Author's Notes: I wrote this story weeks ago and forgot about it but I found it so yay! I wrote it because after watching Cats for the zillionth time, I noticed during the Jellicle Ball scene and mating dance that Munkustrap does not dance at all. He stands in the background next to the tires with a blank expression on his face. I thought about it for ages about why he didn't dance and here is one of the ideas that I've come up with. I might post the other ideas as different fics but I'll see how this one goes…or I'll post it anyway.
Another Munkustrap/Demeter pairing. I love it:D
The Morning After
The birds were still singing well after the sun had risen, which was now sitting high in the sky. The city was fully awake and alert as people rushed around in it, doing their job or just shopping.
Living their life, completely unaware of the significance of last night.
Far away from the main city bustle, hidden in one of the more secret spots was a junkyard.
Inside this junkyard, hidden inside boxes, pipes and other various places were sleeping cats.
These cats were no ordinary cats, definitely not. They were Jellicle cats.
Last night it had been the annual Jellicle Ball and it had been spectacular…although there had been a slight 'hiccup' or two.
Old Deuteronomy getting catnapped by Macavity had been one of them.
Thankfully Mister Mistofelees had managed ti conjure him back and the Ball was able to continue with no more troubles.
When dawn had come Old Deuteronomy had disappeared, leaving the tired Jellicles to be able to go back to heir dens.
But not alone.
Last night was more than just choosing a Jellicle to go to the Heavyside Layer…it was a night to choose a mate.
If somebody was to peer over the fence and into the junkyard, if they looked closely enough at these cats they would see that the sleeping forms were in pairs. Each individual pair was snuggled in their own den, arms around their partner, blissfully asleep.
No one would see this though.
No one would see the one cat lying in a box by himself, the one cat who did not have a mate.
This cat had not danced with the other cats.
He had not danced…she had.
He had watched her dance with another cat, never before had he felt such jealously for another being.
Throughout the whole night he had watched her, even defended her from Macavity when he had attacked her. He even fought Macavity himself for her, even though he had lost. She still had come to him to see if he was all right…
She had nuzzled against HIM and not the cat with which she had danced.
He had stayed next to her whenever he could for the rest of the night.
When the dawn had come, everyone had cleared from the centre of the junkyard. It did not take long to empty but when it had been just the two of them standing…they hadn't known what to say.
They both knew she had a potential mate to go to…but neither had wanted to move because then it would mean the end to whatever it was that had built up between them.
He had looked at her with such a soft expression and she had just simply returned it.
What he had done next was the hardest thing he had ever done…and the most hurtful.
"You'd better go Demeter, he's probably waiting for you."
Demeter had taken a step away from him, looking devastated and she abruptly turned around and walked away without saying anything. Her ears were drooped and her tail had fallen to the ground, slack with no happiness or zest for life.
He had watched her retreating form and Munkustrap felt his heart breaking as the only cat he'd ever wanted for a mate walk away from him forever.
Slowly he had walked to a box that was so big it could fit in a piano.
This was his thinking box…and his escape box for when he couldn't handle things. Nobody knew about his secret hiding place and Munkustrap was glad that he had a spot where he didn't have to worry about everyone.
He didn't visit the box often but whenever he did, he laid curled up in a ball in complete silence.
This time was no different…except now he began to cry.
Munkustrap could count on one paw the number of times he had cried…but this time he could not help it. He was so sad that Demeter could not be his mate because he had chosen not to dance. Deep down he knew that he would never be able to choose another mate.
The want to have kittens had never been an important issue to him, but seeing Demeter walk away from him he had felt all happiness drain out of him. The idea of having mini Munkustraps and Demeters running around suddenly hadn't sounded bad.
But he had still walked away for the same reason that he had not danced.
Munkustrap was the cat that everyone relied on for advice, protection and everything else. They saw him as a serious, stern cat that respected and cared for everyone, not a cat that fell in love, chose a mate and had kittens.
He hadn't danced because he had chosen to maintain his role in the tribe, therefore sacrificing his heart's wants and desires.
Munkustrap sighed quietly and wiped away his tears as he rolled over again in his box, not knowing how long he had been hiding for.
At the moment he could've been hiding for eternity and he wouldn't have cared.
Shifting his gaze from the cardboard wall of the box and onto his forepaws, a thought slowly arose.
I'm in the prime of my life and I've just given up my chance for a mate, what will I do now?
Munkustrap slowly raised his head and looked at the exit at the end of the box.
The sun was shining outside and he had a moment of clarity.
He decided he would leave this box and he would leave inside it behind all sadness and lost for Demeter. The instant he would step out of his box, he would live solely for the tribe and forget his heart's desires and dreams.
Munkustrap uncurled himself and began to slowly pad towards the doorway to the outside.
With every step he took towards his new life, they became slower and slower. Eventually Munkustrap came to a complete stop as he found himself on the precipice of the box that seperated him from the ground and the new cat he would force himself to become.
He knew that if he took that one step there was no going back.
Am I ready for this?
The word rang clear in the air as Munkustrap felt fear and uncertainty.
It was the fear of change and he wasn't ready to face it.
Slowly he took half a step back into his box but was briefly brought to a halt when a soft female voice spoke.
Munkustrap looked around and the moment he saw Demeter sitting on top of a ripped cushion five metres away from him, he felt his heart skip a beat yet he would not allow it to show on his face.
"Demeter, what are you doing here?"
She didn't know whether to feel angry or upset with him because it was obvious she had startled him during a private moment and he hadn't wanted anybody to see it.
Demeter got off the ripped cushion and slowly began to walk towards him as she spoke, "What are you doing here? This is the most remote area in the junkyard and you were lying again in your box."
As she said 'your box', Munkustrap couldn't help but feel anger at his secret place being discovered but he also felt embarrassment that it was Demeter who had found it.
"When you say 'again'?" he replied, trying to sound as if he had no idea what she was talking about.
"As in again. I've seen you Munkustrap prowl off, alone, and I've always followed you. You have always come to this box and once inside you wouldn't leave it for hours."
Anger burned deep inside him at her invading his privacy.
"And how do you know this?"
His tone was harsh and full of emotion; it didn't sound anything like the usual composed Munkustrap at all.
This confused Demeter but she continued, "I have always hid and waited till you came out, just so I knew you were ok otherwise…"
Immediately she stopped talking as her confession had brought her so close to admitting just how much she cared for him. So close to saying that she waited to see if he was ok because otherwise she would not know what to do if something ever happened to him.
So close to saying how much she loved him.
Heat flushed through her cheeks from the harsh embarrassment of her verbal spill, Demeter quickly turned around and started to walk away to allow Munkustrap the privacy he would only have without her around.
She took several steps down the pile of junk towards the ground when suddenly a paw grabbed her right foreleg and made her stop, causing her to turn back around to the black and white striped tom's face.
Demeter's face found itself extremely close towards his but his expression was so translucent with so many emotions, she didn't know if he was furious with her or if he was on cloud nine.
He was staring at her so intensely, Demeter began to really wish he would say something because as she watched him a huge smile began to appear to appear on his face and it was becoming irresistible to her.
They stared at each other in silence, one forming the biggest smile and the other having no idea how to react.
Demeter felt the hard grip of his paw on her forearm soften. She tuned to look as it released itself and returned back to Munkustrap's side. Slowly she looked back up into his furry face with a confused expression as his was beaming with utter happiness.
Finally he spoke, "Otherwise what?"
Demeter knew that what she would say next would decide her future. She was holding her heart and his in her paws and if she wasn't careful then she would destroy both of them so their hearts would be nothing more than a muscle where it felt nothing…but it would still beat.
Munkustrap watched Demeter slowly extend her right forepaw out in air towards him. His stomach began to somersault with nervousness but his heart began to beat stronger than ever with happiness and exuberance for life, he reached out with his own forepaw.
It took less than a second for them to meet, but when they did they clasped tightly and as Demeter looked up at him with such soulful, he understood her answer so well for he felt the exact same way about her.
Never before had he felt such fear in his life when he had watched Macavity begin to drag her away from him.
Munkustrap could feel every individual fair on his paw and forearm as the small contact with Demeter was sending electric charges along his nerves.
He thought this small contact wasn't enough for the over-whelming feeling of love for this Jellicle queen.
Demeter was beginning to smile back at Munkustrap when she suddenly felt herself being pulled towards him into a tight hug that seemed to draw her away from the real world and into a world where the only thing she could feel were his strong forearms wrapped around her.
Munkustrap felt two smaller forearms lay themselves against the soft black and white fur that covered his chest. He felt her face rest against his body and he began to nuzzle the top of her head, causing both of them to purr with contentment.
Suddenly a terrible though hit him.
"Yes?" she asked, her cheek lying against the softest fur she had ever felt.
Demeter's eyes snapped open and she removed her face off his chest and gazed upwards at him.
He was looking down at her with so much barely contained worry and pain Demeter raised a paw and laid it against Munkustrap's cheek, smiling at him warmly.
"He is with Cassandra. I never wanted to dance with him in the first place. But I did."
Confusion clouded his face.
Demeter's smile widened before she slowly reached up and softly kissed him on the lips.
When she lowered herself away from him, Demeter was still smiling.
"Because the cat I love didn't dance."
Munkustrap didn't allow Demeter another second to speak when he swooped down again for more kisses. Eventually he led Demeter by the paw into 'his' box where they would not be disturbed while they 'danced'.
They danced together for the first time…
Never again would they dance with another cat for they were mates and they would have had it no other way.
Never force change upon yourself…
Follow your dreams and heart's desires.
Who knows where it may lead you.