Ham the Goblin, an Origin Story

Full disclosure: Ham is not a genuine, certified goblin. He is actually a cat, who just behaves like a goblin.

One night around the beginning of December, I was solving world hunger (ok, I was playing Elder Scrolls online but close enough), a phone alert for my backyard camera went off. I pulled up the feed on my phone and this is the image that it presented to me.

Stray cats set off my camera all the time. They’re freaking everywhere around these parts like I live in the middle of some kind of North American Shorthair sanctuary.

I think it was the way he looked at the camera that got to me. It makes a noise when you set it off, which is probably why he was looking that direction to begin with. But look how skinny he is!

I went outside and coaxed him out from hiding under the deck and gave him food. Cat was pleased. He was also very thin and small, except for his bobblehead.

He was still there the next day and the next. He was extremely sweet and came when I called him. Every time I visited, before he agreed to emerge from hiding, we always had to have a conversation, which consisted of me coaxing him with offerings of food while he paced under the deck, looking up through the boards and meowing at me loud enough for the neighbors to hear.

This is what he looks like in the daytime. He’s a ginger just like Bleu, my other cat.

I made him a shelter out of a plastic tote bin and a blanket, which he, of course, all but refused to enter because he’s a cat.

He helped me rake leaves.

And generally made himself at home.

We went on this way for some days, and it got to the point where he would yell for me to come out and feed him in the morning. Quite a demanding, little beggar, this one.

Then one day the forecast called for precipitation and temperatures in the 20s. I hated the idea of leaving him out there. I worried about him freezing to death under the deck.

So I opened the door, and he hesitated, but then he came in. He had to stay in quarantine in the rooms at the back of the house until the vet could make sure he didn’t have any horrible diseases that he could give Bleu. That was not the most fun thing ever, but we got through it.

I named him “Ham” because he arrived in December like a Christmas ham. I tacked on “the Goblin” because he’s a maniac, all over and into everything. He is still mostly a baby, though. The vet said he was about 8 months old.

And the boys are getting along pretty well. Here they are, looking like copy and paste.

That’s all I have for now. I should have a book announcement next week if I can get my shiz together.

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