His ears swiveled as another mouse peeped through the doorway. “You are too late,” he told it, letting his head drop. “Your mocking friends have been and gone.”
“Is it true, then?” asked the mouse.
The cat opened one bleary eye. “I have sworn,” he said, “never again to eat the flesh of the unwilling.”
“Will you not starve?”
“It seems so.”
The mouse crept nearer. “My nest is gone. My mate, our little ones… I could do nothing.” He hesitated. “I am prepared.”
The mouse was silent, trembling.
“So be it.” The cat blinked.
The jaws opened, lowered…