As we went around our neighborhood, we were nearing our house... calling for Loki the whole time.. when a kitty poked his head out from under some bushes!! We slowly approached (cats, even if they know you will get scared in a new environment), talking to him the whole time. He obviously recognized us (or else he would have tried to stay hidden instead of coming out) but was scared, probably exhausted. His meows were super raspy and quiet-- he probably hadn't had much (if at all) to drink all day.
He was a bit hissy but never tried to swipe. BF grabbed him and held him on the way home--- he was just down the block, about 8-10 houses away.
He got home, went straight for water, drank for like 15 minutes, ate, went back to drinking, and then fell asleep. He's back to Loki this morning, super curious and all.
We are super thankful for having Loki back. Thank you all for your positive thoughts!