"I don't need to do this too, do I?"
A cat from a rich family.
Perhaps for that reason, is relaxed and laid back.
Some call Chonky Cat lazy and unmotivated for this, but Chonky Cat simply has her own tempo and preferences.
She refused the trends of the cat world, where 'aegyo' is currently the popular thing, and left on an adventure to do what she loves - singing. You might be surprised to meet her at first, at her leisurely speech, shy demeanor, and principled statements.
But she has a warm side that you may not expect, to the point that she can make friends with a fish.
- The Laid-Back Cat’s Story -
“Do I… Have to do that too?”
"It is said, a cat must be haughty and yet have aegyo."
These are words I have heard so much that my ears would fall off, ever since I was a baby kitten. Every time I heard this, I would make an unconvinced face.
"We are cats of a rich household. So we must have an attitude to go with it."
Everyone seems like they are concentrating on the Boss Cat's words, but their souls are completely out of their gazes.
"That's enough for the theory. Let's move on to practice. All right, Cute Aeongie practice question 2-1, today..."
Yawn. I really hope today won't be the day that I--
"There. Chonky Cat, want to try?"
Boss Cat calls on me and looks back. And the other cats too.
Standing up slowly, I think for a second and speak.
"Do I... Have to do that too?"
There's a murmur around me. Boss Cat also goes wide-eyed, as if flustered.
"What, what are you saying?"
"I mean... All the cats here are cute and pretty and full of aegyo. So why do I have to... To be honest it doesn't fit my image or personality."
I look around at the cats still murmuring around me. All of them with their round eyes and adorable faces. The ribbons that the owner tied so carefully around them fit so well. But me?
I take my front paw and push hard on the ribbon around my neck, until it falls off. Patterned with pink polka dots. It is so-oo not a fit for me. Not my style, either!
"Youuu! Put that back on! Don't you know the trend these days is the adorable puppy-cat? But we have adapted it to our household's atmosphere by adding haughtiness and..."
"What is that. I hate it so much! I'm telling you, if I try aegyo it's just weird? I'm a strong and athletic cat. I'm just going to live the way that fits me."
"Ugh. Do whatever you want. Whatever you want!"
Boss Cat, looking frustrated, thumps her chest and turns her head. I unwittingly pout, making a triangle with my mouth.
But I don't think what I said was wrong. I'm sure there are other cats who are thinking the same thing here. One who doesn't want to do aegyo or pretend to be haughty, but has no choice but to conform.
I glance over at the other cats. Among the clowder of cats shaking their heads or staring at me like I'm weird, I see someone's tail wagging pleasantly, as if to encourage me.
* * *
I get away from the other cats for a moment and slip into the library. No one comes to this library and it's my favorite place because I can think quietly.
The life of a rich family's cat might seem liberating, but it's not the case. The world of cats also has trends.
The trend these days is the puppy-cat. Even when you're a cat, you need aegyo to become successful.
"But... Can't you just like me for who I am? I want to do what I like and show myself."
I mutter, hoping someone would listen. At that moment, the light stand on the mahogany desk flickers twice.
What... Was someone listening to me?
* * *
My name is Chonky Cat. So named because I am a plump cat.
Here, I'm always getting admonished for being unmotivated and disinterested all the time.
"But I just like being laid back."
I never back down and I'm always doing what I think I should... But in the end, I guess this place is too stifling to do what I like to do as much as I want?
It's too frequent and annoying, how they ask me to meow or do aegyo or demand things. When I run away from bothersome things to go gaze outside at the window, I always get misunderstood for being lazy.
"I can be diligent to if it's something I like. I want to live where I want, doing what I want, to my heart's content."
For example... Singing a song that I like at a quiet library, decorated in a very modern style.
Or showing off my talent in front of people who like me for all I am. Dancing and singing. And the real things about myself!
Thinking about various things, I doze off- And suddenly an incredible light wakes me up.
I open my eyes to find myself as a girl with long arms and legs, and a voice that I'd wanted.
Looking like this, maybe I can achieve what I've wanted?
With excitement I turn my gaze over to the light. The flickering light stand that I thought was broken has become some kind of hole, shimmering with a blue glow.
A space I'd never seen before, completely different from this cozy and splendid place that the owner decorated.
Oddly, I feel no fear. Because somehow, I feel certain that on the other side, someone who's like me must be waiting for me.
And as if to respond to my assurance, a song finds its way from the other side of the hole.
I slowly move my feet. The space in front of my eyes almost looks like the stage and lights for me to sing in.
I've made my decision.
"I'm going to sing what I like in this place!"
A world where I can sing to my heart's content, and not what others want to see from me. To pass over to that new world, I take a step.