I walked through the forest, lost as all fuck, could be the fact that I don’t know where the hell in the world I am, well I know it’s a jungle with cat people and d-dogs but that’s all I got. ‘I need to stop talking to myself…’ I walked out into a clearing with a small lake, fuck I walked in a circle. ‘Argh, need, booze.’ I dragged myself over to the water, took off my hat, then shoved my head into the water, drinking as I was down there.
Did something just land on my back? I took my head out of the water and looked back into the eyes of a pissed and sacred cat lady. “What are you waiting for?! RUN!” She hissed at me and shoved her heels into my side, somehow getting me to jump forward over the small lake. I looked back and behind her, d-dogs were chasing her, well they were; now they’re just sitting at the other side of the lake looking stupidly at me and the cat lady. “You can go around or get your fur wet dogs!” She yelled at them, a victorious grin, that faded as they split up and ran around each side, there were about 5 of them. “Uh oh, get moving!” She kicked my sides again.
‘You could say please!’ I growled.
“Please!?” She hissed at me and shoved my hat onto my head. “Oh you forgot this.” I adjusted it a bit then started running.
‘Almost forgot about that. Thanks.’ I sighed a bit and side stepped a tree.
“No problem.” She muttered. “Why are you wearing a hat anyway?”
‘You could call it a trademark. I always wear it.’ I then stopped dead in my tracks and looked up at her with wide eyes, she was doing the same. ‘You can understand me?!’
“How? What? WHO!?” Oh boy she was confused beyond reason; I heard the dogs getting closer so I had the run again, only this time I ran into things and tripped a lot, hey you would do the same if someone could hear your thoughts! “Get it together! We’ll find this out once we lose them!” I could not agree more! Goddammit wish I didn’t use badass mode back there, but I would have been shot, oh well! I decided to test the theory that is seen all the time; can a dog follow a cat up a tree? A tree was in my little war path so I I jumped up, latched my claws into it, and climbed up it fast, miss kitty dug her claws into my pelt trying to hold on. Once I reached the top I got onto a sturdy branch and looked down. Those stupid dogs, can’t even climb up here! “Thanks for the help…”
“Right, so now I have a few questions. One how the hell can I understand you. Two why do you wear a hat if you’re a manticore. And three why was your head in the water.” I thought about all of those carefully.
‘Well you must be able to read my thoughts somehow, I wear a hat because it’s the only thing I have on and because I love this fucking hat, and my head was in the water because I was getting a drink.’ I grinned. ‘Most exciting things you have ever heard aye?’ I chuckled and looked back down at the d-dogs, aw dammit their setting up a camp to wait for us. ‘That’s grate…’ I muttered and looked at her. ‘How long before they get bored and run off?’
“Beats me, I’m still thinking about what you told me…”
‘Like I said, the hat’s awesome and I wear it everywhere, what’s not to understand about that?’ She glared at me and I chuckled. ‘Oh lighten up, we’re going to be here a while so why not lighten the mood?’ She looked at me a moment then chuckled.
“You’re a strange manticore, you know that?” I bowed my head.
‘I tend to always stand out.’ We both laughed. The next few hours were filled with talking about random topics. Like I asked her name, she said it was Kate, oh the irony, at least to me it’s ironic. She got kicked out of her village for doing gods only know, she didn’t tell me but it must have been bad since she flinched super bad about it. I kept looking down at the d-dogs; they were just talking around a fire about stuff I couldn’t hear about. ‘So why did you think it was a good idea to jump on a manticore’s back?’ She shrugged at me with a grin.
“Don’t know, seemed like a good idea at the time.” I nodded, nothing could go wrong from jumping on a wild animals back, don’t try this at home kids, do it at a friend’s house. “The suns going down, looks like we’ll be staying the night up here.” She muttered and leaned back on the branch, laying her head on my stomach like I was a pillow.
‘I’m that comfortable?’ She nodded and closed her eyes, soon falling asleep with that grin still on her face. ‘I love my job.’ I grumbled and leaned my head down, soon falling to sleep as well.
---The next morning!---
I woke with a pounding head ache and a growling stomach. ‘Damn, I’m hungry.’ I looked down at the d-dogs; they were sleeping in nap sacks. ‘I wonder if diamond dog tastes good, it would get rid of them for us and feed me at the same time, nothing could go wrong!’ I got up slowly; making sure Kate’s head was stable and wouldn’t wake her up. I stalked down the tree, if that makes sense, so I wouldn’t make any noises. When I was on the ground I walked over to the biggest one, in case he woke up and decided to be a pain in the ass and kill me. I opened my mouth and chomped down on his neck, his eyes shot open in surprise and tried to push me off, but I was too strong and he was losing blood really fast. Soon his whimpering died off and he stopped moving. ‘Time to eat!’ I think I just purred, well I am half cat I think. I ate as much as I could before I was full, it wasn’t the best meal I have ever had, and he had dirt in his pelt and stuff like that. I turned to the other two, who were stirring in their sleep. I shot back up the tree and watched as they got up, I was on a lower branch so I could hear what they were saying.
“What is smell? Blood? What happened?” The smallest one looked around a bit before he spotted the body of the large one, you know when I killed him he had some bottles on him, like he was some sort of potion maker. “Leader is dead!” He yelled, it full woke up the medium on and Kate, who was up on the higher branch. She leapt down onto my back and looked down at the two running around panicking.
“What did you do?” She questioned me, looking at the two.
‘I suspect I killed their leader, the others must have run off in the night to get ranged weaponry to shoot us down, 1 down, 4 to go if we decide to kill them, I’m full anyway.’ I licked my lips and looked up at her. ‘I suppose it’s your call on what we do.’ She went into thought and I looked back down at the dogs, boy were they out of it. I mean the way they are just running around tells me they can hardly think by themselves.
“Let’s take out one more of them, hold one down and kill the other in front of him, that will teach them to mess with us.”
‘Didn’t know there was an us. But fine, you take the smallest one and hold him still, I’ll get the taller one.’ She nodded. I readied myself and jumped at just the right time, landing right on the taller one. Kate jumped of my back and tackled the smaller one. She held him up, holding his arms like some cops do back on earth.
“We are going to let you go pup, but not him, this is for chasing us.” She nodded at me and I lowered my tail to the lager one’s neck.
“No! We are sorry! We will run away! Just don’t kill me!” Begging for mercy? Naw. I stabbed my tail into his throat and got off him; he struggled on the ground and held his neck. He slowed his struggles after a while then went limp. I turned to Kate and the other dog, she had a slightly disgusted look on her face and the dog looked like he was about to wet himself.
‘Let him go.’ She nodded and pushed the dog to the ground, who shot up and ran off with his tail between his legs. ‘Well that was…..Entertaining to say the least, now what?’ She looked at me then put her paw to her chin in thought.
“We could leave the jungle and go out into the town close by. I can’t remember what it was called though.” We both sighed.
‘Well, hop on and you can give me directions.’ She smiled and jumped onto my back eagerly. ‘Damn I must be soft.’
“And cuddly.” She pointed out.
“And cuddly.” I sighed and began walking.
Look out world! Here comes Austin and his partner in crime Kate the cat! Shit is about to go down!