Remember that book by V.C. Andrews? She wrote these ghastly horror stories like that and My Sweet Audrina and If There Be Thorns (a sequel to FITA) and a bunch of other pulp-ish paperback novels that had those "reveal" covers...The book covers with the hole cut in the middle so you just see someone's face but then you open it up and an entire scene appears, often a family portrait where everyone looks like the undead, spooky and doused in velvet and lace. I didn't read too many of her books growing up, except for Flowers in the Attic. I remember being stunned and slightly titillated to read how the brother and sister end up having sex after having been trapped in the attic for five years. Of course, in this attic, they had things like a ballet bar and tights and leotards (hence, the inevitable seduction) and perhaps dollhouses and china tea sets; I can't remember now. I just remember that I felt slightly sick to my stomach while reading it (my first visceral reaction of lit snobbery). The other shocking thing was that the little girl, Carrie, died. In my previous reading experience, little kids never actually died (well, save Beth from Little Women, but she was always such a sickly thing). You could count on the animals to meet an untimely end (Old Yeller, Black Beauty, Old Dan and Little Ann from Where the Red Fern Grows), but not children.
All of which is to say that I feel like a mean captor because the mama kitty is living in a small cage in my second bedroom and she does not like it even a little bit. I go up to visit her about four or five times a day and, each time, she lets me pet her for a second and then she hisses at me and backs up. I keep waiting for the day when I go up there with the food and she's rigged some kind of elaborate escape mechanism such that when I open the door, a pail of water falls on my head, I slide on marbles she's scattered on the floor, land on a roller skate, and am dumped into the laundry hamper, knocked out cold. She is getting fixed on Sunday, so this captivity is finite, assuming I can get her from the dog cage back into the cat carrier without too much bloodshed. She may be one of those cats who will have to be let back into the wild after she's kitty-proof; I don't know that she can be tamed.