song of his people.
The first time my daughter saw him, from a distance, she said, "Hey, is that somebody's golden retriever?" No, it's not. It's the Wizard Howl. He's many complex and problematic things, but first, for a cat, he's HUGE. Two feet tall at the forehead, not counting the ears or tail. I call him "Howl" because he's pretty eponymous, but also because he's ginger and could benefit from neutering. I suspect he may be part bobcat, or something.
When I first saw him, he was wandering around my apartment complex. I thought he was an indoor/ outdoor cat. Then, a couple of weeks in, I heard a woman's voice calling, then, "Holy shit, it's my cat! Come on, boy! Come home!" They drove off.
Three weeks later, like the song, the cat came back.
A neighbor corralled him to her mother's house, five miles away. He got out. He came back.
He adores my cat. She greets him with a prout and they go hunting together. Last week, she felt like staying in and snuggling. He dropped a dead bird on the doorstep. When I let her out, she brought it to the end of the walk and sat primly, waiting for him to devour it together. Or... whatever they do. I don't want to think about it. I'm sure I DON'T want to know and I'm glad cats are for the most part self-cleaning.
He comes in. He thinks I'm AWESOME and loves to be petted, but he will always be skittish and will never let me get between him and a door. I think he may have read "Apt Pupil" or something.
I'd keep him in a heartbeat, but my apartment complex has a one-pet limit, and he sprays. He still has his doodads, you betcha. I'd take him to get neutered but he will NOT do live traps or carriers, or even boxes, and I'm frankly afraid to try. YOU stick your typing fingers in that industrial-kitchen Cuisinart, I'm FINE.
He doesn't like dry food. He's skinny enough that I think
he doesn't have a home, but I can't be sure of that. He has all his pawpads. I've learned not to put my cat's wet-food leftovers out; he will ALWAYS drop a dead mouse on my doorstep the morning after. I'm not sure of the reasoning behind it--- who can say what goes on in furry heads?--- but there's a definitely cause-and-effect. If I were better at bone stripping, I could open a dandy Etsy fascinator store with tiny mouse skulls.
Um. That's the Wizard Howl. So far... somehow I think we've got more stories coming.