When I opened my eyes, it was still dark.
Getting up, I let out a long yawn and stretched out, digging my claws into the soft ground around me. My body was well rested from sleep; I needed to limber up for the day ahead of me. I knew today was an important day for everyone else. They would see us. But for me it was just like any other. I was used to the same routine, day in day out. I was comfortable, secure and well looked after. I counted myself lucky I wasn't out in the wild foraging for myself. The idea of competing to survive each day just didn't appeal to me.
I looked over at the other tiger. They called her Simaria. It's silly having names. That's like giving labels and that's like saying you belong to someone. I don't belong to anyone. I am who I am. I will do what I want, when I want.
Nobody tells me what to do.
The tiger watched me closely. Some mutual understanding passed between us and she got up and followed outside. Right on time, the zookeeper came along with a big bucket of the most tantalizing smelling meat.
'Hello my lovelies,' he greeted us with the same phrase every morning. 'It's feeding time. Are you both hungry?'
I let out a roar, not a full one, but enough to satisfy him.
He slung the meat into the cage and I pounced.