Chessur regarded the lifeless, mutilated body with little interest. Why is it, Chessur pondered as he groomed his whiskers, that when they are alive they are ever so much fun, yet when they are dead they are such a bore? To Chessur this was a very valid question.

When the small blue bird with silver stripes was alive and well it fluttered above him, looping to-and-fro determined to stay safe from the evaporating cat's clutches but also set on not being too far from the madden feline in case it missed his insults. Stupid fat cat! I mocked over and over.

Cleaning the last traces of the ill-fated birdie from his maw Chessur was just thinking how stuffed he was and how he couldn't possibly eat another bird if it walked right up to him and demanded entry into his mouth when he heard tiny voices above him chant, "Stupid fat cat! Stupid fat cat!"

Glancing skywards his saw several more tiny blue, stripped birds circling him. They seemed unmoved by the body of their dead companion and continue to chant, wanting some reaction out of the infamous cat of Underland.

The tiny birds burst into giggles as Chessur, though stuffed as he was, stuck his bottom up in the air preparing to pounce (sure he could levitate, but what would be the fun in that?).

Just as he was about to swipe for the smallest bird who happened to be hovering the lowest, he noticed movement over in the bushes. As soon as he saw a glimpse of white fur he knew who it was. It was far too small to be Nivens, it had to be the dormouse.

Seeing the cat was losing interest in them, the small birds increased their insults, 'Stupid fat cat!' 'Fatter than a rat!' 'But not as flat as a mat!' 'Oh Stupid fat cat!'.

Giving the little birds a final glance and a less than amused "Sod off," he disappeared only to reappear in front of the rodent piece by piece at a time. First his smile, then his bulbous eyes, then his turquoise stripes and finally the rest. He had found through experience this particular order had a way of unnerving nearly everyone and he made a note to use it often.

It unnerved everyone except Mallymkun that is.

"What do you want Chessur, you old dog?" she puffed as she pushed her way past the bulky feline and continued to collect small red berries. Each one she placed gingerly in her tiny woven basket, her hand never resting far from her needle/sword.

"I believe you have mistaken me for Bayard. For you see Bayard is an old dog, and I...well, I am a marvelously Chessur."

"Marvelously mad, maybe," Mallymkun halfheartedly offered and continued on with her task.

Chessur frowned. Usually the small mouse was so feisty and ready to spare with him both verbally and physically, yet today she seemed completely distracted. He vaguely noted her pretty pink and yellow dress. She looked rather fancy today. Was she going to a party?

"What are you doing?"

"Picking berries."

"For..." Chessur inquired.

"For a cake, a mulakulberry cake."

The cat licked his lips. "How delicious!" Suddenly he seemed to forget the half of bird that rested within his stomach and immediately began to hunger for mulakulberry cake. "May I have some?" he asked politely. If Mallymkun said yes, he'd be one very happy kitty. If Mallymkun said no, he'd eat her, or at least try to.

Either way he'd be rather happy.

She eyed him harshly before saying with a sigh, "If you attend the party then-"

"What party?"

"Hatter's-"

"Oh, Tarrant you say?"

"Yes-"

"What for?"

"If you'd stop interrupting me I'd tell you!" Mally squeaked angrily.

Chessur gave her a coy smile, "You talk rather slow, I simply wish for you to speed things along."

His wide smile was practically begging her to prick him in the nose with her needle yet somehow she refrained herself. "It is Hatter's Birthday and-"

"Birthday?" Chessur interrupted again. This time he didn't do it simply to peeve off Mally. "Who celebrates a birthday? They are so plain and ordinary and boring! Not to mention they are spaced so far in between. Unbirthdays are what you should celebrate, they are here all the time."

Mallymkun's face showed Chessur that she reluctantly agreed with him. "Perhaps but Alice says in Aboveland-"

"Aboveland nonsense," he immediately wrote off whatever she was about to say. The Abovelandians were and odd bunch, no need to take to their pratices.

The dormouse narrowed her eyes dangerously at the ever rude feline before she continued. "Alice said that Aboveland they celebrate birthdays, not unbirthdays."

"So, we aren't in Aboveland," he felt the need to remind her, just in case she had forgotten.

"I know that you bloody dog! It's just Alice is taking time off from The White Queen's court to travel down here to celebrate Hatter's birthday. She insisted."

"Oh, and when is this?"

"This weekend."

"The berries will sour by then."

At this Mallymkun blushed and looked down at her tiny white feet. "Not really," she squeaked. "I'm throwing Hatter a party tonight. My party for m-the Hatter." Chessur couldn't help but smile knowingly. "He doesn't know about it yet which means it will be a surprise which means its bound to be better than Alice's party for him!"

"It won't be a surprise if I tell him," Chessur yawned casually as he inspected his claws. From the corner of his large turquoise eyes he watched the rodent with interest, more than curious to see her reaction.

"Oh no you won't!" Mally stomped her small foot on the ground.

"It would be only fair," Chessur mewed, "you said it yourself, he knows of Alice's party, why shouldn't he know of yours?"

"Because-because-"

"Because you are trying to show Alice up!" Chessur finished for her with a mischievous grin as he backed out of the bushes, a small white mouse on his heels. " Mallymkun loves Tarrant!" anticipating the needle to be lunged at him Chessur levitated several feet in air safe from the angry, sword wielding mouse below.

Her snow white cheeks were now beet red as she jumped with all her might trying to reach the hovering cat all the while swinging about her needle wildly and cursing with every breath.

"Toodeloo Malls, off to let Tarrant know about his not-so surprise birthday party orchestrated by his biggest, blushing fan!"

Out of habit Chessur disappeared his usual way, stripes first and grinning mouth last. His slow departure gave Mallymkun plenty of time to scheme. "Wait!" she called out just as he was nearly gone.

Immediately he reappeared and gazed down at her with bored eyes. "If you tell I'll give you no cake! None whatsoever!"

Chessur didn't even let this consequence roll around in his mind. He shrugged, "I'd still whether tell." Again he began to disappear only to be halted by another abrupt 'Wait!'

Seeing the cat was growing annoying Mally quickly proposed something she knew would interest him, "Keep your trap shut and I'll do something for you!"

"Oh?" Chessur began to drift down slowly. Close enough to better hear her but not close enough to get stuck by her needle. "And what is that?"

"I know what it's like to love someone from afar," a blushing Mallymkun bashfully admitted. "and I also know so do you." Chessur raised an eyebrow. "I have to win Hatter over slowly," she gestured to her basket of berries, "but you are held back by a thin wall from the one you love. I can arrange to have that wall tore down, if only for tonight."

"Make it two days."


"Mally I do believe that was the most scrumptious mulakulberry cake I've tasted in all my life!" Tarrant exclaimed joyfully as he patted his full stomach. "Wasn't it delicious, Thackery?"

"Twas nothing Tarrant," Mally smiled sweetly as she tried to pick up the dirty plates. When Tarrant made a move to help her she shooed his hands away. "It's your birthday!" she still struggled not to say unbirthday. "I'll clean the dishes for you!"

The red head nodded, accepting this knowing his small friend would have it no other way. After watching her struggling with the very human sized plates that were definitely not fit for a mouse, Tarrant picked the tiny pink clad creature and placed her in his coat pocket. "How about we do the dishes together?" he offered. She smiled and nodded eagerly successfully hiding her blush as she snuggled closer to him.

As the pair made their way over to the sink, dodging Thackery's projectile cups with each step, Tarrant whispered to her, "What a lovely birthday Mally. I do wish to celebrate my birthday more often now that I see how fun it can be."

"You will celebrate later this week, when Alice comes to visit," she hid her sourness.

"Quite right but by then it won't be my birthday! It will just be another unbirthday." Mallymkun smiled smugly. "Isn't that how these things work? On my birthday it will be my birthday but any date not my birthday is most certainly not my birthday but my unbirthday and though Alice wishes to celebrate my birthday by coming several days late of the event, though I quite understand why The White Court is a busy place, but regardless by coming at a later date she is in fact celebrating my unbirthday not my birthday for you see-"

"Hatter!"

"Oh, yes, sorry..." Tarrant freed himself from his dream like state of constant babble.

As they did the dishes Tarrant continued to talk (but in a much less maddened manner) about things that didn't interest her even slightly yet she was content to have his undivided attention. This happened so rarely! It wasn't until Tarrant asked very suddenly and very gravely "I just noticed, where in the world is my hat?"


Deep within Tulgey Woods the cat known as Chessur sat under the shaded moonlight. On his head he wore a distinctive hat and at his paws sat a large piece of mulakulberry cake. So content was he that he didn't even mind the birds above him taunting him with calls of 'Fat cat'.

Chessur regarded the cake with much interest. Why was it, Chessur pondered as he continued to eat that this hat makes everything so much better? To Chessur this was a very valid question, one he would ask those little birds when he was done and ready for dessert.