Annie 6…Seven years later

“I’ll get the door,” shouted Annie, transferring the kitten in her arms to a blanket on a soft, fat, red chair.

“Okay,” said Clark, “but make it fast, lunch will be ready in two minutes.”

Annie jerked open the door and said, “What do YOU want?”

“You said you would check in.”

“Yeah, well, you sent me here with nothing, so I figured you wanted me dead.  I acted like it, just to make you happy.”

“I see you haven’t changed.”

“I see you haven’t either.”

“How are your cats?”

“Fine.  How are your angels?”

“Can I come in.”

Butch let out a deep, low, growl.  “No,” said Annie, “you can’t come in.   My dog doesn’t like you and neither do I.”

“I see.  Still as difficult as ever.”

“Thank you,” said Annie.  “If you want to talk to Lucifer, come back when he’s home.”

The angel looked at the dog.  “So that’s how it is?”

“That’s exactly how it is,” she said, shutting the door in his face.

“Who was it?” asked Clark, as Annie walked into the kitchen.

“Gabriel.”

“The angel?”

“Yes.  I told him to come back when your father was home.”

“Did he say anything about your orange wings?”

“No, he did not,” she snickered.  “He didn’t have time.”

“There are three more cats on the windowsill.”

“Thank you.  I’ll bring food out to them.”

“There are a LOT more cats everywhere and they all look healthy and happy.  You’re doing a great job guarding them.”

Annie blushed.  “Thank you but I suppose I shouldn’t have transported those two mean boys to the desert in Mexico.”

“Someone found them in time.  They should be out of the hospital in a few weeks, so don’t worry about it.”

“I’d do it again.”

“Never doubted it for a moment,” chuckled Clark.  “There’s chocolate cake.”

“There’s ALWAYS chocolate cake.  Why do you think I’ve stayed here for the last seven years?”

They both laughed and tried to find a spot to eat that wasn’t cluttered with cats.

“I love the way Butch lets the kittens sleep with him,” she said, staring at the three kittens cuddled around him.

“He’s happy.  He has you as his charge and he can be with his sister Dottie, who watches over me.  It’s a win-win situation.”

“We’re so lucky,” said Annie, grinning widely.

Lucifer appeared in the kitchen, picked up a tape roller and immediately began to run it down his pant leg.   “I give up,” he sighed, putting the roller back on the counter.  “I admit defeat. The cat hair wins.”

“It always does,” said Annie, sheepishly.

“Why was Gabe here?  I can smell him.  He smells like burnt cotton candy.”

“He came to see Annie but she told him to go away and come back when you were here.”

Lucifer kissed Annie on the top of her head and said, “Good girl.”  Then he greeted both Hellhounds and played with a few cats.  “I think I’m going to have to give up wearing suits and wear jeans from now on.  At least the cat hair doesn’t stick to denim as much.”

“I’m really sorry about that,” said Annie.  “I’ve asked them to try and control their shedding but I don’t think they can help it.”

“No matter.  The fluffy felines add to the decor and if they make you happy, then I’m happy,” he said, running his finger through the chocolate frosting.  “I know I shouldn’t do that,” he laughed, ” but it’s just so delicious,” he added, licking his lips.  “Did Gabe say when he would be back?”

Annie shook her head.

“You did the right thing.  Never let anyone in when I’m not here.”

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