Des souris et des hommes

I now have 17 glorious days off work, and this entry of Le Blog was supposed to be full of the joys of the Easter weekend, one of my favourite times of the year. But, instead, I’m piecing together the splintered shards of my life after discovering that my placid, loving little boy is a murderer. I’m also literally piecing together physical things that the little sod smashed up in the all-night battle with La Souris, including a brand new powder compact and a glass jar of body cream.

Actually, perhaps “both a murderer AND an attempted (serial) murderer” would be more apt; on Wednesday night I was awoken by squeaking, and found that he had dragged another victim to his lair:

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This time Cat Daddy managed to trap Souris Deux in my watch box and set it free in the park. It seems he was right when he told me the other day that La Souris Originale would be “the first of many”. This is not good. And it was most definitely not in the small print when we adopted Louis Catorze (unlike his big brother Luther: “Will bring mice and birds” couldn’t really be any clearer).

I don’t really want to lock Louis Catorze in at night. Nor do I want to shut him out of our bedroom, as he has slept with us on our bed ever since the very first night. But the thought of gross mousey feet on our stuff, not to mention gross mousey bodies expelling gross mousey excretory substances, is awful. Years ago, when we had no money, we lived in a rat-infested hovel with our elderly cat, who was too old to hunt and would just sit and watch the rats run past her; our days of having rodent housemates are over, and we don’t want to go back there again.

My one small hope is that this influx of mice is a temporary spring thing and that, once they’re bigger and older – the ones that Louis Catorze caught were TINY – they will be able to outrun him. Please, please let this be the case.

Le chasseur

Our days of being able to trip gaily about Le Château barefoot or in the dark – or both, had we wished to do so – are over. At just after midnight last night, for the first time ever, Louis Catorze brought a live mouse into our bedroom and set it free under the bed.

We thought it a little odd that he was so active when he came in, pitter-pattering about far more than usual, but we assumed it was just full moon madness and that he was having an extended play with one of his many toys. Then Cat Daddy said, “Put the light on. He’s caught something.”

I refused to believe it – after all, this is my sweet, gentle little soul who is too lazy, slow and stupid to hunt – but I did as I was asked. And I glimpsed the unmistakable sight of a little teardrop-shaped lump of grey fur with a poker-straight stub of a tail, just before it disappeared under the bed.

Cat Daddy got up, called Catorze a very rude name indeed, and set about finding a suitable receptacle in which to trap poor La Souris, eventually settling upon the box that my new watch came in (which displeased me immensely, but there was nothing else to hand). Alas, a quick glance under the bed revealed absolutely thousands of things, from boxes to bags to shoes to unidentifiable stuff that we haven’t even unpacked since the move; if we were going to take each piece out to corner La Souris, it would take us until sunrise and we were already exhausted after a long day at work.

“What shall we do?” he asked.

“I think we should just leave him in here to catch it,” I said. So we both went to sleep in a different bedroom and hoped for the best. We did wonder how we would know whether La Souris had escaped, whether it had been caught or whether it was still hiding under the bed, but we needn’t have worried because it turned out that Catorze had Un Grand Plan.

Whilst Cat Daddy fell asleep immediately and slept through everything, I was kept awake for the next FIVE HOURS by the sounds of scampering, meowing and things falling to the floor. And Louis Catorze’s Grand Plan to alert us of La Souris’ status was to deposit its carcass outside our door and yowl until we opened up.

After that there was no getting back to sleep for me – although Cat Daddy, annoyingly, again had no problem – so I thought I may as well stay up and write this. The prospect of getting through a full day at work after not managing to sleep AT ALL, makes me want to hurt others and myself. Catorze, however, remains unfazed by his new-found bloodlust. Here he is, at the scene where he dumped the body, and I swear there’s an ungiven shit in the picture:

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