The past week has been a major roller coaster of emotions for both me and D. Last Sunday afternoon, Mercury, our kitty, didn't come in after a rainstorm. Then she didn't come in for the night, and on Monday morning she still hadn't appeared at the back door crying to come in and eat. I tried not to panic and D searched the woods calling her name. I tried to be calm figuring she had just wandered into someone's open garage or shed to escape the rain and had gotten trapped. By Tuesday there was still no sign of her and D and I canvassed the neighborhood putting signs on all of the communal mailboxes.
By Wednesday there was still no sign of her. D rang doorbells on the street and handed out flyers. I had called animal control and the local shelters, plus a few of the local vets to alert them that she was missing. My hope really began to fade. On Thursday or Friday D was visited by a neighborhood boy who has made it his persponal mission to find Mercury. He's canvassing the neighborhood on his bike looking for the cat. He rang the bell on Sunday letting us know that he hadn't found her yet but was not going to give up. "I will not fail. I will find her and bring her back to you and you will live happily ever after" is what he said. If only everyone had such a dedicated cat hunter in their neighborhood. I should mention that the boy, I'll call him William, is probably about 13 and has an intellectual disability. He has such a drive to find our cat that we don't want him to feel like a failure if he can't find her...we want to make sure he knows it's not his fault and that we are so grateful for his help and drive to find her.
I try to remain positive and hope that the cat has wandered off and is enjoying the food at someone else's house for a little while, but the reality is that she has probably fallen prey to one of the bigger and more wild animals that live in the woods and wetlands around our house. We had been warned by the neighbors when we moved in that many cats had gone missing from our neighborhood, but Mercury's joy at being outside overruled the warnings. As a former city cat, it was like she had died and gone to heaven having mice to chase, bugs to eat, tall grass to play in, and a warm stoop to lie on. I couldn't deny her that pleasure.
I keep thinking I hear her cry, but it's always my imagination. I leave the basement door open for her just like I always have, and D leaves fresh food on the deck for her every morning. I pray that miraculously she will just show up on the back deck someday and it will be as if she never left. She's been my constant companion for 5 1/2 years and even though D says he didn't want a cat, she has come to be his co-worker in the past 8 months that he's been working from home. She loves our family snuggle time, and is my nightly reading buddy. I can't even express how much I miss her and worry that she is or was out there in the wild suffering.