Originally Posted by Braineack
this is a medical condition that some cats have. They become unattached to their own bodies (typically tails and rear half)
“Let me see if I understand you,” said Dirk. “You say you lost your cat, er, ‘Gusty,’ while you’ve been standing here talking to me?”
“No. I lost him—or sort of half-lost him—two weeks ago. But I last saw him, which is what you asked, just before I came into your office. I just checked to see he was okay. Which he was. Well, sort of okay. If you can call it okay.”
“And ... er, where was he, exactly, when you checked to see that he was okay?”
She went out of the room and returned with a medium-sized wickerwork cat box. She put it down on Dirk’s desk. Its contents mewed slightly. She closed the door behind her.
“Excuse me if I’m being a little obtuse,” he said, looking round the basket at her. “Tell me which bit of this I’ve got wrong. It seems to me that you are asking me if I will exercise my professional skills to search for and if possible find and return to you a cat ...”
“... which you already have with you in a cat basket?”
“Well, that’s right up to a point.”
“And which point is that?”
“Have a look for yourself.”
She slid out the metal rod that held the lid in place, reached into the basket, lifted out the cat, and put him down on Dirk’s desk, next to the basket. Dirk looked at him.
He—Gusty—looked at him.
There is a particular disdain with which Siamese cats regard you. Anyone who has accidentally walked in on the Queen cleaning her teeth will be familiar with this feeling.
Gusty looked at Dirk and clearly found him reprehensible in some way. He turned away, yawned, stretched, groomed his whiskers briefly, licked down a small patch of ruffled fur, then leapt lightly off the table and started carefully to examine a splinter of floorboard, which he found to be far more interesting than Dirk.
Dirk stared wordlessly at Gusty.
Up to a point, Gusty looked exactly like a normal Siamese cat. Up to a point. The point up to which Gusty looked like a normal Siamese cat was his waist, which was marked by a narrrow, cloudy grey band.
“The front half looks quite well,” said Melinda whatever-her-name-was in a small voice. “Quite sleek and healthy, really.”
“And the back half?” said Dirk.
“Is what I want you to look for.”
“It isn’t invisible,” said Melinda, picking the cat up, awkwardly. “It’s actually not there.” She passed her hand back and forth through clear air, where the cat’s hindquarters should have been. The cat twisted and turned in her grip, mewling crossly, then leapt nimbly to the ground and stalked about in an affronted manner.
“My, my,” said Dirk, steepling his fingers under his chin. “That is odd.”