Every morning upon awakening, precisely at 5:00am, "Prissy Sissy With The Sassy Tail" would roam around the house checking to make sure her territory was adequately secure and safe for her family. Being a very conscientious "watch cat", she never skimped on this task. Indeed, she was always very thorough and ran through all her "check points" in precise sequence.
The kitchen was Prissy's first stop. She would jump up, flip on the light and take a general look around. Satisfied, she would walk over to her food bowl to make sure no one had filched her stash of dried food (which she kept hidden under the throw mat upon which her bowl rested). Next she would walk up to each cabinet, open it with a paw, and take several sniffs as well as making a sight check of the interior. When her kitchen inspection was complete she'd jump up, switch off the light and head for the bathroom. She proceeded in this manner until every room in the house was checked out, each closet inspected, each nook and cranny cleared. After the "all clear" she would come into my bedroom, switch on the light, jump up on the bed next to my ear, and give her "report" - letting me know that it was now safe for me to proceed with my day.
I've mentioned in previous "Prissy" stories that I'm a bit obsessive/compulsive (OK, maybe more than a bit). I tend to do my "spring cleaning" 10 to 12 times a year. On this occasion I got really energetic (not difficult to do since I also have ADHD - Attention Deficit HYPERACTIVITY Disorder) and decided to re-arrange things to a more efficient layout. I made one big mistake, however. I forgot to let Prissy in on my new arrangements! (She spent most days outside, cowing the neighborhood dogs into the proper, obsequious submission.)
The next morning Prissy entered the kitchen, turned on the light, gave her general "look around" and then stood stock still in disbelief, growling softly . Things didn't look the same! Her big, round toy-things on the counter had been moved around - the table had different toy-things on it - and, worst of all, her food dish had been moved. She rushed over, checked under the mat and, sure enough, found that her food stash was gone! Some thief in the night had clearly been there, and might still be. It could even be the evil greebles she'd heard about at her mother's knees! She'd had deadly encounters with this menace in the past.
Still growling, louder now, Prissy started her cabinet check. Yep, just as she'd thought, things were definitely misplaced - even her box of food had been moved so that she'd now have to jump up to a top cabinet in order to get a midnight snack! By now she was getting really perturbed , she even forgot to turn out the light before rushing into the bathroom.
In the bathroom, Prissy turned on the light and looked about her. Here, at least, things seemed to be pretty much undisturbed, although three of her toy-things on the sink counter had been moved or replaced. She jumped up to the sink, pawed the cold water tap on, and took a long drink while she thought about what to do. As she left the bathroom she stopped at her scratching post in the hall and slowly. deliberately sharpened her claws in preparation for battle.
When Prissy got to my daughter's bedroom she paused just outside the door and took a deep breath. With lightening speed, she launched herself at the light switch, flicked it on, and, with the momentum of her jump, ricocheted off the wall to land on the foot of my daughter's bed. She immediately hunched herself up "Halloween cat" style, puffed out her fur, and gave a great hiss/spit and growl. Three times she jumped straight up into the air, came down facing a different direction and repeated her warning. Assured that the unseen thief was sufficiently cowed she proceeded with her check of the room. Everything here seemed to be quiet and, except for the few toy-things on shelves being moved (this thief sure was cocky to so advertise his visit!), all looked to be well here - her girl was safe.
Prissy huffed a bit and left my daughter's bedroom (again forgetting, in her agitation, to turn out the light!) and padded down the hallway to my son's bedroom. Now this would be her biggest problem room. The toy-things in this room were quite numerous and always flung around the room in a haphazard manner. Every morning she was forced to update her mental map of what this room should look like. Cautiously, she lowered her body and poked her head around the door post to take a preliminary sniff. She crouched back and sprang for the light switch (intending to use the same "jump, flick-switch, land-on-bed, and snarl" tactic that she'd used in my daughter's room). Imagine her surprise when she found herself landing on the floor instead of the bed! The evil greebles (she was sure it was them by now, only greebles could be so insidiously evil and blatant) had moved the bed - with her boy still on it!! She leapt onto the dresser and skidded on the newly waxed surface (this, of course was according to the plan of the evil greebles - that she be forced to collide with all the toy-things - she was sure they'd been up all night carefully spreading butter over the entire surface of the dresser). One round toy-thing went sliding off onto the floor and its lid popped off. To Prissy's complete consternation, hundreds of evil greebles poured out onto the floor making a great, grinding-like noise. The evil greebles were in their hard, shiny, round transmutation! They rolled over the floor, heading in every direction and scattering under furniture. Now, Prissy's mother had been very careful to tell Prissy of all the many ways evil greebles could entrap and defeat the unwary cat - and Prissy had learned her lessons well. She knew that the evil greebles planned to surround her, cut her off from the rest of the family, and take them out one by one. She also knew that she was the only one capable of defeating this horrid horde (her human family members were just too slow and didn't even have respectable claws with which to protect themselves!).
Prissy paused a moment to consider her strategy. First she had to get her boy out of harm's way. To do this she had to jump onto his bed, yowl loudly in his ear, and even give him a few nips on his rump to get him running for the door and safety. The evil greebles tried to thwart her plans of course, they quickly rolled themselves under her boy's feet and made him trip (well she should have expected this - her human family was extremely clumsy). She immediately jumped to his rescue, batting at the evil greebles - sending them flying in every direction - then gave her boy a few extra nips on his rump to get him up and going again. She followed his running, crying little body into my bedroom - yowling the whole while - until he landed in a heap upon my bed and me. She then jumped on top the both of us and gave me a quick report before turning and running back to the battle.
Prissy stalked down the hall, hissing and growling, as I followed warily - baseball bat in hand (hey, this was a SMART cat, friends - I ALWAYS took her warnings seriously). When she reached my son's door she paused for only a second before throwing herself into the midst of the evil greebles. Oh, they were fiendishly clever, rolling and careening into each other in order to confuse her, but she persevered! The evil greebles seemed to be multiplying even as she watched. Her efforts intensified. Each swipe of her paw sent evil greebles crashing off in new directions. Finally, all the greebles seemed to be dispatched, stopped dead in their tracks. Just to be sure, she sidled up to one and gave it a small nudge with her paw. Oh her surprise when this evil, faking greeble rolled away into another greeble which also went rolling away. The battle was on again! She spent the next 15 minutes subduing evil greebles - spitting, hissing, yowling out her victory cry, and flying into the air in prodigious leaps intended to confuse and cow the enemy into submission. At last she was satisfied that all were quite dead. She walked back to me, tail held proudly high, and gave me the "all clear" report. By this time I was seated on the hallway floor, laughing until tears poured down my cheeks, and trying to figure out how I was going to find and gather up all those marbles! She kindly ignored my hysterical behavior, sure that it was only the pent-up fear and relief taking hold of me now that the battle was done.
Prissy, purring loudly, strolled over to her favorite napping spot and, with a sigh, lay down. She'd performed her sworn duty and was secure in the knowledge that all was now well - once again she'd saved her family, and the world, from the depredations of the evil greebles!