Fiction logo

That Is Not My Cat

It may look like a cat, but there's something unfamiliar.

By SaraPublished 11 months ago Updated 11 months ago 9 min read
That Is Not My Cat
Photo by Akin Cakiner on Unsplash

I loved the paranormal. Even from a young age, my spare time was used watching videos of so-called "ghosts" caught on camera, or watching ghost hunting shows on the television. I wouldn't have called it a hobby, nor was I interested in making it anymore apart of my life than just simply being a form of entertainment. But I still wanted to know more. Ghosts, urban legends, cryptids, beings from different cultures. A mild fascination stemmed, and eventually I would say I had pretty basic knowledge of most monsters from various folklore across the world.

Being the avid fan of the paranormal that I always was, naturally I became a bit too paranoid for my own good. It may have stemmed from my anxiety disorder, but that's a whole other tale. The point being, I always tended to make things bigger, scarier and much more illogical than they actually were. For example, I'd see something move out of the corner of my eye, and I'd have a small surge of panic, until I turned my head and realized it was just a trick of the light, or my own mind messing with me. It usually got much worse at night, when my sleep-addled brain made everything I saw out to be a ghost or demon come to kill me.

This was no different when, late into one night, my cat jumped onto my bed and got into my lap. I cherished him like he was my own child, and he seemed to always be attached to me, like a pair of magnets that could never be too close together. Wherever I went, 9 times out of 10, he'd be trailing me close behind. I loved petting him; he loved to be pet. It was a win-win. So, he jumped into my lap. I gave his long, soft gray and white fur a stroke along his back. He pushed his head onto my hand, and I repeated the action, this time going from the top of his head to the end of his tail.

I was looking at my phone. I wasn't paying too close attention to him, but he seemed especially demanding for my affection, shoving my hand onto his head, encouraging me to continue petting him. So I placed it by my side and looked at his face, ready to coo at him and tell him how cute he was.

It was then that I noticed it.

We made eye contact, and my heart seemed to sink in my chest. What words I had prepared died in my throat, and my forming smile immediately fell. His eyes were... too big, somehow. His pupils were blown out far wider than they should have been, and I could barely make out the bright yellow-green that they normally were. If I didn't know any better, I would've thought he was dead.

I didn't know why I felt so scared. Besides that, there was absolutely no indication that anything else was even slightly off. He still wanted me to pet him, and even made his way into my lap. Regardless, he still gave me that unnerving stare, as if he somehow recognized that I sensed something different.

I wrote it off as my imagination. That's all it could've been to me. My paranoia, tied with my tiredness, created the illusion that something was off about him.

I thought that, if I went to bed, it'd slip my mind, and I'd lose memory of that heart-gripping feeling that there was something wrong with my cat. Thus, I turned off my light, and he got off the bed to sleep somewhere else.

But when I woke up the next morning, he was staring at me from the bottom of my bed on the floor. He didn't move, didn't blink, and I could barely tell he was even breathing. But his eyes still resembled what I'd seen the night before. His pupils were still expanded, and accompanying it was the fear I'd felt. This time, however, it was much worse, and coupled with it was slight nausea. I knew there was something different. I knew, but I still pretended everything was fine.

The next few days, his behavior became more and more bizarre. At first, it was simply that he wasn't as attached to me as usual. I didn't see him around the house as often. But when I did see him, he was staring at me. Giving me that dreadful gaze that made me hate turning any corner of my house. I didn't want to see him watching me. Eventually, he stopped going to his food bowl. I would find it still full every evening. All I could do was replace it and just hope that he was getting his food from somewhere else.

The fear just got worse and worse. I didn't want to leave my room. I kept my door shut and locked at all times, only coming out to use the bathroom or get food. Even my dreams were haunted by him. I'd had nightmares of him turning into some kind of monster with long, spindly limbs, claws sharpened to a fine point and a gaping jaw with endless rows of teeth. The monster would do nothing but watch me and then attack when my guard was lowered. The only thing I could do to get to sleep was to take over-the-counter sleeping pills. My friends and family started to take notice when I refused any kind of outing. I tried to tell them, begged them to understand that my cat was no longer the sweet, affectionate animal I once knew, that he was some kind of beast that simply looked like him. Naturally, they encouraged me to seek mental help. No amount of pictures I took of him did anything to convince them I was telling the truth. It seemed like he knew exactly when to look and act like a cat.

I couldn't stop myself from shaking ever so slightly whenever I caught him staring at me. I was almost positive he was going out of his way to make sure he was in my line of sight. His pupils were pitch black, and there was a certain... emptiness to it. Normally, he was so playful and affectionate, and his eyes would reflect that, dilating and constricting with various stimuli, but now, there was nothing. No irises. Just the eyes that reminded me of a black hole, vast, never-ending, and utterly vacant, with not even a glimmer of light. When I was brave enough to get close to him, they even seemed to lack a reflection. I've heard of people describing sociopathic or psychopathic individuals of having the eyes of a shark. It reminded me of that.

I took him to the vet. I wanted, more than anything, for it to just be some sort of illness, maybe even something wrong with his food or water. I begged the vet to run different tests, scans and the like, but physically, he was perfectly healthy. Though, the doctor did note he was a bit chubby. I didn't know how this was possible. By this point, it'd been a week, and every time I went to refill his food bowl, I wouldn't need to. It wasn't even touched. I told the vet so, but she suggested that he'd been visiting another family when I let him out.

So I asked around. And the desperation for any sort of answers only heightened when everyone within a few miles' radius told me that they hadn't seen him. I had no idea where he went. No complaints, either, about small animal corpses.

His time at my house became less and less frequent. He'd stay gone for days at a time, if not weeks, which was not like him at all. Though I don't know if that was a curse or a blessing. He stopped seeking my attention every time he saw me. I stopped feeling him rub against my leg, I stopped hearing him using his litter box, he stopped hopping into my lap every evening. There was nothing from him, besides those cold, dead eyes.

You wouldn't believe the guilt I felt when he wasn't around. Out of all the pets I'd owned in my life, this was the only pet that I hated having the company of.

I did hours of research. I wanted someone, anyone, no matter how qualified, to tell me what the hell was wrong with my cat. Sleepless nights turned into being up at 3 in the morning searching on various blogs and forums. I found no one that had anything close to what I was going through.

Except for one person.

I was on the backend of a long-forgotten online journal of some sorts when I saw a post made by the author. Their dog was acting similar. Hollow eyes, like a doll's, as they described it. Staring, lack of personality, behavior unlike anything the person had ever experienced. They gave their theory that their dog was no longer a dog, instead a monster posing as one. They saw their dog making bizarre movements, and making noises that dogs absolutely should not be able to make. It began acting extremely aggressive, and the poster no longer felt safe.

They stopped posting not long after that. I'm afraid to wonder what happened to them.

As I write this down in my phone, I hope someone may find it. I've never felt so terrified in my life. My hands are shaking so bad that I can barely even press a button. I've locked myself in my bathroom, and I can hear the thing that looks like my cat outside the door, meowing. It's in a consistent rhythm, and it sounds terrifyingly similar to his real meow, but as if it was recorded, and the recording is stuck on loop. That one meow, over and over. But even so, that one meow is still not perfect. I know my real cat, and that meow would never fool me. I know if I open the door, I will not see my cat. I don't know what I'll see, to be honest. But I don't want to know. I would rather starve to death than face whatever monster took my cat away from me.

My poor baby. I don't know what happened to him, if he's dead or what. I hope I can see him again in the afterlife, and apologize for not looking after him more carefully. Maybe this wouldn't have happened if I kept him inside. Oh well, it's far too late for what ifs.

Whoever finds this, be wary. If that... thing... is still around, run. Run away, and never, ever look back.

That... is not my cat.

Short Story

About the Creator


I am an avid reader and nonprofessional writer. My dream is to one day get published. I write fiction in various genres, and am currently writing my first novel. Any interaction helps, & contributions are greatly appreciated.

Reader insights

Be the first to share your insights about this piece.

How does it work?

Add your insights


There are no comments for this story

Be the first to respond and start the conversation.

Sign in to comment

    Find us on social media

    Miscellaneous links

    • Explore
    • Contact
    • Privacy Policy
    • Terms of Use
    • Support

    © 2023 Creatd, Inc. All Rights Reserved.