'Twas the Night Before Christmas...
And all through the house...
There were creatures a-stirrin'.
Perhaps a really, REALLY BIG mouse.
"Hey, that was no mouse, Mason. That was me, your brother. You know, me: Seville the Cat. MOUSES!"
"Why are you still up at this hour, Seville? You KNOW Santa won't bring us our presents until we're all tucked in bed, asleep, dreamin' of..."
"Yeah, yeah... I know the drill. Santa won't come 'til we're all dreamin' of sugarplum, nipped up fairies and stuff. MOUSES!"
"Then WHY are you still up?"
"Because I... Uh... Um... Well..."
"Spit it out," demanded my sister. So I did. I spat the nip leaf I had been chewin' upon, right into her paw. MOUSES!"
"Ewww..." and Mason wiped her paw on the sleeve of my nightshirt.
Wait a minute. Nightshirt? Sleeve? I'm not wearin' any stupid ol' nightshirt with any stupid ol' sleeves. MOUSES!
"Wake up, Sivvers. Wake up!"
I could hear my brothers' voices, and I could feel someone tuggin' on my tail. Givin' my head a good shake, I slowly sat up in the cat bed. "What's goin' on?" I asked, not really wanting to know the answer, on account of my fearin' ANY answer from those two long-haired brotherly freaks of mine would be.. Well... Weird.
To say the least.
"There's someone in the living room," Andy whispered.
"And I think they're stealing things," added Rushton.
"WEASEL ALERT!" Mason yelled as she entered the room, brandishing what looked to be a weapon of some sort. "We have weasels in the living room," she stated, "messing about with our tree. WE'RE GOING TO DEFCON THREE."
Rolling my eyes, I groaned, "You really have to stop watchin' weird shows on TV, Mason. MOUSES!"
"You'll change your tune about my studies of military manoeuvres when we're in full battle mode with the Weasel Syndicate," my sister said through gritted teeth. "They're in there right now, stealing the presents Santa brought, no doubt. We can't just sit back and do nothing, Seville. We must protect what is ours!"
Not accustomed to bein' the voice of reason in my family, I spoke up anyway. "And how do you know there are weasels in the livin' room, pray tell?"
"Did you not hear the crash? AND THE BOOM? AND THE SMASH?" Mason asked.
I scratched behind an ear with a hind leg. "Come to think of it, I did. Weasels made those noises, huh? Are you SURE?"
"Of course I'm sure," Mason snapped.
"You SAW the weasels, and everythin'?"
"Well..." Mason pawed at the ground. "I didn't exactly SEE them. But I heard them. And when one hears the activity of weasels, one KNOWS they're up to no good. You must know that, Seville. You've dealt with the Weasel Syndicate before."
I nodded. "True. But..."
"But nothing. COME ON," and she tossed me a... To tell the truth, I have no idea what it was my sister tossed me. It looked kinda like a spatula, but on the other paw, it could have been just a wooden spoon.
"And you two, too!" Mason cried, throwing Andy and Rushy kitchen implements as well. Putting a small-sized stainless steel mixing bowl over her head, she peered out from under its rim. "ONCE MORE UNTO THE BREACH, DEAR FRIENDS. ONCE MORE!"
I shook my head in dismay at my thinkin'-she-was-a-king-named-Henry, sister. Or was that Harry... Whatever.
As quietly as we could while dragging various weaponized kitchen implements behind us, we four cats crept up to the living room door. Mason had been right. There WAS someone in there messing about with our stuff. I could still hear the crashes and the booms, although they weren't nearly as loud as Mason had made 'em out to be.
"You look first," I hissed at my sister. "You have the protective head gear."
Mason nodded, and peered around the entrance way. Moments later, she turned back to us with a rather odd expression on her face. Embarrassment, I wondered?
"It appears to be," coughed Mason. "It seems..."
"What's up?" asked Rushy. "How come your peachy cream furs are lookin' bright orange and red like us Marmies'?"
"Well..." Mason looked about, furtively.
"Oh for mousin' out loud," I cried, headin' into the livin' room myself, brandishing my... Yeah, I still wasn't sure if it was a wooden spatula or a funny lookin' spoon, but I figured whatever it was, it would do in a pinch.
"SEVILLE!" Peep #1 cried.
"WHY ARE YOU STILL AWAKE?" asked Peep #2.
"We're uh... We were just... UHHH..."
"We? I only see you," and the first peep narrowed her eyes.
I looked over my shoulder. MOUSES, there was no trace of my fur-sibs to be seen. Those three cowardly siblings of mine had high-tailed it out of the area, the moment they sensed trouble.
"I uh... I thought you were weasels," I confessed to the peeps. "But in all fairness, I didn't come to that conclusion all by myself."
"And what are you doing with my cake decorating comb?" Peep #1 asked.
So THAT'S what it was. Humph. Who woulda guessed? MOUSES! I looked up at the peep. "You want it back?"
"Probably not," she answered, shaking her head.
"So anyway... Never mind 'bout what I'm doin' still up on Christmas Eve, Peepers. What's more to the point is, WHAT ARE YOU TWO DOIN' STILL UP? Huh? HUH? Tryin' to catch a glimpse of Santa or somethin'? 'Cause if you are, it's not gonna work. The big guy in red won't come down the chimney 'til all of us are tucked into our beds. DON'T YOU KNOW ANYTHIN', PEEPERS? HUH?"
The peep looked down at her paws - I mean, feet - and mumbled somethin' about my bein' correct.
"What was that, Peepers? Didn't quite catch what you said. YOU'RE GONNA HAVE TO SPEAK UP."
"You're RIGHT, Seville," she said.
"Of course I am," I smiled back. "Now off to bed with you, you peeps," I told them. "Off to bed and to sleep. And uh... Uh... Um... And a Very Merry Christmas to the both of you. Let's plan on gettin' up at dawn to open prezzies, shall we? Dawn sounds about right." I turned and skedaddled it out of the room before either peep could complain 'bout gettin' up so early. "Nighty night!" I cried from the hallway. "You two had best get some sleep."
Moments later, once more tucked back in my cat bed, I softly whispered to all my friends from all around the world...