Sunday, December 16, 2012

Can One Be Afoot if One Has No Feet?

Something is afoot in Backroads. I don't know what it is. Or if it even has feet. But it would behoove that something to knock it off. To cease and desist with the shenanigans.

Last Saturday morning, The Pony and I headed out to the garage at 7:55 on our way to town for his academic tournament. Genius was sleeping in, as was Hick the sicko. I had awoken Hick to tell him we were leaving. He mumbled, coughed, and pulled the quilt back over his head. Because he has the breather, you see, to keep him ventilated.

The Pony rounded the corner of the house first, and trotted down the four steps to the garage. He pulled open the green metal door with the half glass, and said softly, "That's weird. Dad's garage door is up." Which got my attention, because all manner of critters come in if the garage door is up. Possums and skunks and our dogs and other dogs and chickens and mice and baby moles and frogs. Most of them want to eat the dry cat food out of the roaster pan. The frogs, I suspect, just take a wrong turn on the way to the fish pond.

"Your dad must have left it open last night when he got home from the auction."

The Pony busied himself with scooping some cat food into the empty pan. "But Mom. The LIGHT is o---." At that moment, the overhead garage light went off. It comes on when the door goes up, then goes off after a minute or two. Which would mean that the garage door had just gone up as we were leaving the kitchen for the garage. With nobody there. With Hick's garage door opener on the sun visor of his car, and the wall-mounted control a doorbell button five feet high, right beside the walk-in door.

"Huh. Maybe your dad got up and fed the cats while I was in the shower."

"Mom! The light would have been off by now. And there was no food in the pan."

We drove off to town. After closing that creepy garage door. When I got home, I grilled Hick and Genius. At separate times, of course, due to their different get-up times. Hick swore that he had not been outside. He suggested that the garage mouse the cats refuse to kill was responsible. That it ran up the wall and pushed on that doorbell button with its tiny hand-like mouse feet. A feat that would have necessitated the Garage Nest Mousester to hang perpendicular and pound that doorbell with a tiny mouse sledgehammer.

Genius related that when he arrived home Friday night, Hick's garage door was up. But since Hick was asleep, and he'd been so sick, he was probably incoherent from cough medicine, so Genius did not bother him. Neither did he close the garage door. Which still did not explain the light on Saturday morning. Genius said the light is activated by a motion sensor. So maybe a cat or mouse ran in front of it. Which would mean they had to be up on the metal garage door tracks, because we don't set off the light when we walk around in the garage.

I called my mom to kill some time while waiting for The Pony to get done with his tournament so we could start our Book House excursion. We dissected the facts. The dogs had gone crazy barking when I got out of the shower. Something must have been out there. Maybe thieves were cruising around with a clicker, trying garage doors at random, making plans to come back when nobody was home. Some people have garages with doors that enter right into their kitchen, doors they don't lock. My mom used to be a big Murder She Wrote fan. In the middle of telling her about the garage door mystery, I got a creepy feeling in my chest. What if a person had walked in the garage door by the porch, pushed the button to open Hick's garage door, heard us coming, and jumped in Hick's Pacifica to hide? What if there had been a creeper laying down in Hick's car while The Pony and I dithered about the mystery? With only a thin layer of metal separating us? EEEEEEEE!

Last night, Genius and Hick were both out on the town. The Pony and I were watching Redneck Island. At 8:50, we heard footsteps above. They continued in the area of the boys' bathroom, and Genius's room. The Pony tried to deny it. But every now and then, he'd say, "I heard THAT! I think I'll wait until Dad gets home from the auction to go up and have my shower." I went into my office around 9:30. By 10:15, he was tired of waiting. He started up. Midway, he stopped. "Did you hear that one? It was in Genius's room. Now I hear feet walking through the kitchen!" He ran back down the steps and into my office. "It must be Dad." We waited. No more footfalls above. Nobody home.

The Pony went back to watch TV. I called Genius, who had been at a friend's house since afternoon. "Where are you? When are you coming home?"

"I'm still here watching a movie. I'll be home before midnight."

"Well, something has been looking for you for the last hour and a half. Just so you know. Your brother is afraid to go upstairs."

Something is afoot in Backroads.


  1. Perhaps it's the ghost from the Book House. You need to contact the owner's friend--she's a shaman AND an exorcist.

  2. Didn't I warn you about bringing a ghost home from the Book House? Lay abook out and see if the page is turned.

  3. But--as you point out what about the feet? Don't ghosts float? I'm voting for zombies.

  4. Yep, you probably brought a ghost home....

  5. Sioux,
    I'll thank you not to mention that EX word here again, Madam. As I explained at The Book House when you so kindly brought up the shaman and the dying, and Donna chimed in about the REAL EX-word for that William Peter Blatty book being right here in St. Louis, WHILE I WAS RIGHT THERE IN ST. LOUIS...I will never read that book again, nor ever see the movie for the first time, and prefer not to have that subject rattling around in my head at all.

    EEK! I just did a Google search to make sure I spelled his name right, and PICTURES CAME UP OF THE COVER OF THAT BOOK!

    Oh, dear. That would be like taunting. I think I shall not give that a try.

    That's much better. I've never seen a zombie. So they are most certainly not real. But if they were, they would be kind of stupid like the ones in Zombieland. And Woody Harrelson might come help me. Hey! His Google pictures are more inviting than the EX-word book cover.

    Did you hear that? I'm turning on the light.