Fantastical Pet Care

Taking care of a new cat was already hard work. It was worrisome trying to see if a new kitten was settling in. There was a whole list of worries new owners could have – constantly checking for warning signs that their cat was getting sick, stressing over their kitten’s fear during the first visit to an animal hospital, or their lack of interest in a newly purchased cat toy.

The last thing Ruby and Bee expected to worry about their new cat was him being a fire hazard.

“Get water!” Ruby cried out as she tried to stamp the small flame building on the carpet out. Their kitten watched, eyes big and innocent, from where he sat. Ruby never would have guessed he was the culprit if she hadn’t seen the fireball leap from his mouth herself.

Bee raced back into the room. Water exploded from the bucket they threw. Ruby got soaked from head to toe, but so did the fire. The only sign it had been there at all was the small wisp of smoke rising from the charred carpet. 

Ruby and Bee looked at each other, looked over to the cat and back again. “I’m going to book an appointment with a Carnbourne Vet. Right. Now.”

The kitten began to lick his fur, unfazed. 

“Wait. Wait!” Bee grabbed onto her arm. Their eyes were wide, body shaking with shock, but their tone was resolute. “What are you going to say?”

“The cat breathed fire,” Ruby said. As the words left her mouth, she knew that no one would believe them. Hopelessness and fear filled her body. She turned to the cat. “What was that?”

The cat tilted its head sideways, blinked once, and barked. It sounded like it came from a pitbull, not from the palm-sized kitten in front of her. Ruby, in shock, began to laugh. 

“Great!” She smiled, but she didn’t find the situation funny at all. “He can join our dogs in their puppy classes!” 

Bee was filled with their own concern but they kept their expression calm, much to Ruby’s mounting annoyance. It made Ruby feel that her own reactions were overly dramatic. But, to be fair to herself, who knew what to do when your new cat spit fire at you? 

Bee kneeled down in front of the kitten. He began to purr up at them, quickly flopping onto his back and presenting his stomach to be petted. Ruby saw her friend’s face soften into a smile, and she sighed. “We’re not getting rid of him after this, huh?”

Bee shook their head and Ruby joined them on the ground. At least the kitten was adorable.