“We’re all mad here,” said the cat. “I’m mad. You’re mad.”
The loris thought that the cat should probably speak for itself, but was too polite to say so. There was an awkward silence.
“And it’s no use saying you don’t want to go among mad people!” said the Cheshire cat, its voice rising hysterically. “You can’t help it!”
The little primate hadn’t planned to say anything of the sort, being of the opinion that it was best not to engage with clearly deranged people. It folded its paws neatly and waited for the cat to finish, an expression of polite interest on its face.
“Bugger this,” muttered the cat. Its grin had vanished some time ago, and the rest of it followed suit. The lashing tail stuck around longer than the rest, and the loris waited for the angry shadow to melt into the dappled shade of the trees before it continued down the path.