They meander into the upstairs office, the cats, and I *close the door*. I now have their undivided attention.
A handful of treats poured into their carrier gets me precisely nowhere. Cat 1 is backing off all the way to the far wall, even though he has spent the last two weeks napping in said carrier while it was being left out in the open in order to avoid sudden unfamiliar stuff appearing into which they were being stuffed - but the door is now closed and the carrier is in the middle of the room, and it's uh-oh, mom, I don't THINK so...
Meantime Cat 2, the clever one, is just balancing on the edge of the carrier with two front feet, her next extended a full two inches she doesn't normally boast, mopping up the treats. No sense in WASTING the stuff, she just isn't getting into the carrier, thank you very much.
Cat 1 finally makes an incautions move past rdeck's legs, and at the same time Cat 2 streaks past me, making for the door. The cats come to a screeching halt in front of the closed door, and for a moment look stricken - and then I swoop down and gather #1 and stuff him into the carrier and we pull the zipper on the top-loading opening almost closed while I chase down #2. She squeaks like an un-oiled door as I pick her up and flails her feet around but I know better than to try and stuff her in feet first; it's upside down for you, my lady, butt first, and even so she manages to cling to the carrier's mesh with front feet while I'm stuffing her inside and it's touch and go whether *I* will need surgery if those claws manage to get anywhere near my pitifully vulnerable wrists.
But after a brief struggle, it is done, and the two of them glare balefully from behind the mesh. Mom, how COULD you.
Into the car they go, and the caterwauling starts.
#1 (in anguished bartone): MROOOOOW!
#2 (in pitiful soprano): Meeow? Meeow? Meeow? Meeow?!?
Me (because every cry rips at my heart): Quiet! Shut up! Nearly there! Quiet! Stop it! Shhhh!
rdeck (in the passenger seat): [rolls eyes]
We get to thevet. The cats shut up instantly as they always do. Not a peep out of them.
We get shown through into the examination room and I open up the carrier. #2 pokes her head out and looks around. #1 is playing possum at the bottom of the carrier.
Vet tech comes in to weigh them; she tries to lift #2 out of the carrier, but hot damn, the cat who wouldn't go in now REALLY doesn't want out, and she's clinging with every claw she possesses to the sheepskin mat at the bottom of the carrier. On which #1 is still lying, and is now being turfed off of. He makes absolutely no effort to fight back - his defense mechanism at the vet remains being very Zen about it: I am not here. I do not exist. The things that are being done to me are illusions. I am not here. I do not exist.
They are both weighed. The little lardasses have both gained more than a pound apiece in the last year, closer to a pound and a half for the Fluffy Prince (who, as I know very well, likes nothing so much as eating...) They're taken away, one by one, for the cosmetic stuff - their manicures (yikes you should SEE the claws on #2, she could perform surgery with her feet) and what they euphemistically call a hygiene trim for #1 (he IS the Fluffy Prince. His gorgeous britches, um, get in the way of nature sometimes. He hates being shaved...)
The vet comes in, examines #2, eyes, ears, teeth, heartbeat, the works - she gets her vaccination stuffed into her but - and then she scrambles back into the carrier. We let her, but the carrier is on the examination table, and so is #1, who wants into the carrier too but he isn't done yet. So I lift the carrier down to the floor at my feet while I stand beside the exam table, which is about waist high to me.
Fluffy Prince vacantly allows the examinations to be performed (I am fairly certain that what the vet sees when she peers into his ears is an empty space which has a sign "This Space for Rent" tacked up in the rear...) and then releases him.
At which point he turns into a Cat Slinky and, standing on the edge of the examining table, POURS himself down his full length (his vet doesn't call him Stringbean for nothing) straight down into the carrier below in a feat fit for a circus act. Aside from a startled muffled "OOOF" of surprise as her brother basically piles down on top of her from a height, we hear nothing more from either of them. We close up the zipper. Time to go.
The trip home was uneventful. Another year done. And I think they've forgiven me already - at least a little bit - at the very least #1 has already demanded lap time since we've been back. But MAN their vet days take it out of me. I really feel for their distress, even though they themselves shrug it off so easily, after.
Currently, both cats napping in a patch of sunlight streaming in through the sliding doors to the deck. #2 lifted a head as I walked by and hiccupped at me quizzically (probably "when's dinner). #1 is stretched out, all paws to the wind, and is sleeping off the edge of the day.
They'll love me again tomorrow [grin]. So long as Fluffy Prince forgets about his woefully inelegant shorn britches. In the meantime, the sun is shining, and it's another day in Paradise...