Alley Cats (A Micro-Fic)
It vanished into the storm drain. A big tom, black, half an ear missing. Then there was the other one, the tabby on the fence. The slender black cat slipping into the neighbor's yard. Taken for granted, these cats, nobody's cats. Quiet, not so much as a meow between them. People complained. They lowered the tone of the neighborhood. They tried to get rid of them, they trapped them, transported them to shelters. Put them in cages. With the storm drains empty, with not a whisker in the alleys, bad things happened. They let them go; for better in any day and time the cat than the rat.
True story - actually happened in a neighborhood near us. They set out to eliminate their feral cat problem...and rapidly ended up replacing it with a rat and mouse problem.
Cats are highly useful critters to have around - except when they arrive on your laptop with such suddenness that you start typing on their fur... (Gotta love friendly barn cats).
Feral cats are also extremely common in many parts of Europe. The cat in the picture, however, belonged to my parents. Who, as you can see, needed to mow that lawn a little more often...
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