People and furry people who like The Leader Otis,
It’s Thomas. Apparently, Brother Henry has gotten it into his head that I need some training. It all started the other night when he approached me on the cat tree by the front window and said, “Junior Agent T! It’s time for your formal training to begin!”
When I asked Brother Henry what training he was talking about, he said, “Security agent training, of course! If you’re going to be of any use to us in the event of the Long-feared Dog Uprising, you are going to need to be fully trained! Now step lively Junior Agent T! Let’s get this training started!” I almost refused to play along, but then I decided that it might actually be fun. So I followed Brother Henry when he jumped down to the floor.
Once we were on the floor, Brother Henry said, “Alright, first I need to show you how we handle super-secret communications! Dogs have excellent hearing and we don’t want them to overhear any of our most important communiques. So here’s how we prevent that from happening!” Brother Henry then put his mouth up against my head, right behind my ear. He whispered softly, “Freeze-dried chicken is super tasty.”
Brother Henry then pulled his face back and said, “Did you get that Junior Agent T!?” I said, “Yes. You said that freeze-dried chicken is su…”, “SHHHHHHHHHHH!”, Brother Henry interjected, “Keep it down Junior Agent T! That was secret! We don’t want the dogs knowing about that!” Although I was pretty sure that the dogs already knew that, I didn’t argue. I just said, “Oooops. Sorry I almost gave that one away Brother Henry. I’ll be sure to use your super-secret communication method next time.” I don’t think he saw me roll my eyes when I said it because he just said, “That’s fine Junior Agent T. You’re still a rookie, so of course you’re going to make a few rookie mistakes. Let’s move on.”
Brother Henry said that next he would show me how to properly sit an outpost. The outpost looked an awful lot like a box to me, but Brother Henry assured me that it was actually Security Outpost Zulu. He told me to hop in, sit down, and be alert for any signs of an impending canine attack. He then showed me how to properly look alert and I did my best to imitate him.
A few moments passed and then Brother Henry turned back to me and said, “Excellent, Junior Agent T! You’re an outpost sitting natural!” I don’t know why, but I kind of felt like smiling when he said that.
Next Brother Henry said, “Alright Junior Agent T! Now let’s work a little on your Sneaky Skills. Close your eyes and count to ten. While you do that, I’m going to go hide. When you reach ten, open your eyes and try to find me. Be sure to use your Sneaky though, because I’m going to try to ambush you!” I did as Brother Henry asked, and when I reached ten, I set off to find him.
Now, I lived outside for more than a year. Dangers were around every corner out there and I had to use all of my senses to avoid them. Back then, “Sneaky” was my way of life, so it took me about two seconds to realize that Brother Henry was lying in wait behind a tall cardboard box. I approached the box silently, and sat down next to it when I heard Brother Henry’s breathing coming from the opposite side.
I circled back to my right, and leapt softly onto the black bench next to the box. I tiptoed down to the end and took up position above and behind Brother Henry. From my high vantage point I watched, knowing that at any moment I could drop down on Brother Henry from above and take him completely by surprise.
As I watched Brother Henry from above, I realized that it would probably be devastating for him if he were to realize that the student was actually the master. Brother Henry has never lived in Limbo. He has never known the constant fear that drives outdoor kitties to become skittish, distrustful and secretive. In that moment, sitting above him, I envied him for that, and I decided I didn’t want to do anything to disrupt that sense of safety.
So I snuck back along the bench, and jumped back down on the other side of the box. I then walked with somewhat heavy footsteps toward where I knew Brother Henry to be hiding. When I didn’t hear any reaction from Brother Henry, I faked a kitty sneeze and suddenly he leapt out from behind the box. He crouched low, as if he was about to pounce, and said, “Aha! I have you Junior Agent T!”
I made a big show of acting startled, and I said, “Oh my gosh! Brother Henry! Where did you come from!? I can’t believe you got me!” Brother Henry said, “Don’t feel too bad Junior Agent T! It takes some practice to develop your Sneaky Skills. I’ve been working on them for more than 7 years now, so just give it some time and you’ll get there.” Getting up to leave Brother Henry said, “That’s it for today’s training, Junior Agent T. Practice what I have taught you and, when you’re ready, we’ll have another lesson. I’m sure you’ll be up to full Agent status in no time!”
After Brother Henry left, I jumped back up onto the bench to ponder all that had just happened.
I still think these cats are pretty weird, but I really do like them. If there really is going to be a Long-feared Dog Uprising like Brother Henry thinks though, well, I’m not so sure he is fully prepared to lead the defense. He’s certainly a big, strong cat, but If I’m able to get the drop on him, won’t the dogs be able to as well?
No, we need a new first line of defense. We need a weapon so stealthy that even The Leader Himself won’t know that it exists. That weapon will be an international cat of mystery. That weapon will be called “Secret Agent T”. That weapon will be me.