The heating is broken, again, and I gingerly ease myself between icy sheets and lie gasping and waiting for the temperature to become bearable. The cat rouses himself yawning and walks down from the end of the bed, curling himself into the crook of my knee and falling asleep instantly. He is a heavy, warm weight, having added probably thirty or forty percent to his frame to survive the winter months he spends mostly outside.
It’s nice and warm, his presence, and I find myself wishing he were bigger. Half dreaming, I imagine a larger, longer cat that could thaw more than just the backs of my knees. Maybe something almost as big as myself that could stretch the whole length of me.
Only later on I realise that this thing I was trying to conceive of, the idea I was wistfully grasping for but not quite reaching, was probably another human being. That would most likely be simpler than the large, slender cat creature that initially came to mind.