When I sit on the living room couch, both cats want to sit in my lap. Here is how it normally works: if Melly gets to my lap first, Scarlett stays at least a few feet away and acts completely disinterested. If Scarlett gets to my lap first, Melly lets her sit for a few minutes then gnaws her ear until she leaves. Melly then takes her spot. Melly, who cannot be rewarded for such behavior, is relocated and Scarlett is retrieved. If Geoff is there, he takes Melly so that Scarlett can sit peacefully on my lap (obviously, both cats are fine with that). If Geoff is not there, the cycle is repeated a couple of times until I give up, which usually results in Melly laying next to me in her usual pin-up pose and Scarlett looking disapprovingly on from the back of the couch. Never are the two within a couple feet of each other.
This is why, when Geoff emailed me the photo below (I was at work at the time) with the caption, "Could I get a few more cats for my little nest?" I was beyond thrilled. He took it with his cell phone camera - retrieving the actual camera would've disturbed the felines - and he reported that they had been there for over ten minutes! Ten minutes!!
My friend Jackie has a theory that when I'm not home, the cats cuddle; the wrestling and sparring is just an act they put on for me. I'm starting to think she may be on to something.