Feral cats, Istanbul.
by Lisa Thompson
Who are you, she asked, looking at the black cat that cleaned itself on her doormat. It seemed to be about a year old, lanky and sleek, hardly more substantial than a shadow.
You must live in the building, she said as she opened the door.
The cat strolled into the front room and sat down, while she stood in the doorway like a delivery man. She shut the door and bolted it.
I am your magic cat, it said.
I thought so.
The cat began to clean its chest, awkwardly stretching its long tongue down the front of a small patch of white on its otherwise black coat.
Let me do that, the woman said. She knelt down and began to lick the cat’s fur. It felt weird on her tongue, but she enjoyed helping out. The cat purred quietly, then moved away.
I’m magic, it said again. You can have a wish.
I wish I was beautiful, the woman said.
Instantly, she became a female cat. Her clothes fell in a heap around her and she struggled to extricate herself from the layers of cloth. She took a few steps. She felt good in her skin.
Magic Cat licked the crown of her head and her ears.
Who is going to feed us now?, she asked.
He smiled. You don’t really understand magic, do you?
. . .
Lisa Thompson is a Washington DC based writer and the author of the soon to be published