2: I had ONE plan!
191 14 13
Reading Options
Font Size
A- 15px A+
Table of Contents
Loading... please wait.
ATUHOR'S NOSE: h/t to Creative Helper at character.ai for helping us to invent more character appearances, which... we're not very good at lmao lol only lol.

I'm not gonna waste your time going over the everyday minutia of living in a cat shelter. It's a cat shelter, if you've seen one you've seen them all. I played, I slept, I ate, I got poked at by the veterinarian.

That last was where I learned why they decided to call me Lucky. Or part of why, anyway.

Apparently I was in really bad shape when they initially found me, and my recovery from this condition was regarded as a near-miracle.

I had to look myself over after hearing that, and I didn't see any kind of injuries or scars or anything, so I don't really know what they were talking about. They didn't discuss it in any real detail around me, either, just saying vague phrases like "bad shape". Bad form, y'all, giving me a mystery like that but no clues to follow up on!

For the record, I don't have any special ability to communicate with other cats like this. Of course living as a cat full-time did quickly teach me a lot about how cats operate through sheer exposure alone, but this would in principle work just as well for a very small human; I didn't gain access to a "secret cat language" or anything.

As much as I always loved that trope, these cats didn't even seem to be sapient enough for a language. Which raised the question of why I was still sapient enough for language, given that I was a cat now. 

Obviously I don't know, but if I had to take a shot in the dark 1Which I do, now, because leaving it at "I don't know" is way too boring! I'd imagine that the isekai angel figured that "I" am inherently a sapient person, so for "me" to reincarnate as a cat I would necessarily have to reincarnate as a sapient cat even if cats normally aren't sapient. 

That's my guess, anyway! I have no idea if it's right. For one thing it's attributing an awful lot of willingness-to-interpret-statements-charitably to a being who I already know darn well had no problem interrupting me mid-word to make me reincarnate as the wrong species! And yeah that's partly my own fault for hesitating that long mid-word but the guy2I'm using "guy" in the same gender-neutral sense the make-up-a-guy guy uses it, for the record! But if the angel wants to show up in the comment section and object to being described as a "guy", I'll certainly edit this if that ever happens! is an actual freaking angel, surely it's not so hard to work out whether I'm still talking!

But that's enough internal reflection for now. Back to updates on the outside world.

After the passage of what I'd call several weeks3They don't seem to use the seven-day week around here, which I guess makes sense since the widespread adoption of that system back home was largely coincidental, but I still haven't figured out what they do use they decided I was in good enough shape and well-behaved enough for visits and potential adoption.

(You might be wondering about the shelter getting me "fixed" — after all, shelters back home did that as a matter of course. I also wondered about that, or worried about it if I'm honest, but they never did. Thinking about it, I remember how intact cats behaved back home, and I never felt any urges to behave like that, so either something is way different about how cats work, in at least my case if not in general, or I somehow spawned into this world in an already-altered body. And both possibilities raise further questions of their own... but I said I was done reflecting for now, didn't I?)

Various people visited with me, some clearly interested in taking a kitty home immediately, some still thinking about it, some just wanting to pet any cat at all. I wasn't entirely sure what I wanted myself, honestly, so I tried to be a little bit aloof so people would favor the other cats but not hostile or rude so nobody would get the impression I couldn't be adopted. I also briefly tried interacting cutely with the other cats to make them look more appealing, but I couldn't figure out how to make just the other cat look cute.

Though, in cases of people who clearly weren't looking to adopt but just wanted to pet a cat, I did allow myself to indulge in some snuggles. I didn't know whether I was being influenced by my new tiny cute fuzzy body, but I found that I rather liked being pet and cuddled and loved on.

This... kinda ended up backfiring on me.

I was enjoying my time with a broke student who couldn't afford a full time pet, when she walked in.

The kid immediately froze up. "P- Professor Flores!"

"We're not in class, Barry," said the woman with the cold grey eyes wearing a black cloak and long leather gloves... fingerless gloves, on a second glance. For optimal cat petting, presumably. "You can call me by my first name."

Barry didn't seem to get any less tense. Possibly more so, actually. "O... kay..." I didn't think he was going to take her up on that.

Professor Flores 4I was perfectly willing to take her up on the first-naming offer, but of course I didn't yet know what her first name was. turned away from Barry and extended a hand to the nearest other cat in the playroom, a white-furred one with blue eyes5Who wasn't deaf, despite the likelihood of that disability coinciding with that appearance; I wasn't sure whether the genetic quirk that caused this correlation didn't exist here in the first place or if he had just avoided it by chance who was currently lounging on the top of a cat tower.

His ears twitched slightly, and he gave off a few purrs as she scritchied his head. After a few minutes of this, she turned to the next cat — Jellybean, that same sneaky calico who had almost pounced the caretaker's6Misty, by the way. I had heard the veterinarian — Dr. Alvarado, nope nope not bringing up the language question again — address her by name a few times. tail the other day. 

The moment the professor looked at Jellybean, she immediately tried to play innocent, as though she hadn't just been winding up a pounce aimed directly at the woman's shoelace. She didn't sell it very well, since she was still all crouched up.

The professor leaned forward toward Jellybean. "Well? Did you have any plans there, kitty?"

Jellybean rolled over, still playing innocent.

The professor sighed and gave Jellybean some pats, before turning to...

... me.

Of course I was still in Barry's lap. I'd gotten distracted by the professor's sudden entry, so while he was still petting me, I wasn't really paying attention to him. 

And the professor noticed. 

She approached me, looking me right in the eyes.

I stared back, too intimidated to look away.

She reached out a hand to me and


... scritched me gently right behind the ears.


I don't know what I was expecting. She was here to pet cats. All her intimidating stern attitude was directed at the people around her. Obviously.

Still a bit rattled, I accepted the earscritchies purringly.

"Hmm... yes, this one is different. Barry."

"Y- yes Professor Flores? I mean... Professor Rosalinda7Finally, a first name!?"

Rosalinda sighed and muttered "Close enough. Anyway," she continued at a normal volume, "have you noticed anything unusual about this cat? Or have the shelter staff told you of anything unusual about them?"

"Uhh..." Barry looked down at me. I looked back up at him, projecting 'normal innocent kity' as aggressively as I could manage. "They didn't say that much about Lucky in particular. Just that he could be real friendly or real aloof if he wanted to be."

"Is he a he?"

Barry frowned "Well, he's... they're? a cat? I don't think cats really care about gender the way people do."

"Have you asked?"

Barry frowned loudly. He hadn't, of course, but admitting that would probably make him feel kinda silly. Come to think of it, I thought, I haven't heard anyone actually say whether Barry's a he.8He is, for the record, I managed to confirm that later. And that Rosalinda is a she. In fact, all the pronouns used for any sapient beings so far have been correct and confirmed, with the exception of the isekai angel who I still haven't seen since reincarnating. The non-sapient ones of course can't confirm much of anything.

Barry looked down at me. "Well, Lucky? Are you a good boy?" I didn't respond. "Or a good girl?" I decided not to respond to that one either. Like he said, cats don't really care about that.

"Or are you purrchance a feline of mysterious and indistinct gender?"

I couldn't help myself, I let out a giggle at that one. At least I think the eartwitching motion I made there was the feline equivalent of a giggle. It certainly felt like it, anyway.

The problem with laughing at a joke when you're not supposed to understand language is... that. Barry didn't catch the significance, but Rosalinda definitely did. The sudden twinkle in her eye was unmistakable. She didn't say anything about it right away, but I knew. She was certain I was more than your bog-standard shelter cat.