The title of this story, “Kath and Mouse,” is a play on the phrase cat and mouse. If someone is playing cat and mouse, he or she is using strategic moves to toy with an opponent, like a cat playing with a mouse before killing it. Here the title is foreshadowing the relationship between Kath and Helen, whom Kath calls Mouse because of her appearance. Kath is mean and manipulative, taking any opportunity to humiliate Helen. Kevin, Kath’s twin, even compares Helen to “a mouse I’d had to take away from our cat once, wounded.” Kath wounded Helen that first day at the lunch table, and refused to let her go from that moment on.
Helen plays her own sort of inadvertent, sneaky offense in this game as well, and uses her friendship with Kevin to her advantage. She decides to sing at the talent show, and asks Kevin to accompany her on piano, such that when Kath decides she also wants to sing at the talent show, she must fend for herself, without her brother to help her out. The result is humbling for Kath and affirming for Helen, and with the latter’s display of strength, the game is finally over – Helen no longer a mouse, Kath no longer a predator.