Whenever middle-aged desert tour guide Forrest Bryant Johnson went out on his daily walks into the Mojave, all was usually peaceful and serene. But one beautiful summer day in 1987, Forrest heard a cry of distress. Following the cries, he came upon a small bobcat kitten, injured, orphaned, and desperately in need of help. So Forrest took his new feline friend home for a night.
But when the little "trooper" clearly needed some more time to recoup, that night turned into two nights, a week, and eventually 19 years. And so Trooper became a part of the Johnson family. And in those 19 years, Trooper lived his nine lives to the fullest. He explored desert flora and fauna around him, befriending kit foxes, jackrabbits, desert tortoises, and other creatures and getting into mischief along the way.
Trooper became a "big brother" to stray tabby Little Brother, teaching, guiding, and protecting Brother on the pair's adventures and misadventures. He became a beloved patient at his local vet and cherished housemate of Forrest's wife, Chi. And Trooper even managed to melt the icy heart of a tough guy neighbor. But most of all, throughout his 19 years, Trooper became Forrest's best friend as the two shared each other's worries and frustrations, musings and rants, joys and laughter.
©2018 Forrest Bryant Johnson (P)2018 Tantor