When the tide went out it left the small beach cove layered in seaweed which made it a dangerous place to go for an walk. It was my favorite spotted though because it was empty of people and great for finding items to make my crafts with.
I was walking along the edge, putting interesting bits of wood, shells and other items in my basket. The sea, though distance was still loud as the autumn wind was strong and a drizzle was falling. Letting my raincoat hood fall back, I heard the loud cries of a cat.
Frowning, I followed the sound and a few meters down on the beach I saw a movement of black and heard a strangled cry. Placing down my basket, I carefully walked over the seaweed and slippy rocks. Twice, I felt like I was going to slip but I was able to keep my balance.
From out of a large pile of seaweed rose a small, skinny black cat. He’s huge green eyes focused on me and he’s meows were so pleading it was heartbreaking. I slowly crept closer, but the cat didn’t try to run away, in fact he seemed to be awaiting me. Bit unusual for a cat!
‘Okay, kitty. I’m only here to help you,’ I said gently.
I began taking the long strips of wet seaweed off the cat’s back, thinking at any moment he would do a runner. My fingers touched the cat’s fur and I realised he was soaked through. He meowed at me and kept trying to pulled himself free.
‘How long have been here, cat? Did you decided to take a walk and fell into this seaweed?’ I asked.
He meowed at me some more. I took the last slimy piece off his back then moved on to his legs. Somehow, he’d really got himself wrapped up. As I untangled a third leg the cat struggled out and shook himself.
‘You’re free now,’ I said with a smile.
The black cat pressed up against me, meowing more softer this time. I stroked his wet head and back. He was so skinny! His tail swayed around, sometimes hitting my leg, I ignored that as I glanced around.
‘Will you let me carry you?’ I asked, ‘just in case you get stuck again?’
Carefully, I picked him up and let him climb up to my shoulder. He pressed his head to my ear and give a low purr. I turned and began making my way back, slowly. It was hard going with just one arm for balance and the sight of a cat blocking my view but we made it back. Just in time for it to start raining.
I grabbed my basket and hurried home. The cat not seeming to mind as he bounced on my shoulder. Entering the seaside village, I made straight for my shop front then around to the back door which was my front door to my apartment above. When we got in and up the narrow stairs, I set the cat down then my basket. Taking off my shoes, coat and jumper, I left everything at the front door and went to get a towel.
I dried myself off then the cat. He wasn’t wearing a collar but he was too friendly not to be someone’s pet. Though, I’d not seen a black cat around here, since my own; Web who’d died two years ago. Luckily, I had kept her stuff and I give the black cat a bowl of water and a handful of cat treats that I’d not thrown away yet.
In the coming months, I tried hard to find the cat’s owner, but no one ever came forward to claim him. He made himself at home and was loved by everyone who came into the shop. People also said how fitting it was for a black cat to live in a witch’s shop. I had to agree and some days, I did wonder if he had actually come to me. A witch wasn’t a witch without her black cat familiar!
Oh, I called him Ebb by the way. That seemed kind of fitting.
(Inspired by; https://scvincent.com/2017/10/26/thursday-photo-prompt-ebb-writephoto with thanks).