When I came to New Mexico, it was a few months ahead of my new bride. I spent that time getting the lay of the land as much as I could, meeting people, creating networks, etc. Then Gulie arrived. Now she was new to the USA, despite having been here before on a student visa (when I met her in '94), so she was offput. She had a place to live, adequate food, and a loving (if a bit distracted by work and study) husband. The lack of attention was not working for her. So I got her a cat.
Enter Tarquinius Superbus. Now, during the period where I was alone "setting up" in Socorro, I turned to Saki (H.H. Munro for you jerks who hate his pen name) for solace. A wry bit of social commentary always makes me feel solid, as an outsider. One of the stories I read (and loved) was "The Boar-Pig". So this sweet tiny little white cat (with a grey spot on his head at the time) shows up. I named him after the boar. So no, Talia, I did not name him after the famed Etruscan rapist, although I DID know the reference, it was simply a reference to his power and his effect on the world. And I was not wrong, as it turns out.
So Tarquin got to watch as my wife withered from my coldness and I withered from hers (I'm bad at relationships) and he did not approve. So for those 7 years or 6, he felt a bit offput, but he always loved Gulie and me, and despite everything, me and Gulie both loved each other, we just couldn't make it work. So it didn't.
After that, it was me and Tarquin and Bridie and Bubo. Oh gosh Bubo and her traumatic childhood... that was an affair. Luckily she's come out of it MEGA-positive etc. So yeah. Tarquin after my marriage. Well, he missed Gulie a lot. Regardless of anything else, Gulie and I had a sort of standard sleeping habit. I would latch on to her and then Tarquin would nestle down in the empty spot between my legs. It's the little things...
So after I broke up, I went back to MY old habit of "fetal position" which is how I sleep, always have, always been alone. The few times Cathy visited me here in Socorro, Tarquin was happy, but Cathy had allergies to my house/Socorro or whatever, so that didn't happen much.
Either way, poor baby Tarquin had to change. Tarquin didn't like change, but he embraced it. He slept on me, he sucked my soul (as all cats do) and he was mad gentle and kind, as he was.
And then, a few years ago, he started losing weight. I was like "OK, this is it, he's dead." I watched If die from kidney failure, I knew the signs. Recently Justin told me Coda had diabetes, which has similar signs. Either way, chronic as in deadly since I'm poor.
So I watched Tarquin wither away and finally, last Tuesday, he died gasping for air in my lap. I know one thing about Tarquin: He loved Gulie and he loved me. He was a great cat, the best person I knew, and Bubo misses the heck out of him.