"Really, Monty!" The blonde girl exclaimed upon entering the room. "Did you seriously adopt another kitten?"

The boy looked up at her from his place on the carpet, where he sat cradling a tiny ball of fluff.

"It was scratching at the front door of the building! I couldn't leave it out in the cold, it snowed last night! And Mother said it was alright."

"But Monty, it will only run off like the last one."

"Well, if it does, it will be well-fed by the time it leaves. You have to admit, it's too adorable to ignore!" He raised the cat slightly to display it better. The girl turned up her nose.

"I don't see anything remarkable about a stray kitten."

But even Sibella was eventually won over by the wide hazel eyes and gently curving tail flicking back and forth. Before long, the two children sat across from each other on the threadbare carpet, taking turns waving a bit of string in the air, encouraging the kitten to catch it.

The kitten remained at Ursula Grove much longer than its predecessor, and it grew into adulthood curled up in the worn armchair, well-fed and well-loved.