by Lesley Scott
A litter of newborn kittens is thrown from a car, killing all but one little baby.
The tiny kitten felt the impact as the box that once felt safe, propelled on to highway 176 so hard her two baby brothers were thrown into the busy road. The pouring rain stung and she was disoriented from being hurtled from the car. Torti and her mother landed next to a dumpster with a bone jarring slam. She felt extraordinarily frightened and vulnerable. Both of her siblings were smashed into the rocky road by a semi-truck. The driver never noticed. He was probably blinded from oncoming headlights in the downpour.
Her mother was still in the box that landed on the side of the road with injuries to her head maybe a broken back. She built up enough energy to call her last baby. The two lone survivors struggled to keep each other warm and they felt the connection of love. When it was time for the kitten to nurse, mother and child felt some confort in such a simple necessity. Torti was a tiny one for three weeks old.
She remembered her mother's last soft purr, not knowing she would soon be completely alone. Before little Torti drifted off to sleep, she murmured, “ I love you.” That was the last time she spoke to her mother. Her mother didn't hear the sound of the poor little kitten as she cried. Her heart had stopped beating moments earlier.Torti snuggled up to her mother, already growing cold after her spiritual warmth had departed.
The morning light, Susan drove past the dead brothers and felt a combination of sorrow and fury. Always checking dump sites for abandoned animals, she spied Torti at once. The tiny terrified kitten, startled and afraid, tried to run, but she was too small and Susan was fast. She knew what to do to help Torti. Susan was a veterinarian technician and lived nearby on her 20 acre farm.
It is sad there are many more dump sites everywhere, and no one around to catch these heartless humans as they so cruelly abandon their "pets." Torti was lucky, but most of the castaways don't live long. Susan had picked up too many homeless animals to count. At the time, Susan didn't have any option but to adopt this little orphan. Torti would need nurturing, food, and lots of love. Susan had it in herself to be the one to give the baby what she needed.
Susan knew what to do. Over the years, she had lots of experience raising baby animals. Susan mixed up and warmed the kitten milk formula. It had been many hours since Torti's last suckle. She sucked down that bottle and most of another one. Warm, full tummy and someone to be near and snuggle were all she needed at this time. I love you, she thought as Susan stroked her multi colored and soft coat.
Her New Mom took good care of the little orphan and Torti began to grow and learn to eat regular cat food. She was even allowed to snuggle real close with her new mom in bed. It was wonderful to hear Mom’s regular breathing. From time to time, she would dream about her old life and her other mom, who was gone forever. She would shiver and whimper in her sleep. Susan stroked Torti and promised her a full and happy life.
Torti purred loudly and "made biscuits" on Susan's stomach. Susan's fingers reminded her of her mother's soft tongue, licking her as she squirmed with her two brothers. Because Torti's mother was only six months old, her litter was small. Torti received extra attention, since she was so small and lively.
As time past, Torti made friends with Fred, the huge tortoise, Daffy the duck, Silky the rooster, Peaches the donkey and thrived. She scampered, puffed up, scrambled, chased her tail and attacked anyone's feet. Every night, she purred and made biscuits on Susan's back, giving her a natural massage. Now, the happy kitten forgot her past life and trauma.
Torti and others like her have found love and happy lives. Torti liked to spread out on the front step, watching the other animals on the farm. The dogs didn't tease her and the donkeys liked to sniff her face. She wondered what all of those chickens and geese were up to with all of that scratching. Her life became important one rainy night so many years ago. Torti lived a charmed life until she turned fifteen. Nature has a way of calling back its children.