One warm late summer day a litter of kittens was born on a farm. They would romp among the rows of green while playing games of “tag” and “hide and seek”. Occasionally they would bat at the little orange balls hanging from the green vines.
As the days passed the kittens grew bigger. When they were old enough and weened, the farmer offered them up for adoption to visitors to the farm.
Punkin-Cat was one of those kittens, although that wasn’t his name at the time. He was just known as “kitty” as were his brothers and sisters. He would romp with them among the rows of green, noticing that his litter-mates were slowly disappearing as the summer days passed into autumn.
The gray tabby was the first to go. He was fond of following after the humans and always curious about what they were up to. He went home with a nice young man.
The calico was the next to go. She was not one to run and hide. She sat there in the middle of the row waiting for her fate. She went home with a lovely little girl.
The black and white tuxedo went away next to a very nice old couple. They promised him plenty of toys and good stuff to eat. He purred for them.
He found himself alone one chilly fall morning after the last of his siblings had gone away with the human strangers. It wasn’t as much fun playing in the field alone, but there had been a new development as the orange balls had become quite large over the past weeks.
He was fond of hiding from the humans who came to the farm. He was hard to see in the ever more orange fields of pumpkins.
One day a little girl named Honey came to the patch with her daddy to pick out a Halloween pumpkin. He had promised her that she could pick out her own pumpkin while he searched for his.
While bending down to look at a small pumpkin she noticed an odd orange shape nearby. She parted the leaves to find a cat staring back at her.
Before the kitten could escape, she reached down and scooped him up into her arms.
“Daddy, daddy!” she cried out while running with the struggling kitten in her arms. “Look what I found! It’s a punkin-cat! Can I have it?”
The father looked long and hard at the struggling cat still trying to wriggle free of her bearish hug. “We came here for a pumpkin, not a cat, Honey,” he replied.
She dropped the cat and sat down in the dirt. She wanted to cry but could only manage a sad pout. “But you said that I could have any punkin that I could pick up,” she folded her arms across her chest in protest.
Not wanting to fight with her, her father asked about the cat.
“Today’s your lucky day. If you can find him again, he’s yours for free.”
Honey quickly rose to her feet and ran back to where she had first found the kitten. She parted the leaves to the pumpkin plant and found – nothing! She stood for a moment all arms akimbo and thought hard about where she would be if she were a kitten.
All her attempts at finding him again ended in failure. She walked sadly back to where her father stood with his new pumpkin. She scuffed her feet for a few minutes before finally looking up to admit defeat.
“I looked everywhere, Daddy, but I couldn’t find him again.”
Her dad smiled down at her as she stooped to swat at whatever was tugging at her right sock. “Looks like he found you, Honey.”
Honey looked down at the curious kitten sitting next to her. “Punkin-cat, there you are!” she bent down and scooped him into her arms.
He didn’t fight so hard to get away and even settled into a purr while Honey told him about all the adventures they were going to have one day.