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Weird Cat Disease

On the other side of town, a few hours later...

“Clint! Get out here now!”

A shrill voice pierces through the air, disturbing the previously silent apartment. The Black Widow stands, hands sternly on her hips, staring out around the living room. A living room that was neat and tidy when she had left only a few hours earlier. It was most certainly not in the same state it was previously.

Clint pokes his head out of the bedroom tentatively, hiding his body behind the door. Natasha folds her arms over across her chest humourlessly, her eyes glowering at the archer. “Yes, darling?”

“Why, oh why, darling,” She mocks, “Do I find the beloved Mischief in our apartment, with what I can only assume to be enough of his belongings to be staying a while.”

“I’m sorry, Tash,” Clint shrinks back further as he apologies, “But Tony was really worried about some weird cat disease infecting Loki and the baby and asked if we could have him for a bit. I couldn’t say no…”

"What 'weird cat disease'?” She scoffs, not believing him, “I've never heard anything quite so ridiculous, and that's saying a lot since I live with you."

"I can't remember the name, it's all sciencey stuff, and you know that's not my thing!" He flaps his arms flustered, as he tries to explain himself, ignoring her last jibe.

"Never would have guessed..." Natasha grumbles under her breath unceremoniously. She grabs the top of the range Stark tablet she persuaded Tony to let her have — okay, so she slipped it out from under his nose, he deserved it for being an idiot, hence why he let her keep it — and she takes a seat on the sofa. The assassin sets to work, quickly being bombarded by her partner in crime. Clint sits close — Natasha subconsciously cuddling back against his strong chest — his head staring intently over her shoulder, watching her fingers glide across the touch screen, practiced.

She taps away at the screen looking for any diseases involving cats and pregnant women. In all her years of being a spy, never did she think this would be what she had to deal with on a daily basis. Of course she would never mention the words woman and Loki in the same sentence in the presence of the God himself, especially since his hormones have gone haywire. Everyone had learnt that particular lesson the hard way when they had to witness the carnage that followed Steve after he accidentally made that mistake. His famously patriotic shield wasn’t such a pleasant sight after Loki had finished with it. Its colours were no longer red, white and blue, but green and gold, with a few expletives scrawled across the middle that not even Tony would let leave his lips.

Very surprisingly, it doesn't take Natasha long to find exactly what she was looking for. Toxoplasmosis. Clint was right and Tony hadn’t been lying, there actually is a weird cat disease. It almost worried her that no one had picked up on this before; it seemed serious, dangerous almost. As she continues with her own research, she feels worse and worse. This is definitely something they perhaps should have picked up on earlier in his pregnancy, especially since Loki is now close to six-months along.

With that being said, she will have to let Clint’s hasty decision slide — just this once though. Mischief is very well behaved, and it seems that instead of her belongings, the cat has already taken to curling up on Clint’s favourite jacket. She just hopes it will stay that way, she couldn’t stand her uniform covered in cat fur. It’s also extremely lucky that she has a soft spot for the creature in her guarded heart, she’s not usually this easy to get by. The Black Widow sighs, shrugging her shoulders and shaking her head. She can’t deny the cat a home for the next few months, especially for such a good reason.

Placing the tablet on the table, Natasha pulls her phone from her pocket. She accesses her contacts, despite knowing the number by heart. It dials, as she places the device to her ear. The call connects after barely three rings and she hears a familiar “hello”.

“Thanks for the warning, Stark. You owe us big time.” The spy tries to make her statement sound like a joke, but unfortunately she fails.

Tony’s almost panicked voice jumps in, “I’m so sorry for springing this on you, Natasha!”

“Tony, Tony! It’s alright, don’t worry,” Natasha herself is astounded. Tony Stark apologising? This is huge! He has never apologised for anything in his life, unless Loki forces him too, which is often… but he is always void of any sincerity. This apology however, certainly is.

“So…” He is hopeful, “He can stay with you?”

Natasha pauses for a moment, turning to look over her shoulder towards Clint. Mischief is led in the archer’s arms, purring loudly as he is stroked from head to tail. “Of course he can. Tell Loki, he’ll be safe with us. Promise.”

As she hears the deep sigh of relief, she knows this is one promise she plans on keeping.


The working title for this was in fact Weird Cat Disease… But then I decided against it…

I just want to explain briefly what the disease is:
Toxoplasmosis is a real parasitic disease, which is transmitted by cat faeces or by eating raw/undercooked meat.
In pregnant woman (I know he's not, but shh, pregnancy hormones make him cranky!), toxoplasmosis can increase the risk of miscarriage and stillbirth. It can also cause blindness, deafness, and brain damage to the infant.
To prevent the disease (in regard to cats) it’s advised that pregnant woman avoid their faeces, including changing cat litter.
Don’t just take what I'm saying as gospel, Google it for more information, I’m no doctor!
Getting rid of your cats when pregnant isn’t actually advised, just don’t change their litter tray.
Tony however, is such a drama queen, he would definitely go to the extreme to keep Loki safe, and that entailed getting rid of Mischief for a bit.

There is also one more part to the Reflection series. It's called Supervision, and chapter one of ten is being uploaded now.


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