The other day I got a call from my friend Prince, a shut-in playwright of questionable moral fiber. I answered the phone and reluctantly obliged a request to drop something off at his house.
I knocked on his door and saw two beady eyes appear through the grating. The tiny window shut as abruptly as it opened, and I heard a dozen or so locks click and snap until Prince finally appeared in the doorway to let me in. The apartment smelled of seafood and...bleach.
"Here are those pictures of Jake sleeping you asked for. I don't really understand why you wanted...." Without acknowledging me, he snatched the disc out of my hands and disappeared behind the velvety red curtain that led to his den of sin and blogging.
Standing there amongst crudely hand-painted portraits of Zac Efron and Levi Johnston, I noticed a mind-boggling number of cat toys and the words "Pork Chop" sprawled in crayon across the wall. I deduced that it must be the name of his beloved feline. Unsure when Prince was going to return and unwilling to spend any more time in his hovel than absolutely necessary, I made my way for the door. But before I could reach for the handle, a rotund cat appeared before me. Our eyes met.
"Hey there, little guy," I said. But Pork Chop just looked at me.
The way Pork Chop stared was unlike any cat had ever stared at me before. I saw something intangible, something beautiful. Akin to the "Afghan Girl" or the Mona Lisa. In the depths of Pork Chop's pale green eyes I saw sadness, strength...and love.
"Take me away with you," Pork Chop said.
"I can't," I stammered.
"No. You won't."
I lowered my eyes, taken aback by Pork Chop's boldness.
"Don't be like that.... You don't know how much I...care." Almost immediately after I said it, I regretted it. How could I open myself, my heart, to this cat so soon? I wasn't entirely sure, but I swear I saw him smile.
Then Prince awkwardly stumbled into the room, ruining the moment.
"I see you two are getting well acquainted!"
I cringed at Prince's bumbling sniffle-snorting laughter. But I knew he could never understand what he had just interrupted—the beauty of such a pure connection was simply beyond him. The moment passed. Pork Chop meowed and with a flick of his tail...was gone.
Prince and I had absolutely nothing to say to one another, so, after a moment of silence and three solicitations for Diet Coke, I could no longer take it and left.
But as I rounded the corner, I couldn't help but feel eyes on my back. I turned to look up and saw Pork Chop sitting in the window. I knew our story wouldn't end there.
[To be continued....]
[Will Blank is a Video Contest Warrior.]