Turtle was not a bar-going man. In fact, Turtle was not a man, he was a curmudgeon, and the very idea of a public place where strangers gathered to socialize frightened him like heavy traffic on the highway.
Turtle preferred the warm aloneness of his shell.
But Turtle had started going to bars despite all of this, because his two best and only friends, Cat and Owl, were secretly in love with each other.
Cat and Owl were in love, and they needed Turtle’s presence to facilitate an environment where they could go out together, could gaze and smile at each other from across the table, could fantasize about kittens hatching from eggs, without feeling pressured to reveal their mutual secret. When it was just the two of them, Cat was tongue-tied and Owl would nervously spin his head around and around in circles, but when Turtle was there, somehow things just…flowed.
So the three of them were “The Trifecta,” because Cat thought it sounded tough and sexy, like a sports car, and every week the T would go out to bars and be Single together, ostensibly as a way to meet new people who they could take to the movies and then kiss and then giggle about back at one of their apartments.
But because none of them were actually interested in meeting new people for these purposes, it always ended up with Turtle drunk in the corner, watching in his slow and lonely way as Cat and Owl felt the excitement of illicit love, wondering to himself how he of all animals had played match-maker to such a bizarre and selfish pair, how many more beers would it take for him to feel what those two are feeling, I’m so glad my home is on my back and not in some other creature’s heart.