For Part 1 of this 3-part story, go here.
For Part 2 of this 3-part story, go here.
It happened while the family was decorating their house for Christmas. They went out for a while and came home with a tree that was taller than the Dad. Bad Kitty watched with big eyes. It was the most wonderful thing he had ever seen. As the Mom and the Dad were putting up the tree, he ran around their feet and tried to play with the branches. The pine scent made his nose tickle and he sneezed.
“Ryan, could you take the kitty to your room until we are finished getting the tree in the stand?” asked the Mom.
Ryan took Bad Kitty to his bedroom, along with Bad Kitty’s favorite toyÂ â€” a long plastic stick with a lot of feathers on one endÂ â€” and they played until the tree was ready to be trimmed.
“We have to do something different this year,” the Mom told Ryan and Emma. “We can only put plastic ornaments on the bottom branches of the tree. We don’t want the kitty to knock off any ornaments that can break and hurt him.”
It was while Ryan, Emma and Bad Kitty were choosing ornaments that the phone rang. The Mom answered it in the kitchen, and Ryan could hear her talking.
“Yes, with a black tip on his tail. He’s very cute. I found him, or I should say, my son found him outside the school. Really? Are you sure? Really sure? Well, what’s his name? Okay. Thank you. Good-bye.”
The Mom came back to the living room with a strange look on her face.
“That was the kitty’s owner,” she said.
“No!” said Emma. “Do we have to give him back?”
Everyone looked up at the Mom with worried expressions. Even Bad Kitty. He could tell something important was happening.
“No, we don’t have to give him back,” said the Mom. “They don’t want him.”
“Yay!” Emma squealed, and Ryan was so relieved he didn’t even get mad at her.
“But why don’t they want him?” he asked.
“The lady said he was too rambunctious,” said the Mom.
“Ram-what?” asked Emma.
“It means he gets into too much trouble,” said Ryan, proud that he knew. “That is just silly. He’s curious and playful. That’s all.”
“Did his owner tell you what his name was?” the Dad asked.
“Yes. It’s… Tiger.”
“Tiger!” said Ryan. “He doesn’t look like a ‘Tiger.’ Let’s give him a new name. How aboutÂ â€” Fred?”
“Fred?” Emma frowned. “I don’t like that!”
“Let’s see what the kitty thinks,” said Ryan. He crouched down and petted Bad Kitty. “What do you think, Fred? Freddie? Freddie-boy?”
Freddie purred and gave Ryan a headbutt.
“I guess that settles it,” said the Mom. “Freddie it is.”
Freddie sneezed in agreement and everybody laughed.
But it wasn’t the tree that was making Freddie sneeze. He began sneezing more and more over the next couple of days, and his eyes began to water. He stopped playing with Ryan and did not jump on the kitchen counter even once. Instead of knocking the plastic ornaments off the Christmas tree branches, he slept next to the presents. He wasn’t even interested in scratching on the new cat tree that the Mom and the Dad brought home for him.
“Poor Freddie,” said Ryan. “He’s sick.”
“Let’s take him to the cat and dog hospital and see what they say,” said the Mom.
Freddie did not complain when the Mom bundled him up and put him in a cat carrier. The Mom dropped off Emma to play at a friend’s house, but she said Ryan was old enough to come with her and Freddie.
At the cat and dog hospital, Dr. Lowen examined Freddie. She listened to his heart and looked in his mouth and ears. Freddie did not complain. He just looked sad.
“Freddie is a very sick boy,” Dr. Lowen told the Mom and Ryan. “He has a nasty upper respiratory illness.”
“What’s that?” Ryan asked.
“It’s like a cold, only worse,” Dr. Lowen explained. “If he was any sicker, I would want to keep him here. But I will let you take him home with some medicine. If he doesn’t start getting better in a few days, please bring him back.”
Freddie only struggled a little bit when the Mom and Ryan gave him his daily dropper full of medicine, but he did not get better or worse. He just looked sad and watery-eyed.
“Is Freddie ever going to get better?” Emma asked.
“I hope so,” said the Mom. “If he is not better soon, we will have to take him back to Dr. Lowen.”
“But Christmas is day after tomorrow,” said Ryan. “What if he gets sicker and they’re closed?”
“I don’t know,” said the Mom. “We will either have to wait or take him to the emergency pet hospital.”
The next day was Christmas Eve, and even though Ryan and Emma were excited, they were still worried about Freddie. Freddie continued to sleep a lot under the tree. He was very quiet. Ryan slid under the tree and scratched Freddie under the chin.
“Come on, buddy,” he said, “please feel better.”
Freddie stretched out one long, striped paw and pushed his head into Ryan’s hand.
“It’s bedtime,” said the Mom. “we’ll see how Freddie is tomorrow.”
Emma helped the Mom put out a glass of milk and the Mom’s special sugar cookies for Santa. Then she and Ryan reluctantly went to bed. Ryan looked back at the Christmas tree, but he wasn’t thinking of the presents he was getting in the morning.
The Mom and Dad went to bed a little while later. Before the Mom turned off the Christmas lights, she kneeled down and stroked Freddie on his cheek.
“We love you, Freddie,” she said.
The house was dark, but Freddie had a hard time sleeping. He had slept so much, he was starting to get bored. He stood up and stretched his front paws out as long as he could. Then he batted at an ornament that glittered in the dim glow from one of the outdoor lights. He sniffed the sweet pine smell of the tree. It reminded him of that time, long, long ago when he was a kitten and lived outdoors. He wondered what it would be like to climb the tree.
Slowly, he got up on his hind legs and began grabbing at branches with his front paws. It was fun! He climbed higher and higher up the tree, playing with the silvery garland and batting at ornaments that bobbed back and forth. About halfway up the tree, one of the ornaments Freddie pawed at fell to the ground with a crack! The noise startled him and he tried to scramble away, but he got stuck in the tree. Suddenly he felt the tree start to topple over. Freddie panicked and pushed away from the tree with his strong hind legs. The tree landed on the floor with a crash and tangled up Freddie in its branches.
As Freddie struggled to escape, the living room lights came on.
“It’s Santa!” yelled Emma as she ran in from her bedroom.
“It’s not Santa,” said the Mom. “The tree fell over.”
Freddie poked his head up from the ruined Christmas tree, bright-eyed and surprised.
“Freddie! You knocked down the tree!” said Ryan.
“Isn’t that great?” he asked the Mom and the Dad. “That means he’s feeling better!”
“Well, I don’t know how ‘great’ it is,” said the Dad, “but it is good that Freddie is feeling better. We were worried about him.”
“Freddie is a bad kitty!” said Emma.
Ryan scooped up Freddie and hugged him. “No he’s not. Who cares about a dumb Christmas tree anyway? Freddie is the best cat ever!”
Feline Yogi says
Dear Sparkle, My human has been out of town but she did read this on Christmas Eve and loved this story as did I. Sorry it has taken me so long to get my comment on your blog but I had to wait till my human got back in town so I could dictate my comment to her! 🙂 This is what happens when I give her over a week off! We get behind! Meow and Namste! Pippy the Feline Yogini
Kitties Blue says
Sparkle, Mom can’t believe that it has taken her so long to get back to her reading and our commenting and seeing the conclusion of this story. She worried so much about Bad Kitty/Freddie. We are all so glad this wonderpurr story had a happy ending, and that the children understood that living creatures are so much more important than possessions and some stolen turkey! Bravo! Purrs and hugs, Lily Olivia, Mauricio, Misty May, Giulietta, Fiona, Astrid, Lisbeth and Calista Jo
Cattle Aussies~Bella, Terra, & Kronos says
Great story! We love the ending-there needs to be more books and stories like these out for people to read.
Jobi and Fisher says
Mark's Mews says
We all loved the story. Sometimes, we guess, its not what you do, but how those around you interpret it…
Katie Bella says
I loved that story. Freddie, you are home. xxoo
Brought tears to my eyes! What a wonderful story!!!!
Famous SpokesGoat Pricilla says
Very much like Fred the Farm cat….may he run with joy at the Bridge. He used to love to sit in the Christmas tree.
Merry Christmas Sparkle, Binga, Boodie, the dog and your human and her boyfriend
Katnip Lounge says
Well of course Mommy is bawling her eyes out…we admit it…we’re a little leaky-eyed too.
We loved the story!
Eat (ham) drink (cream) and Sniff Nip!!
Love, The Katnip Lounge Kats and Mommy Trish
Cathy Keisha says
The Woman is all leaky eyed but I think she liked the story. Bad Kitty has the same name as my Pop. Hmmm! Merry Catmas!
Glogirly & Katie says
What a wonderfully sweet story…. we LOVED it!!!
And we love Freddie.
Glogirly, Katie & Waffles
That was a lovely story Sparkle and I am glad it had a happy ending.
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all of you.
Sue Brandes says
What a wonderful story. Merry Christmas Sparkle.
Wish we had a tree to knock over! Merry Christmas to you all!!
Maxwell, Faraday & Allie says
Freddie is a pawesome name – especially because his mini human CHOSE it for him. We’re sure he found his people in time for them to take him to the evil V-E-T and make him all better! Whew, we love happy endings!
Sometimes, Cats Herd You says
Your story made the head peep cry in the middle. We’re so happy for Freddie. Everykitty deserves a happy home like that.
Fraidy Kats! says
great story, Sparkle! our mom had to do some quick reading there through the middle since her eyes were a bit leaky. We loved the ending 🙂 Merry Christmas!
Pip, Smidgen, Minnie, Hollie
Kjelle Bus aka Charlie Rascal says
Awww , I just knewed it would be a happy Ending 😀
Wonderful story! I’m so glad Freddie got the home he deserved.
The Island Cats says
Yay! We love happy endings!! And we’re glad Freddie found a family that loves him for what he is….a curious cat!
Random Felines says
Yay for Freddie and his wonderful new family. We loved the story.
We’re so glad there was a happily-ever-after for Fred and his forever family!
Merry Christmas, dear friends! Hope your holiday season is filled with peace, love and joy.
Yay! We love the happy ending! It still made our mommy’s eyes leak but that’s because she’s weird.
Yay for Freddie and his new forever family that loves him! Great ending to a story we really enjoyed! Well done!
Brian Frum says
Happy Christmas Eve everyone!
Meowy Catmouse Sparkle and friends! *Watery eyes!* So happy that Bad Kitty found a loving home and got a Purrfect ending. Selleck and His Person, Emily. 😀
Spunky Doodle and Manny says
Yea for Freddie! We liked the happy ending and that he found a much better home where he was loved.
Traveling Cats says
That is one terrific story. Sparkle, you should write more stories. We enjoyed that a lot. Nothing better than a kitty getting rescued by someone that understands cats. Well done.
The Florida Furkids says
That was a great story. We were really worried about Freddie and were glad it had such a nice ending.
The Florida Furkids
The Kitties of Purring Pines says
Meomy Catmouse! We’re glad Freddie has a good fur-ever home & got well!
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*sniff, sniff* That was so beeyooteeful, Sparkle. Give your human a special head bump from us.
Purrs and Merry Christmas from all of us,
Meowma, Jasmine, Joey, Eddie & Rosie
At least your story has a happy end ! An end I would like too. Hopefully my problem cat will get better too ! This morning at least he has eaten. My cats ignore the tree completely, and cause no worry at all, but I am still worried about Chouchou, that spoils a bit my Christmas ! BTW our Santa gets a glass of wine and cookies ! Not milk, lol !
Sparkle Cat says
My human thinks the U.S. version of Santa would probably be happiest with a beer, peanuts and some HBO on the TV… but she did not think it would go well in a children’s story, MOL!
Georgia and Julie says
Now that was a good story and purrfect for Christmas eve!!
We love happy endings 🙂
Merry Christmas !
Purrs Georgia and Julie,
Treasure,Tiger and JJ
and Angel Tillie