Above, Linus the cat and "his" baby, Rosebud.
Linus has never had a normal life. I don't think he knows he's a cat. He's not quite human either, of course, but some sort of strange human/cat hybrid. I bottle-raised him from the time he was a day old -- a woman found him and his brother, newly born, in the trunk of her car, after seeing their mother jump out of her back window while she was driving. She tried giving them milk and brought them into the veterinary hospital where I worked the next day -- Linus's brother had eaten quite a bit of the cow's milk, and he ultimately didn't make it. (You just can't feed a kitten cow's milk and expect it to survive.) But Linus had not eaten well, so he survived, and I raised him on kitten milk replacer. He went everywhere with me, since he needed to be fed every couple of hours. He went to restaurants in my pocket, he went to dog shows in my car. I was pregnant with J at the time, so Linus was still quite a young cat when J was born, and I guess he figured J was his littermate. They were inseparable, and the vast majority of the photos I have of J (and subsequently Zoo Boy) as babies has Linus in them as well. From that point forward, Linus only wanted to be with the kids, he pretty much stopped having anything to do with me. Instead, he became the world's best kid's cat -- he let them dress him up, stick toy kittens on him as though he was nursing them, and fawn all over him.
About 2 months before Rosebud's birth, Linus suddenly took an intense interest in me again. He started following me around, crawling all over me whenever I sat down, sleeping up against my belly at night. He started greeting me at the door when I came home, and watching me intently whenever I was at home. It confused us for the first week or so, then we figured it out -- he somehow realized I was pregnant and was waiting for the baby.
Now Rosebud's here, and Linus doesn't really want much to do with me anymore. Why would he, he's got the baby he wanted at long last!
5-7 year mission preview, realized
6 years ago