The vet was very kind. After Cuthbert was gone, I placed him in a new, white pillow case I bought for his winding sheet and put him in the trunk of my car. collinsmom and siege returned home, while I went on to Wilderstead.
I buried him next to Fuji, in what I mentally refer to now as the Hallows; which makes the previously unnamed trail on the other side of the creek the Hallows Trail, I guess. I raised a low cairn over his grave. Later on, I'll add a token to it (Fuji has a cast cement kitty on his cairn). He lies now in the hollow where we found him, albeit on the other side of the creek. It's a beautiful place: a place of peace.
When Cuthbert was young, he would fret when we were gone too much. He was an abandoned kitty, you know, and it upset him to be left too long. So, when I would come home, I would pick him up and hold him, and tell him over and over, "I will always come back to you. Always. Always." And he would settle into my arms and be comforted. He hasn't been too fretful for a long while, but still, whenever I would have to leave on a trip, or whenever I would come home from one, I would pick him up and hold him like a baby, and whisper softly to him, "Always. Always." And he would close his eyes and go right to sleep in my arms.
Cuthbert and Fuji are buried in a little patch of grass beside the trail. We will pass them every time we go across the creek. And, of course, it has been my intention to one day have my ashes scattered at Wilderstead. Knowing all this, the last thing I did after finishing Cuthbert's cairn was to lay my hand upon it and say, softly, "Always. Always."