"She went this way!"

"We'll catch her soon!"

----

A girl, who seemed to be fourteen, laned back against a wall of a building, hiding in the darkness of an alley way. The hood of her sweater was over her head and showed nothing, not even her eyes, but strands of short, brown hair. Lifting her hood a tad, she looked out to the streets. As the girl saw nothing, she let out a sigh of relief and took off her hood.

What stood upon her head were black cat ears. She was the race of this world that everyone took as a pet; a 9-life. It had only been a few short days since she had come to this planet from her own, and already she was being chased around by people who just want to use her as a pet. It wasn't that she didn't want to be a pet. She longed to be like the pets that she saw being petted and treated nicely, like taken out for food and all. It was just that all the people that had found her looked mean and scarry.

Turning around and putting her hood back on, the girl started down the alley. Hey, she might just be able to find a trash can with some goodies in it. Though, before long, she bumped into someone.

"Ah, i'm sorry..." the girl appologize, lifting her hood abit to look at who she bumped into.

"No, it's alright," replied another girl, looking about a year older than the girl and hair just as short as her's. Infact, it was the same hair style. Only difference between their hair was that the other girl's was a darker shade of brown. "I can understand that you couldn't see me, what with the hood-" The other girl stopped there, probably realising why the girl was wearing one. "You're...A 9-life, aren't you?"

God damn it, was all the 9-life could think. Though, the human girl did nothing instead of smile. She didn't reach for the 9-life, nor did she whip out one of those wierd, small things that most people did when they saw her. Instead, while holding out a hand, the girl spoke,

"I'm Marlene. What about y-"

"Freeze!"

The 9-life quickly turned, lips curling up a tad. Looking at the men who were standing at the end of the alley way, she turned and faced them, letting out a low growl. If it wasn't obvious to the men that she was a 9-life from the hood, she had just made it even more obvious from the growl and the fangs. Soon enough, the men were running over, ready with things to catch her.

"No, stop!"

9-life was surprised from the cry. Looking to Marlene, she blinked and tilted her head. Not only did the 9-life seemed surprise, but so did the DNLC (Department Nine Life Controll).

"She's my pet, i'm sorry. I was just about to go and get her a collar...I took the alleyway because it's a short cut from my house, you see..." Was that true?

"Then why is she wearing a hood...?"

Marlene patted the 9-life's head, smiling. "Because her ears get cold in the winter."

The DNLC seemed to have believed the human girl. Watching the men leave, the 9-life couldn't really believe what had just happened. Once they left, she turned to Marlene.

"What was that all about? You didn't have to help me, y'know..." It was true. She could have taken the DNLC on, and even if they caught her it wouldn't be all that bad...

"You didn't seem to want to go with them, and I just hate the idea of people keeping other people, no matter the race, under containment if they don't want to..." This surprised the the black cat girl. This human wasn't all that bad...

Sighing, the cat shook her head. "It's not that I didn't want to go with them. I want an owner, I just don't want a bad owner, if you get what I mean." she explained.

With that, the human teenager smiled. "Well, do you want to be my cat, then? I promise i'm not a bad owner, but...I do have brothers and one of them can be quite bad...But i'll make sure he isn't mean to you, if that's at all possible."

9-life blinked. This human actually asked her if she wanted to be a pet instead of reaching and trying to force her to be a pet. So, she smirked and nodded.

"Sure. You said your name was Marlene, right?" asked the 9-life. After Marlene responded with a nod, she nodded back. "I'm Ayla," holding out a hand, she continued, "and it's nice to meet an owner who won't be too scarry."