tabby thomas

Christopher Cricket on Cats - With Observations and Deductions for the Enlightenment of the Human Race from Infancy to Maturity and Even Old Age. Anthony Henderson Euwer. Introduction by Wallace Irwin. New York, The Little Book Concern [c1909].

“The Cat’s a four-legged quadruped, —
Not countin in his tail, 
The Mrs. is the Tabby Cat
And Thomas is the male.
The Cat it-is carniverous,  
Although to milk inclinin, 
It makes a hump out of its back 
And whiskers it looks fine in.”

Slow Magic || Thomas & Tabby

Thomas pulled his silver BMW up to the familiar outline of Tabitha’s building and briefly deliberated just leaning on the horn like a jackass until he drew the attention of the entire neighborhood and all of the tenants within the complex. He probably wouldn’t be welcome back if he decided to pull something like that. But on the other hand, it would sure piss off Tobias if he was around. It was almost worthwhile just for that possibility. He grinned to himself.

Tabitha had seemed to think he wouldn’t have an issues with the current security guard on duty, but he shot a wary glance at the entrance and decided not to risk it anyhow. Besides, he didn’t really want to be spotted. If Lara ever looked into the situation, it would be best if as few people as possible knew about it if he spent any time with her personal assistant outside of work. Those weren’t eyebrows that he really wanted to raise. It would do him far more favors if he kept Lara convinced that he was entirely indifferent to her assistant.

So he just leaned back and texted Tabitha a quick note that he was outside. He hadn’t ever seen her outside of work obligations, and usually only around the chateau on the rare occasion that he needed to stop by. This wasn’t going to be awkward, was it? She hadn’t brought up the whole dwarf incident herself, but she hadn’t actually contacted him at all save for a wrong number text, so he had no idea if she had ultimately been upset with him. She had agreed to go eat with him, but he hadn’t been able to read much emotion out of a few lines of text.

Still well aware of the implications of her empathy link, he’d opted for long sleeves all around, a white shirt and black jeans, and he probably would have added gloves to the ensemble to boot if he hadn’t thought it might arouse her suspicions. He kept his eyes on the building entrance, unsure what to expect.

zephyrchat

Chaleur Humaine || Thomas & Tabby

Thomas wasn’t really sure why he had actually agreed to come over. It felt like a truly terrible idea. Except that he really wasn’t trying to avoid Tabitha. She hadn’t done anything. She seemed to like him, and didn’t badmouth him. The most she’d ever said was a single word, but he didn’t even know what that had meant.

He just had the sinking feeling that she was going to be a mess when he saw her again, and he had wanted very much to avoid dealing with any of that. It really wasn’t his business. He had felt responsible enough to retrieve her, but she must have been able to do something about it in the first place. He was torn between guilt and frustration, and on top of that, he was entirely anxious that she wanted to talk about the experience, and he didn’t want to hear about anything like that at all.

All in all, it seemed like the worst idea ever to come over again, but he wasn’t sure what else to do. If he started deliberately avoiding her again, she’d take it personally, when it had far less to do with her than it did with his own comfort.

He dragged his feet a bit as he headed slowly down the familiar hallway, and he came to a reluctant stop in front of her apartment door. He stared down at the door, recalling that she’d told him a while back that she had wanted to give him a key. Inexplicably, that only made him feel worse. He had the feeling that she’d be able to read all of the anxiety in his emotions without even touching him.

He drew a deep breath and tried to convince himself that she had just invited him over because she was bored and lonely and wanted companionship, and not because she wanted to discuss traumatizing experiences with him, and he knocked at the door.

@zephyrchat

Dance Little Liar || Thomas & Tabby

Thomas found himself once again standing in front of the all too familiar door of the Thorns’ apartment, clad in a simple white long-sleeved shirt and jeans. This time, so much unlike the last time, he was filled with apprehension and uncertainty. He hadn’t wanted to come. He’d been procrastinating, and he would have been content to continue procrastinating if not for the series of angry texts from Tabitha’s brother, chiding him for still not having taken care of the situation.

He wasn’t really sure why he was supposed to be doing this. Tabitha thought that one of his sisters had been responsible. Was that really so bad? Tobias seemed to think so, but Thomas wasn’t sure why. If she continued to believe that it had been one of his sisters, maybe she would finally quit that job. She didn’t need to know that it had really been him. It would only upset her. Maybe she’d even hate him for it. He didn’t think she was good friends with Mia, though. Had they even hung out together apart from when he’d briefly introduced them at the bacchanal before Mia had taken off and he’d become distracted by Tabitha? But even just on principle alone, Tabitha might hate him for doing what he’d done if she knew. So why did she need to know?

He didn’t understand why he couldn’t just lie. Or omit, if nothing else. She was unlikely to become independently suspicious. He didn’t think that such a thought would even cross her mind, and he didn’t want to push her away. She was his friend. She was supposed to be, anyway. Was she really? He spent so much time avoiding her because he thought that distance could improve her own situation. The situation that had come about through his own doing even though he’d known better. And Mia was supposed to be a friend, too, but he hadn’t treated her anything like a friend. Neither of the two seemed willing to let him leave them alone, though, and he had the distinct impression that that decision had nothing to do with what he was. It had something to do with who they were, and he didn’t understand any of it at all.

He just stared blankly at the door for a long while. He wanted to turn and walk away. Tabitha was the last person he wanted to see. She was an empath. Half the reason he’d been avoiding her was because of his guilt over Mia. She’d feel it the moment she touched him–hence the sleeves. Maybe he could put it off. On the other hand, she was probably used to his guilt, wasn’t she? He felt it nearly every time he saw her, and that meant that she felt it, too. And that was the other half of the reason. He didn’t know how to move past that guilt.

He’d second-guessed himself every step of the way. As he climbed into the car, as he reached every red light, as he pulled up to the curb, as he walked into the building, and as he arrived at her door. But every time he wanted to stop and go back home, he kept hearing Tobias’s voice in the back of his mind, telling him simply and seriously, “You need to tell her.” Tomorrow, Thomas had said, again and again. Many tomorrows had passed.

He knocked on the door.

zephyrchat

Temptation Waits || Thomas & Tabby

Thomas found himself in front of a very familiar door in a very familiar situation, only this time he couldn’t recall what he’d been feeling the last time, nor did he particularly care to bother with such trivialities. The way he’d looked then had nothing on the way he looked now. He was pale and disheveled, shirt and fishnet and jeans torn to shreds, eyes nearly white. His skin, hair, and the scraps of his clothing were covered in a combination of dirt and dried blood, most of it his own. His broken bones had healed, but the skin was still bruised in brilliant hues of purple and yellow where it wasn’t covered in blood and grime.

It had been an obvious choice, really. The warlock had turned him onto the idea in the first place back in the white room when he’d been about to enter the final arena. He needed to feed, and he had a very reliable food source that knew would gladly help him. As he’d explained before, incidentally to the girl’s own brother, it was simply the nature of a predator to take the sure thing. Why gamble on needing to cajole or fight when a far easier option was available to him?

And so he lifted a hand and knocked at the door, feeling himself on the verge of collapse. He’d used the last of his energy just to make it past the building security.

zephyrchat

Return To Innocence || Thomas & Tabby

Nearly six months had passed. Thomas had seen the ad a few days before summoning the drive to send out some texts, wondering why he’d heard nothing directly. Maybe he would have, had he waited a few days more, or weeks perhaps; he wasn’t sure. It had been a long period of radio silence. But there were reasons. There were always reasons; he just didn’t know what they were yet. The last he’d heard from Tabitha had been a very brief note on his birthday, and then nothing. Because they couldn’t use their phones wherever their tests were being conducted? That was probable.

Or maybe it had been a very deliberate, conscious choice. Maybe they had wanted the distance. He couldn’t blame them for it. The situation had spiraled well out of control, over and over. He had no idea where things stood now. He had no idea how Tabitha felt or how her brother felt, or even how he felt. For all he knew, he might be walking directly into some kind of setup. Maybe the Council had chosen to try to use the Thorns against his family, given Tabitha’s ties to them. He couldn’t even be certain where their loyalties lay now.

Everything was uncertain.

But he went anyway. He had to. He couldn’t not. He wanted to see her again, even if she didn’t want to reach out to him. If nothing else, he wanted the opportunity to gauge the situation in person.

There’d been a brief misunderstanding; he had suggested lunch and she had been awfully insistent about only lunch, nothing else, and perhaps she just didn’t want to handle prolonged exposure at this point. Or maybe this was just a formality and she didn’t really want to see him at all but refusing would have been too impolite. But he’d deliberately selected a public place rather than inviting her by, and that seemed to go over well enough. Even then, she’d specified quite deliberately that they would meet there, when he hadn’t offered her a ride. Maybe he was reading to much into it.

Then again, maybe he wasn’t.

The thoughts spun in his head for the remainder of the day, and they manifested in a series of convoluted and confusing dreams that night that he forgot upon waking, leaving him only with a vague sensation of unease that he couldn’t quite explain.

He arrived at the pizzeria early, even by the standards of a normal person who was habitually on time, despite having spent a good fifteen minutes reconsidering every possible outfit combination that occurred to him. He turned up in dark designer jeans and white leather jacket over a plain t-shirt, and he looked awfully out of place in the little pizzeria with its cheesy red and white checkered tablecloths and its quaint photos on the walls of all the moderately famous people who’d visited once. But despite its appearance, it was one of the best pizza places in town, and it was just casual and relaxed enough that he hoped it would set them both at ease.

The place wasn’t all that busy yet by the time he arrived, and most of the other diners were seated at the bar. He staked his claim on a corner table tucked between the far wall and the window where he could gaze outside while still remaining relatively out of the way. A cheerful waitress brought him a beer and a pair of menus that he left untouched for the time being while he listened to the ceiling fans creaking quietly overhead.

@troubleadjacent