Desdemona died sometime in the night. Aunt Ada had had the cat since she was a tiny kitten, and she was naturally heartbroken. So was Boots, Desdemona's partner in crime and play and food and everything else that makes life worthwhile for two old cats.
Through her tears, Aunt Ada wondered if she could've noticed something or had done something differently that would have given Desdemona back to her for a while longer, but there just wasn't anything. The cat had looked good at bedtime, and was gone before the sun came up.
What if? Well, what if she'd done this or that? Would it have saved the cat? No, of course not.
Even if your heart is breaking, you have to look at things logically. Cats get old and cats die. So do people. Aunt Ada Sandiford is old. Very old to some ways of thinking. But she still putters around the house and does her own shopping and cooking. She makes it to church every Sunday, too. Years ago she sang in the choir, but she stopped doing that when she discovered her voice had gotten old.
So she called a good friend and asked her if she would look after Boots if she died before he did.
There, that was something I could do. And she went quietly out in the back yard with the shovel and said goodbye to her old friend Desdemona.
Sometimes there's nothing left to say except I love you.
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