“Hey Fred!”Jess hears nothing from inside the house, even with just a screen between him and what he knows lurks inside. “Hey Fred, I need ya. Come on, don’t do this to me, will ya? I need ya.” The dark interior hides too much for his liking. He tries not to fidget but can’t stop his tail from twitching erratically. Soon he notices a shadow moving slowly. From it emerges The Cat. Jess nervously looks over his shoulder at the ducks before turning back. “Oh hey, there you are. Ah, say can you help me for a minute? I need ah… I need, something; a favor. Would you help me?”
“My name is not Fred” the cat sank down a foot away from the screen “and you’re wasting my time.”
“Federico, yes, Federico. Sorry, my bad. You ah.. I'm nervous.” Jess realizes he’s wringing his hands and quickly grasps a few hairs on his chest. The pain is enough that he can focus for a moment. “Can you….can you, help me?”
The Cat looks at him.
“Can you ah.. see, it’s the ducks. They want um to ah… well, they seem like a nice couple and all but they are pretty weird sometimes, you know. Not that you would know, being you are always inside there all the time. But um, I see you watching and all so I know you know….”
The Cat looks at him.
Jess inadvertently pulls a few hairs out. “ Yeeouch! He jumps a foot in the air and as he is landing, he blurts “They want to have sex on your bed.” A shiver runs up his back as the cat hasn't even blinked. “No no no, not on your bed but on their bed. And if you let them then, they will let me have half of their food this week and next and I don’t know if you've noticed but it’s getting cold out here and it’s only going to get worse. Please, I beg of ya, ya gotta help me!”
The cat allows the silence to hang before speaking. “Your funny, squirrel. I don’t know why, but I like you.”
Jess clamped his mouth shut as tight as he could and tried to conceal how shallow he was breathing.
“I’ll do it, but just this once. You tell them if they leave any mess at all, I want their first 3 eggs next year, got it?
“Got it, I got it. Oh I so got it. Thank you thank you thank you.” He flips around to go tell the ducks.
“I’m not finished, squirrel.”
Jess makes himself turn back. The Cat is cleaning his paw so he waits. “That is their deal. I haven’t said what you have to do for me.”
Much more than this and Jess was going to pass out from hyperventilating.
“Two times every day…” the cat pauses to inspect his work “you have to either chase a bird into the window or offer yourself up for my amusement.”
“For how long?” he squeaks out.
“A month.” Spots swim in front of his eyes and the world narrows down to a dark tunnel. The last thing he sees before he blacks out is the cat walking away, chuckling. “I’ll take that as a yes.”