Mackinley - Greetings! Thank you for following me; you are MOST welcome here, Please excuse the lengthy gap 'twixt the last post and this one - the New Teal Megane has died a horrible and protracted death and has had to be replaced. More of this anon; for now, let us return to Gisèle's ill-advised "I Love Peaches Party" and conclude that wretched business. And so, therefore:-
"I mean, LOOK at you!" sneered Peaches nastily, "You're one of those pathetic types who actually IS as stupid as they look. You look more like an ugly skinny rat than a dog - did you crawl out of a sewer when you were born, or something?!"
Gisèle looked at him uncertainly, and tried to smile, but Peaches was having none of it. The evil feline seemed to know exactly which "buttons" to press in order to cause maximum distress to another, and it was no different with poor, sweet, Gisèle. "No-one WANTED you here, did you know that?" he meowed, his eyes glinting malevolently in the sun, "Not your Mistress - she didn't want you. Lady Lardy over there" [meaning Betty] "didn't want you. And not even your owner before that - he definitely didn't want you, did he? Oh, I saw it all. I was watching when he brought you here... Didn't stay more than ten minutes did he? Just shoved your things into the house and left you. Not even took the time to say goodbye. Told the daft girl he'd collect you in a fortnight's time. But he never came back, did he? You never saw him again. And - as for your so-called 'Mistress' - Jasper was the dog she'd always wanted. Jasper. Not you. There's a casket by her computer, isn't there? I've seen it through the glass doors whenever I visit to p*ss on his memorial. YOU know what's in there, don't you? DON'T you?"
"Yes." squeaked Giz, in a small and trembling voice.
"And you've been told NEVER to reveal what is in that casket, haven't you...?"
Gisèle trembled and a small tear trickled down her cheek, which was more than enough for Peaches.
"What does the little brass plaque on the outside of that casket say, Gisèle?"
"WHAT does it SAY?!"
"It... it says... it says 'JASPER'."
"See?!" sneered Peaches cruelly, "She keeps him close - but not YOU. Never you. No-one wants you here Gisèle. Why don't you just f***ing p*ss off and die?!"
"It's not true!" whimpered poor Giz, "Mistress DOES love me! I is a good girl! I IS loved!"
"Oh, knock it off." groaned Peaches. "No-one ever wanted you here. Go on - ask. Ask Fatty over there." Peaches' whiskers twitched towards Betty, who had tried to shrink and hide behind my partner's watering-can and store of spare plant-pots at the onset of Peaches' tirade. Rosie had slunk backwards, trying to escape Peaches' notice, until she was behind her garden fence, at which point she abandoned discretion and fled headlong into the safety of her own house. Laddie was nowhere to be seen. "Go on! Ask her!" jeered Peaches.
"It ISN'T true! It isn't!!" squealed Giz desperately, turning and staggering around for a lifeline which did not present itself. "It ISN'T true! Betty!! Tell me it's not true! Tell me it's not TRUE! BETTY!!!"
But poor Betty, equally stricken, could not lie to her best friend. Quivering and wretched, she finally whispered
"It was true - a long time ago. But not any more. Dearest, belovèd, Giz - you are so loved, so loved and wanted now..."
"She admits!" crowed Peaches, cutting across Elizabeth's words, "You see?! Not even your best friend can deny that you weren't wanted!"
Gisèle began to struggle for breath, her tiny chest heaving. "And this" continued Peaches "is what I think of your stupid f***ing party, you dirty little pig." And, in a sudden sweeping movement, he smacked his paw against the dish of special milk for cats. The small bowl flew through the air and struck Giz on the forehead. It tipped over and the thick, sticky milk ran down her face and neck, dripping off the ends of her delicate whiskers. Sweet Giz finally gave up the battle in which she had been struggling for the past few minutes and burst into tears.
Peaches purred with satisfaction at the distress he had caused, and then moved closer to drive the hurtful dagger home. "I don't need any friends." he mewed, "But, even if I did, the last creature I would ever want to be my friend is a pathetic, fluff-brained, unwanted, idiot little runt like you. You are worthless, I'm not surprised no-one wants you. You should have been drowned in a sack the moment you were born. F*** off and f***ing DIE." With this parting barb, while Giz wailed and sobbed behind him, Peaches turned to swagger off - but he couldn't resist one last swipe. "Silly little cry-baby. I knew, the first time I sa-AAAUUUGHKK!"
Laddie had come belting around the little path and corner from Rosie's house and, with an enraged roar, had leaped upon the foul Peaches and pinned him to the ground. I thought he might have killed him outright - Laddie was literally standing with his front paws on Peaches' shoulders - but after a few seconds the wretched cat, his face and chest squashed against the asphalt pavement, began to struggle and wheeze.
"'Bout time someone beat some decent respect and manners into you, boy." barked Laddie furiously.
"Let me breathe a bit..." squeaked Peaches.
"You don't deserve to breathe, you nasty little parasite."
"Let me breathe a bit - I can't breathe!"
Laddie slipped his right paw under the back of Peaches' collar and hauled his upper body up a few inches off the ground.
"Better?" he growled.
"Good." And, with that, Laddie slammed Peaches back down, hard, face-first on the pavement. "Now then, you little sack of sh*t, you're gonna tell me why you just said all them 'orrible things to the nice little lady 'ere." Laddie's face was twisted with anger and he was virtually unrecognisable. Gone was the genial Cockney East-End charm and the full nature of the dog's rough roots was laid bare. It was a startling transformation and most unsettling.
"Oh, Laddie, PLEASE don't hurt him!" pleaded Giz, her overwhelming good-nature and compassion even exceeding the pain that Peaches' snipes had inflicted.
"Out of your paws now, little princess." barked Laddie, not taking his eyes off Peaches. "So come on then, cat," he snarled, "Tell me why. Go on! These lovely ladies worked hard to make a nice party, just for you - and you paid them back like that, you little scum-bucket."
"Let me go!" yowled Peaches.
"I'll let you go only when you've answered my questions. Why was you so 'orrible to sweet little Gisèle?!"
"I don't know." muttered the wretched Peaches.
"Wrong answer!" shouted Laddie, lifting Peaches' upper half off the ground again and slamming him back down on the pavement. "Have another go!"
"I - because I - I thought it was funny..." croaked Peaches miserably. Laddie gave a mirthless laugh.
"Oh. You thought it was funny, did yer?" he growled dangerously, "Then let me tell you something my little pedigree chum. With just one 'phone call I can 'ave a van round 'ere full of my uncles, cousins, and their 'ardest mates. They LOVE beating the cr*p out of ingrates who disrespect nice ladies an' it wouldn't take 'em no time to give you the f***ing kicking of your life. Then you'll learn how f***ing funny it is to pick on nice girls."
Peaches gave a pathetic little whimper, the coward. Elizabeth and Gisèle winced at every profanity that Laddie barked, but neither of them dared to intervene.
"Right." continued Laddie, turning to Giz but still keeping Peaches firmly pinned to the ground, "I believe you got in some special milk for cats, for this little maggot?" Giz nodded. "An' the little scrote chucked it in your face?" Another nod. "Alright darlin', would you kindly oblige me and go and get some more? Cheers princess."
Giz mutely obeyed, grasping the little dish in her mouth and carrying it indoors to ask my partner for a refill. She soon returned carefully holding the dish so as not to spill any of the expensive drink.
"Good girl." said Lad, "Set it down just 'ere, would yer? Ta, love." He waited while Gisèle placed the bowl of milk in front of him. "Right." he barked, "Peaches here is going to graciously accept your hospitality. Ain't yer?" Silence. "Ain't yer?!" He gave Peaches a violent shake, for good measure.
"I'm not really th-" began Peaches weakly. Laddie raised him up and slammed him down onto the pavement once more.
"Nope. Try again..." snarled Laddie. He dragged Peaches over to the bowl, scraping the cat's body and claws on the ground. I winced. I might no longer be able to feel pain myself - but I had not forgotten the agony that a scraped paw-pad or grazed flesh could occasion. I was unable to look away as Laddie pushed Peaches' face down into the milk. "Drink it." he hissed viciously, "Or I'll f***ing drown you in it." Peaches began to lap at the milk in the dish.
"Mmmmn... tasty..." he squeaked, trying (and failing) to sound sincere.
"Finish it. ALL of it." growled Laddie, through gritted fangs. Peaches meekly hastened to comply and licked the bowl dry in record time. "Right." continued Laddie, still not relaxing his powerful grip on the wretched cat, "Now what do you say...?"
"Th- thank you..." stammered Peaches. Laddie barked and smashed Peaches up and down on the pavement once more.
"Have another go." he hissed.
"Thank you very much."
"Thank you very much, Gisèle."
"Better." Laddie relaxed his grip a little - but only a very little. "Now you listen 'ere, and mind you listen GOOD, son, 'cos I'm warning you for the first and last time - and I don't normally give ANY warnings - if you EVER at ANY TIME breath so much as a single nasty meow to these girls or hurt them - and this goes for everyone else here on my turf - in ANY way, I shall find out about it and I will f***ing destroy you. And, believe me, I WILL find out about it. And then there won't even be enough bits of you left that'd cover a postage stamp to return to your deluded owner. They'll never find what's left of you. Got it?!"
Peaches squeaked in fear.
"'Ave you got that?!"
SLAM! Another harsh pavement-pounding.
"Good." Laddie finally released Peaches, who didn't dare to move but cowered, trembling, whimpering and defeated at Laddie's paws. "Now f*** off back home, before I change my mind and decide I ain't so kind after all." Peaches made a dash in the direction of his house. "WALK, don't run on the road!" shouted Laddie, and Peaches immediately halted and walked the rest of the way home in an odd, stiff, march.
As soon as he'd rounded the corner, Betty raced over to Laddie and gave him a big kiss.
"My hero!" she barked, proudly. Laddie looked surprised, though pleased, but failed to press home his advantage. He kept looking back at the road towards Peaches' house and frowning.
"Cheers duchess." he muttered, in a preoccupied sort of way. He then looked down at Giz. "You okay, little princess?" When Giz nodded, Laddie continued "Good. Listen girls, I'm sorry you had to see me do that and hear them bad words - but I'm sick of seeing folks of all species hobbling about or scratched and sore 'cos of that 'orrible cat. I ain't having it no more. Look - I'm gonna go and make sure that he has gone straight home. Don't want him doubling-back here again. I'll pop 'round tomorrow and check that you girls are alright, okay? See ya..." and, with that, he was off.
Gisèle sighed sadly and barked "I suppose I will just take one of those mice over to Honey." [the sweet-natured and well-behaved ginger cat who lived opposite] "I promised her that she could have one if there were any left." She turned, with another little sigh, to the plate of dead mice she had prepared for Peaches - but the plate was empty!
"What happened to all my fresh mice?!" squeaked Giz, looking all around her in surprise. "Did you see what happened to them, Betz...?"
Unfortunately, at that very moment, Betty gave an involuntary loud burp and a fragment of mouse-tail dropped from her mouth.
"I beg pardon..." mumbled Betty meekly, as Gisèle stared at her. Finally, just giving a little smile and shake of her head, Giz began to clear away the remnants of her party. "Look, Giz," said Betty kindly, "Why don't we leave that until tomorrow? Come on in and I'll clean all that sticky milk stuff off your head and fur for you. Come along - let's get you washed before it dries up and your fur goes all crispy." Little Gisèle, still looking forlorn, mutely acquiesced and tottered indoors. As Betty turned to follow her in, she caught my eye and shook her head. "Well - that went better than expected..." she muttered, rolling her eyes heavenwards.
And I have to bark that I agreed with her. What a COMPLETE shambles. Poor Gisèle. At least Peaches finally received his long-overdue comeuppance...