A bathroom fan in the apartment below mine shorted out, and burst into flames, at about 5 PM. I never knew until the smoke detector went off (as the smoke hadn't reached the bedroom), and I found my apartment quickly engulfed in thick black smoke, choking me...yet I refused to leave, attempting to find my cats, until the fire trucks arrived, and I was dragged out.
A fireman stopped by to see if I needed further assistance. I asked him to please look outside for a big gray cat, and he promised he would. I looked around my apartment, surveying the damage...broken window screens, a ceiling fan ripped out, my "Graces" statue in the bathroom cracked in several places. The whole place stank of oily smoke, with pieces of various knick-knacks scattered around the floor. I couldn't stop coughing, but at least Pi and Kit were okay, and despite my heartache for Gray, I felt fortunate!
I walked to the kitchen, the pair of cats close behind me, cleaned their bowls, and got out their cat food, as they'd missed their dinner. I tried to resign myself to the possibility of life without my beloved big cat...but the prospect quickly had me sniffling, yet again! Turning to place the meals on the dining room table, a familiar head popped out from around the corner...and I dropped both bowls to the floor!
He quickly dashed into another room and hid, but I felt a tremendous sense of relief...My whole family was safe!
I'm afraid the fire has taught the cats that I'm not God, and I can't keep them safe from everything...
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