Quintus (Quintilian? we’re calling him both) is a happy boy. He has sun.
The animal shelter did not have sunlight for kitties. Quint likes the sun.
The new quarters appear to be highly satisfactory. I had tried to resist getting two extra kittens (why?), and the rather desperate volunteer lady said they’d even be okay in a closet for a long time, since they’d spent most of their short lives in a kennel (together, the brothers). Probably she was right, and certainly it would have been better that than being killed. (They made it out by a whisker, with a day to spare). But they really, really like the space and variety of Sair’s room. And probably eventually the whole house, and the world.
She was a little worried, since they had been confined since they were tiny, that they might have a hard time learning to negotiate in a big space. Or even not really know how to play. Not to worry.
Time to play pounce and chase. First pounce.
I can’t get a good photo of chase, because it is just blurs.
If they aren’t asleep, they are playing, and they really don’t seem to be at all lacking in determination or invention. Or fluency of being in the world. They are incredibly athletic and graceful. It’s rather like watching otters: a stream of movement, supple and unceasing. And their minds are on all the time.
They have a pattern. Quint is the leader and pioneer. He’s into everything first. (And into everything.) Then comes Sextus, first watching his brother, then checking things out for himself. Then, usually, a second pass by Quint, in case Sextus found anything new. I think they have hit, pulled, shoved, sat on, or bitten, everything they can reach in the room. And they can reach pretty far. They also try to climb the wall.
It’s all his.
My suspicion is that they were kept together for Sextus’ sake. Sextus is much the more feral of the two, but prettier. Having his brother with him probably made him seem more potentially tame, and having his cuter brother probably was thought to improve Quint’s chances. Black cats can have a hard time of it. For whatever reason, I’m glad they did it, because the boys are very loving to each other. (And they also tolerate, and even play with, Doc!)
Apparently their story is that they were trapped as ferals at an Alley Cats Allies colony, kept at their trailer (?) for a while, and then moved to the Animal Shelter back in May. And all that time in a kennel together, with brief bouts in the exercise room – where apparently they just tried to hide. They had lots of handling, but not much of it voluntary.
The shelter volunteers were telling me to just grab them and pat them. My take on it, though, is that I can’t have cats I need to grab, they have to be willing to come to me. So I’ve been being non-threatening, and talking to them all the time, and just waiting for them to figure things out. Which hadn’t been happening yet.
So here is the Big News:
That is Quint. On my lap. And here too:
My person is mine.
He did tell Doc to back off when he turned up wanting to share the lap. Doc, luckily, is utterly unflappable, and just settled in on the other side.
This morning Quint suddenly decided that I was mom, and all the volunteers at the shelter, and maybe even myself too, and I belong to him. He climbed into my lap, crawled into my hair, found my shoulder and armpit, and generally has tamed me for good. He likes being patted and chomping on ears and fingers. All the hours of work by all those volunteers has paid off. The connections clicked in his little head.
Actually, he both licks and chomps. He’s still a baby.
I think probably Sextus will come around soon. He was watching all this very closely. And walked around me carefully, checking things out. Maybe not today, but soon.