29 November 2013

[liff] Goodbye, Mysterious Warrior Archie

2964.Our mysterious sojourner, Archie, left us this week.

Here was an oddball feline – well, none of our cats were ever particularly 'normal', but we likes 'em quirky.

Archie came to my mother-in-law, a long time ago, battered and in need of care. He was a tough guy, with a single snaggly ear, who had apparently emerged from a battle with some opponent and, seeing my mom-in-law nearby, figured he'd go for help, going 'You think I look bad? You shoulda see'd the other guy!"

He was the strong, silent type for years, but recently he became talkative. He had a miaow as smoky as his coat. He was a sweet, loyal guy whose ambition in life was apparently to be The Wife™'s fur hat while she slept.

To the best of our guessing, he was 18 years old. He had started to take on that old-cat spindliness that old cats will do, his coat lost his lustre, and he began to slow. He was more susceptible to infections, contracting an intractable one above his nose that affected his rugged, handsome visage, but he never let it stop him. He stayed by Wife like bodyguard, trailing her through the house.

Dr Behrends, at Montavilla, pronounced the sentence. Archie was, in that inscrutable way that animals do, choosing his time and getting his affairs in order. He was at the end of his life and knew it. And so, he turned off the lights in the rooms of his life, one by one, in the most dignified way. And then, two Saturdays ago, he spent 14 hours in Wife's arms. And then he was gone.

He was a sweet guy, old before we knew him, tougher than most because someone thought declawing was the thing to do.

He gave us his best. I hope he left us thinking we did same.

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