A very well dressed young lady with an enormous handbag, twinset and pearls, one of those computer tablet things and three mobile phones plus IPad arrived at Gripers to see Her Ladyship. She arrived in one of those nippy little city cars that have silly names like 'cow-cart', 'tart-transporter', or 'fairy magnet' with 'driven on waffle dust' emblazoned on the side by the go-faster stripe.

She was from a magazine called The Titler. Lady Fanny always takes The Titler, as do all her lady friends, it is a must-read magazine, their bible and source of all gossip, fashion info, who’s socially de rigueur and who is most definitely not.

Sir Teddie used to take a magazine called Horse and Honks. As did his father, and father before him. Apparently the absorbency of Horse and Honks when cut into squares and left in the staff lav was most commendable.

Marietta Money-Bags-Colendar-Parps was from a well pedigreed lineage and was doing a bit of media work in her gap year before taking time out to go abroad and cuddle orphaned polar bears. She had been incredibly lucky to have landed a totally spiffing job at The Titler based on her talents, her skills, her NVQ certificate in Farcebook proficiency and the fact that the magazine was part owned by the family.

Some years ago The Titler did an article entitled ‘How To Pocket a Prince’ which went down an absolute storm with the young gels in the counties and resulted in several very titled and very wrinkly, aged princes immediately being snapped up and taken off the market, many of whom were dead within the year after decades of inactivity in the love department, the shock killed most of them off very soon after the nuptial ceremony. Some of the ultra-aged didn't even make it to the honeymoon, but died with a smile on their faces.

Marietta Money-Bags-Colendar-Parps was simply brimming with spiffing ideas, one of which was a totes amazi-balls article entitled ‘How to woo a widow’ and with Sir Teddie’s recent demise Her Ladyship was now well qualified to talk as a woman with a new career: widowhood. When Marietta cast her eyes upon me she instantly fell in love and, as she so delicately put it:

“All my creative juices came together at once,” she gushed as she tickled my tummy as I was lying on my back on the horse hair sofa next to her. Then she picked me up and smothered me in kisses. I was quite flabbergasted at her forwardness.

“Oh yuk” said Skrowte as he poured the tea and handed round Master Kippled Sozz rolls. It was too early for afternoon cakes so savouries were offered.

And so it was that, one fine morning a week later, I came to be sitting on Lady F’s desk, right next to her, in my usual place when she does her correspondence. Only this time I was bedecked in the Gruffington-Gusset family jewels. The Pillage of Portaloo tiara, The Antipasti neck collar. The stunning amethyst ring, The Scrotum Scratcher of Sozzlebury as Sir Teddie called it, was placed on my front right ankle. I looked simply divine – apparently. Everyone stood around and just stared in adoration at me, the bling covered cat.

Hard work being a model, but I kept my chipper up as Marietta constantly fed me slivers of tuna from Fartnums and wished all models could be so cheaply bought, undemanding and well behaved. With all the jewels hanging from my fur, she couldn’t pick me up and kiss me, thankfully.

I was gently brushed in between shots and swooshed with Chanel powder which smelt heavenly and gave my fur a certain sparkle which glinted gently in the halogen photographic lights which were suspended above me.

The photographer, Lord Barrie of Brixton, who they were jolly grateful could fit in the session in between topless models and glam photos, ran the whole thing like finely tuned ballet as he bellowed his commands and his little army of anorexic  minions rushed hither and thither ensuring each shot was just perfect.

The lights were a bit blinding and rather warm and all the people who come with a photo shoot were a bit loud, shrieking and laughing but eventually the shoot was done.

As they packed up, her ladyship was talking with the photographer Lord Barrie of Brixton about life in the city.

“Full of beggars,” he moaned, “and I hear that they are going to give down and outs drugs now, treat them with LSD.”

“Should be interesting,” mused Skrowte. “Spare some cash guv, I’ve a unicorn to feed. Fifty quid should do it!”

Several weeks later a copy of The Titler arrived by special courier. On the cover was a rather splendid picture of oneself covered in the Gruffington-Gusset family bling looking up at Lady F as if seducing her with my handsomeness. The headline proclaimed:-

“How to Woo a Widow, Prince Clarence of Clutterbuck spills the beans. Turn to page 4 where Bling Boy Clarry brags about his conquest as the love of Lady Trumpington Trubshaw and tells all when it comes to locating ladies and wooing widows”

“You won’t be cutting that up into squares and putting it in the lavatory,” instructed Lady Fanny severely to Skrowte. “That’s being framed and put over the mantelpiece in place of the Salvador Lentil Dahli.”

Dogs Come when Called

"Dogs come when called. Cats take a message and get back to you."

"Of course, every cat is really the most beautiful woman in the room."

Edward Verrall Luca (essayist)

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