The cat sits on the mantle. It’s beautiful in every way, caught in an elegant pose. No one touches the porcelain cat. Who would want to break something so perfect? It watches the room with sadness. Eventually it moves from the mantle to the cupboard. Everyone forgets the cat. Dust settles on the paws and the tip of its tail.
“Where is the porcelain cat?” Mother asks one rainy day. She looks all over. The cat holds its breath. Someone wants it. Mother opens the cupboard and finds it. She dusts off the black paws and runs a finger over the tail. She throws it hard against the brick wall outside. This was the first present Father gave her. Father is now living in Spain with his butcher. Life’s a bitch.