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Nemesis The Hellbound Cat

There is one unmistakable kite mark of quality in a place and that’s a cat. Be it library, café, prison or of course a pub then a cat is an unmistakable sign of a homely comfortable welcome. That and someone is keeping an eye on the local mouse population…..a murderous eye.

Now there used to be a cat here, a fierce old one-eyed Tom by the name of Nemesis. No one knew quite how old Nemesis was; he’d been here longer than anyone remembered. Maybe even before the pub had first been built, before man had first brewed beer…it would be easy to picture Nemesis squaring up to a velociraptor before mankind had ever set foot upon the earth. Certainly Nemesis appeared after the notorious local highway man in the 17th century Bad Ned was sentenced to death by the local judge Nasty Neil. Who himself hanged a few months later.

Nemesis demanded only two things of the pub and its regulars.

A bowl of raw meat once a day and no dogs, there would have been a third rule about no petting or stroking, but even the most affectionate drunk would look at the thick fur and yellow fangs and think better of laying a hand upon his fur.

And as for dogs, Nemesis disliked them and the few times they arrived the battles could be heard from several streets away. So Nemesis was left to sleep by the fire his bowl of raw meat and an occasional poorly guarded pint of beer. Only the most foolish rodent would dare his lair so there wasn’t much work for him.

And this situation would probably have carried on for as long as Nemesis was living upon this earth.

If Nemesis was ever truly alive….. To peer into the eyes of Nemesis was to see into the eyes of an ancient, evil intelligence. One that perhaps belonged to a highwayman or maybe the hangman, who hanged them,
If only he hadn’t met Mr Pickles, in an encounter that was to prove fatal for Mr Pickles. Mr Pickles was a pure bread Chihuahua and the exact size of a well-fed rat. Mr Pickle’s owners (or as they preferred to be called his parents) brought him to the pub one fateful Tuesday.

Pickle’s parents weren’t the kind of people to be put off by a mere sign reading

“No dogs.”

And laughed at the one that read

“Beware of the cat.”

And laughed even harder at the one that read

“No really beware of the cat.”

Mr Pickles lived exactly three seconds after Nemesis spotted him and thought

“That’s a particularly cheeky looking rat sauntering in.”

All that was left was of poor Mr Pickles was his pink diamante collar, which is a shame as it didn’t suit Nemesis even slightly.

Well, enough was enough; the occasional scratching or piece of malodorous poop was one thing, but the crime of homicide (as the devouring of small dogs is called) was too much. Mr and Mrs Pickle wrote to the council and a death warrant was issued for Nemesis.

On the day the animal control officers descended upon the pub, the clouds gathered, the rain fell and thunder and lightning struck.

To this day none of the officers will speak of how Nemesis met his end or how he fought. But of the three of them that were there that day, two of them had their hair turn white. Except Chris, who was bald as an egg and his girlfriend say the fluffy hair on his bottom turned white.

Nemesis may no longer patrol here. But to this day no mouse dare enter Nemesis’s lair and you’d be best advised to leave the dog with the neighbours.