They share the house with us only because we’ve become the live-in maids, you see. We’re not on equal footing here, we belong to them. They are each so masterful at their craft of manipulation and petty tyranny, which is how we ended up this way.
There isn’t a leader among them; this arrangement is a conspiracy born of necessity. They don’t like each other enough to claim relationship; rather they are a group of individuals who tolerate the requirement that they share a physical space but are adept at pretending they exist independent of all other inferior creatures. With so many masters, it is certainly a challenge to appease them all. Their demands are various, fleeting and nuanced by the personality of the one who is doing the demanding at a given moment.
Bella, for instance, is such a beast! Petite, quite squirrelly, really; asthmatic and frowzy in her appearance but with the heart of a lightweight boxer. Mischievous little imp, she is brazen, quick tempered and fierce but everyone falls in love with her. Charm? She invented it. Correction: not everyone falls in love with her… Bitty Boop hates her, truly. Bitty may possess those dark and mysterious good looks but she is equally as fierce and quick tempered, petite, as well but powerful… come to think of it, they are a lot alike. The big difference is that Miss Bitty was here first and refuses to relinquish her deserves-to-be-worshipped status to some Joannie-come-lately. She was perfectly willing to let Cole be the Grand Poo Bah while there was no direct threat but all that has changed now.
Cole was dethroned the moment Dewey marched onto the scene. He wasn’t dethroned by Dewey, mind you, but by subtle forces that drastically changed both the landscape and the game plan. Cole was always the lovable, goofy guy that everybody adored; everybody except Rosie, that is. Rosie the Bruiser, the heavyweight of the house has an unfathomable hatred of Dewey. There were some fights, I tell you. Dewey bumbled his way into one altercation after another, and revealed himself to be quite the Whiner, but then again Rosie gave him plenty to whine about. You couldn’t blame Dewey too much, still that incessant complaining set everyone’s nerves on edge. Cole became a nervous wreck and started losing weight at a rapid rate. Rosie stifled his aggravation with food until the heavyweight of the joint became too big for his own titled britches, so to speak. And Dewey? Dewey, it would appear, has caught the eye of The Cranky Queen Emma.
Emma, of course, would never let on that she fancies anyone, but it is suspected that she favors Dewey. While the other girls scuffle over who will be princess, Emma sits back comfortably in her gilded chair and holds court as the queen. She’s petulant, hard to please but gorgeous to behold and willing to be pampered regularly.
I wish I could say that we fit in to this mismatched assemblage of little green eyed monsters, but we don’t. Although we dote and we coo, we praise and flatter, we will never be “one of them”. Yet, time and time again, predictably and pitifully our hearts will swell with love, and a question will inevitably tumble from our lips, “Who wants catnip?” Somehow they always manage to hear us when we utter those words.