Lucky and Almond headed behind Petland’s building and through a cold and dark alleyway to rescue Almond’s friend. Almond explained dozens of times their mission: look for another way in that did not involve the front entrance. It seemed like a simple goal to Almond, but confusing for Lucky.

“Why would a back entrance differ from the front?” Lucky pondered.

“You really are a house cat, huh?” Almond sighed. “My friend has told me all about the people he’s encountered and how stupid they can be. Maybe they left a door open or maybe even a window. I don’t know. He and I have done this before. Breaking and entering… I’ve just never done this without him though.”

“But isn’t that bad?” Lucky asked.

“What is?”

“Doing all of that. Aren’t you scared of getting into trouble?”

“Humans don’t care about us,” he scoffed. “Some of us are just used for entertainment purposes anyway. When they have no need for us, they throw us out here on the streets. I’ve seen it happen… several times.”

Lucky wanted to speak up about Amelia and inform Almond that good humans possibly exist. However, Lucky’s mind still lingered on the human family that kicked her out of her own home. That enraged her.

Maybe Amelia was the only different human, Lucky thought to herself. Maybe Almond is right.

Rotten garbage from knocked over trash bins engulfed the path. Along the way, various vermin were investigating said bins searching for a free meal. Many of them stopped in their tracks and cautiously watched as both Lucky and Almond strolled by.

“There’s your lunch,” Almond whispered. “So many rats back here; just take your pick!”

Lucky appeared visibly ill at the notion. “No thanks,” she began. “Not after that scuffle earlier.”

They arrived at the Petland’s glass backdoor and Almond was eager to break in somehow. He carefully examined the building and shrugged to himself afterward.

“This is as far as I got. I’ve circled this place five times now and I still have not figured out how to break in.”

“We’re doomed!” Lucky shrieked.

“No, we’re not. Just give me a moment to think.”

“You said it yourself! You circled around here five times and still nothing. You had five moments to think! Five!”

Almond ignored the crying cat by shutting his eyes and entering the deepest recesses of his mind. While he may be tiny, Almond more than made up for it with his brainpower.

“Circle… no… the alley… maybe… no, that won’t work,” he mumbled. “glass… door… circle… CIRCLE!”

Lucky stared on in astonishment as she keenly awaited. She knew if they could not rescue Almond’s friend, she will probably waste away on the road somewhere.

“Lucky, my dear, how many movies have you watched since you’ve been alive?” Almond asked suddenly.

“I-I don’t know,” Lucky stuttered. “What does this have to do with anything?”

“Oh, why haven’t I thought of this sooner?” he asked himself. “We will pull off a heist like in this one movie I’ve seen — I don’t know if you’ve ever seen it or not — but we will try it out.”

Lucky grew even more curious.

“We’re breaking and entering. I need your claws, dear,” Almond finally spat out.

Lucky was still unsure where he was going with any of this, but she was more than happy to oblige him. She showed her right paw with her perfectly manicured claws and watched as Almond motioned for the glass door.

“I need you to make a circle, please! A circle in the door!” he tried explaining to the clueless cat. Eventually, after Almond showed her for the third time, she made a circle carving into the glass door.

“Excellent!” Almond squealed. “Now let’s push that circle out of the way and get a move on.”

The two forced their way through the glass and made way into the shop.

“Felix!” Almond shouted through the darkness. He stayed beside Lucky so he didn’t lose his way.

“Who’s that?” Lucky asked.

“My friend, Felix. The one we’re doing this for. Help me out here.”

They both shouted for Felix and at last stumbled into a lit room with multiple cages filled with howling canines. Each of them was excited to see the duo as they wagged their tails and barked up a storm. They were all locked in thanks to a padlock requiring a key.

“Who’s that?” one dog cried.

“You come to get us out of here?” another bellowed.

Felix ignored them as he looked around for his pal. It terrified Lucky out of her mind seeing the many animals she never had the pleasure of knowing until this day. The few times she had seen a pup, or a hamster was perhaps from the television at Amelia’s home.

“Felix!” Almond gasped. “I’ve found you at last!”

Something about Felix’s face rubbed Lucky the wrong way. He had a scar over his left eye along with multiple wounds and scratches spread across his body. His fur was unkempt, and his gaze had a feeling of danger to them.

“Who is this?” Felix gruffly asked Almond. His eyes were fixated on Lucky which intimidated her.

“This is Lucky and as much as I would love to tell you about her, I think we got more important things to do,” Almond replied. “Lucky, be a dear and pick this lock for me. We’re breaking out of here. All of us.”

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