Author’s Note: Today I pulled out a scene I think most would consider pure ridiculous. My decision to give Alik a cat was a bit silly in the first place, I admit, but then I wrote this, making it… worse, I suppose.
I am not that good a person, I guess. This came from a weird personal conversation I had, which I should not admit to having, but I am that kind of crazy.
Alik stopped in the doorway, frowning when he heard the half-squeak. “What are you doing?”
“Playing with the cat,” Enadar told him, looking up at his brother with a grin. Alik gave him a look in return. He’d known the cat was involved because of the noise she’d made, but what he did not know was what the youngest member of their family was doing to her.
“I don’t think she wants to play.”
“You do not have the ability to speak cat. You also can’t tell me you know what she’s thinking.”
“Yes, I can,” Alik said, tired of having similar discussions with his brother. He had ever since Robot had decided she was Alik’s cat and not a family one. She tolerated Malina, but she hadn’t been willing to be close to either of their parents and as for Enadar… Sometimes he was too much of a child still, at least in Robot’s opinion. “You can hear it in her voice and see it in her eyes.”
Enadar lifted Robot up and studied her. “You can decipher her eyes. That’s it. That’s your secret method of communicating robot-to-robot. The laser eyes.”
Alik shook his head. “Give me the cat.”
“Just because she likes you best doesn’t mean I have to give her up the moment you walk into the room. I wasn’t hurting her. We were playing.”
“Playing what, exactly?”
“Did you know she’s ticklish? Right about where you are, too. Must be a robot thing.”
“Cats aren’t ticklish.” Alik took the cat from his brother’s hands, swatting them away when Enadar tried to recover the cat. “Don’t. I’ll overload you if you try and take her back.”
“You’re no fun.”
Robot jumped up onto Alik’s shoulder and bumped her head against his. He reached up to pet her, and she started purring.
“Really, she should fall off of you when she does that,” Enadar grumbled. He was correct. Even though Robot hadn’t grown much past the size of a kitten, Alik’s shoulder wasn’t a good place for her to perch, but she seemed to like it there—it was where she always put herself if Alik was standing. He could hold her in his lap if he was sitting or let her sit on his chest if he was lying down, but she only wanted the shoulder if he was up and moving. “It’s not fair she likes you best.”
Alik smiled. “I don’t tickle her.”