Chapter Four; Part One
The cats greet us with enthusiasm when we arrive at Rembrandt’s house. Ginger walks in a circle around Rembrandt’s legs, whereas Onyx and Jet paw at my legs with their front paws while standing on their hind legs. Rembrandt scoops Ginger up with one hand while cradling the shopping bag to his chest. We troop our way into the kitchen, and I give each of the cats a sliver of turkey. That’s enough to keep them occupied while we put the leftovers away. It’s almost four in the afternoon, and I’m still full. I don’t know if I’m going to be able to eat much tonight, but I know I have to put away my fair share or risk hurting Jasmine’s feelings.
“I need a quick nap,” I say to Rembrandt once we’ve put everything away. “Hopefully, I’ll burn off some calories while I sleep.”
“I think I’ll join you,” Rembrandt replies, shutting the fridge door. “I feel as if I could sleep for days.”
“We have to be at Jasmine’s by five-thirty,” I remind him. “Six at the latest. We run on Asian time.” I hate being late, but it’s part of my heritage. “We should probably get up by five at the latest.”
“An hour should do it.” Rembrandt and I link arms and go upstairs. The cats trail behind us, wanting to be part of the action. I contemplate changing into sweats before taking a nap, but I decide against it. I’m just going to have to get dressed again when I wake up, so I might as well save myself five minutes. Then again, I’ve already stained this blouse with strawberry juice, so it would probably be best to change my clothes before going to my sister’s, anyway. I strip off my clothes, which causes Rembrandt to eye me lasciviously.
“Down, boy,” I laugh, making the ‘stay’ motion with my hand. “We don’t have time right now.” I’m all for a quickie now and then, but I’m too old to fuck, take a shower, and grab a nap in an hour or less. I put on a pair of sweats and an Obama sweatshirt before lying on the bed. Rembrandt changes as well, and I ogle his ass before he pulls on a pair of sweats. He lies beside me and promptly falls asleep. Ginger jumps on his head, but I put her next to Rembrandt’s head so she doesn’t bother him in his sleep. Onyx snuggles next to Ginger, and Jet wraps himself around both of them. He is a true gentleman in that he looks out for the girl cats. They have adapted to the two household thing fairly easily, and for that, I’m grateful. I’m drowsy, but I can’t fall asleep. I glance at my phone, and I have several comments on my post about sleep. Normally, there is a variety of responses on my posts, but this time, the comments are exclusively lamenting how difficult it is to sleep.
BreadNotBed writes, “As you can tell by my username, I don’t like sleep very much. When I was a kid, I would sleep up to fifteen hours at a time. My mom got concerned and talked to her doctor about it. He told her not to let me sleep more than eight hours a night, but for whatever reason, my mom decided six hours was enough. I think it’s because she didn’t slept for more than four hours at a time and never wanted to be alone, but as a result, I automatically wake up after six hours of sleep, regardless if it’s enough sleep or not.” CountingSheep adds, “First time commenter. I can’t remember a time when I slept for more than two or three hours. There’s nothing physically wrong with me, and I’ve given up trying to change it. It’s great for productivity, but hell on my ability to hold down a job. Right now, I live on disability and sell crafts on Etsy. I sleep two hours every four hours or so, and I have no social life.” CaliforniaReaming contributes this thought. “I have major insomnia that keeps me up for days. It’s great because I can get projects done in a short amount of time, but when I crash, I crash hard. And I have terrible dreams. And I can’t sleep next to someone because I roll from side to side as I sleep. I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone.” I hate that other people have to deal with sleep as much as I do, but it’s also comforting to know that I’m not alone. I place my phone on the nightstand and close my eyes. I’m certain I won’t fall asleep, but I must have because what seems like minutes later, Rembrandt is shaking me awake.