Ever Had That Feeling....
that something's not right? It's an eerie sense that sends tingles down the back of your neck- nothing is obviously wrong, but you are suddenly tense and don't know why.
It was 4:00am this morning when I sensed it-- the alarm clock had just gone off. Everything in my bedroom seemed normal, yet something was wrong somewhere in the house. I couldn't put my finger on it, but I knew it. My bedroom door was closed, as usual. I stood in front of it for a moment before turning the handle. As the door opened, I expected to see a ghost in the hallway, or a a thief scurrying into the dark corner to hide behind the drapes, but everything seemed normal still. I walked to the kitchen and fumbled to find the light switch. I flicked the switch and nothing happened. Oh God, I thought-- there was a thief inside (or outside) of the house and they had cut the power line- probably the phone line too. I've seen it done in hundreds of movies. They always do that. Then I remembered that the kitchen light had burned out weeks ago, and I hadn't replaced it. No cause for alarm yet. I continued through the kitchen and into the sunroom, still searching for a reason for the uneasy feeling. As I entered the sunroom, I felt I had discovered it: the backdoor was wide open. I turned on the light and was horrified to find a pillow on the floor- with it's stuffing pulled out and scattered about the room. The framed pictures of me with various celebrities layed on the floor, covered with the potting soil from the overturned plants. The folding chairs that had been neatly stacked against the wall when I went to bed last night were now lying on the floor in a pile. The vase on the end table was also toppled and pussywillows (yes, pussywillows, Dottie!), were spilled out among the clutter. I immediately closed and locked the back door. I wonder wether or not I had locked the theif outside, or if he was still in the house- locked in with me. I wondered "What were they looking for? Why did they ransack my sunroom/office? Where are they now? Am I missing anything?". Everything seemed to still be here, just in a messier arrangement.
Just then, I heard my roommate cough on the other side of his closed bedroom door. That's when I got mad- maybe he got really drunk last night and trashed the house in his stupor. Or maybe that wasn't a cough- maybe it was a cry for help being made through a gag. Maybe at that very moment, he was tied up with rope, with a bandana wrapped around his face and in his mouth- a man (or a gang of men) holding a knife to his throat or a gun to his head and warning him "don't make a sound or you'll get it". I've seen this in lots of movies too.
I wasn't brave enough to open his bedroom door. I wanted to eliminate the rest of the house first. I started turning on all of the lights in the house, looking for other signs of a theif, or an actual theif. I went to the bathroom, turned on the light and dramatically pulled the shower curtain open (like they always do in horror movies). Nothing. I walked through every room of the house, and still nothing. I stood in the hallway, contemplating opening my roommates door. Just before I turned the handle I heard a hissing sound behind me. I turned around and saw the culpret- a possum! Better yet- a possum IN MY HOUSE!!!!! Yeah, he was laying on his side with his mouth open- playing that game that possums play-- what's it called? Oh yeah, it was a possum playing possum. If it weren't for the beady eye that was following me around, or the hissing noise escaping through his nasty little, razor-tooth-filled mouth, I would've thought it was dead. Then I realized that I had walked right beside that beast at least 10 times, with my bare legs just inches from it's infection-filled mouth. I went and opened the front door. I propped open the storm door and he had a clean get away, but he didn't move. He just layed there. I started to call him, but I didn't really know the right key phrases to use to call a possum. "Here possum, possum, possum" didn't work. I contemplated just getting dressed and going to work and letting Omega deal with it when he woke up, but then I figured that wouldn't be fair. I went out to the garage and got my shovel. I came back inside, half hoping that the possum had made a break for it while I was away, but there he was. In a quick flash, I had his limp body on the end of my shovel and headed toward the front door. I expected him to jump off the shovel, hiss and bite me the entire time. But I got him outside without incident and gently layed him in the grass in the front yard. I ran into the house, slammed the door. I composed myself, cleaned up the mess and then went back to look- he was gone. Just like Jason in "Friday the 13th", or Freddy Krueger in "Nightmare on Elm Street". You can never turn your back on a villian, even when they appear to be dead. They always get up, disappear and then attack from the shadows. I've seen it too many times in the horror movies.
As I was leaving for work, I realized the reason that the backdoor was open- the weather seal had come loose and prevented the door from closing all the way. The possum probably pushed it open since it wasn't fully latched. He ransacked the sunroom looking for food, and froze in place when he heard me moving about the house. Case closed- no thief, no murderer. Just an overgrown rodent with midnight munchies.