Wet Cat

A wet cat she was; sitting at the corner table; her hair matted and dripping, her overcoat sticking to her shoulders and arms. She sat in a puddle of water; in her hands she gripped a steaming mug of coffee. The bar was quiet at this time of the night. It usually got this quiet during the rainstorms. There was a fire blazing in the fireplace, a few men were gathered around it, staring in silence into the flames, drinking beer or hot coffee.

The gay surroundings were somber in the only light from the lanterns burning low and the fire. The shifting shadows dancing on the walls, the bar, the customers; gave everything a disturbed atmosphere. The windows shut tight and the shutters tied down, the door bolted, they all sat, stood, whispering to say a few words, and otherwise silent. The tiny hammers and the wind banging incessantly to be allowed entrance; the thunder demanding to be heard, its shouts ignored.

There is a knock, quick three raps and then another three. The cat head snaps up. Fear glowing in her eyes, her hands shaking spilling some of the coffee – she doesn’t notice. The barrel of a bartender retrieves a club from behind the counter, starts walking towards the door, his heels clicking against the wooden floor. Two of the customers also start towards the door, their faces cold with years of experience. The bartender slides the spy-hole open and peers through, and suddenly relaxes.

He quickly starts to un-bolt the door, the two run to help him. The door opens with a bang throwing the three to the floor. The wind and rain reach deep within, making everything damp.

The knocker walks in a hooded figure, wet and dripping. He helps in bolting the door shut again. The cat in the corner suddenly is relaxed.


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