After charging for about 7 hours, I got one of the "virtual walls" set up across the office doorway (making that room Roomba-able will take some serious tying-up of computer cords), unplugged the Roomba, did a last-minute "ah heck, I'll get this off the floor too" of various items, and turned it on.
*happy Roomba song*
Aw! Clean, my minion! -boop- *rumbarumbarumba*
The cats, who'd come out to sniff the Interesting Thing in the middle of the room, suddenly channel James Brown. WHOOA! JUMP BACK! HURT MA'SELF! They levitate backwards about three feet and go tail-over-teakettle, then flee into the kitchen. I stifle hysterical giggling and watch as the Roomba starts checking out its new digs. It's supposed to work its way out in a spiral pattern, changing direction when it hits something. Given that we have a 4-bedroom house's worth of furniture in a 2-bedroom apartment, there's a whole lotta bonking going on. Rather than anything resembling a spiral, the Roomba is doing this spastic caroming dance of cat hair all over the place. Raist is circling it warily at a distance of approximately 10 miles. Caramon decides to be brave (go fig) and sneak up on the "new pet".
Roomba: *bonking in corner*
Roomba: *bonkbonkbonk* *finishes pattern, zips around 90 degrees, charges cat*
Caramon: AAAAAAAAAAARRRGGGGHHHH! *smacks headfirst into table leg, gallops sideways out of room*
Oh, I'm going to love this thing.
BWA! We've now got the feline equivalent of Monty Python and the Holy Grail going on. The 'loafs have decided to team up on the new addition every time it's "distracted".
Roomba: *molesting chair leg*
Raist: *creep creep* Okay, we'll outflank it. You come from the left, and I'll come at a 45-degree angle to--
Caramon: *waddle waddle* What's flankin'?
Raist: Come on, lardass. *creep creep*
Roomba: *bonkybonky-bweep-* *swivels*
Cats: RUN AWAAAAYYYYYYYY! *crash skitter thud*
-snrk- The first real faceoff. Raist finally realized that it can't come into the office, and he is sulking on the futon. Caramon decided he'd had enough and planted his portly butt in the middle of the hall.
Caramon: Hell with you. You think I's afraid of you, punk? Bring it!
Caramon: You ain't got the balls, son! Step off! *turns back*
Roomba: *bonks furry "wall" flat in the ass*
Caramon: *becomes fuzzy pretzel, flees into kitchen*
Don't step to the Roomba, bizzatch. *hee*
Okay, I admit it, I'm a horrible Mom. Caramon STILL hasn't figured out that the office is a safe zone, and is busily playing hide-n-seek with the Roomba. He waddles all lowrider up to every corner, peeeeeeers around it, then streaks for the next corner-area.
Caramon: *peering nervously around corner*
Me: *sneakasneaka* -grabs cat on the ass-
Caramon: *attempts to flee in 15 directions at once while levitating*
Hee. Applying bandaids to self now. Hee. Ow. Hee. Ouch. Hee.
Dirt detector? Double awesome. Not only is the Roomba zeroing in on problem cat-fur areas, it can actually be led by them. Since it's not coming in the office, I decided to hand-pick some cat fur and carpet fluff off the floor and toss it out into the Roomba area.
Roomba: -bwip!- *zoom* -munchmunchmunch-
Caramon: *peeks around corner*
Me: *flings furwad towards cat*
Roomba: -bweep!- *target acquired*
Caramon: Oh, ha ha ha FUCK YOU. *hides under coffee table for 13th time*
The Roomba just locked itself in the bathroom. Seriously. It trundled in, bonkied around, and went to clean behind the door for some reason. It managed to swing the door out from the wall and then bonk it completely shut. I have no idea why I find this so amusing. I came out to see what was going on and both cats were watching the door with this smug "Heh." expression. I don't think they actually had anything to do with the Roomba-napping (although Raist, I'm not so sure), but they were certainly pleased with the situation. When I opened the door and let it out again, I got a distinct "Aww, MoooOOOOoooommmmm!" look and much stomping and sulking.
I come out to see what's going on, if it got stuck, whatever... aww! It found its recharger, trundled on over and went to sleep. Très cute. Unfortunately, looking around, there are still some areas that need cleaning (mainly the kitchen), but when I came closer I saw its battery is almost dead. Poor lil' tyke. I do have to admit, the apartment needed some serious deep cleaning after weeks of "I've got 5 minutes to vaccuum!" So I'll let it recharge and set it off for Round 2.
The cats will be so thrilled.