He was almost 20 years old.
I'd had him since the summer of 1991, when he was a tiny little kitten. He was initially given to my girlfriend at the time by a friend of hers. She thought he was a girl, and named him Gwenevere, because his fur was mostly pure white.
When we took "her" to the vet to be spayed, the vet told us that he couldn't spay Gwenevere, he had to neuter Lancelot. So he became Lancelot, or Lance for short.
He was a wonderful cat. I've never met a more loving, affectionate cat. Some would say he was needy. Everyone who ever met him loved him, even non-cat people.
He used to sit with me on the couch when I'd get home from work and watch movies with me. Until I got a computer and found the internet. Then he'd sit at my feet, pining away for attention. He loved going outside, but we didn't want him getting into fights, so we'd only let him out if we were with him. He always tried to escape out the front door when we'd come and go. One winter he bolted out the door and down the steps to the sidewalk, only to discover that it had snowed. He had no idea what it was.
Over the years he was always a comfort for me. His age was starting to show, though. He had arthritis throughout his body, had lost most of his teeth, and we thought he was going deaf. His kidney levels were high, indicating future kidney failure, so we had him on an expensive prescription diet.
We knew it was his time today. He'd been having issues walking around, and his bowels were not being friendly anymore. The vet told us that he was now blind, most likely from the high blood pressure caused by kidney failure. He had been wandering around the house in circles, and would stop and stare at the wall for minutes at a time, as if he'd forgotten what he was doing. In the end, I held him as he was put to sleep. He'd been agitated at the vet the entire time, but calmed down instantly when I picked him up. Normally he'd fight me a bit, but not this time. It was as if he knew what was happening. I'd like to think so, at least.
I'll miss you, Lance.