An update to this post:
So, I ended up taking groupthink's collective advice and getting two kitties. They're three months old. Both are boys and they're litter mates. Went in looking for an adult and predictably got our hearts stolen by the babies. I mean, come on, they came pre-purred!
They've been at home a week and by now have access to all rooms. No transition problems. We were a whole lot more nervous than they ever were. They're an absolute joy!
Pictures, to be taken down soon-ish (b/c I plan on sharing the same with people I know IRL and I like online anonymity):
Going going aaaand gone.