Sneak out the back door. Load the shotgun, then tromp through the cottonwoods, past the barn. Look for jackrabbits, but don’t be too picky; cottontails are fine.
Get at least three rabbits, maybe four, if winter’s almost spent. Never hunt for cat food in the warm months, those without an “R” in their name. July hares likely harbor worms.
Dress the rabbits meticulously. Remove every fragment of buckshot. Use tweezers to pluck the deep bits—take no chances with Yellow Cat’s brittle old teeth.
Line up a row of baggies. Portion the meat, bite-size pieces only. Deposit the baggies in the freezer, but save the best tidbits for later.
Reassure the wife that, of course, it’s all jackrabbit meat; no cottontails in the lot. Project sincerity, especially when her glare stings. Nod when she hectors about her Siamese’s more civilized digestion.
Mollify by helping with the supper dishes. Stack the plastic plates in the pantry, on the shelf above her cat’s store-bought food. Squint at the tuna-flavored scourge and commiserate with the melancholy Siamese. When no one’s looking, loosen his black velvet collar.
Escape the kitchen. Take Yellow Cat’s china dish to the back step. Wait for him to slink out of the shadows, then scratch his ears while he eats. Bask in his ragged purring and kneading claws.
Later, smuggle the last morsel of fresh meat into the Siamese’s crystal dish. Grin, because the taste of shared rebellion is sweet.
- Myna Chang writes short stories in a variety of genres. Her work has been featured in the Akashic Books flash series. She holds B.S. and M.A. degrees in communication. See more at mynachang.com.