This is the story of domestic animals as you would never believe them, of how they protect and guard their owners’ business 24/7 in all situations in all weathers.  Of how they have united to demostrate their bond with one another and above all, their devotion and service to their owners…..they are…

Comforts In Action


The Business:  Les Creature Comforts.  An Hotel (pension) for dogs and cats (chiens et chats) English owned and based in rural France.

The Owners:  Mme. Lack a.k.a H.O.H (Head of Happenings) and M.Vinicombe a.k.a M.O.P (Man of Power)

The Team:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAKyla Lack:  British Blue – Age – never revealed.  Very British and very blue.  Adopted in her early years

Dept.  Communication

Strengths:  diplomatic – assured

Weaknesses:  impatient – hypochondraic

Unarmed Kills 2013 – Not Applicable

katy and imogen x 016Steve Oslington Bay:  Oriental Red – Age – 15 years.  English owned from birth

Dept.  Internal investigations/keeper of Admissions

Strengths:  knowledgable – eloquent

Weaknesses:  vain – gobby

Unarmed Kills 2013 – 5 stuffed toys drowned in a water bowl

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERABosco The Slayer:  Berger Allmand – Age – 8 years.  French national/English adopted and  owned for 6 years

Dept.  Defence/surveillance

Strengths:  powerful – fearless

Weaknesses:  troublemaker

Unarmed Kills 2013 – 85

Oct 25 2010 - VID00082_2Bobby Holiday:  Setter – Age – 8 years.  French national/English adopted and owned for 7 years

Dept.  Entertainment/socialising

Strengths:  loving – kind

Weaknesses:  fearful – dreamy

Unarmed Kills.  None ever!!

DPP_2281Walter PPK:  Feral – 4 years.  French national…adopted at 3 years.. NEW RECRUIT

Dept.  Assasination/manoeuvers

Strengths:  Quick thinking/agile

Weaknesses:  Untrustworthy!!

Unarmed Kills 2013 – Unknown but in excess of 300

Kyla heads up all communications whilst Steve takes care of work inside the admissions building.  He works fearlessly and alone throughout the day, unseen but never unheard.  Kyla communicates to Steve by use of a concealed headset, but when the risk is high she will use signals to Steve through the window to command Steve’s attention to an imminent problem.  They work in tangent reacting and responding to each other whatever may take place.  Protection of the Secret Agent Cat Knowledge (S.A.C.K) is what drives them day and night.  They are supported by the other team members.  Bosco The Slayer, evil destroyer of all interlopers, Bobby Holiday a chameleon who is everyones friend and Walter PPK a mover and shaker of undetermined ability.

This is the story of how two cats changed the face of defence as we thought we knew it……….



A Routine Day

A normal day at Les Comforts, the kennels are full of paying guests and the Cattery is full of secret agents in waiting..also paying.  It is the holiday period and Kyla and Steve review the risk status of having so many visitors to their territory.  It will be a  challenging day.

Steve starts his day with a large breakfast of Special Agent biscuits designed to give him the power lift he will need to carry him through the next 12 hours.  Kyla reviews all the breakfasts for the guests prepared in the cat kitchen, sampling and checking them all for taste, substance and any suspect ingredients.  Whatever disagrees with her sensitive palette is immediately rejected onto the kitchen table for Head of Happenings to investigate.

It is Saturday, always a busy time and the work load is high.  Many cats and dogs are coming and going and Kyla is working nonstop crossing the void between observation tower and point of contact with Steve.  He is clearly concerned; he has been calling for several hours that something is not right.  No-one has lit the fires in the house, the central heating has gone off and the ‘phone has clicked onto answerphone several times already. Additionally, his food bowl is dangerously low.  Rest and a well deserved sleep are out of the question, the tension is running high.

Already Kyla has been chased by unruly dogs that have been let off their leads by untrained owners and she has had to scale a tree and abseil the tractor to keep away from danger.  Bosco has been unable to help as through a fault in the security routine he has been shut in the red car for being too involved with guests and he constantly barks out his alarm call.  Only Bobby Holiday can help.  He leaps from the silver car, his favourite safe place.  Here he likes to spend much of his day brushing up on his training notes and keeping clean and tidy.   Now, once out, he starts to dash about madly trying to make sense of a situation out of control.  He barks, not once but many times but only Bosco replies.

“What is the risk?  Where is the enemy? What is happening?”  He calls to Bobby.  Bobby has no idea of the answers so he returns to the silver car for a rethink.  He lies low to catch his breath, he will try to grab some sleep as maybe things will seem clearer after a rest.

HOH is calling out instructions, what if they aren’t carried out?  Kyla interprets this as a signal of danger and leaps onto the windowsill to get Steve to go for help…he is nowhere to be seen, has the enemy got him?  She breaks a golden rule and starts to squeak loudly at the Admissions Building…nothing.  Holy God!  This is a mess.  She leaves her post and heads at a frantic trot back to the observations tower and to the place where she can hide out and take stock; her heated bed.. Within a trice she is in and blending with her fleece…it will take an expert indeed to find her here.

Steve has heard the commotion, but he is in trouble in the Admissions Building.  Having run for his life to the first floor to get a better look out, he has become entangled in a duvet that has been carelessly thrown back on the bed and now he is painstakingly trying to edge his way out of the feathery warm enclosing cocoon without falling and submitting to the fatigue he has felt since breakfast.

Only one dog is left in the frame; Bosco.  As the door is opened on the red car he leaps out and immediately starts to sniff out the situation.  He makes his way steadily and quietly through the garden area checking all unturned stones on his route.  He can smell something new, but what…there is definately something new here.  He stops, he stares, he waits and…..he pounces.

Seconds pass and he raises his huge paw to check out the damage.  Bingo!  He has it.  Lying immobile on the grey gravel is a tiny dead baby mouse.

Oh Yes!!  Who is the Daddy?  He smiles the smile of the Devil himself and carefully picks it up in his mouth and carries it to the cat kitchen, he knows Kyla will be waiting and he wants to share his success with her.  He approaches her hideout by way of the stairs.  Caught unawares and in full battle mode Kyla lashes out and strikes Bosco’s nose with her open claws.  He drops the mouse, yelps and runs away his eyes smarting and his nose stinging.  This is the worst day!

All Agents are dazed and confused, there needs to be a regrouping.  Without a proper game plan Les Comforts is open for attack!!!



The Regrouping

The meeting is planned to be held in Les Comforts Reception area at 23.ooh.  Even arranging this isn’t without its problems.  Steve is a house cat and not allowed into the Reception, so he will have to sneak out unnoticed.  The door to Reception leads from the house to the meeting area and he will have to hide behind the door curtain and wait until HOH goes out to the freezer.  This is unsatisfactory as Steve will be sitting away from the warmth of the fire for ages.  Bosco wants the meeting to be held in the fields under cover of dark where he can be ready to attack but Bobby Holiday is afraid of the dark so he wants it to be where there are bright lights and possibly some music.  Kyla normally rests at this hour and likes to be curled up in the cat kitchen with a drink and some snacks  Finally it is settled and the Group get together.

During the minutes it is agreed that the Agents need to up their fitness levels to perform at their optimum and cover all aspects of total security.  To ensure this happens the following must be put in place.

BOBBY HOLIDAY  is to accompany all canine guests on walks.  This is a dual role as it a)  provides extras cover outside the perimeter fence and b) Bobby gets to do alot of running about.  Bobby is delighted with this new turn of events.  He loves to run free when the wind makes his ears bob up and down and his tail feathers fan out prettily behind him.  He likes to run fast past the parked cars so he can catch a glimpse of himself in action.

BOSCO THE SLAYER has to become more discriminate in what and when he kills.  His slavish lust for blood has meant that in the past he has wasted valuable time and energy pursuing voles and mice that are no real threat to the surroundings.  He must also settle his differences with Bobby Holiday.  The group know Bosco is unhappy, he lies sulkily on the floor chewing his feet for the rest of the meeting and refuses to participate.

KYLA has medical issues that are impairing her performance; the group mull this over.  Her main cause for complaint is that her headset rubs her around her ears and causes dry patches which are uncomfortable.  This inevitably leads to her leaving her headset off and seriously hampers the communication process for which she is responsible.  She also states that unless something is done about the grey gravel she will soon have sore pad and any movement will be severely restricted.  Steve interjects that he has heard HOH talk to Man of Power (MOP) about sorting out the walkways as they are uncomfortable for her and her clients to walk on too.  Meanwhile Bobby offers the suggestion of an application of Aloe Vera ointment for Kyla’s dry areas but Kyla points out that this is not readily available to her and she has to rely on HOH to notice and deal with the patches with Tea Tree Oil which makes her smell unpleasant.  Bobby starts to whine that he was only trying to help and Bosco growls at him to go back to the silver car and shut up.  The meeting falls apart.  HOH can be heard calling for Steve and the Reception door opens, Steve flees though it.

Last heard was Steve suggesting that he spend more time running up and down the stairs in the Admissions Building to improve his cardiovascular performance.  No one bothers to answer.





Les Comforts at Night

Not much happens at night at Les Comforts.  Once HOH and MOP have checked on their guests they retire to the warm fire and eat food, sip wine and talk.  Sometimes their night routine takes longer because Bosco likes to patrol and spook the guests so that they mess up their kennels and runs.  He doesn’t want to make work for his caretakers but feels duty bound to make sure that the residents know who exactly is boss and running up and down outside the kennel block certainly makes them sit up and take notice.  Bosco know he is impeccably clean in his special bedroom that HOH made for him.  Here he resides between the house and the reception able to effectively guard both taking naps when he can.  He smirks when HOH exclaims that most of the dogs should be house trained and is bewildered that sometimes they are not.

catsOccasionally he will go and bark dully at Bobby to try and get a reaction but he rarely does.  Once lights are out Bobby Holiday gets into his hobbies nights .  As soon as HOH and MOP are safely in the house Bobby H assumes the driving position in the silver car and seated in the driver’s seat practices all the moves that he has observed MOP make when the car is in motion.  Sometimes there is a pair of sunglasses left on the dashboard and Bobby will slip these on as he flicks through the driver’s manual.  It is of little wonder that Bobby Holiday gets so tired and needs plenty of sleep during the day.

Kyla gets impatient.  She will move from Observation Tower to the Admissions Building making a great deal of squeaking as she knows there is a warm fire to curl up in front of.   She also knows Steve will be there taking his drugs as normal.  She has issues with the amount of catnip he has access to and has actually witnessed him rolling around on his catnip pillow when he is supposed to be on duty.

From time to time the dark silence is broken by a sharp snap as a baited trap catches another mouse in its deadly vice.  It is at these moments that Kyla puffs her cheeks with pleasure as less effort is required from her.



An Incident

This morning at 08.00h a guest arrives complete with a sharp warning.  Under no circumstances must this dog meet up with any other animal, it is to be handled with extreme caution by HOH and MOP, it is a french guard dog and is trained to attack.  Tyson will be staying one week unless the call is put out for his owners to return because of problems.

Everyone is very tired from their late night so the first one of the group to hear this is Kyla when she overhears the instructions being passed to HOH.  As is completely normal Kyla hangs out in the Reception area,when visitors are due, to show well being and harmony.  HOH often absent-mindedly strokes Kyla when she is talking to her visitors which Kyla likes, although she is not keen on strangers touching her.  They often have unclean hands that smell of unsavoury things.

On hearing the new information Kyla slips quietly out of Reception and starts to make her way back to her sentry post, en route she passes a huge black Station Wagon parked in the driveway and catches sight of Tyson.  Oh Dear God!   She quickens her pace, the thing is a monster, her pace increases, he is hideous, she must hurry to be safe.  By the time she reaches the Cat Kitchen she decides camouflage is the only solution right now and slips neatly under her grey camouflage blanket.  Motionless she crouches desperately working a plan through her mind as to how she can pass on this vital information to the group.  She hears footsteps approaching and can smell the enemy getting closer.  Out of the corner of her eye in the nick of time she realises she has left her tail on view…quick!  She panics and whips it under the blanket only to see Tyson has caught the movement because the stupid tail has bushed up to twice its normal size.  A frenzy of barking and snapping jaws introduces her to the beast.  It is on a chain and the owners just manage to pull him up short from grabbing her beautiful prized tail, normally so sleek and now a flag signalling her position to the world.

HOH averts a crisis by pulling the whole sentry post complete with Kyla, her blanket and her bed (with her still embarrassingly in it) away from the visitors and quietly asking them to continue up the stairs towards the kennel block.  Panic over.  Hey it may be for you HOH but what about the rest of us.  Kyla sits up bewildered and shaken.  That was a very close thing and already within seconds of his arrival the Beast has broken down security.  Something must be done.

Back outside Bobby Holiday too has seen the Beast.  He heard the arrival and sat up all ready to bark out his position but stopped short when he saw the opposition.  He carefully sank back down to below window height of the car and lay there trembling until the dog was out of the wagon and well on his way to the kennels.  Only then was he able to slowly sit up and observe its progress.  Oh My!  Huge, black, muscular and a coat so long and wavy it was perfect.  He was so very lovely.  Bobby Holiday could only look on enviously at this creature in such peak condition and then he looked sadly at his reflection in the rear view mirror.  The Beast was everything he wasn’t.  The only thought that cheered him was that maybe, just maybe, Bosco the Slayer had met his match..oh how he hoped so.  He looked across at the house and saw Steve sitting on the table cleaning his paws.  He was clearly untroubled by the turn of events.  Steve, certain that he was under no immediate threat, was perfectly relaxed and really abit too busy to be bothered by a kennel dog so far from Admissions.

Bobby lay back down to think about the chain collar the Beast was wearing and wondered whether it had been ordered on line by the owners and whether in fact it was designer.  How he hoped MOP would by him one for his birthday, he felt it would make him look very manly.

Only one member of the group was yet to be informed of the problem afoot and that was Bosco.  He had left earlier with MOP to collect bread and cakes from the shops and had yet to return.  Although Bosco disliked leaving his post he found the lure of going shopping in the car irresistible and thus had left Les Comforts disadvantaged.

Twenty minutes or so passed and Kyla felt it safe to leave her post and begin a paw tip search for clues as to the origin of the Beast.  The noise in the kennels had reached a crescendo and frankly she was glad to give her ears a break and move away from the area.  She tripped across the gravel cursing the harshness of the stones on her paws.  She was certainly going to put in another complaint.  She reached the kitchen window to witness Steve yawning widely showing his tonsils to the world and then lazily flick one of his drug toys to the floor followed by him.  She squeaked loudly but received no reply.  Kyla was aghast at this flagrant disregard of the group’s rules.  She made another mental note to complain about this too.  Steve picked up the cat nip mouse and headed upstairs to breathe in a little of the pungent aroma and maybe just meditate a little, unaware that he had been observed.

Kyla looked across at the silver car to see if Bobby Holiday had also witnessed this turn of events but he was sitting on the back seat stroking his ear with his paw, his eyes closed.  She was beginning to think she was running this show alone.  Just then she heard the red car approaching as usual heralded by Bosco barking madly in the back interspersed with MOP shouting threats to his manhood if he didn’t stop.

The red car pulled up and Bobby Holiday leapt into action barking excitedly trying to cut in on Bosco.  Kyla cut the headphones and ran for cover, this was noise she didn’t need.

“He’s a giant, he has red eyes, he wears chains and he will get you.”  This was Bobby’s message to Bosco, delivered so loudly even Bosco paused for a moment to try and hear.

Several valuable minutes later a very angry Bosco catapulted from the car.  He had had to hang about while MOP greeted HOH and then they unloaded the spoils from the back seat.  Did these idiots not realise that he was here to protect them and they were putting themselves in mortal danger by standing about discussing the cake selection and which one they wanted. They were hampering his efforts big time.  He flew across the yard to where the Station Wagon had been parked.  Oh yes, he could smell trouble, big trouble.  He approached Bobby in the silver car where he continued his tirade with his eyes squeezed shut.

“He’s gonna have you Slayer, he’s bigger and meaner than you and stronger and blacker and he’s FRENCH.”

Bosco growled, irritated by Bobby’s obvious admiration for the enemy.  He always thought this Setter was a weirdo and this confirmed it…he FANCIED the new arrival!!!  He went to find Kyla.

He eventually found Kyla in the hay barn pulling tufts out of her still bushy tail.  He knew she was stressed.

“I can’t do this on my own Bosco.” She squeaked.  “Bobby Holiday is always too excited to do anything contructive and Steve seems to be in a purple haze most of the time, he has left his post again now with one of his packages.  Bosco what are we going to do?”

Bosco scratched himself thoughtfully.  He loved to scratch and took the opportunity everytime HOH wasn’t looking.  She said it was a bad look for a kennels to have a smelly old scratchy dog positioned outside for visitors to see and she always told him off.  He found the smelly and old description rather insulting as he was only 8 and she was always making him bath and have special skin sprays spread all over him.

The noise in the kennel block caught his attention and he signalled for Kyla to be quiet.  He could hear the word up that the new arrival ‘was not gonna stay at this crib man.’ He was gonnna be out at the first chance and listen everybody because there was gonna be a chance and it would be break out.’  A couple of others joined in barking that they were going too and how much was it going to cost for him to take them along.  Bosco was furious and decided to take a look for himself to size up the enemy.  He and Kyla headed back to the cat kitchen where she opted to wait.  Bosco took the long hidden route to the block and remained out of sight for as long as possible.  He wanted to assess the situation.

His first glimpse of the Beast checked him….yep, this guy was bigger, stronger and younger than him and as soon as Tyson copped Bosco he squared up to him teeth barred.

“Bonjour Monsieur Bosco..and how are you today?  Maybe a little scared if I see you correctly.”  Tyson widened his mouth to imitate a smile and show his perfect white fangs.  “They tell me you’re in charge here…well think again small fry, and think hard Mr Boss because that isn’t your name any’s mine I am the Boss now.  When I make my break you are gonna be the first to get it.  I am going to chew you up into tiny pieces and spit you out for all your friends to see.  You get it Mr Nobody?  I said do you understand?”

Bosco tightened his jaw, he was a little scared but he wouldn’t let that shake him.  He had a job to do.  He turned his back and cocked his leg against the bars of the kennel.  Let the Beast get a scent of the opposition.  He sauntered away, his swagger covering what he felt inside.

Kyla was waiting.

“What do you think?  Is he as bad as he looks?”  Kyla’s normal calm was rattled.

“What do we do Bosco?  If he gets out it will be the end of us ….and of HOH.  Her reputation rides on the security here and the care she provides..but honestly I don’t really care about all that…I just dont want to die.

The din in the kennel block was building up as dogs picked up their metal food bowls and threw them around, barking and howling as loudly as they could.

Bosco looked at worried Kyla, her little grey face was pinched and tired, he owed it to all of them to come up with a plan.

“Call a meeting GreyPuss.”  He used the nickname they only shared in private.

“We are a strong group and we can stop this.”  He wished he felt as confident as he sounded.  This situaiton was really bad.



The Plan

As soon as she had Bosco’s assurances Kyla leapt into action.  No afternoon nap for her, she had business to attend to and fast.  The longer Tyson threatened, the sooner there could be a rebellion.  She dashed across the gravel all thoughts of paw injury forgotten and ran to the silver car.

“We have to meet Bobby, it’s urgent, Bosco says we have to meet today…Bobby…Bobby!”

Bobby Holiday sat up, he was half wearing a high visibility jacket that he had found in the car and thought would look good on him.

“What is it?  What’s happening?  I’m quite busy at the moment.”  As usual he was preoccupied with his own thing and Kyla responded by hissing at him.  She was fed up with agents that were under par.

Next she got up onto the kitchen window sill, she adjusted her headset and put out the call for Steve.

“Mayday Mayday, Steve are you receiving me?  We have a Red situation, I repeat a Red situation.  Over.”

After several long minutes Steve appeared at the window.

“Okay cooooolio Kyla what’s  the problem?”

Kyla quickly repeated what had taken place emphasising the urgency of the problem.

“We have to meet, can you get out?”

“Oh, uh!  I don’t know, HOH and MOP are upstairs working on the new bathroom extension, I cant open the door.”  Kyla raised her yellow lamp like eyes to the heavens.  This was hardly the tight operation she thought she had joined.

“Okay, I’ll get Bosco to open the pump room door but you have to be in and out real quick.”  She had remembered that once when a shooting party had frightened Bosco he had been able to open the door himself and get into the house.  HOH had found him upstairs under a bed shaking.  It wasn’t something any of them had referred to since but now it would seem it was an important historic event.

Bosco was nervously chewing his paws at the doorway to Reception.  Kyla went nose to nose with him.

“Do you remember that time when you got into the house?”  She asked.

Bosco did and retaliated.  “Those shots were aimed across the territory, you know we were all in serious danger, do we have to keep going over old ground?”  His face showed signs of strain and Kyla thought he was looking worn out.

“Okay, okay, whatever.”  Kyla held up her paw in a dismissive gesture.

“What I want to know is can you do it the door to the house and get Steve out?”  She furrowed her brow giving what Bosco reflected was a very Nicole Kidman look.  He thought about mentioning it but realised this wasn’t the time.

“Oh yeah, HOH used to wedge a piece of wood under the handle but she has long since forgiven me, when do you want it done?”

“Well now I guess, if we can get Bobby Holiday out as well.”

“Oh no prob..I can get the door open on the car as well if you want, I was just keeping that in reserve until the little punk really hacked me off.”

“Then go to it, something has to be done and quick if we are all to get out alive, Tyson has the measure of this place and we have to stop him.”

Bosco went straight to it.  First he jumped the pump room door that adjoined Reception. “Get out scraggy cat!”  and then as quick as a flash he was at the car.

“Okay little spotty fellow, get your butt inside and start talking, we want ideas.”

Bobby Holiday was completely surprised.  How on earth had Bosco opened the car door?  He had seen HOH and MOP take so much care in protecting him from  The Slayer and he wasn’t sure if this was a booby trap.  He hesitated.

“How do I know it’s safe?  You could get me the minute I come out?”  He was shaky and sitting as far away from the door as possible.

“Get real baby face, you want Tyson out after us.  I can have you any time I like, but right now I have my own back to cover.”  Bosco stalked off his massive plume of a tail waving stiffly in the air.  As if he was bothered with a micro being right now.

They all gathered in Reception.  They could hear the sound of banging about above them so they knew it was safe until this stopped which would mean one of the people could arrive at any minute.

Kyla took the lead.

“Tyson is an A1 threat.  He gets this place and probably us as well.  he is threatening to break out and bring some others with him.  If this happens we go down and so does HOH and MOP, their reputation is at stake.

“Oh Golly!  I’m not sure I am prepared for this.  They always said I was Entertainments Officer in charge of playing with happy dogs.  This is quite frightening and not at all what I am equipped for.”  Bobby was visibly shaking and eyeing up the route back to the car.

“Well personally I don’t see any risk to myself as I am Admissions Manager, but I suppose if you need a little help then of course I will do my best.”  Steve was examining his left front paw when he delivered this.  Kyla’s eyes were wide with disbelief.

“Oslington Bay, you are as much at risk as the rest of us.”  She used his agent name to make the point.  “What happens if this place goes down?  Where will our next meal sachet come from?  How will the electricity be paid for that heats our beds…and who will buy your cat nip toys?”

“And I am hoping for a new collar.  Who will buy that for me?”  Bobby piped up still thinking of the Beasts neck wear.

Bosco lost patience.

“Do you want me to take out this guy on my own?  I’ll do it and if for any reason I don’t succeed you will only have yourselves to look to as to the reason why.  You know I will fight to the end for HOH and I don’t need a load of scaredy cats and ponce dogs to help if that’s all I’ve got.”

The group fell silent.  What Bosco had said was true.  HOH had given him a home against all odds  and he was devoted to protecting her.  When he was left at Les Comforts he had a one way ticket to Le Vets and she put a stop to it.  They owed it to Bosco too, he was after all front line aggression and without him they didn’t have a paw to stand on.

“Seems like we need a straaaategy.”  Steve yawned out the last word and then arched his back in a supreme stretch.

The banging above them stopped for a moment and the group froze.  Then they heard loud voices. HOH and MOP seemed to be having a disagreement.

“Jeeesus!”  MOP barked out.  “I cant hold this up much longer, get something to wedge under it.”  There was the sound of hurried footsteps and then they heard HOH.

“Ok, Ok I think it’s going to be strong enough, just ease your hand out and see if it holds good.”

“My hand is already thinking it’s broken, but no panic..yep ok seems to be safe for now.”

“Brilliant, we do need to get this finished before Mum gets here and you wont get much done with a broken hand!”

Kyla exchanged glances with Bosco, they had heard this sort of thing before when the kennel extension had been built.  Tension was running high in the household.

Suddenly Bobby sat up.  “I’ve got it, I’ve got it, I have a plan.”  He jumped up spinning and turning wildly after his tail.  “I knew I wasn’t silly, I knew I could make the grade one day.  I’m so happy.  Now I can be a proper member of the group.”

“Bobby.”  Kyla squeaked quietly.  She wanted him to feel valued.  “Tell us your plan, it may be a good one but you need to be calm, sit down and tell us, we haven’t much time, the whole ceiling could come crashing down at any minute.”

Bobby sat down. He assumed his proud position, the one he normally reserved for when MOP explained his job as Entertainments Officer.  When MOP detailed how Bobby Holiday nurtured and made friends with new kennel guests he felt his heart would burst with pride.  He sounded so important and everyone made such a big fuss of him.  That was what made his day.

“Do you promise not to laugh at me?”

“Oh, please.” Whined Steve.  “Get on with it.”

“Okay, you remember that time I stole one of Steve’s cat nip mice, I think it was the pink one..or it may have been the turquoise one, I’m not sure I can quite remember the colour.”

“Yeah, yeah, forget the colour Spot, get on with the plan before we all fall asleep.”  Bosco was beginning to think that today might be the day he would take Bobby out!

Bobby started to shake again.  “Okay, whatever colour , I stole it from Reception and took it to the Silver car for the night.  I rested my nose on it and dribbled a little bit and then fell asleep.  When I woke up I felt really dreamy and lovely and warm all over and I looked out of the window and saw beautiful colours in the sky, yellows and golds and the moon was all fuzzy…”  Bobby seemed to be drifting off into a world of his own.

“Bobby, can you get to the point, you stealing and spitting all over my special toys is not going anywhere and to be honest I am losing the will to live with this story.  And more importantly, that was one of my newest and strongest toys to date.  Where is it now?”  Steve was very annoyed at the way things were going and Kyla made yet another mental note to talk to Bosco about Steve’s drug habit.  She thought he was having too much of the nip causing him mood swings.  Frankly she couldn’t see what was in it for him, she loathed the stuff and constantly rejected all HOH’s little gifts to her.

Bobby Holiday’s eyes widened.

“Don’t you see..that is the point.  Whatever is in Steve’s toys makes you go all googly and wobbly and feel great about everything.  Why don’t we give some to Tyson?”  He looked around for the approval he was expecting.

“Okay Spot, brilliant!  You go and give him his catnip in a pink mouse and see how much of you is left to tell the tale.”  Bosco got up and walked away.

Steve flicked his tail at Bobby.  “Don’t you ever steal my toys again man, you are quite clearly off your head and I’m not sure the group needs agents like you that are so wet behind the ears.  Kyla and I slog our guts out to try and keep you safe and now we have a real crisis, instead of helping you come up with a stupid baby plan that won’t work.”

Bobby’s earS were pinned right back.  He quietly got up and sloped off to the silver car his tail tucked firmly under this back legs.  He felt tearful and hurt and needed to get to his refuge…even that didn’t feel safe anymore.  Why wasn’t he smart like Kyla, or brave like Bosco or even just in love with himself like Steve.  Nobody ever laughed at them.

Kyla sat on the table unblinking, she was thinking about what Bobby had said.  The stuff in the toys didn’t make her feel happy , it made her feel sick, but it definitely did something to whoever had some.  Maybe he did have a plan after all, it just needed fine tuning.  She jumped down from the table and padded over to the Silver car calling Bosco to follow her.

” I think Bobby may have something, have you ever tried that stuff?”

“Hell no!  I don’t need to get my kicks from playground stuff, killing is what drives me GreyPuss, the chase, the squeal, the kill, that’s my fix.  Spot could get a fix from cold water he’s so wet.”

“Sit by the door, I’ll see if I can coax him to talk, you must stop being so mean to him.”  In a second she was on the bonnet of the car.

“Bobby Holiday, you there?”  She waited.  “Bobby, Bobby; still a red situation, we really do need your help.”

Bobby’s face appeared at the back window, he was clearly upset, his jaw sagged and his brown eyes were huge.

“I don’t want everyone laughing at me anymore, I don’t think I fit in here and yet what am I suposed to do?  Ever since MOP fell in love with HOH my world has turned upside down and I have to try and go along with’s not fair, nobody likes me.”  He sniffed quietly.

“Bobby we all like you and we have all had to adjust.”  Kyla spoke softly she knew Bobby was very insecure.  “You have to remember that Steve is the only one here who was established.  He has live with HOH since he was a kitten and she loves him dearly; maybe the most, but she has also opened her home and her heart to all of us.  Don’t forget I was brought here in a plastic carrier from my old house where noone was looking after me and left here for HOH to find me a new home.  She kept me because she cares, and Bosco; he was driven here as a holiday guest and his owner didn’t want him back, so she kept him too.

Bosco looked sharply at Kyla.

“I would have survived whatever, I can look after myself.”

“You know that’s not true Bosco, you know what happens to dogs like you in France.  Nobody wants a fighter who eats as much as you do and scares everyone off.”  Bosco grumbled something inaudible and Kyla let it go.  Bosco was always going to be the big hunter and would never accept he was a disposable as any other animal kept by uncaring people.

“We have issues Bobby, but we both feel so happy to be HOH’s guides and want to do as much as possible for her.  If you help us now it helps MOP too…and you will always be his Number 1.”

“Yes, but you are all brave and clever and I am always the one everyone laughs at..Bobby Holiday the Entertainments Officer..I am like Les Comforts joke.”

“Not at all Bobby, do you not realise how important your role is?  HOH advertises your services to clients, you bring in business for her, she doesn’t advertise any of her security team.”

Bobby sat up, what Kyla said made sense.

“So you actually think I help her make money?”

“Of course you do Bobby, there is no doubt about it.”  She shot Bosco a hard stare to make sure he didn’t  comment.

“So the plan Bobby, I am sure you haven’t told us everything.”  Kyla hoped her hunch was right.

“Well what I was thinking was that if we could get some of the special Steve stuff to the Tyson dog, he could eat it or something and he will be all dreamy and squidgy and then he wont be a problem to us or anyone anymore.”  Bobby H was animated.  “Do you think it will work?”

“Too right it will work Bobs and it is a masterful plan.  What we need to consider now is how we are going to get it to happen.”  Kyla was purring loudly, this is what it was all about.  Everyone working together.  Brilliant minds on a tricky situation.

“Don’t want to wee on your plan Spot, but we are no further forward.  How exactly are we going to get the gear into the stupid hound’s mouth?”  Bosco started to scratch himself he was getting agitated.

“Ssssh Bosco, I can hear Steve, wait a minute.”

They all strained their ears and they could hear Steve calling loudly from Admissions.

“What’s he saying Kyla?”

She held up her paw.

“Wait a minute boys I think he’s got it.”  A couple of tense minutes passed and then she jumped down from the car.  “Okay, listen hard you two.  Steve has agreed to collect all his toys together and he will leave them at the pump room door under the door curtain.  We have to devise a plan to get them out at regular intervals and transport them to the cat kitchen…he doesn’t have a plan after that.”

Bosco howled with laughter.  “So what happens now?  We have a stash of Steve’s drugs to do what with.  I think probably we should all just take some and leave things to sort themselves out.”

Bobby started to tap dance with his front feet, he was quite liking the idea now.

“Do you know what Bosco, you are actually hampering our thought processes, are you in or out?”  Kyla was very cross, she needed them all to be on top form.

“Bosco, you have to get the door open as often as possible and collect a toy or two.  HOH and MOP will have to think they have left the door ajar each time you do it.”  She was warming to her theme.  “Then bring them to the cat kitchen and I will pull them open ready to drop the contents into Tyson’s food each day.  It’s a long shot but it is the best idea we have at the moment.  We have to give it a try.”

“How many times do you think HOH will fall for the door ajar theory Kyla?  She’s a smart lady and she will know it is me opening it, I’ve been caught before remember.”

Bobby interjected.

“Bosco is right, they will barricade the door after the second or third time, we have to get it all straightaway and hide it somewhere.  This stuff has to be drip fed, we just want to subdue Tyson, not o/d him.”

“Good point Spot!  Here’s what we do.  Steve leaves all the junk by the door.  When HOH and MOP to do the late night check, I will jump the door and get it all to the Silver car.  Spot you hide it under your girlie quilts and then each day, when you come out early morning you drop one or two on the floor for me to collect and get to Kyla before kennel breakfasts.  This way we are all acting as normal.  Then it’s over to you GreyPuss.”

Bobby felt supremely proud that he and Bosco were working together, he allowed himslef for a moment to imagine them side by side on security.

Bosco squashed this hope immediately.

“You mess up Spot and it wont be Tyson you need to worry got it?”

“I’ve got it Bosco.”

Kyla immediately relayed the information to Steve, impressing upon him the urgency of his actions.

“You must do it tonight Steve…no fireside vigil for you…get the toys and drop them as soon as the coast is clear.”  She waited.  Again they could hear Steve from the house.

“I don’t believe this guy..he’s moaning about how long before his supply is replenished.”

“Is he going to do it?” Bobby asked.  He was excited but also very nervous.  This was the first time he had played a real part in a big plan.  He had to get it right.

“Oh yeah, he’s going to do it, he’s just letting us know how inconvenient it is.”

“How will you get it into the food Kyla?”  Bobby’s eyes were wide with wonderment, he couldn’t work this on out.

With a lightening response Kyla reared up onto her haunches and splayed out her very long and very sharp claws.

“Same way I draw blood Bobby, with these.  I will shred the toy in seconds and deposit the contents into his food.  Don’t forget I am always there at feeding times.  She sank down and Bobby shuffled further back.  Now he understood why Kyla was always manicuring her paws.

“Good call GreyPuss.  High five for that.”  Bosco raised his left paw.








The Implementation

The morning was dank and misty.  Kyla woke from a deep sleep around 06.00am, stretched and tried to remember what was happening today.  She had a fluttery feeling in her tummy that something was going on but she couldn’t quite get it.

After rubbing her face around the edges of the bed she flicked her tail up to clean the very tip.  She would never forget to clean the end of her tail, it would demonstrate a dangerous lack of attention to detail.  Next she moved onto her paws.  In the morning when schedules were tight she liked to do face, tail and paws, then later in the day during her ‘me’ time she would have her full toilette and  manicure.  Time was so limited in the mornings, so much happened….Oh My God!!!  She suddenly remembered.  This morning was the morning the plan was happening.  She must check and make sure everyone was up and in position: no time for paws now.

With lightning speed that surprised even her she flew from her bed and across the kitchen and out into the mist, she covered the distance in seconds in time to see Bobby flick two toys out of the car window.

“Bobby, Bobby, what’s happening, is everything going to plan?”

Bobby was smiling broadly.

“All taken care of GreyPuss.”  He said cheekily.  “Toys are stowed here and first delivery for the Devil are right there for you.”  He pushed his nose through the slot in the window to indicate an orange mouse and a tiny white cushion that had the words ‘I Love my Cat’ printed on it.

“Where’s Bosco?  He’s supposed to bring them to me in the kitchen?”

“Oh he needed some real action he said, he’s gone off to the new warren to wait for the baby rabbits breakfast time…and his breakfast.  He brought all the toys out last night and it was really late.  He doesn’t seem to need as much sleep as me and he woke me up opening the car door. ”  Bobby paused.  “You don’t think he will open the door at any other time do you Kyla..y’know, at a bad time when I wasn’t expecting it?”

Kyla realised that to mention that Bobby never really seemed to anticipate anything happening would be unhelpful and so she smoothed his insecurity instead.

“No Bobby, I think Boss knows the consequences if he ever did those bad things again.”  She picked up the orange mouse wrinkling her nose in disgust as she did.  This meant she would have to be sick later because of the taste, but whatever..this had to be done.  She started off to the kitchen hurrying because there was another one to fetch.  Damn Bosco for not completing his part of the plan, she was annoyed and would be having words with him.

Three minutes later she was back for the cushion, slightly larger and more awkward.

“Bobby, tell Bosco when you see him I want to talk to him about his work, I don’t expect to have to carry this stuff about tomorrow morning.

“Oh Okay Kyla.”  Bobby didn’t sit up he was resting after his exciting start to the day.

“Oh and Bobby.”


“Don’t ever call me GreyPuss again.”  She picked up the cushion with difficulty and stalked off waving her tail.

Bobby sat up and watched her through the windscreen.  Why did everyone manage to rain on his parade, once again he felt reduced to Chihuahua!

Kyla lodged the toys under her blanket, once breakfasts were being put out she would do her work.  She heard footsteps crunching on the gravel and HOH walked in followed by MOP.

“Good morning beautiful and how are you today?”  HOH went straight over to Kyla’s bed and rubbed noses with her as she did every morning.  Kyla loved this and enthusiastically returned the greeting squeaking out her affection and placing a paw on HOH’s arm to keep her there as long as possible.  MOP came over and rubbed her behind her ears.

“Hello Big Girl, did you guard the gang for us?”  Kyla loved her people and the special attention; she felt so very loved and special.  She squeaked up into MOP’s face to show her appreciation.

“Do you think Kyla will bother the birds if we put up our new table?” MOP asked HOH.

“Not at all, you’re so very busy doing other important things for us aren’t you beautiful?”  HOH smiled and Kyla felt an absolute traitor.  Her people had no idea what was being done to prevent any trouble for them.

The food was prepared.  As normal all the bowls were laid out and filled for the kennels and the cattery, then the cats were fed first.  As soon as this happened Kyla was in action.  She only had a few minutes to complete her task.  She singled out the Devils’s bowl, very large and very full, topped off with raw meat as was the owners request.  No normal dog could eat this amount of food.  She grabbed the mouse first and tore at it until all the stuffing fell into the bowl.  Then she picked out the material remains and repeated the process with the cushion.  The fabric left over joined the mouse material under her blanket.  The taste was so vile that twice she had to stop for a second to make sure she wasn’t sick into his bowl.  She was certain that would be noticed by her people.  Her finishing touch was to paw a little meat over the cat nip and jump back into bed and pretend to purr.  Dear God she felt so ill and the smell from the paw was indeed nauseating.  Realising she couldn’t be sick in her bed because of the hidden remains she jumped out and touched down on the floor in the nick of time…and did she throw up, it was really all quite noisy and embarrassing, especially when HOH and MOP came in.

“Oh my word Kyla you poor thing!”  HOH swept her up into her arms and stroked her carefully.

“Are you not feeling well?”  SHe turned to MOP.  “Oh dear she has been sick alot..more than usual, do you think she’s alright?”

” I hope so, maybe a bad mouse or something.  We’ll keep an eye on her, just in case.”

Kyla knew she would have to be more careful tomorrow, she didn’t want to worry them and she certainly wasn’t going to the vet.  She would need to come up with a plan to throw up somewhere else.  Damn!

At 10.00am Bosco sauntered into the cat kitchen.  Kyla still felt green around the gills and he noticed all was not well.

“GreyPuss, Bobby said you wanted to talk to me.  Are you okay, you look awful?”

“Well thanks for that Bosco, I am sick as a dog from that stupid catnip, plus I had to carry it myself making it doubly worse when you were supposed to do it and now I don’t know what to do about tomorrow because our people will worry if I am sick again and that isn’t fair to them.  Any ideas, or are you too busy chasing baby bunnies?”  She knew she was being harsh, but under the circumstances it was necessary.

“Hey steady on.  The rabbits are a real problem to MOP, the garden is being wrecked by the thieving bunnies and I am supposed to help out in that department.  My duties have to start quite early if I am to catch a rabbit.”

“I know Boss, but I am dying of poisening here, and I am worried I can’t cut the mustard.”

“No worries GreyPuss.  When I bring it in to you tomorrow I will pre-chew all the contents so it is easier for you to work with, maybe that will buy you some extra time to hang onto your puke ’til they are out of the picture.  What do you reckon?”

“It’s worth a go, I hope I can hack it.”  She contemplated the idea of chewed soggy catnip toys!

“Well you need to listen up and be very proud.  The kennels are really quiet.  I went up for a sneak look and the Devil is out of it snoozing like a puppy.  I reckon this will work if we keep up with the plan.  And the other dogs are all pretty relieved; Tyson is so mean they don’t really want to hang out with him if he makes a break, it was just big woof to stay in his good books.  As nomal all paws and claws and no action..lily livered hounds!”

“”So you think it is working?”  Kyla visibly brightened.

“No doubt GreyPuss, that hound will be eating out of my paw by the end of the week.”  Bosco turned to leave.

“Get some sleep GreyPuss, you look rough.”  He sashayed off; the walk of a confident and in control guard dog.



The Outcome

Tyson’s stay went like a dream.  All the Agents carried out their part of the plan flawlessly and Tyson remained in a happy and relaxed frame of mind…when he was awake!

Kyla continued to be sick on a daily basis but was definitely better for Bosco having given the toys a little dilution before they arrived with her.  Bobby for his part was expecting a medal and so was utterly let down when the only compliment he received from Bosco was ‘nice work Spot’ delivered on the paw as headed off  to the shops with HOH.  Steve to his great pleasure received a cat nip gift pack that arrived with HOH’s mother when she came from England to stay.  He was even more made up to realise that he had forgotten how much stronger the UK version was.  Fortunately for him his work on the campaign was pretty much over after the initial stowing of the cache so he was able to spend quite a lot of time lying on the windowsill watching the golden and fluffy yellow world go by.  HOH Senior adored him.

“He is such a sleek, beautiful and intelligent cat.”  She called to HOH one day.  “It is lovely to just sit and watch him or hold him on my lap.”

Kyla overhearing this was disgusted at such a mis-judgement of character and made a note to be in HOH Senior’s face from now on.

At 4.00pm precisely on the designated Saturday afternoon the huge black station wagon arrived and out jumped Monsieur and Madame Boudry to collect their charge.  Kyla made sure she was out of the way of the kennel route but well within eyeballing distance.  Bosco was shut in the red car ‘for safety purposes’ and Bobby was of course sitting to attention in the silver car waiting for a final glimpse of the Devil.

After about 5 minutes the party reappeared.  Mme Boudry talking nineteen to the dozen to HOH and Monsieur bright red in the face trying to keep a raging Tyson under control.  Clearly their arrival had triggered something in his brain and he was up and in full fighting mode for all to see.  The Agents just smirked.  As Tyson threatened to pull Monsieur over MOP took the chain and continued their speedy progress to the car.

Barking reached a crescendo in the kennels and Bosco paused for a moment during his loaded comments to hear that they were all pretty much barking out of relief, not one dog really wanted to be loose with Tyson.

MOP opened the rear door of the wagon and Tyson flew in.   As MOP went to shut the door Tyson whipped round, jaws wide open to grab at MOP’s arm.

“Too late big boy.”  MOP muttered.  “You’ll have to be quicker than that.”  And the door was firmly shut.

Tyson kicked  off, his angry shouts loud enough for everyone to hear.

” I will get you all don’t you worry.  I know what you did, I worked it out.  I will return and you’d all better be on your guard…even your people.  No-one beats Le Tyson!”

“You are a yellow liver Tyson, we took you and you know it…accept defeat French Dog.”  Bosco was enjoying this.

“Au revoir Monsieur, Madame, merci! A prochen.”  Mme Boudry waved her goodbyes and climbed into the car.  Monsieur shook everyone’s hands again and also got it in.  All smiles they disappeared down the driveway and all the personnel at Les Comforts breathed a sigh of relief.

“Oh God!  What do you think he meant…until next time?”  HOH asked MOP

“I think they’ll be coming back here again.”  Said MOP.  “When we were up at the kennels Monsieur muttered something to me that no other place would take Tyson.”

“Oh!  Well he is a difficult dog, but in fairness he didn’t really cause us too many problems, so I suppose it’s fine if they rebook.”

Kyla looked across at Bosco, still in the car.  From his expression she knew what he was thinking…we couldn’t pull off the same stunt again.!!!

Windows Photo Gallery WallpaperBobby Holiday lay back down to review the weeks action and try to work out how he was going to get on of those fierce chain collars.  Steve looked up knowingly from his position by the window on HOH Senior’s lap.  He knew how it could work again as long as he remained firm friends with his new UK pusher.






A New Agent

The cat that had arrived on Monday afternoon was to all intents and purposes (and in Kyla’s opinion) a plain looking French feral cat.  Her view changed somewhat when, after making her routine inspection of the Cattery later that day, she heard him talking, first to a French guest fluently, and then later to an English guest…also fluently.  She was quite impressed, rarely did they ever see a bilingual pet stey here.

“He looks so very ordinary  but he speaks both languages and HOH seems to have taken a real shine to him.  He also appears to be extremely agile, he scaled the chalet walls like a professional.”  Kyla was debriefing with Bosco after lights out.  She didn’t want to admit it but she was feeling a little miffed that this dull little cat seemed to be causing a ripple, especially with HOH.  This was unusual.  HOH cared for all her guests completely.  She smoothed them, she talked to them and fretted if they weren’t settling quickly but hmmmm…somehow this one seemed different.  She would keep her ears open.

“Better watch your back GreyPuss.”  Commented Bosco.  “You reckon he is here for only a couple of weeks but I was at Reception and the man who brought him here wants to rehome him.  My guess is that HOH will keep him.”

“Are you serious?  Kyla was alarmed.  “How do you know that?  What did HOH say to the man?  I don’t normally miss things, I think you’re wrong, how could you possibly make that assumption?”  There was a note of panic in her voice.

“She said that she would ask around to try and find a new home for him.  Then later I heard her talking to MOP and she said she rarely had cats stay that made such a play for her and he was a most endearing little cat.  I think that is people speak for ownership.”  Bosco smiles smugly allowing himself a little snigger, he knew that he had perhaps embellished the feedback just a little!

“WHAT!!?  You seriously think she would keep him..he is quite definately a common cat, she likes breedy types like me and Steve.”  Kyla’s tail was waving madly and her yellow eyes were wide with disbelief.

“GreyPuss, what do we know about the human mind?   They over complicate stuff, they don’t spend anywhere near enough time on the touch, smell and kill experiences..and besides our people love all animals.”

Kyla thought this through, Bosco was right, although these people were their responsibility, they never knew the trouble they caused by not being cats or dogs.  She reviewed what had happened when MOP arrived with Bobby Holiday.  Somehow the people thought that time would resolve all issues, but it hadn’t and they were still ongoing.  And then there was her and Steve, they didn’t see whisker to whisker on just about anything but they knew they had to rub along and yeah, it was difficult.  People were complex but the agents were there to make life easier for them and that was how it just had to be.

Over the next few days Agent Kyla noticed little changes that made her more unsettled.  During his first night KP Peanuts had pulled out large tufts of his own fur, leaving white clumps for HOH to discover in the morning.  Needless to say she was horrified.  Kyla heard her almost sobbing to MOP that this poor little cat must know he wasn’t wanted, what could have caused this problem?  In addition to this whenever HOH was in the Cattery KP Peanuts made a huge fuss of her, talking alot and winding himself around her legs, only eating when she got down on the floor with him and stroked him through his breakfast and dinner.  Frankly Kyla was disgusted, did this feral have no self respect?

The last straw was her observation of KP assuming the control position.  This was an outrage.  People did not understand the cat control situation, but the agents did.  Once a cat was picked up it would immediately engage in full body contact with the person, they would place their head near to the human’s neck and their paws on either side of their shoulders.  Never failed!  Dogs of course simply sat in really close to the human’s feet and leaned their backs into the human’s legs.  Then with heads turned upwards engaged them in direct eye contact.  Every dog and cat knew these moves they were failsafe and captivated their target.

Kyla turned to Steve for feline consultation.

“Steve!”  She was off radio and face to face through the kitchen window.  “Have you ever pulled your fur out through stress?”

“For meowing out loud Kyla NO!  In case you are blind, I am an Oriental Red.  We are sought after for our amazing breeding records and also for our striking self colour.  Why in heavens name would I mess with something that makes me so gorgeous and different?”

Kyla realised she was on a non starter with vain Steve.  She also knew that as a British Blue her coat and colour were beautiful and whatever was happening in her private life she wouldn’t want to mess up her appearance.

Approaching Bosco about fur issues was a non starter.  Firstly he already knew her fur was up and secondly, and probably more to the point, he couldn’t care less about his appearance; he was totally confidant having made HOH his own from the earliest moment.  As a last resort she spoke to Bobby Holiday.  She quickly explained the HOH/KP situation,emphasising the salient points to make sure Bobby got the picture.

“Well actually Kyla I did have a bad fur time.”  He revealed, pleased that his views were being sought.  “MOP’s family went through a horrid time and I was shocked to see that my feathers were falling out daily.  You do know Kyla that Setters like me are supposed to have long wavy hair on their tail and legs; much the same as mine is right now.”  He turned to study himself admiringly.  “But it wasn’t all like that.  Before I came here I was pretty sparse on the flowing good locks.”  He hesitated choking back his emotion.  “But I know I won over HOH’s heart because she understood my need to have friends and was so kind to me…especially after ‘the attack'”

Oh, here we go again thought Kyla.  Bobby’s reference to ‘the attack’ was when he first encountered Bosco and rather than stand up for himself, he fell to the floor and played dead so that the people would remove him from the situation.  All the agents knew that Bobby needed to assert himself with Bosco and he would back off but that was not hapening at the moment.  Bosco was a bully, but he wasn’t a mean dog.  Much later on when another accidental encounter took place, it almost seemed that Bobby H was making the grade until MOP tried to separate them with the only thing to hand, a salami sausage and greedy Bobby tried to grab the sausage  instead of maintaining his hold on Bosco’s cheek.

“Okay Bobby, thanks for that.”  Said Kyla.  “As usual a most helpful and enlightening take on events.”  Bobby sat back down pleased with himself that he had been able to help.

She waddled off lost in thought.  This was a challenge she was going to have to take on herself.  She decided to interview KP Peanuts to see if she could get an in on his mind set.

It was late afternoon before she could get down to the Cattery.  She had done some research and the facts were worrying.  Apparently KP, it was rumoured was a double agent.  He had previously worked for the French and had switched sides to the UK.  How much of this was true she had to establish.  Was the fur pulling a genuine cry for help or was it a more sinister clever double agent technique.  She had to know.


When she arrived at the Cattery most of the guests were asleep on their chairs in the sun, but not KP, he was sharpening his claws and practising his moves on a multicoloured rubber ball.

“Good afternoon Mr Peanuts, or should I say Monsieur Cacahuets?” She felt pleased with her translation.

“Bonjour Madame Kylie, you may refer to me in either way I answer to both.”  KP smiled a smile which didn’t reach his ears.

“It’s Kyla so that you know in future.”  She retorted.  “I understand that your stay here may be for more than a couple of weeks, were you aware of that?”

“Mais oui mon chere, I know all zee information that concerns my goodself.  Why do you ask moi?”

“I ask because I want to know.  You have been displaying displacement charateristics and as I head up the external surveillance team it is my duty to establish any problems that lurk within Les Comforts.”

Zat ees a grand title Mme Kylie but be assured I am not ‘arbouring any problems zat you need to stress about.  I am my own feline and will draw on my own resources if it beecomes necessaire.”

Kyla felt her interrogation techniques were beginning to fail, this feral was on his guard.

“But I am hearing that you are intenet on staying around Monsieur KP and in the interests of this establishment I will get the facts so that I can report back to my colleagues.  You seem to be making moves on  HOH of the overt kind.  Do you already know of the possible abandonement or not?”  She went straight for the jugular using sensitive words as she had been taught.

“Mon Dieur!  Zees are harsh allegations Mme.  Pray tell my why you are thinking zis thing?  I am here as a paying guest and will leave according to my dossier.”

“Because your person says he wants to re-home you, I am sorry but it is the truth, were you aware of this?”  Kyla did not feel kind talking in this way.

“I am sorry too Mme, I do not understand.”  KP did indeed look puzzled.

“I am told that your person said he has no time for cats, he doesn’t want to look after you anymore, so you must be rehomed.  Did you know this?”

Again Kyla shocked herself at her directness, but she had been in this situation so often, sometimes it was better just to get all the cards on the table.

KP looked completely confused.

“They also say around here that you are a double agent, that you work for both the French and the British.  How much of this is true?”  Another twist of the knife.

“Madame, I don’t work for anyone.  True I am a French feral, but was born in an English garden so I thought my roots were there.  My Mother took all my siblings to a new home one day when we were very small, but did not return for me.

Kyla drew her eyebrows together in a frown, this questioning was sliding off course.

“OK, so how come you end up arriving here with an English person at least two years later?”

Because zis English person leaves out scraps for me so I stay in the barns and garden and kill zee mice and rabbits.  He says that is what he expects from me for the scraps.

“Well clearly not anymore.  Did you not live in the house with him and make much of him and keep him calm like cats are supposed to do?”

“Non!  Zee house was fobidden territory, if I appear at zee door he throws water at me.  It is better I stay in zee garden.  I think now he goes for a long holiday.”

Kyla felt the prickle of a tear in her eye, but she must focus.  She could see that KP Peanuts was struggling with the information she had passed on to him; he sat tall and erect, his little grey mask furrowed and she guessed he was trying to contemplate his future.  Without further ado she left without a backward glance to report in.

She found Bosco lying in front of the silver car with a new bone so that Bobby H could watch him knaw at it.

“A word Bosco please.”  Bosco looked at Kyla and then at his bone.  Damn GreyPuss, this bone was so fresh he only had minutes left to bury it.

“Ten minutes GreyPuss if you don’t mind.”  He called back.  She went straight up to him and swiped his nose with her claws.  He wagged his tail slowly, he could not resist a faceoff with Kyla, she made his day when she got all aggressive.  He pushed his bloodied nose at her.

“Five minutes?”


Again he looked as his bone and then making a grumbling noise he got to his feet.

“If I get back and find this bone gone you are answerable GreyPuss.”

“Whatever!”  She stalked off into the hay barn where they could talk in private.

As she finished filling him in on the details of her investigation he heard HOH calling him to get in the car, so without really finishing their conversation he shot off.  They were obviously off on an excursion and he began to bark loudly.  The car trips were such a treat.

As the car engine started HOH called from the window to MOP.

“Will you have time to ring Mr Peters?  We might as well strike while the iron is hot.”

“You sure you don’t want to see if there is any change?”

“No, we both know where this is going, we might as well act now.”
“No problem…it’s done.  See you in a bit.”

The car pulled away and Bosco saw MOP let Bobby H out of the silver car, then watched horrified as Bobby made straight for the bone and they weren’t even out of the drive.  He kicked off big time calling out abuse but Bobby simply snatched up the bone and, finding if heavier than he expected, stumbled across the garden with it.  Bosco knew that was pretty much the last he would see of it.

Kyla had heard the exchange between HOH and MOP and hung around.  As Bosco’s barking grew fainter MOP returned to Reception and pulled out his mobile phone.  He quickly flicked through some papers and finding what he wanted he dialled a number.

“Hello Mr Peters?  I’m calling from the Cattery..”  Kyla didn’t need to hear the rest of the conversation.  She took a leisurely stroll back to the cat kitchen to clean up.  She would inform the rest of the group of what was happening later in the evening.  Without doubt Les Comforts had a new Agent.  Their people were too kind and very predictable, she was a clever cat and now she had to take time out to plan the new Agent’s role.

In the Cattery KP Peanuts was sitting on his chair.  He had been watching the birds bobbing about in the gardens.  He saw Kyla return to the kitchen and fixed his stare on the doorway.  His green eyes unblinking and his small mouth turned up at the corners to imitate a smile.  He too was a clever cat.  Mme Kylie would soon find that out!

















The Changeling

Bobby rolled over onto his back and stretched luxuriously.  It didn’t get much better than this, the early summer sunshine was deliciously warm on his speckled tummy and there was a light breeze wafting through the open window.  He lay there thinking about the dream he had just had.  He had been running along a beach whipping up sand followed by two pretty Golden Retreivers who had barked with glee at the chase.  The wind in his ears caused them to fan out behind him and he bounded powerful and lean towards the waters’ edge.

He opened his eyes and pushed his hind legs out to their full extent and assessed their form.  There was no doubt in his mind that his beautifully marked and feathered legs were probably best in breed.  Little wonder that the girls liked him.  As he lay there relaxing he heard the sound of footsteps on the gravel.  Not sure if he was still in dream mode he kept perfectly still.  No.  He was right, there were definitely footsteps.  He turned gently onto his stomach and slowly raised his head to window height to see what was outside.  It was lunchtime and all was usually quiet.  MOP and HOH would be in the house and Bosco would be guarding them in the pump room.  Nobody ever came to the house at this time.  Damn it!  He had been working all morning playing with guests and this was his relaxation time and now…   He let out a couple of disinterested barks.  The people stopped in their tracks so he let another two go.  He prayed Bosco would take up the challenge and he could return to his most important rest period.

The people were talking in low voices; one carrying a bundle of rags in their arms that they were both leaning towards.  One more bark and he was sure Bosco would appear.  Excellent!  The Slayer appeared trying to look alert and viscious but Bobby knew he too had probably been asleep.  The people drew their rags towards them and as their voices became raised Bobby H realise they were French.  Oh well, nothing he could do now,  he settled back down to observe the proceedings.

Seconds after Bosco gave voice his people arrived and put Bosco into the red car.  The French and his people started an intense conversation and then out of nowhere Kyla appeared.  There was much discussion and after a period of time the rags were handed over to HOH who appeared to be quite upset.  They said their goodbyes and then HOH and MOP walked in Reception, his arm around her shoulder, both of them cradling the rags.  Two minutes later MOP returned,  wordlessly opened the red car to let Bosco out, and then  disappeared back  into the house.

“Kyla, Kyla, what’s going on?”  Bobby was as curious as the next dog.

“God knows..I was asleep, seems like rest is an impossible dream..I’ll ask Bosco.”  She let out a few squeaks and right on cue Bosco appeared.  He had been told to ‘STAY’ in Reception and he was indignant.  How embarrassing to be told what to do just like Bobby was, he hated that.

“It would sem from what I can smell that the French people have turned up with a dog..definitely male, young and dirty.  Other than that I cannot say.  They have taken it into the house.”

“What!”  Kyla was amazed.  Everyone knew no guests to Les Comforts ever went into the house unless there was an emergency.

“I have to contact Steve.”  She waddled up to the kitchen window, still rather fuddled with sleep.  Her headset was in the cat kitchen so she hoped he was up and alert and ready for action.  Several calls later and he appeared at the upstairs window.

“What?!  Do you know what time it is?”

“Steve, a guest has been taken into the house.  We need to find out what is going on.  We think it is a dog and HOH has taken it straight in.  Find out what you can.”

Steve’s face registered shock and then disappeared so Kyla waited where she was hoping for immediate feedback.  The sun was beating down so she settled into what she hoped looked like an alert lying down pose.  As she rested her head on her paws she caught sight of KP, now referred to as PPK by MOP, watching her, a sly smile playing about his lips.

“Busy Kylie?  I thought it was an emergency and now I realise it was just a sunbathing call.  Let me know if you need any help catching the sun.”  With that he turned and flicking his tail disappeared into the shade, his white body soon hidden from view.

Kyla was furious.  Ever since Les Comforts had offered that pompous little French feral a home he had lorded it over her and was busy trying to muscle in on her relationship with Bosco.  He appeared everywhere, seemed to know everything and had captivated Bosco with his fearless play fighting.  She had endlessly warned Bosco of getting too close to him, but for some reason Bosco thought he was the cats whiskers.  Every morning she had to endure the sickening sight of PPK leaping out from a hiding place and bashing Bosco around the face.  All the stupid dog did was wag his plume and keep going back for more.

She was relieved that Bobby holiday realised the danger of this infiltrator and at every opportunity chased him up a tree barking loudly to ‘back away Pale Puss’. She did wonder where it would all end…and more to the point, she did wonder where his french accent had gone!  But whatever, right now she had this new guest to worry about and she called out with some force for Steve to hurry up.

Steve appeared.

“For meowing out loud Kyla, give me a chance.  Do you want all the information or not?”

“Just get on with it.”

“If you insist on speaking to me like that I don’t have to collaborate you know.”  Steve once again was displaying his precious Oriental temperament and Kyla knew arguing would be pointless.

“What have you found out Steve?  Do we have a new member?  Who is it?”  She played up to his need for importance.

“ would seem we have an orphan here.  Those foreign people (Kyla raised yellow eyes to the heavens) have found a baby dog in the dustbins up the road and they thought we would be the perfect people to being it to.  As usual everyone trying to dump their unwanted rubbish on us.”  Kyla bit her tongue, after all some might say she was unwanted rubbish along with the rest of the gang..apart from Steve!


“And I don’t know.  HOH is in tears, MOP is mopping them up and there is a horrible smell in the utility room where they are with this thing.”

“So what happens now?  Are they alerting the authorities, has the puppy spoken to you, will it die?”  There was no end to the questions Kyla had, this was shocking news and they all needed answers.

“Kyla, I’m telling you I don’t know.  Right now I need to go and clean up.  I have been in close proximity to this bin baby and I need to get the stench off my fur.  I smell like a feral..infact I smell like PPK.”  He sneered, after all he could get away with saying these things, he didn’t have to interact with the feral add-on.  “Stay by the window and I will let you know if I get more information.”

Sometimes Kyla wished she could get her paws around Steve’s stringy little red neck.  How unhe;lpful was that and didn’t Oslington Bay realise that this was her lunch break and it was quite frankly far too hot to remain in situ’ for much longer.  Wearily she jumped down and padded off to tell Bosco and Bobby the news so far.

Needless to say both dogs were impressed that HOH and MOP had acted so appropriately.  They were both very sensitive to the needs of unwanted dogs and were keen to offer help to HOH and MOP.  Bosco trotted to the silver car and held up his paw.  Bobby sat up and touched the window from the inside.

“High Five Spotty, we need to get involved..this is a big day for Les Comforts.”

“As one Slayer, tell me what I need to do.”  Bobby was ecstatic, a real breakthrough in his relationship with Bosco  and he sensed a unity with him.

“I’ll get the feedback, we need to move this one forward, stay alert.”  Bosco headed back to Reception where he was supposed to be STAYING and Bobby lay back down, his thoughts on a beach sccene with him and Bosco running through the waves with the Golden Retrievers .

A while later Kyla’s belated rest was interrupted by PPK appearing by her bed, his face pushed up close to hers.

“Wake up lazy girl, do you want to know what’s happening?”  Kyla sat bolt upright.  This nasty feral was intolerable.  She hissed loudly telling him to move out of her personal space.

“I’m sorry PK Peanut KP, whatever your name is, do you want to talk to me?”  She glared hard at him.

“I don’t have to tell you Lazy Grey Cat or however your friends address you, I just thought you would like to know what is happening in your security zone.”  He grinned his unpleasant grin and Kyla took stock.

“Okay PPK you are a clever cat and I am grateful for you coming to me with news.  What is the situation as you see it?”

“They, our people, are taking bin baby to the Dog Doctor.  They are anxious for its health and they have pledged to keep it here and nurse it if the Doctor says that is okay.  Pretty cool people I should say.”

Kyla was caught between the devil and the deep blue sea.  This was news indeed and she was only sorry that it hadn’t been delivered by a tried and trusted agent.  Additionally, if she wasn’t mistaken, feral fuzz called them ‘our people’.  This was an outrage.  But enough! For the moment they all had to be sure that this new arrival offered no threat to health and security amongst them and their charges.  Already Steve had complained about the stench..goodness knows what bugs the bin baby carried.  She must find out.

“PPK, do you think you can get any more information?  Steve is on the inside checking it out….”  Before she could finish she was interrupted.

“Steve is asleep on the window sill in the kitchen.  Just thought you might like to know.”  Another sly grin.

Kyla was mortified, the unit was beginning to look all over the place and PPK was cashing in on it.  She had to take charge completely.  She shook her head to clear it, her small ears making a sharp ratatatat.

“Then go and wake him and tell him I have sent you to update him.  Then tell him to go and sit by the utility door and listen to everything that is said.  They have the thing in there.  I want a full report in 15 minutes.”   Her yellow eyes stared straight into the pale green eyes of PPK.  He felt a little shiver in his tail.  My!  Lazy Grey was quite enchanting when she got herself in a tizz.  What a challenge.  He ran off..

Steve yawned widely stretched his front legs out and flicked his tail; boy it was hot by the window.  He knew he should be doing something else.  Something about an emergency, but whilst it was so deliciously relaxing, he would remain where he was for now.  He opened his eyes into little slits to filter the direct sunlight.  OH MY GOD…He leapt up off all fours and then fell to the floor like a stone.  What the Hell was that???

“Oriental Boy, did I surprise  you?”

Steve sprung back onto the table.  This was awful, that hideous cat’s face had been an inch from his, for a second he thought he was in the room.  He let out an ear splitting yowl and spat at the window.

“Temper, temper Oslington.  I have only come to give you your instructions.”

“Get lost you disgusting creature, just looking at you offends my eyes.  You make trouble of the first degree and in my opinion there is no room for you in this or any other investigation at Les Comforts, now clear off and let the real team get on with their jobs.”  He flattened his ears to show he meant it.

“Oooh slow down OB I have been sent by Kyla to tell you to maintain your position..I think that is supposed to be by the utility door, but, with ears the size of yours you can probably hear everything within a ten mile radius…except you were asleep.  So just to keep you in the loop, they are planning to keep bin baby but we need to know more.”

Without a meow Steve slid away and tiptoed up to the door of the room placing an ear close to it…

“That was Greg.  He got my text about the puppy.  He says he will have him whatever and would like to come to the vets with us so we’ll meet there in an hour.”  MOP relayed the details of his phone conversation to HOH.

“God!  He is such a lovely person, who else would take on an abandoned puppy unconditionally?  We are so lucky to have a friend and neighbour  like him.  You don’t think he thought we were asking him to take him on do you?”

“No way.  I only asked if he knew of anyone who might want to foster the little man for a while,  he is going to need so much t.l.c  we wouldn’t ask that of anyone lightly.”

“Do you think we should keep him here for a while just to make sure everything is okay first?  We could bring Bobby in to keep him company and to show him the ropes.”

“Maybe, let’s see what the vet says first, we’re way ahead of ourselves.  Greg has even offered to pay the vets bill, but I did say that was way beyond the call of duty.”

“Do you think Sue Ellen will get on with a young male?”  HOH was referring to Greg’s  Great Dane puppy who herself was only 8 months old.

“I hope so….look, I think he’s hungry,  that’s good, I’ll go and make up some formula.  Do you think  it is okay to feed him before he sees the vet?”

“I think that would be a good idea, if he drinks something it’s got to be a good sign.”

As the door started to open Steve melted away into the recess below the stairs.  He was pleased that he had managed to gather so much information with so little effort.  This was how it should be.  He waited until the coast was clear and stealthily made his way up stairs and upon reaching the master bedroom window let out a few calls.  Unfortunately PPK appeared not Kyla which he found irritating.

“What news OB?”

“Steve Oslington Bay if you don’t mind feral, have a little respect.”

“Okay S.O.B  what’s happening?”

Steve outlined the situation and PPK left to update Kyla.  On his way PPK made a detour.

“Bobby Hobby…Bobby Hobby…you in there?”  He sprung up onto the bonnet of the silver car causing Bobby much alarm.

“What, what?”

“You are going on the inside puny dog..they want you to keep the little baby company.  I guess that is the level of security they think you are up to.  Ha ha and that will leave The Slave to do all the outside work on his own…at his age!!”

Bobby simply sat there perplexed.  He had never come up against such nastiness from a fellow animal before and he felt very hurt.   He was also worried about having to go inside.  He hated the inside.  Before MOP found him at the rescue place, he had been locked up for week upon week in a small shed with not much to eat and drink all because he didn’t make the grade as a hunting dog.  He was scared of the inside.  MOP knew that and that was why they let him have the safe silver car to hang out in.  Also it seemed to him that PPK was playing them off against each other.  He was supposed to be Bosco’s friend and yet he seemed pleased that Bosco would have to keep guard without his, Bobby’s, assistance.  His jowl sagged and he felt sad and afraid.  Who knew what his future would be with another agent on board.

Meanwhile PPK  zoomed off to impress Kyla with his findings.

“So now we play the waiting feral are off duty and I will visit Bosco to check on all other areas of possible breach in our security.  Away and play with some mice, I am sure there are plenty for you to be getting on with.”  She squished her mouth into a straight line and glared hard at PPK.

“You are dismissed for now Monsieur!”

A  furious PPK turned tail and stalked out of the cat kitchen.  How dare that fat grey ball of fur talk to him in such a way!  Revenge was imminent…he would wait!!

Calm descended for a short time and then all of a sudden HOH and MOP emerged from Reception carrying a small bundle wrapped up in what Bobby was horrified to note was one of his fleece blankets.  Bosco was hot on their heels trying to sniff the parcel and calling loudly despite the admonishments delivered by MOP.  They climbed into the big truck (rarely used outside of land duties) and drove towards the gates.  HOH called from the window..

“On guard Bosco!” and they sped off.

Bosco reluctantly turned away from chasing the truck and realised that with the gates open he had his work cut out.

“Bosco, Slayer, do you know what’s going on?”  Bobby had his head to the window.

“You know as much as I do Spot, clearly I am to get no rest today, they never leave the gates open, I have to stay here now and wait to see what happens.”  He was fed up.  Surely they could have taken him for the ride and he would have had all the information they all needed.  He settled down to lie in the middle of the forecourt to await their return.

“This is mayhem Bosco, how are we going to manage it?”  Kyla appeared by his side.

“Grey puss, what do I know?  I guard the premises day and night and now there is a real emergency I am relegated to watch…I think they have the matter in hand, but who knows?”

What was only an hour in real time seemed endless to the Agents.  Kyla waited near Bosco to lend her support in surveillance duty, Bobby H kept himself awake by watching the birds frolic in the bird bath, although several times his lids closed involuntarily, PPK was observed carrying out several fast moves in the undergrowth appertaining to be training and Steve sat phoenix like on the window sill, eyes closed, attempting to seem bright and interested.

Before any audible sound was heard Bosco set up barking and within a minute the truck was seen at the top of the drive, behind it was the large black estate car owned by Greg, they roared into the driveway and Bosco circled both vehicles giving voice.

“Hey Big Man.  Who’s in charge here then?”  Greg alighted from his car and gave Bosco the high five.  Bosco loved Greg who was, apart from his people, the best person he had ever known.  Greg then turned his attention to Kyla.

“Hello gorgeous, there’s alot going on here today isn’t there?”  Kyla allowed herself to be swept up into Greg’s arms as she knew he was almost family.  She purred good and loud to let Greg know she approved.

“Okay you, I think a celebration is in order.”  MOP appeared backwards from the truck carrying bin baby and called to his friend.  “Let’s get this little man settled and then have a beer!”

They all headed for the house and Kyla jumped down from Greg’s arms and headed for the kitchen window sill.  Steve who had been disturbed from his semi-coma managed to look awake enough when Kyla almost hit the glass with her speed.

“Oslington..over to you!  Get the full run down on what is happening and report back as soon is as feline possible.  No mucking around, we have to know immediately.  You got it?”

“Over and out Kyla.”  Steve was fed up as yet again the full responsibility of information fell at his paws.  He really did feel he was earning his Whiskas.

Over the next two hours the Agents were in the dark.  No rest, a potential breach in health and security along with the additional uncertainty over their tight knit band was beginning to take its toll.  Bosco, against his wishes, had been secured inside the Reception, Bobby was out and about taunting PPK at every opportunity and forgetting Les Comforts was in crisis, Kyla constantly checking and rechecking her headset and Steve so worn out with his duties that he kept hallucinating about a purple and orange duvet.  The Agents were in bits; so when Greg emerged after beer and sandwiches they were all frankly relieved.  And best of all he was carrying the bundle in his arms.

“Seriously Greg, I mean it, if you have any problems, whatever, ring us or come over, any time day or night.   This isn’t your responsibility, we will happily take him back, you have been so good and we really appreciate it.”  MOP had his arm around Greg.

“Really, we mean it.  You don’t need another puppy at yours and if you only decide to foster him that is fine with us.  We are so grateful to you.”  HOH was walking towards the cars.

“I wouldn’t say it if I didn’t mean it.  He’s absolutely fine.  The vet has given him a clean bill of health, he just needs to have some love and support and a new home so he’s got it!  He’s fantastic and I know Sue Ellen will love him.  Don’t worry about a thing.  He’s a lovely little boy.  Thank you!”  Greg gave HOH a huge hug and plonked the fleece wrapped parcel on the back seat of his car.  “Two minutes and he’s home for good.  See you later.”

The car started up and HOH and MOP’s friend disappeared up the driveway along with the bin baby.

Bobby Holiday immediately swished up to MOP’s legs and presented his head for attention.  He was hugely relieved that this let him off the’ inside’  hook.   MOP smoothed him and rubbed his chest vigorously.

“Good man Bobby…you almost had a baby to look’d have been good at that, you are such a softie.”  Bobby wriggled with pride, he almost wished he could show them just how good he would have been but it was probably better this way.

“Oh sweetheart, look at the cats.” HOH drew MOP’s attention to the scene she was witnessing.

Kyla was wiggling at top speed back to the cat kitchen pursued by PPK intent on score settling watched by Steve from the window smiling broadly.  Good luck with him he thought to himself.

A petulant bark turned their attention to the Reception doorway.  Bosco stood there tail down, ears flat looking at them all.

“Oh Bosco!  You are such a good boy.”  HOH rushed over to Bosco’s side and embraced him.

“Look darling he hasn’t even bothered Bobby, how good is this dog?”  HOH was ecstatic.  This was a first at Les Comforts (or so she thought!).  Bosco knew how to manipulate the situation, he had been in check for quite a while now and he was definitely going to get points for this.  What better way than to reinforce his bond with HOH!!

“This has turned out to be a really good day, what a great result all round.”  MOP put his arm around HOH.  “I suppose we should be getting on with some work.”

Bosco curled his lip….his thoughts turned to taking back control.  He knew he had been called ‘The Slave’.