Friday, 28 June 2013

Friday 28 June 2013

The immediate post-Peaches-Party was a subdued and rather pathetic time.  Betty trotted into the house after Gisèle and clambered into her favourite armchair.
"Up you come, poppet." she prompted kindly, holding wide her forearms for Gisèle to jump into.  The tiny Jack Russell hopped up, settled herself, and allowed Betty to commence her washing-off of the sticky, viscous cat milk covering Gisèle's face, head and neck.  "Eurrgh!" exclaimed Betty, wrinkling up her snout in disgust "That stuff tastes revolting!  What on Earth do cats see in it?!  Laddie says they all go crazy for it..."
Gisèle sniffed.  Elizabeth assumed that this was a cursory reply but, when her washing activities moved closer to Giz's face, she saw that the little dog was quietly crying.  "Whatever's the matter, sweetie?!" enquired Betty gently.
"I don't understand..." whimpered Giz, "What happened?  Why was Peaches so mean to me?! I... I thought..."

"Oh Giz," sighed Betty sadly, "It was a lovely party.  You laid on a lovely spread.  Nicely planned and SUCH good fun.  Until Peaches turned up, anyway."
"But it was a party FOR Peaches!" sobbed Gisèle miserably.  "And he was SO horrid!  Why?  What did I do?"
"You didn't do anything wrong, lovey." soothed Betty, in between her licks.  "Oh!  Your Giz-tuft is growing back!"
"Oh no, really...?" sniffed Giz, looking up at last, "I was hoping that had gone for good."

By way of explanation, when Betty had inadvertently inflicted a serious tooth-based injury upon Giz, the vet had had to shave the little dog's neck and skull-cap in order to treat the wounds and keep them germ-free.  The fur had mostly all re-grown, save for the odd little tuft of fur that stuck up on the top of Gisèle's little head - much like the unfortunate 'comb-over' Sir Bobby Charlton sported during his footballing career (see here for a reminder).  Giz had been optimistic that the tuft would not re-grow, as it was something of a source of embarrassment to her.  Apparently not.  "Are you sure?!" she implored.
"Yup, definitely." replied Betty.  "See?"  She gently grasped the end of the still-short but obvious regrowing tuft and gave it a soft little tug, after which she immediately resumed her thorough washing.
"Oh b*gg*r." muttered Giz.
"What?!" barked Betty quietly.  "I like it!  It's cute - especially when you have it clipped back and up with one of your sparkly fur-grips."
"It makes me look like a t*t."
"You think it does - but it really doesn't.  It makes you look extra pretty - even more pretty than you already are."
Gisèle grunted her thanks, but I could tell that she was not convinced.  She was still deeply hurt by how the party had turned out and the cruelty of Peaches' meows.

"Why was he so very, very nasty to me?" she persisted plaintively, fresh tears welling in her deep brown eyes.  "All I was trying to do was be his friend..."
Betty finally finished giving Gisèle her bath.

"All right," she sighed heavily, "Look.  There are lots of different types of characters and reasons why some people are mean.  But they all basically boil down to three specific sorts.  First, there are those who are either mentally or physically extremely unwell and cannot control what they are saying.  That doesn't explain Peaches.  Next, there are those who don't know any better.  They don't think about the effect of what they are saying and doing and they don't change their ways because they can't understand that they way they are behaving is wrong.  Again, that does not account for Peaches - but it DOES explain, though cannot justify, me.  I used to pick on you because I thought it was funny, because I didn't realise just how much I was hurting you and because I didn't know any other way of behaving."

Betty paused, looking ashamed of her former behaviour towards Gisèle.  Giz, however, barked nothing, but continued to listen in silence to her friend.

"But then I learned how very, very special it is to have a proper friend, like you Giz, and I understood that the things I had been doing and saying were inappropriate and cruel.  I honestly don't know of any other creature who could have forgiven me for what I did.  But YOU forgave me Giz.  You forgave me and still wanted to be my friend, and I can never love you or thank you enough for that."

The large Betty was temporarily silent once more, and looked as though she was close to tears herself.
"You said there were three types." prompted Gisèle quietly.
"What?  Oh yes." said Betty hastily, "The third type is the worst of all.  That type of individual knows that what they are doing and saying is wrong - and they choose to behave that way.  I do not know if they actually enjoy it - perhaps they do.  But they are cruel and devious and they carefully select their words and actions in order to cause maximum distress to their victim.  They deliberately seek to provoke conflicts and then enjoy either watching and/or participating in the resulting effects.  They will set you up specifically to fail and then berate, mock and laugh at you as you flounder trying to achieve what they expect of you.  They delight in setting friend against friend and sowing discord wherever they appear.  They are basically and utterly devoid of compassion, empathy and moral compass - and nothing anyone ever says or does will EVER be good enough for them.  This type is irredeemably unpleasant - and it is into this last category that I believe Peaches falls.  He cannot help himself.  He knows exactly what he is doing - and actively enjoys the misery and despair he wreaks."

Gisèle seemed rather stunned by this.
"You mean - " she whispered, "That nothing I ever bark or do will help Peaches to be nice...?"
With a heavy sigh, Betty shook her large, hairy head.
"You know," she replied sadly, "I remember reading something that Jasper quoted on this blog once.  He said 'You can't polish a turd'.  I'm sorry to say that I think he was right."
"But - I... I don't-"
"Gizzy, sweets, you are young and almost uniquely pure of heart.  I know that it is difficult to understand - especially for you, to whom the concepts of selfishness, cruelty and bullying are virtually alien - but, I am afraid to bark, that there ARE people out there in the world who are just plain nasty."

"So, what can I do...?" squeaked Gisèle.
"Nothing, really." replied Betty, sighing again.  "All you can do is to just keep on being your lovely little self.  You're a very good girl and, just by being yourself, you show people that there ARE still good folks out in the world and you can give hope to those who are victims of bullies like Peaches.  And in the meantime, let Laddie and his acquaintances beat the sh*t out of the little maggot."  This latter statement finally succeeded in getting a small, watery smile out of Gisèle, and Betty grinned back down at her.

Betty continued to enumerate Gisèle's qualities and how it was important not to let bullies succeed but, after a while, she looked down and saw that the little Parson Jack Russell Terrier had fallen fast asleep.  Betty drew her long, powerful arms tighter around Giz's small sleeping form, gave her little head a gentle kiss and settled down to sleep herself, holding her precious friend close and safe in her strong embrace all night.

Poor Gisèle...

But we move ever onwards!  Next time: the advent of the Giz-mobile (like the Bat-mobile, only much more fabulous) and further summer adventures!

Good night.

Sunday, 16 June 2013

Saturday 15 June 2013

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.
"Yes, Sir."

"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...

Monday, 3 June 2013

Monday 3 June 2013

So, dear reader, how do you think Gisèle's 'I Love Peaches Party' went yesterday?

I shall tell you.  To sum up, it went about as well as it went for Jeanne d'Arc after the lit taper had been applied to the faggots at her feet.

Elizabeth has been itching to bark "I told you so..." to Gizmo, but couldn't bring herself to be that unkind to her little best friend.

I have been trying to find a photograph of Peaches, to enable you to better visualise the scene.  Alas, the only actual one I have is on an old blog post and is a view of his ample derrière - here it is:-

Here is the most accurate image I could find on the internet:-
  Even this doesn't do justice to the permanently-angry and intimidating visage of Peaches himself.  This cat is called "Guinness" (c/f and makes Peaches himself look like a veritable angel of light.  Peaches' face is rounder and far more malevolent.

So the day dawned bright and early, and little Giz was so excited that she was virtually bouncing off the walls.  As soon as my partner opened the French Windows onto our sunny patio, Giz was out laying out the napkins, little snack trays, her plate of fresh dead mice (kept carefully hidden from Betty's thieving snout) and the dish awaiting the special milk for cats.  Betty herself pretended to remain asleep for as long as she could - but then Giz spotted Betty looking to see if her wakefulness had been noted, so the game was up.  With a deep sigh and an air of "oh, let's just get it over with", Betty ambled out into the garden to assist Gisèle.  She moved a pebble onto the pile of napkins, lest a sudden breeze blow them away and then sat down to watch Giz buzzing about with excitement - a bit like an hyperactive bee who's over-done the nectar...

"Mistress saw these lovely sparkly party-hats in the shop yesterday." Giz informed Betty. "I thought it would be nice to get a photograph of Peaches and put it on the hats and we could ALL wear one!"
"Gizzles, if you make me wear a party hat I will clobber you." muttered Betty, still in her early-morning grouchy mood (Betty was NOT a morning dog). "And if you make me wear a party hat with that stupid cat's face - or indeed, any cat's face on it, I will swallow you whole in one single gulp, and the last desperate moments of your life will be spent trapped in my belly."
"Hihihihi...!"  giggled Gisèle, "Well, it doesn't matter anyway, because Mistress didn't have enough money left for the hats after she bought the carton of cat-milk."
Betty muttered something indistinct, and shook her head.
"Right."  continued Giz in a business-like tone.  "You keep an eye on the snacks - and don't eat any yet, I have counted those mice Elizabeth - while I go out on to the pavement to make our sign."
"Sign?!" spluttered Betty, and she watched as Gisèle busied herself in making some sort of odd display in front of the garden.  It consisted of an arrangement with some old peach-stones Giz had found in the garden, some small pebbles, twigs and leaves.  When it was - whatever it was - complete, Giz stepped back to admire her work.
"Lovely!" she pronounced, before tottering back into the garden.  Betty moved closer for a better inspection.
"What is it?" she asked.
"It's my sign that says 'Welcome Peaches! We Love You!'" grinned Giz.  Betty raised an eyebrow.  It was just a jumbled mess; obviously Gisèle had no idea how to make words, but the overall effect was not unpleasant.

As Giz fussed around, straightening dishes and bowls that didn't need straightening, Rosie the little Westie from next door appeared.
"Morning Betty and Giz!" she trilled.
"Hiya Rosie." replied Betty, "Welcome.  May I take your collar and lead?"
"Um... no, it's OK thanks.  I've only come from next door..."
"Oh yes!  Silly me.  Well, help yourself to the snacks and drinks; there's plenty here..."
"Not the mice though!" Giz added, trotting over to Rosie and giving her a kiss on each cheek, "No-one's allowed to start those until Peaches is here!"

The next arrivals were Archie, the little smooth-coated Jack Russell from the end of our row of houses, who had brought with him Oliver, the three-legged black cat who lived with him.  Gisèle relented and allowed the mild-mannered and sociable Oliver to have one of the dead mice.  He accepted with gratitude, but then paid his respects to Gisèle and left.  He was one of Peaches' regular targets for cruelty, owing to his disability, and did not care to put himself in the way of further bullying.  Giz assured Oliver that she understood and let him have a second mouse to take back home with him.

As Oliver limped off, Laddie arrived; a sealed plastic tray of dips and a flower in his mouth.  He gave the dips to Giz and then went around to Betty and presented her with the flower, with a low bow.  I had to admire his technique - he had swiped the flower from the border of an opposite garden on his way over.  Betty was surprised, but flattered.  Giz pretended not to watch, as she pulled the cellophane cover off the tray of dips and put them in front of Rosie, who tucked straight in.
"Mmmnnn!" she exclaimed "I LOVE these!"
"Ha!" grinned Laddie, moving round the corner to address pretty Rosie, "I can let you have some more if you want.  Got a job lot for the stall last week, thought they'd go nice with salads for barbecues and picnics - only the bl**dy weather turned, didn't it?  Couldn't shift 'em.  Now we've got one box left, with the sell-by date at the end of the week.  Been having them for breakfast for the last five days, sick of the sight of 'em!"  Rosie giggled.  All of the local girls fancied Laddie, with his cheeky humour and his easy Cockney charm.  "Nice little spread you've laid out here, Princess." he said to Gisèle as he took up a marrowbone biscuit and barked with his mouth full. "Thought some of the girls [Laddie's female feline fan-club, who tailed him around the close] would come along with me, but I don't think they're that keen on the ol' guest of honour.  'Ain't he here yet?!"
"No." said Giz.
"Gizzles," barked Betty, a sudden thought occurring to her, "You DID invite Peaches, didn't you?!"
"Yes!" Giz yipped, "Of course!  I put the card by his door.  He'll be here in a bit."

Laddie wandered off to bark to Rosie about his surfeit of dips, sensing an opportunity to recoup at least some of his master's losses, and Betty seemed to turn her attention to trying to work out how to sneak a mouse off the place and eat it without being noticed by her august hostess.  Suddenly -
"Oh, bl**dy hell, I'm off!" muttered Archie hastily. "Sorry sweetheart, thanks for the nosh..."  He fled.  The reason was immediately apparent: Peaches was striding across the road.

A sudden chill breeze seemed to cut through the air.  Gisèle didn't seem to notice and beamed with joy.
"Yayyyy!!!  Here he IS!" she cheered as the cat drew nearer.

"What's all this, then?!" muttered Peaches as he approached.  He stopped, smirking, in front of Gisèle's little pavement display.  "And what -" he sneered, "- is this supposed to represent...?"
"It's a little something I put together, just for you!" enthused Giz, beaming at the cat.  As soon as I saw the look in Peaches' eyes I knew that the situation was not going to go well.  I wanted to reach out to Giz, to nurture her away from what was about to transpire and to protect her from the evil cat but, of course, I could not.

"It's a piece of art!" continued Giz.
"It's a piece of sh*t..." muttered Peaches, but Giz didn't seem to hear him.

"Would you like to come in?" invited Giz, beaming, "I have made this party just for you!  To show that we would like to be your friends and play with you and that!"
"And why," whispered Peaches, slinking closer to Gisèle, "would I want to be friends with you?!"

"Erm... well... umm...."
"No, seriously." growled the cat, "I'm interested.  What makes you think that I'd want to be a friend of yours?!"

"Well... I got you this special cat milk..." Giz indicated the dish of special milk, which she had kept guarded from the cheeky thieving attempts of Thunder and Kittenjasper (the tom-cats who lived with Honey across the road), "AND I have killed these mice, freshly just for you." She showed Peaches the plate of mice.

"I'll ask you again." growled Peaches darkly, "What makes you think I would want to be friends with YOU?!"

Little Gisèle blinked, uncomprehendingly, back at him.

And then, then, it got very nasty INDEED...

To be continued...