After breakfast the next morning, Daniel ran out the backdoor of his aunt’s and uncle’s farm house and into the barn. Sure enough, he found Fearful Symmetry relaxing in a patch of sunlight.
Aunt Abby said that Uncle Ethan could name their dogs if she could name the cats. Fearful Symmetry was the mama cat and head mouser in charge of the barn and surrounding area. She was named for a line in a famous poem by William Blake. Auntie had an impressive library in the basement, which is where she also kept the violin she hadn’t played for years, but Daniel wasn’t attracted to poetry, so he rarely sampled any of her tomes.
Fearful Symmetry was getting older but still could hold her own. One of her sons or daughters would eventually fulfill her role, and on that day, Daniel would miss her. Some of his fondest memories of the farm were playing with Fearful.
“Hi, old girl.” The cat raised her head and then exposed her neck as Daniel petted her. “You knew I was coming, didn’t you?”
The feline rolled onto her back and the boy scratched her tummy. Soon low, loud purring could be heard from her furry throat.
A few yards away, the three kittens the Harris’ kept from Fearful’s last litter were playing with a blue ball of yarn, an odd accessory inside a barn. The yarn was dirty and littered with flecks of hay, but kittens are oblivious to such details.
One kitten looked a lot like Fearful and another Daniel figured must resemble the sire. The last kitten came over the ball of yarn, and for a moment, a trick of light made it look pink.
Then, as the kittens continued to play, Daniel realized it wasn’t a trick of light.
“A pink kitten. Why a pink kitten?”
Daniel knew a girl at school who wanted to dye her cat pink (fortunately, her parents said ‘no’), but there was no reason for Aunt Abby to consent to such a thing.
The pink kitten stopped playing and began staring at the boy. The pit of Daniel’s stomach seemed to drop out as the kitten raised its hackles and hissed.
The other two kittens scattered and even Fearful got up and ran.
“An anomaly?” The angry kitten advanced on him.
This concept is loosely based on Iain Kelly’s recent A to Z Challenge 2017 story series. Every day, Iain crafted another puzzle piece to his murder mystery that had me and his other readers spellbound. I doubt I can create the suspense he conjured up, but when my wife got a giant A to Z jigsaw puzzle for our two-year-old granddaughter, I thought I’d give it a whirl.
I don’t have a lot of time, so I think each “letter” will be shorter and I’m not sure I can write one every day, but I’ll do my best.
Let me know what you think.