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A lonely kitten living deep in the Virginia woods, I yearned for a nurturer to accept my neediness and quirks.
But then there she was, our eyes connected, and we knew. I’d been rescued. “Luray,” Mom dubbed me after the town near where we met. She took me home. 
“In Puerto Rico, we were orphan cats too,” Rebel, my new older brother said. “Flying to Maryland was our first time on a plane. It’s a good story.”

“Don’t let him ruin it,” Coqui, his littermate, and now my sister, interrupted. “Have Mom tell you what happened.”

Which she did, typing away with that glaring screen in her lap, and I scowled, jealous I couldn’t curl up there instead. Mom’s memoir was just getting to the juicy part, though—the tale of her quest for a woman. A hunter myself, I knew the thrill of the chase but also the despair of returning home empty-pawed. 
A caretaker and self-questioner, Mom’s strengths were also her underbelly. Mine was black and orange striped. Despite her lack of fur, Mom was way more feline than she knew, confident, independent, and a chatty catty like the rest of us. 
Nervous, we bit our claws. 
Would Mom ever find the love she needed? 


Lee Embers headshot

About Lee Embers

Lee loves to write, but not about herself, unless it’s a memoir. 

She earned her BA in government at The College of William & Mary, then followed both her father and grandfather into the federal service, where she’s been a program manager with the U.S. Department of Commerce for over twenty-five years.


Lee lives with her wife in Silver Spring, Maryland—a Washington, D.C. suburb. There, they alternate staring at various-sized screens much of the day, breaking occasionally to tend to their cats’ needs.


Lee’s first book, What Happened to the Cat? tells the her story of loving all the wrong women but all the right felines. “If you’re going to reveal our secrets, then we each get a chapter,” her three current kitties decided. The result—a memoir authored, in part, by two Puerto Rican rescue cats and a stray mountain kitten who leapt into Lee’s arms.

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