Damien was my other life-long pal, adopted about six years after Jidderbug.  I picked him up as a young teen, and expanded the family to four.  After the bugs, my mother had adopted Sally and my brother Tiger, so Damien made number four. He was much different then what I was used to.  He was very active, skittish, and vocal.  Undersized for a male cat, he got picked on by two of the other household cats.  They had a habit of hissing and batting at any animal not Jidderbug.  I made sure to give him extra TLC because I knew he was always tormented by the other two.  When I moved out into my first apartment, he and the bugs came with me.  He was given a chance to grow into his own cat, finally free of a crowded home.  He became fond of my roommate of five years, and was often spotted chilling with him during the day while I worked nights. When the wife and I moved int our house, we shed the roommates and he really bloomed.  He started putting on weight around the age of 9, started becoming more vocal.  When given the chance, animals really show their personalities.  It’s a really beautiful thing. Unfortunately like most animals, he didn’t get to choose his end.  He suffered from a blocked urethra, which was mis-diagnosed by my vet and emergency vet.  He died an undignified death, unable to pee, while we slept.  I tried so hard to cope with this one, but I still hold a grudge.  It’s hard not to imagine how many more moments I’d have to just admire his majesty had they listened to us that night and done their job. He’s now at rest, sitting up above the bookshelf, watching over my family as it grows in different ways.  I know his life was short compared to what it should have been, but I do take some solace in knowing I treated him like I treated the bugs, and I gave him all the love I could muster (even those times here he fought to get away from a ‘hugglin, he got huggled). Farewell my little guy.  You know, all those nights where you perched on my chest just to be close or licked at my wife’s face to get attention, were and still are cherished.  They were all signs of your unique personality, and have left a bitter void that nothing can fill. -Bobby

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