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Max replied, "Bootsie."
Bootsie was what we called The Cat Who Had Us. Never "our cat," though i suppose technically she was. But MyGuy always insisted that we had too many pets with just Puppers, and Bootsie refused to come inside or be touched anyway. But she did accept food, snuggle with Puppers, and generally hang out here. When she was young, we even spayed and innoculated her.
Late last summer, we had a hawk in our yard for a couple of weeks. i tried again to get Bootsie to come inside, but she wasn't having any.
Then she and the hawk disappeared about the same time.
i think we know what happened.
So i told Max that i thought the hawk got her.
Probably an insensitive way to break the news, and six months later at that, but i didn't know what else to say.
It seemed to satisfy him anyway.