My cat is missing.
She's an indoor cat, and while she occasionally goes out on our (2nd floor) deck to scratch her back against the rougher flooring, this is not something she does in April, and certainly not with the weather we've been having here lately. She didn't leave during Norwescon (I saw her yesterday (Wednesday) morning). I can't find her anywhere in our house - none of her favorite hiding-from-Lizzy spots nor the place where she lives at night and when we're gone. She hasn't been locked in the dryer or anything gruesome like that (I did check) and there has been no change in the level of the food in her bowl (although some water in her other bowl has evaporated).
So she's either outside, or dead. Or both. Even Hubby (who is not a fan) is a bit worried (probably more on my behalf and Abby's than on Tiger's, admittedly). Given that Tiger is a scaredy-cat anyway, it would not surprise me if she sneaked out on the deck and got frightened off by the power-washer guys yesterday.
My first husband (Abby's dad) and I got Tiger from the Humane Society on Halloween of 1998. They told us her name was Tiger (which she answered to as much as cats do or we would have changed it to something more unique) and that she was "about six months old, spayed and with her shots". So we decided that our timid kitty had a birthday of April Fools' Day. She's always been timid and shy, especially of children or women with high-pitched voices, but she can get used to them if introduced slowly (we brought Abby's first shirt home from the hospital for her to smell before we brought Abby home). And while she is not a huge fan of the kids, she has never ever hurt them in any way; she seems to understand that they are my kittens and therefore to be treated gently.
She's just 13, which is middle-aged for a cat. But she's always acted a bit elderly; even as a kitten she was quiet and shy. She may be all right... but I don't hold much hope in that direction.
ETA: Now I'm wondering. Was she here Wednesday morning? She's so quiet that I might not notice her absence for a day or so. What if the morning I'm remembering was Tuesday... and she got out while I was struggling with moving stuff in from the patio so they could power wash, or when the grocery delivery guy and I had the front door open to get the food in. It seems more likely. And in some ways I hope so. Finding the body of a beloved pet is something I think I could handle myself... but I don't want the kids to go through it.
ETA: Apparently a cat answering Tiger's description was reported to the apartment complex yesterday afternoon; they went out to take a look and got scratched for their trouble. She may now be at PAWS - the apartment complex people do not know whether the reporting neighbor had the shelter come get her or whether she has slunk off to be alone, but she's not where she was reported to be yesterday...
FOUND HER! In the bushes under the staircase where she was spotted yesterday. Poor little kitty - at least 24 hours of the Big Scary Outside. She scarfed her first bowl of food and I'm sure she'll throw it up (it's not designed to be inhaled), but she's working a little slower now. And hiding from the preschoolers.