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Zombie Catpocalypse and the Fern of Doom

Updated on November 14, 2015
Eyes glazed, Rupert was mesmerized by the fern of doom.
Eyes glazed, Rupert was mesmerized by the fern of doom.

The Marmalade Creature Shambled Along on Hind Feet, Paws Ready to Grasp and Rend

Has the zombie catpocalypse begun? Is this cuddly yet blank-eyed ginger thirsting for gooey, gooey brains? Or is something else at play here? Read on if you'd like to find out what turned this fluffy marmalade kitty into a single-minded killing machine.

all photos by Kylyssa Shay unless otherwise noted

The Fern of Doom, photo by Kylyssa Shay
The Fern of Doom, photo by Kylyssa Shay

The Fern of Doom

It was a quiet day in October when the thing, the vector, arrived in my apartment. It appeared innocent enough, disguised as a gift from my roommate's mother. As you can see, its leaves were full and lush, a testament to her green thumb.

We knew it was as good as dead from the beginning, despite its healthy appearance. My roommate and I had both made many attempts at keeping such ferns alive, to no avail.

Despite our certainty that the fern was a member of the leafy undead, we gave in to optimism and put it in a protected place. It sat in the tub in the bathroom, behind a closed door while we purchased a ceiling hook and tried to determine the best place to hang it.


Vanessa the Fierce being fiercely adorable
Vanessa the Fierce being fiercely adorable

Hanging the Fern of Doom

Its siren song called to the creatures of the household, even through the closed door. Every time we needed to use the restroom, two furry bodies pressed against our legs, pushing to gain entry. Tiny Vanessa shoved her soft white paws beneath the door and sat for hours with her face pressed against it. This strengthened our resolve to find a safe hanging place for the fern of doom.

It took a bit of discussion and strategic planning but we finally arrived at a location that would not be directly beneath a heat vent, encourage the use of humans as ladders, or deprive the plant of sunlight.

As we hung the fern, the cats watched with blood-lust (sap-lust?) and curiosity, eyebrow whiskers trembling.


Rupert was watching the Fern of Doom day in and day out.
Rupert was watching the Fern of Doom day in and day out.

Try as he might, Rupert could not quite reach the dangling fern to bring about its destruction. He sat awake days and nights, sitting on the coffee table and staring at his green nemesis. His sister contented herself by doing fierce battle with and then consuming whatever leaves happened to fall from above although sometimes she'd gaze up longingly and wave a paw in its direction.

The fern was not innocent in all of this. It sent its sneeze-inducing spores of doom throughout our home and I popped pills to combat my watering eyes and runny nose. But Rupert was on the job. I've never seen a cat with a better work ethic.


Rupert was on the job. I've never seen a cat with a better work ethic.

Zombie Catpocalypse or Fern of Doom Induced Madness?

Zombie-eyed Rupert shambling beneath the Fern of Doom
Zombie-eyed Rupert shambling beneath the Fern of Doom

A week or so into the fern occupation I caught this terrifying image on film. Well, on a digital camera. As you can see by his blank expression, Rupert was consumed by his desire to destroy the fern.

Ultimately, the fern of doom died all on its own, due to apartment dryness unmitigated by thrice daily spritzings of its leaves. In the end, I brought its nearly skeletal carcass down to distract the kitties from flowers I was making into a funeral arrangement in the dining room. They feasted well and I vacuumed dead leaves up for several weeks thereafter.


The Hook from the Fern of Doom Has Been Put to Good Use

Ginger cat photo mobile
Ginger cat photo mobile | Source

As you can see, the hook has been put to use displaying something far more adorable and less likely to produce small fuzzy cat zombies. A part of me wonders if Rupert didn't plan this all along.


Relaxed and happy Rupert being excessively cute
Relaxed and happy Rupert being excessively cute

Now that the fern of doom has died and been disposed of, Rupert is relaxed and happy. He spends his days napping and his nights napping and charging after imaginary foes in endless and greatly varied battle simulations. If another anything of Doom finds its way into our home, he will be ready.


Vanessa the Fierce, napping on a little sofa
Vanessa the Fierce, napping on a little sofa

Vanessa the Fierce also survived the zombie catpocalypse and the fern of doom. She is pictured here getting a well deserved rest after weeks keeping watch over the home-invading houseplant.

She spends her days dreaming of murder and her nights plotting murder and practicing the fine art of knocking stuff down. Although a lovely specimen of the cat mafia, Vanessa takes the time to enjoy creative pursuits such as the playing of the taplinkta song on the bedroom blinds and knocking stuff down to knock other stuff down.

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