Originally posted 2016-05-13 12:00:48.
Some days don’t give you the chance to breathe steady.
Backing down the driveway, I figured it would be best, considering the pounding rainstorm and the softly crying beast in the soft kennel in the passenger seat next to me, that I wouldn’t be tossing the Bluetooth on when I started charging my mobile. It would just be too much hassle, and I had to focus.
How anyone can find a quiet moment in this world is beyond me.
So I missed the first call, as I always have my mobile on vibrate, and of course I had tossed it back into my purse upside down, so it could charge and not bounce around. Second call goes straight to voicemail, but I’m oblivious.
I’m turned back around now, looking out my windshield, and I reach over, petting the top of the carrier. “Shhhhhh, baby kitten girl. Mama’s gonna take you to the vet and get your tum checked.”
My cell has now slipped down further inside my purse, and on what was the fourth, but my non-aware-of-that state, I hear the ting ting ting rattling of the case against my tic-tac container. Now I’m kind of kicking myself mentally for not connecting the Bluetooth. I stop, and have to set that all up now, hoping I’m not blocking traffic too long.
Great. I just missed it. ‘Unknown number’ shows up and I’m shaking my head. All that for something I wouldn’t have probably done anyway. The only ones who have ‘unknown numbers’ are one of three types of people, and I generally don’t like to deal with any of them. Telemarketers or phone scams, creepy people who are up to no good, or bill collectors. Since I don’t have any current outstanding debts I’m aware of, I’m definitely not thinking about the fourth possible option; outside calls from a secured location.
‘Four missed calls’. Oh, nertz. Well, Bluetooth is on, windshield wipers are clackin’ like a Janis Joplin song, and the soft ‘mew mew mew’ from the kennel is getting softer. Silent submission to the reality of life. Or maybe she realises that it’s not fantastic, but it’s not tort…the TARDIS whoooshing sound fills the car, as my phone begins to vibrate and I answer it on the second ‘ring’.
“Hello, look, I’m not sure who this is calling but…”
“Ma’am, are you sitting down?”
First off, who even asks that kind of thing outside of a medical television drama, and secondly what an odd lead off question. Bristling and righting myself a bit more in the driver’s seat, I respond cautiously. The words are out of my mouth before I realise what exactly I’ve said, or how silly they might be taken.
“Yes, Sir, but my cat is with me.”
Clearly, my phone partner is not prepared for this. If I knew him, I would assume that was a chuckle I heard on the speakers through the car, but I don’t, and I need to focus.
“Are you not at home right now Ma’am? It is important we know this information.”
“Uh… what? Wait, What? Who are you? What is going on?”
“Ma’am, we need to secure you in a safe location. Where are you right now?”
I’m really not sure if I should respond or disconnect the phone, but my eyes train on my cat’s carrier. I notice the outside pocket is bulging slightly, and I know when I prepped everything the last time I used her kennel, I purposely cleaned everything out, because I washed it.
“What is going on?” I’m now stalling for time. His silence is worrying me, and I am now reaching over to unzip the front area, and gingerly reach my hand inside.
“Ma’am…” he starts, but I cut him off.
“Did you poison my cat to get me out of the house? Why is my passport in my cat’s kennel? What is going on? WHO ARE YOU!?” I’m really trying to stay calm, but now I’m furious.
“It’s a sedative, Ma’am, I assure you, Kaylee is…”
This, beyond the silence, and the creepiness of the fact my personal belongings are in my cat’s carrier… this is what makes me snap. And then, the calm.
“Sir,” keeping my tone so calm and still glass would be jealous, “How, in the name of the stars above, do you know my cat’s name?”
“Our boss has all that information. Please Ma’am, where are you?”
“Tell me what is going on, so I can decide if I want to trust you enough with that information. Place yourself in my position. Way too many things are going on right now, and I need to know…” What I really need to know is everything, but I do know that’s not going to happen, so I start with the one thing that I can ensure he will respond about. “…is my cat going to be alright?”
Again, a soft chuckle. That time it was definitely human and real and there’s a twinge of a sigh at the end of it that makes the tone of the conversation change. Just that hint of a decent intake of breath.
“Nia, I promise you, Kaylee is alright. She’s probably sound asleep by now. The dosage we gave her will be sufficient to get you and her onboard the jet and probably have you landed safely in … well, I’d rather not say over an open connection if that’s all the same. Safety precautions.”
“I’m not even going to assume how your boss found out my name, let alone how to pronounce it that way. Most people put the wrong inflection on the letters.”
A new voice takes over the line, and I gasp, as I’ve heard that voice since I was adopted at the age of eight. I know that voice better than probably anyone, well, at least I thought I did. Now, I’m not so sure. What all don’t I know?
“Nia, I promise you and Kaylee will be safe. With me.”