Dear Crazy Journal,
My cat is very angry with me, but at least she is not on fire.
That is what I thought to myself as I walked away from my home. My family. My past. All of it burned behind me.
Everything except the kitten.
Her name is Blaze now, but at the time she didn’t have a name. She was just a little black kitten that I had found.
I am glad that I have been allowed to keep her. The keepers said that if I continue to take my medications, she can stay. She is the only reason why I am sane.
I wasn’t very sane in the past. You need only to read my other journals to figure that out.
I am afraid this entry has not been very entertaining. Let me tell you the story that I alluded to earlier.
I had been with that family for two years. The longest I had been with any family. The mother and father had handled and adopted other troublesome children, so they accepted me with open arms. I wasn’t a problem for them only because I was tired of constantly being moved around. So I pretended.
I pretended to be normal. Sometimes I stole things with the other fosters, a got into a few fights. Chases a boy or two as the months wore on. Occasionally I refused to do my homework. The parents handled all of it with patience and love. Never fear. They didn’t know that they had anything to be afraid of.
In the beginning I could feel them watching me, waiting to see if what they had heard about me was true. They never saw anything, as I had become a master of keeping my emotions in check. Or so I thought.
I asked for a cat every few days. The mother and father always said no. If I had a cat, then all the other children would ask why they couldn’t have their own pet. And we lived on a ranch, far away from any pet store. They didn’t want to make the trip.
Then, one day, I was exploring the old barn. The mother and father always said we should never go there, so of course I had to go see.
I broke the chain on the barn doors and went inside. I looked in a few stalls and found lots of rotten hay and old horse manure. I saw a saddle that was falling apart. Nothing really interested me until the fifth or sixth stall – a family of cats was living there.
The mother was a beautiful orange tabby, and she had four little kittens who were just starting to walk. There was a brown tabby, an orange tabby, a black and white tuxedo, and the solid black runt. The runt tried to wobble towards me, but the mother growled and carried the kitten to the back corner of the stall. I was clearly not welcome, so I left.
I came back the next day with leftover sausage with breakfast. I tossed it into the stall and left. I brought ham after lunch. Chicken after dinner. I brought food every day for two weeks, and each time I stayed a little longer, and inched my way into the stall. This was my one chance to have a cat, and I wasn’t going to mess it up.
By the last day, I was able to pet the kittens and feed them from my hand, as they were old enough to start trying solid food. The mother seemed happy to have help, and all of them had gained some weight from the first time I came.
The black kitten tried to follow me when I was leaving, so I picked her up. The mother didn’t protest. I took a step back. The mother watched. I left the stall with the kitten, and her mother just laid her head down to take a nap. I guessed that she thought I would come back. That was my plan at the time.
The kitten climbed onto my shoulder, and she stayed there as I walked back to the house. One of the younger children saw me walking up and yelled “Nyx found a kitten! Nyx found a kitten!” By the time I was at the front door, every single child had heard and come out. We all went inside to find the mother and father in the kitchen. Both of them had their arms crossed. The mother’s foot was tapping on the wood floors. She. Was. Mad.
They demanded that I showed them where I got the kitten, so they could ‘take care of the problem.’ I could tell that they wanted to kill the cats, so I refused to tell them where they lived. I started to feel warm.
They yelled at me. Threatened to throw me out. I still wouldn’t tell them. I started to feel hot.
Then father hit me.
Everything froze. Mother couldn’t believe her husband had actually struck a foster child, let alone one with such a scary reputation. Father took a step back and began to apologize, but it was too late.
The floor beneath my feet had already caught fire.
I turned to look at them. Fires began in different parts of the house.
The children began to scream. A few ran to the front door, but it was locked. The kitten began to mewl. I had to grab her before she jumped off my shoulder.
I held the kitten tight to my chest as I calmly walked out. The door opened for me, and then closed as soon as I crossed the threshold. I heard them calling my name, begging me to let them out. The fires intensified with every word, until the entire house and every person inside had been engulfed.
I kept walking until I left the property. I walked past the emergency response vehicles screamed past me. I walked into the night. I didn’t stop until dawn broke the next day. I collapsed on the edge of town. The kitten never left my side. I think she was too scared to do that.
I woke up in a hospital, speaking nonsense. Even I barely understood myself. The only coherent thing I could say was “This is my kitten and if you take her I will burn you.”
My condition didn’t improve until Blaze and I came here, about a week later. The nurses took Blaze away, and I was finally completely broken. Speaking nonsense, making things explode or catch on fire when I didn’t get my way. No body knew what to do with me, until they called in that specialist and gave Blaze back.
A year later, I am finally in control again. More or less sane. Blaze is happy. I am too, at times.
Let’s see how long this lasts.