Okay, the title seems morbid, but I didn’t kill a cat. I may have caused its death, but I’m not entirely sure until today.
Flashback to 11-12 years ago.
I was about ten years old at the time and toy guns were the in thing for rowdy young boys. These toy guns shoot plastic pellets, and while they’re mostly not fatal, they pack a hard punch. I “accidentally” shot my palm once; the pain is like a sting only that it’s itchy and lingers on your skin for hours.
When my dad bought my toy gun, he cautioned me not to use it on any living creatures. He drew some targets to have something to play with, but shooting immobile objects was very boring. It was not long before my bloodlust (I say that very loosely) was welling inside of me and my love for the hunt soon took over. I started to play war games with my friends and would go home every night with tons of rashes due to the pellets. This went on for a couple of weeks. Before I knew it, toy guns were already part of our lives as young commandos.
Everything changed in one rainy morning though. Seeing that we can’t play in the bad weather, I did some practice shootings alone. I obviously got bored and looked for something to hunt. And then there it was… a cat hiding under our car. It was fully grown, sleeping under the cold metal chassis of the vehicle. Its peaceful slumber meant scat to me and I fired a shot. I hit him on his thigh, which caused him to scurry away. I didn’t chase the cat though; I just went inside our house and watched T.V.
After a few hours, the sky was clear again. That also meant that it’s time for another session of war games with my friends. As I was going outside, I noticed something lying near the canal beside our gates. It was the cat I shot before, wet and shivering. Tears involuntarily poured from eyes and my knees shook hard — they were almost jerking. The slight minute of despair turned into panic. What can an eleven year-old do to a dying cat? I called our helper and asked her to do something. She was dumbfounded as well. I wanted to bring the cat inside our home in the hopes of reviving him but our helper forbade me from doing so, citing reasons that revolve around germs and rabies. I made a final attempt however and brought him milk and some bread. It feels silly to think about it now. Alas, all hope was lost and the cat succumbed to the cold streets of Cavite.
That moment gave me nightmares. I cried every night for two weeks. A cat died in my own hands.
The questions arise.
“Am I really a cold-blooded murderer?”
“What if I kill an animal again? What if I kill someone next time!?”
And with the questions came the justifications.
“No, a shot to the thigh couldn’t have killed a cat. It must be the harsh weather.”
“The pellet didn’t really hit the cat. I missed. I’m innocent.”
And since that moment, I decided not to touch pellet guns anymore or get near to cats for that matter. I still remember what happened when I see real or toy guns. No, sir, I won’t shoot cats anymore.
Linking this post to the Daily Prompt.
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