On a summer morning several years ago, I let Alien out on the balcony to lie in the sun while I got ready for work. After I took my shower I went back outside, but couldn't find her anywhere.
My condo is three stories up over the marina, and there is a tiny little ledge that runs from my unit to the ones on either side. I looked and saw that she had walked along the narrow ledge to the balcony next door. I called to her and she looked at me like, "Yeah, what?" I quickly ran inside and grabbed a can of tuna and the can opener and ran back out. I stood there in my robe with wet hair, pounding the opener against the can and shouting, "Alien, Alien!"
I can only imagine what my neighbors must have thought.
[Yes, she came back eventually. Sauntered in acting like nothing had happened.]
Well, it was hard to take Alien in to the vet, but everything went fine. She was a good girl, and they took her to put an IV in her leg and then brought her back into an exam room. I brought Grammy's blue afghan that she liked to sit on in the guest room and put that on the table and spent a few more minutes with her. She laid down on the afghan and snuggled in my arms. The doctor came in and administered the shot into the IV. After only a few seconds I felt her relax and she went to sleep. Within a minute the doctor checked and said she was gone. It was very, very peaceful. I was glad I was there with her.
I went to Jen's house afterwards and her cat Murray (who weighs about three times as much as Alien) jumped in my lap and purred and purred. It was hard to walk back into the condo, but I know she's in a better place and doesn't hurt anymore.