Bandit's mother travelled all the way up from Suffolk to live with us and, at far too young an age, met and had a torrid affair with a rather wild, dark, local tom, by whom she had five kittens, one of which, Bandit, we kept. Bandit lived with us for eighteen years, a very independent cat who occasionally went missing, disliked strangers, was....
....a fearsome mouser, caught all the wrong birds - like the only goldcrest we'd seen in years - was never ill - she was only taken to the vet once, to be spayed - and was deeply affectionate with the few privileged humans she chose to love.
Bandit died on Thursday as she would have wished to, very quietly, with no fuss, still purring whenever she was stroked. Had she had her way she would have died alone under a bush but was found and brought indoors so she would be with us.
At night, we lie in bed and listen to the mice partying in the roof.