Needless to say, I was heartbroken. I decided to show up at work a little late and go to see her and hold her one last time. She looked awful; all of her flesh was yellow due to the problems with her liver, she was stiff and cold. When she was alive, she was like a little furnace, she was so warm all the time. But, I had my time with her, to say goodbye and to let go. The vet told me that it was hepatic lipidosis, where the liver produces too much fat and destroys itself. Of course, they have no idea what caused it, whether it was genetic or the result of some incidents when she was a kitten and living with someone else, where she was poisoned after walking on a floor that had just been washed with toxic cleaner. They had the liver sample that they had taken in surgery yesterday, and asked if I still wanted to have it tested, but I decided not to. No sense in finding out now.
Now, for most people, this would be the end of the story. Not for me.
It turns out that the vet's office had a kitten who needed a home, a little gray tabby male with lots of energy. So, I did bring a cat home today...just not the one we left there earlier in the week. His name's Bucky, and he fits in great with the others. Hemingway was right: one cat just leads to another.