last night, i spent the night at my sister’s apartment. she and her boyfriend headed down to florida today for a mini vacation, and she wanted me to apartment and hedgehog sit, so i needed to pick up her keys. i came down, she and rod had made pork chops, and the three of us sat around and chatted through dinner, then went to bed fairly early.
i always sleep in the cozy little room off the kitchen, on a futon. i had trouble falling asleep, probably because i’m not used to the noises her apartment makes, and i’m always concerned a ghost will come through the wall. come 1am in the morning, i’ve finally fallen asleep. i’m lying on my back, probably drooling on myself, when all of a sudden something crawls through my hair onto my collarbone.
i sit bolt upright, halfway into a full-blown panic attack, sending blankets in all directions. by the time i’ve gathered my wits and am able to stop gibbering senselessly to myself, whatever it was is gone. i cautiously lie back down, facing the room with my back to the wall (which is how i normally sleep so monsters can’t creep up on me), and wait for the *thing* to come back. nothing happens for a few minutes, and i’ve finally started to relax, when i hear it:
scratch, scratch, scratch.
horrified, i slowly,
s l o w l y
peer over the side of the bed. there is a small, dark shape scaling the edge of the sheet that is hanging down off the bed, climbing toward me, faster and faster, my obvious terror driving it to reach higher, higher, higher! i let out a yelp, give the sheet a brisk shake, and the *thing* falls away, and scurries off to plot under the futon.
mustering all my bravery, i climb out of bed and turn on the light. peering down under the futon, i see it: a small brown mouse, with bright red eyes, staring at me. i’ve no great fear of mice; i like them a lot, actually. i think they’re cute. but there was something a bit menacing in the way this one met my gaze. i must have unknowingly initiated a staring contest, and it just sat there, staring, completely fearless.
it was obvious quite quickly i wasn’t getting anywhere, so i gingerly climbed back into bed, and spent the rest of the night tossing and turning (with the light on, of course) waiting for the little monster to sidle up noiselessly and bite me on the neck.