No Trust
by Mevima

I'm just a poor outcast... never had a home... that's what they told you, right? Ha! Don't believe it, honey. There was a REASON they kicked me out... they just didn't want to burden a kitten like yourself with the truth. Oh, so I've got you curious, have I? Might have known. Curiousity killed the Cat, y'know? It's true in some cases... but that's not the story you want to hear, am I right? Come on, come on then... I'll tell you...

My mum was never the caring sort. She fed us -- that's me and my littermates -- until we were old enough to hunt... then stayed home and let us fend for ourselves. Sure, she'd help us clean up if we got into a fight, but that was pretty much the extent of it.

Like most Cats, I didn't even know who my dad was. Not sure if mum did neither. She was sorta absentminded 'bout things like that I guess...

Anyway, this' all the background yer gonna need.

So, y'see, one week I was havin' a rough time findin' food -- no rodents and the birds were stayin' away -- when I heard another Cat comin' up behind me. Now, I don't like t' pick fightin', but I wasn't in the best of moods at the time and didn't want company. So you can't blame me when I turned around and clawed the sneaky Tom right across the face. Bast, was he mad...

Ya don't want the details on our little exchange, do ya? Let's just say... I lost the fight. And somethin' else as well... in a way I'll never forget. Ya gotta remember, I was barely out o' kittenhood then and didn't know what was what in the world yet. Didn't know where my place was.

I gotta admit, I passed out in the middle... from shock more than anythin' else. He'd beaten me in a fair fight! That had never happened before, not in my life. So, seein' as I was out cold, when I woke up I didn't know WHERE I was... the Tom'd moved me to a dark, rancid building. I started to move around a bit, y'know, to get my blood going again, when he pounced me from behind. I was pinned! Damn, was I mad... beaten twice by the same Tom!

Well, I gotta say, that Tom had stamina. Bast...I STILL wish I could have clawed his eyes out!

Now here's somethin' I don't admit lightly... by the end I was cryin'. True tears. From lookin' at me now, you wouldn't guess me capable of it, hmm? Well, I was. Didn't pass out that time though. Wish I had...

Ya ever hear a Tom's voice, full of rightful confidence, whisper harshly in yer ear? It's somethin' I don't wanna hear again. "You're MINE" he told me... "No one else's" That was somethin' I wasn't gonna answer to. I wasn't anybody's, I was my own. And no one was gonna take myself away from me.

Thankfully, I was smart enough then to wait til he was asleep. Ever notice how easy it is to slit a throat?

It was simple enough to get out of the building... boxes were piled up against the walls and several windows were open. I was still lost though. Didn't know how in Heaviside I was gonna get home... so I wandered. For I don't know how long, I walked the streets, fending off other Cats and catching mice for food. Sometimes it was hard to get food, sometimes insanely simple.

One day, I couldn' find any food around. And I mean ANY food. Nothin' anywhere! In desperation I remembered the last time that'd happened... wondered idly what had happened to th' Tom's corpse. I was older by then, understood what had taken place. So I decided, if a Tom will go through risks to get that, why not trade it for food? I coulda just challenged another Cat to a fight... but what's the guarantee that they'd have any food for me to steal? So I went out lookin' for a Tom.

My first attempt wasn't the best. Awful approach, bad choice of words. Ended up breaking two of his ribs, if I remember correctly.

Second was a little better, but I didn't think it so at the time. He got what he wanted... and disappeared without givin' food. Dammit! I wasn't gonna go through THAT again for free! So I figured I'd have 'em pay in advance. Pay? Yeah. That's what I considered it; payment.

By that time it was nightfall, so I waited til the next day. Found another Tom easily. Gave him the deal, plain and simple, he agreed. He caught me mice -- took him about two hours but he did -- and I ate them ravenously. He took what he wanted. I was amazed at how simplistic it all was, and decided that was how my life was gonna be. Easy, right? Wrong.

I lived this way for about five years. A long time... and not a comfortable life either. It was a life, though... when there wasn't food, there were Toms who would spend hours catching it if they were desperate enough. When there weren't any Toms, there was easily caught food.

After five years, you'd think a Queen'd have a reputation... and you'd be right. I was known as the "Glamour Cat of Tottenham Court". To put it bluntly -- a prostitute. I'd learned the word from a human passing through the area.

That's when I met up with a Jellicle. I think her name was Jennyanydots... just old enough to be trusted out of her precious Junkyard on her own. She'd wandered a little far and looked rather lost. As she wasn't a Tom and had no news for me I paid no attention to her until she stopped in front of me and asked politely "Do you know where the Junkyard is?"

I just looked at her. Politely? This Queen was being POLITE in THIS area? She obviously didn't know where she was, and could easily get killed for just that. Finally, I responded "No I don't, kit, get lost". Not a very caring Cat, was I?

Jenny looked up at me with these big eyes and I swear she was going to cry. She just walked off and I saw her talkin' to some other Queens... apparantly they told her who I was as well as directing her home. I didn't really care, just as long as she didn't bother me. That's where I got my reputation spread to the Junkyard I'd bet...

Now, a Queen won't last forever keeping herself alive like this... you get old... you can't keep it up anymore. That's exactly what happened to me. I got old. The Toms just sneered at me. I was twelve by that point I believe... too old for the Toms to have any interest anymore... I could barely move fast enough to catch the mice. My lifestyle had been tiring, aging me prematurely.

So of course, I turned to other Cats for help. The Junkyard. The Jellicles. The DAMN Jellicles... on the night of their Ball. Y'know, at first they were nice? But Jenny had talked... and Demeter had listened. That red Queen always believed in Demeter... and when they began to shun me, the rest of the tribe listened. I returned three times... always hoping they'd take pity.

And it was the youngest kitten who accepted me... I still don't know why she did that. I sure didn't deserve it. She stood up for me and gave me another chance... "Sunlight through the trees in summer, endless masquerading..." is what she said. I guess that's what I'd been doing. Masquerading. Blockin' out my pain so I could keep livin'.

I've noticed those Jellicles listen to their own. She accepted, they accepted. Brought me up... to the tire... to their tire. I looked at all the kind faces... thinkin' how undeservin' I was...

Now I guess you wonder why I didn't let them take me up. I broke. Stumbled my way off the tire and just ran as I could. They didn't stop me, some sneerin', knowin' all along that was what I was goin' to do. The calico kitten looked heartbroken, I noticed that... and didn't care. I just don't care anymore!

They're not gonna trust me anymore, y'know? Not gonna give me another chance. I'll die here in peace... with only you to talk to... starvin' most likely. It's my life after all... no, no, don't bother goin' for food or nothin', it won't matter in a couple days. Just... sit here... yeah, that's it, honey... don't pity me. I did it all to myself. Nothin' ya can do to change it.

At least ya can tell those Jellicles I'm not all bad? Hey, I didn't try to kill you or nothin', did I? Ha... there's one up on them... and just... tell them that, yeah. Now let me sleep... I'm an old Queen, but I can handle myself. Don't worry... let me rest...

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