I saw a black cat one day and this short story sprouted from my overactive mind.
The first time I saw the cat, I was walking back home from work. I wouldn't have paid any particular attention to it, if not for its black velvet fur and bright yellow eyes. It was not often I saw a cat like that. The kind of cat featured in folk tales about witches or the devil. The kind of cat that people believed brought bad luck if it crossed the street in front of them. That kind of cat.
But truth to tell, I thought it was probably just an ordinary black cat.
It sat still on the lawn of someone’s front yard with its head turned the other way, ignoring the people who walked by, just a few feet away. After that one time, I never expected to see it again.
However, when I stepped out of the house to get the mail on the very next day, there it was. Almost as if waiting for me to notice it. It crossed the front yard and paused to look at me for the briefest second, before it was on its way.
And then I started seeing it at the most unexpected times. I would gaze out of the kitchen window in the middle of doing the dishes and it would return my gaze from the backyard, before jumping the wooden fence to the other side. I would randomly look out of my bedroom window and see it perched on the charcoal-tiled roof of my neighbor’s house and it would turn its head to look at me at that exact moment.
The days stumbled after each other. It became a little game of sorts. I would spot it and it would pause to acknowledge me, before running along. Not a day passed without our unspoken exchange.
Until one day, a full fortnight after I’d first seen it, it came treading along as I stepped out on the front porch on my way out. This time it stopped and sat a couple of yards away from me, waiting like it wanted to tell me something. Unfortunately, I didn’t speak cat.
It turned out, I wouldn’t need to. I’d barely locked the front door when I accidentally dropped my keys. I cursed, bending to retrieve them. But the cat swooped over them and scooted away in a flash.
“What the–?” I turned around to find the cat standing several yards away, with my keys firmly held in its maw. I cursed again.