THE SENTINELS 

Through the window, I see either one or both of them on the green mat outside the door. It is their favorite place, next to the box. Most of the time, I find them asleep after having had their meal or “sitting” and gazing about serenely. I always remind myself to look down before stepping out of the floor and to look to the left to make sure their tails haven’t got caught at the door. 

They didn’t arrive all of a sudden outside the entrance to my flat like the others. Nur, a member of the janitorial team of the junior high of Global Prestasi School, had accosted me along the school corridor one day and beckoned me to follow her. Down the corridor we went until we reached the end where the school equipment were parked. She parted the mattresses to reveal two kittens visibly frightened. Their situation was precarious, said Nur. She had let the kittens stay in the area for two days, but then her junior supervisor got wind of it and said she’d have to do something about them or he would, meaning he would remove them himself. I was Nur’s answer.

It took a couple of days for thetwo to get used to their new surroundings. It took them two days to come out of the box I used to  transport them. They’d hissed whenever I peeped to see how they were doing or checked on the bowl of Whiskas dry food (like the rest, they don’t really like the Friskas brand) in the box. They are inseparable and, on occasions, I have seen one put his paw around the other, as if to say everything is all right, or when the other looked a bit under the weather. They kept to the area where their box was. Now, they have a run of the place, sequestering the green mat as their daybed, and, on several occasions, acting like little sentinels of the flat. 

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