I brought Cora over first. She rarely rides in the car, but is so great when she does. When I got to Sarah's, I carried her in and called out gently, as I always do when I go over Sarah's, "Em'sen....! Emmmmmerseeeeennnn!"
Sarah wasn't home yet, so Emersen was happy to see me. "Mrow!"
Cora peered at Emersen from my arms. Emersen hadn't seen Cora. As I stood in the dining room, Emersen kept saying, "Mrow!" and weaving around my legs.
Finally I crouched down and petted Emersen, Cora still in my arms. Emersen rubbed on my hand and kneeded my knees. So I thought she'd seen Cora at this point and set her down.
Emersen froze. Then "Hissssss! Hisssss!", which was followed by her wail of "Mroooooooooooooowww!", which sounded more like, "Nooooooooooooo!"
Emersen then ran and hid under the chair in Sarah's office. Cora just stared at her.
For the next 15 minutes Cora explored Sarah's house and boy was she loving it! Catnip toys everywhere, shorts rugs to roll around on, carpeted cat climber... Sarah really spoils Emersen, that's for sure!
Each time Cora walked passed the office to see about the litter box we'd hear "Hisssssss! Hisssssss! Mrooooooooow!!" and Cora would run out.
Finally Sarah came home and said, "Hi, honey! Where's my cat?"
"Emersen or Cora?" I laughed. Cora loves Sarah and Sarah absolutely adores Cora.
"Cora, of course!" She laughed.
I then explained what happened when I brought Cora over.
"Well, of course," she said. "That's our Emersen. She'll hide there forever. Why didn't you bring Mia over?"
"I thought maybe it might be too much?"
"No," she said. "Go ahead and get her."
So I went home, scooped up my little Mi and brought her to Sarah's. Cora was thrilled to see her, Emersen most certainly was not. She escalated to snorting and yowling, but unlike Cora, Mia hissed back at her.
Mia began her little hyperventilating routine, as she does whenever we're somewhere new. Poor thing, head bobbing up and down. Emersen, however, continued to yowl. Sarah decided she wasn't putting up with it and got down on her hands and knees in front of the chair Emersen was hiding under.
"Emers--" Sarah began, but stopped as a paw swiped at her.
"No," Sarah said sternly. Then the two of them began a little scene that was pretty much right out of Austin Powers. You know, the one where Dr. Evil is like, "Zip it!" "But I-" "Zip!" "He--" "Zip it!"
I, of course, had to leave the room, since I was laughing so hard. I'm going to suck at disciplining our children someday.
After a while Mia and Cora began to really make themselves at home. Sarah kept playing with Cora and Mia leaped from window sill to window sill. Every now and then we'd hear a wail from the office, "Mrooo-ooo-ooo-oooowwwwerrrrrrr!"
Emersen did not come out the entire rest of the night.
The next morning I decided to bike in and left my car keys with Sarah, asking her to please drop the cats off at my house so I could bike to work. We were meeting two of her friends for a Boston Breakers and New England Revolution soccer double header after I got done, and we'd planned on her picking me up at work so we would only have to drive one car.
At about 10:00 a.m. I heard an overhead page, "Liz Erk, please pick up on line 101, Liz Erk, 101."
I punched in "101" on the nearest phone, "Hello, this is Liz."
"I'm about to have a nervous breakdown!" Sarah growled.
"What's wrong?" I asked, startled.
"Your Maine Coon kicked the shit out of me!" She cried.
"Why?" I asked, again startled.
"Because she didn't want to leave my house!" she said. "She kicked me from my house to your car. And then when we got to your house, I couldn't get the key to work! Did you make me a set of keys that don't work??"
"Sarah," I said, trying desperately not to laugh because she sounded so funny, "You need to not shove the key all the way in. Turn it to the left until it clicks."
"Why didn't you tell me that?" She asked, her voice rising.
"Because you've let yourself into my house before," I replied, still fighting a fit of giggles.
"Once!" she cried. "Once ever, that's it! Liz, I look like I was in a fight with glass. And the glass won!"
That did it. I had to cover the mouth piece and turn my face away. Within a few seconds of my silence Sarah shrieks, "Oh my God! I can't believe this! You're totally laughing! I can't see you, but I know you're laughing! Stop laughing, it's not funny."
I forced my voice out, "No, I'm not laughing...," but it cracked and gave it away.
"You're so laughing! I can't believe you...!"
Our conversation went on like that for a few more minutes. Finally we hung up. I felt terrible, but it was funny at the same time. I know, I know, I'm horrible.
I saw Sarah a few hours after that when she picked me up at HW. She frowned as I got in the car.
"Hi, honey," I said sweetly.
Instead of answering, she thrust her arms at me. Yikes, they were covered in pink streaks. But they didn't have broken skin for the most part and I pointed this out to her.
"Liz!" Sarah said incredulously, "I look horrible! And I still can't believe you were laughing at me before! And don't deny it, because I know you so were!"
I tried so hard not to smile, yet it happened anyway.
"I KNEW IT!"
She loves me.