we found my cat mystery when i was pretty young, probably about 10 or so. for days, a mysterious meowing sound could be heard around my dad's old house. a house so old the basement was literally a cube carved out of the muddy terrain.
my brother opened the latch to the basement and found a wee little kitty, quite skinny and quite distraught. we nursed her back to health, feeding her out of a bottle. my father told us not to get attached, that we would have to give her away once she was fully healthy again. but i grew so fond of this little kitten and, in the end, my father broke down and let us keep her. it was a mystery to us how she had gotten into our basement and that's how mystery got her name.
she was never the friendliest of cats. she only likes to be petted for approximately 30 seconds and then you better be fast to get your hand away from her swatting claws. she's a cat of the wild, it's her instinct. but she always had a soft spot for my father. she was a completely different cat around him. she'd even jump up on his lap and take a nap with him.
after my father passed away, mystery came to live with us at my mom's house and she was more agitated than ever, having to live in a new house with new people and with a dog. slowly but surely, mystery became acclimated to her new surroundings, but she still never lost her aloofness. she still doesn't like more than minimal affection, and on her schedule. and she definitely doesn't like large groups of people.
however, on christmas day this year, we all gathered around the tree and opened our presents, laughing and yawning (as none of us are morning people). lo and behold, in walks mystery. she prances in and sits perfectly centered beneath the christmas tree, among the gifts, about a foot away from or dog blinky, and watches us open our gifts. it was one of my favorite christmas gifts, to have her there with all the family.
this cat will never cease to be a mystery to me.