A Cat (4D Sze Hoi Ching)


It was just an ordinary night, when Thomas was at home with his dad, Mr. Phillip. Mr. Phillip was cleaning the dinner plates in the kitchen while Thomas was watching the television, resting cozily on the sofa with a blanket. This was their daily routine. However, Thomas could not focus on his favourite cartoon show. He kept glancing at the clock every second, now and then.

‘Ding-Dong’ Thomas ran to the door immediately and peeped through the door viewer. Standing outside, his best friends Walter and William heard the swift but heavy footsteps and smiled at each other identically. Thomas nudged the door, giving his twin friends a bro hug.

‘Hey, man! How have you been?’

‘Pretty good!’ He welcomed them to the living room, and they all sat around the coffee table.

‘Shall we play Monopoly?’ Thomas suggested.

‘Again? We literally play this game every time we come to sleep over. You’re really obsessed with this game, huh?’

William could see Thomas’s eyes sparkling. ‘Fine. Just one round for you, Tom, and we shall play other games afterwards, okay?’ 

This put a bright smile on Thomas immediately. ‘Yay! Let’s set up the board game arena together!’

After a whole hour, the game finally came to an end. ‘Ha-ha! Look Dad! I’ve won!’ Thomas shouted. Sitting on the sofa, Mr. Phillip leant forward, patting his proud son on his head. 

‘Dang, this is just a luck-based game, isn’t this?’ William looked at his empty in-game wallet.

‘Don’t worry, Will, we’ll surely get him in other games,’ Walter patted his brother’s shoulder.

‘Hey, I’ve realised that you two always call me Will. I haven’t really heard you call me by my full name.’

William looked at Thomas in the eyes. ‘Say it after me, “William”.’

‘Will-I-am?’ Thomas looked up at William with his innocent eyes, that William could not tell if he said it intentionally or not. Not understanding why William was looking at him doubtfully, Thomas tilted his head to the side.

‘Will-I-am’ repeated Walter, who was trying to keep a straight face, but ended up giggling. ‘Why are you also like this …?’

‘Rumble, rumble,’ William got cut off by a strange noise.

They all went silent, and it was a very loud silence. ‘Did you all hear that?’ Thomas’s bright voice broke the silence. ‘It was from right above us! Wait… isn’t that my room? But there are just the four of us in the house!’ Thomas trembled.

‘I didn’t know you live with ghosts, huh?’ joked Walter, as he watched the boys’ faces turning pale. ‘I- I was just joking. Ghosts aren’t real, are they?’ Walter said promptly.

William breathed a sigh of relief, ‘Well, I guess we could only find it out by ourselves!’ Without further explanation, he grabbed Thomas on his left arm, and Walter on his right arm. William dragged them towards the stairs with all of his strength. ‘Fine, we can walk ourselves!’ The boys sprinted upstairs.

‘Wait kids! It was prob-’ Mr. Phillip could not finish his line before they ran out of sight. He smirked as he rested his back on the backrest of the sofa.

Lights were dim in the corridor, and the door of Thomas’s room was firmly shut. The boys panted outside the room, which they were only one step away from.

‘Tom, this is your room, right? You should go in first ‘cause you know your home the best. Don’t worry, we will follow you afterwards,’ proposed William, as he began to regret suggesting to come and investigate.

‘But- but I’m s- scared.’

Thomas once again looked up to the twins with his crystal-clear eyes. ‘What about letting Walter lead us into my room? You’re the oldest, right?’

‘Yeah, only by three minutes!’

The boys kept pushing each other on the back and Walter sighed. ‘Alright, I’ll go first, but you two need to help me out, okay? Tom, you’ll turn on the lights, and Will, you’ll help me catch the ghost- I mean in case there really is one,’ Walter uttered while he slammed the door open.

“BAM” the door hit hard on the wall. The boys followed him right after Walter stepped into the room, and Thomas ran towards the light switches. Just as the lights were turned on, the boys froze.

‘Are you alright?’ Mr. Phillip walked upstairs, ‘I heard a loud bang. Did you guys get hurt?’

‘Oh,’ Mr. Philip arrived at the door of Thomas’s room, ‘Guess you’d already figured out what it was.’

The boys were standing around in the room, staring at a black object. It was Thomas’s robot cat toy!

‘I- um I think I might have forgotten to turn it off after playing with it this afternoon. Ha-ha…’

Thomas scratched his head.

‘It moves when it detects sounds, and it makes noises when “walking” with its wheel legs,’ added Mr. Phillip. The robot cat went around in a circle, as if it was responding to their conversation.

‘At least it wasn’t a ghost,’ William was relieved, wiping off his sweat. 

‘Well then,’ said Mr. Phillip. ‘It’s pretty late already. You guys had better go to bed now.’

The twins pulled out their sleeping bags, and Thomas got onto his bed.

‘Goodnight.’ Mr. Phillip turned the lights off.