I walked out of the studio late that night. The air was cool and a few stars were twinkling through the wisps of clouds. There wasn't much of a moon leaving the small parking lot at my work site very dark.
Ringing through the darkness, I could hear the very clear and very terrifying cries of a cat. Not just a cat, I could definitely tell it was a kitten. I could also tell it was scared . . . maybe even hurt.
I grew up in a home where we constantly loved animals. My mom would often bring home abandoned or hurt critters and nurse them back to health. It's a part of my mentality to always "help the helpless".
But I was so tired. It was almost 11 at night, I'd had a long day, and I was only wearing a hoodie, basketball shorts and slippers.
I could almost literally feel the weight of my shoulder angel and shoulder demon sitting on each shoulder blade, whispering things in my ears. I walked back and forth from my car toward the direction of the meowing several times before I finally let out a deep sigh and got in my car. I put my car in drive and pulled to the chain link fence. I then put the car in park and turned on my brights, letting the light flood the field on the other side of the fence. There in the field, was a stack of scrap metal and I instantly knew that was where the kitten was. Without much of a plan, I got out of my car and walked to the fence. I started saying things in a sing-song voice as I carefully scaled my way up the fence.
"It's okay. I'm coming, baby kitty."
"Keep meowing so I can find you."
I kept carrying on a conversation like this throughout the whole rescue mission, which is quite ridiculous since cats don't understand English. But every time I spoke, I got a response of high-pitched kitten squeaks.
Once I made it to the top of the fence, only snagging my mesh shorts one time, I jumped down to the ground. I continued speaking to the feline while I bent down to see if I could locate it in the metal. I took my cell phone out, using the dim light to look down in the cracks between the pile. I couldn't see anything. So that's when I nervously started to move the pieces of metal. It was my only option, really. Each scrap was over six feet long and a lot denser than I had hoped. I could lift one piece at a time and move it to a new location. Not only were the strips of metal heavy, but I also had to be extremely gentle so that none of the other pieces would slip as I lifted one piece out. The last thing I needed was to smash and kill a kitten while trying to save it. After moving close to 15 pieces of metal, there was still no kitten. I could still hear it desperately crying out. My arms felt like jello and I was so afraid of what I might find. What if it was badly injured? What if it attacked me or something? What if someone saw me in the field moving metal around and called the cops? After taking a moment to catch my breath, I continued to move pieces of metal. I kept trying to coax the kitten to come out but I started sounding much more desperate at this point. I got down to the very last piece of metal and before I lifted it, I let out a, "This kitten better be really cute."
I lifted the metal and the next thing I said was, "Oh, it's a mutant cat."
Curled up in a shivering little ball sat a grey puffy creature partly buried in the dirt. It turned its little head up to me and continued crying, its scared blue eyes looked clouded over. Its grey fur looked coarse and frizzy and was full of dirt clods. I bent down and scooped it up, holding it gingerly in the palm of my hand. The poor thing didn't seem to be injured but its belly was hard and bloated. I wondered when it had last eaten. I cooed comforting words and it started to calm down and immediately tried to suck on my hand, searching for sustenance.
Now I needed to get back over the fence.
I carefully slid the kitten through a gap at the bottom of the fence. I then climbed back over and then picked up the creature I had heroically (yes, heroically) rescued from a heaping pile of metal. I then drove home while the cat continued to cry as it dug its needle-like claws through my shorts and into my leg.
As I pulled up to our place, I prayed that Brian wouldn't be mad and I prayed even harder that Luna wouldn't be mad (Luna isn't too fond of other cats). The kitten continued its bloodcurdling screaming the entire walk to my front door. When I entered our living room, Brian had an alarmed look on his face.
"I rescued it. It was trapped under a pile of metal."
Brian immediately jumped up from the couch. "It's probably hungry. I'll go buy some kitten formula."
My heart immediately swelled with love because I knew I had married the right guy. A lot of guys would be annoyed, maybe even mad, had their wife brought home a starving, crying kitten in the middle of the night. But Brian has a big heart and he understands that his wife does too (and she's also a little crazy). Fifteen minutes later, he returned with a bottle and formula. I forgot about every single thing he'd done that day to annoy me as he mixed up a bottle for the abandoned kitten. Luna prowled around the room, ears flat and would occasionally hiss if she ever felt at all threatened by the living thing that was 10 times smaller than her. After finally getting the crying cat to suck the bottle, it didn't want to stop. If you're ever having a bad day, watch a kitten suck from a tiny bottle because it will melt your heart.
It was the cutest thing. It wrapped its tiny paws around the bottle and smacked its lips when it was done eating. We then found a box and an old towel and created a temporary home for the fluff ball.
After three days of Luna being butt hurt and Brian and I taking turns bottle feeding the baby, we finally found a good home for it and I felt that my good deed for the month was done.
So we had quite the adventure rescuing a kitten. The biggest lesson I learned is that Luna might hate our future children. Oh well, she'll have to get over it.