Pay her

Relenting to the cat's ruthlessness, and fearing what will happen if you don't, you agree to paying the cat.

"Okay, so how much does it cost?"

"Cost? As in money?" the cat asks.

"Yeah," you say, "what else?"

"I'm not talking about money," the cat says, starting to laugh, "oh my, no I'm not."

"What are you talking about then?" you ask, confused. "What else could I pay you in?"

"I'm talking about magic. Sure, I could just magic up the money, and undoubtedly you could, too, even though it will disappear, but magic. That's a different story. You can't magic up magic. I hope we could, oh wouldn't that be great, but no, we can't. So the only way one get get more magic is by getting it from someone else."

"I see, now!" you say. "You want me to give you magic!" The cat nods. "So you bring people here just to sap the magic out of them, is that right?" 

"No, of course not!" the cat says, avoiding your eyes. "Even ask ..." she says a name so intricately twisted up that you can't even try to replicate it in your thoughts. She gestures towards the man, so you assume it's him she's talking about.

"Does the cat bring people here to sap magic from them and make it her own?" you ask the man. He stares at you, blinking slowly.

"I'm not a cat, for the last time!" says the cat.

"What are you, then?" you challenge the cat to answer.

"Nothing," the cat says quickly, avoiding the question.

"So that's why I have to call you a cat, because I don't know what you really are," you say.

"Yes," the man says. Two pairs of eyes swivel around to look at him.

"What?" you and the cat say in unison.

"In answer to your question," the man says, addressing you. "The answer is yes."

The cat obviously remembers what the question was first. "No, that can't be true! You said the wrong answer, obviously. Or probably heard the question wrong."

Then you remember the question. "Ah!" you say, triumphant. "Confessions, confessions, confessions."

"It's for a good cause," the cat argues.

The End

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