Despite the drizzle the red male cat had been outside in our garden the whole morning. He had been making those weird howls males make when they are in heat. Somehow he had found out that we had a female cat even though she had only been with us for a few months and only outside for one.. Her name was Saar and she was a beautiful Maine Coon, with long grey and black hair, intense yellow eyes and a bussy plume for a tail.
She was the third cat in out house for we had two castrated male cats as well. A small red one called Sam and a black grey one called Moos. The names were taken from two fictive characters invented by the Dutch humorist Max Tailleur, who had them talk to each other as part of his jokes.
Sam was the smallest of our two cats. He was a nervous, somewhat unpredictable cat who had a fear of men. Probably he had once had some kind of traumatic experience with a man and it took him a long time to get used to any man, like our neighbor who took care of our cats when we were on holiday. On the other side Sam was most social of the two and was the one who sometimes played with Saar.
Moos was almost the opposite of Sam. He seemed to be unaffected by anything going on around him. In fact, although he was aware of things around him, it looked like he did just did not seem to register them. You couldn’t call him relaxed, so perhaps he was an autistic cat. He was a buddy of Sam, but he completely ignored Saar.
The drizzle had stopped at noon, but the red male had kept on howling. Saar had taken position on a blue plastic table at the other end of the garden. It felt like she was cautiously curious. Not quite sure about his intentions but curious about his behavior. The male saw Saar on that table and started to sneak towards her.
My eldest daughter, unaware of what was going outside opened the garden door to let Sam out. He had been sitting before the door casting looks at us that meant to say that he wanted to have that door opened. Sam saw the red male crouching in the grass. Something clicked in his head and he charged. The red male was oblivious of the oncoming Sam, until he was on top of him. He gave a surprised meow and fled. Sam chased him, but my eldest called out to him and he stopped.
We fantasized about the reason for the charge and came up with all kinds of explanations, but we all agreed that the one our eldest gave was the most fitting.
“Perhaps he was just fed up with the incessant howling.” she said.