But luckily I have a sibling who is good with cars; and miraculously enough when I called him he was awake and even more miraculously he agreed to bring some antifreeze. And he got there quickly and poured a bunch of stuff in and then he hopped in my car to keep an eye on things and I hopped in his car and we kept on going straight to the animal hospital.
When I got in his car there was a CD in the player. It was the Black Crowes. The song was Remedy. I nearly cried.
But when we got there the sibling told me that there was no heat in my car, which foretold bad things for the state of the heater core, like water had gotten in there and frozen the thing solid; as far as the cat went though we weren't even late, since the appointment was for 'between seven and eight am' and we'd gotten an early start; and Mewton was good and non-freaking out and the vet was very kindly. And as luck would have it there was a slot for the ultrasound right while we were there (they had originally planned to keep him there for a half day, which would have been an issue with a blinky car).
So the cat got his ultrasound; my brother left my car running to try to thaw the heater out, and he said he'd bring it back to his heated garage and drain the system out properly so he could put in all antifreeze.
So I'm trying to keep all these things in my head and then the vet comes out. Sir Isaac Mewton, it turns out, has pancreatitis, an inflamed pancreas, which is not necessarily good; however it is not a tumor, which is good. So it's his poor swollen pancreas which is crowding his bile ducts, not anything wrong with the ducts or his liver per se.
Now, the vet said most of the time they don't know what causes pancreatitis in cats; she said about a third of the time it's bacterial, though, so she gave me some antibiotics. And, she said, since he is still eating (though he's lost a little weight his appetite is still pretty good), she said we could bring him home, but that we would need to keep a very close eye on him. Any sign of going downhill and we are to bring him into the local vet's office quickly.
So. I am grateful: for siblings who know about Volvos and who don't grumble when called at 7:15am, though I know his schedule is about as vampiric as mine; for the fact that it turned out the car was okay and the heater core thawed and works fine now; for the fact that it is not a tumor; for the fact Mewton is eating well and looks perky enough; and I am absurdly grateful for Remedy, honestly. And I am very grateful to all of you for the kind thoughts and good energies sent his way. And to Bastet, Lady of the Salve.
So, here's a picture or two of Sir Isaac Mewton. In this one, without the flash, you can see he looks perfectly bright-eyed and decently healthy:
In the second one, though, with the flash on, you can get a better look at the clear-cut swath they had to shave so they could give him the ultrasound. Poor guy. It's kind of scary, though; the skin of a black cat is usually this nice sort of silvery grey. But though the color in the picture isn't exactly perfect, you can still see that his skin is a bit on the yellow side, because he has jaundice.