I dropped Harry and Marmalade off at the vet early this morning. They had their, uh, alterations done today.
I felt like such a traitor. When I woke up this morning, Harry was sleeping on my neck, with his nose resting on my cheek, and Marmalade was cuddled next to him. They got out of bed with me and followed me into the kitchen, looking hopefully at the cupboard where their food is kept. They'd been fasting (involuntarily, of course) since 8PM the night before.
At about 7.20, I got out the cat carrier and they hopped inside, because they've come to associate it with happy, fun things, like going to the cottage and visiting my parents. I called a cab and in fifteen minutes I was saying good-bye to them in the waiting room of the animal hospital.
The looks on their little bewhiskered faces said, "Hey, this isn't the cottage! We've been had!"
The vet called me after the surgery to tell me they were fine - groggy and "probably seeing pink mice", but coming out of the anasthesia and trying to sit up. I'm going to pick them up tomorrow after work (they have to stay overnight, just in case).
And I was fine with that, until I came home tonight, and opened the door, and there was no Marmalade trying to squeeze past me into the hallway. No Harry "brrr-brrrp"ing a welcome. No race to the scratching post, no plaintive mews informing me that food bowls are almost empty and isn't it time they were filled up again.
Just an empty, lonely, dark apartment.
I burst into tears.
I miss them so much. They've become such a part of my life. I remember feeling a little exhausted and overwhelmed by them at first. The playing all night. The "cat hammocks" they made for themselves out of the fabric covering the boxspring of my mattress. The repeated peeing on the goosedown duvet. And, more recently, the getting into the kitchen sink and stealing the stopper and the sponge, and tipping the garbage can over to filch tea bags and dead lettuce.
I can't wait to have them home again.