It Lives in the Stairwell

“How many times have I told you not to go down there, Sal?” Fred was pissed at his incorrigible wife for putting herself in danger.

Sally was halfway down the stairwell when the beam from Fred’s flashlight struck her face. Her cheeks flush excitement. “Oh Fred! It’s no big deal. Hurry, hand me the torch.”

Fred muttered under his breath and stepped forward to hand her the flashlight. As he crouched near the stairwell, he lost his balance and reflexively reached out to right himself. As he stretched to catch his fall, he lost his grip on the light. It dropped into the stairwell, hit the floor and rolled forward out of sight.

“Fred!” exclaimed Sally, frustrated that he could be so clumsy. “Oh. That’s okay dear,” she cooed, retracting her harshness. Sally was mindful to protect his feelings.

She was only halfway down to the stairwell floor. She no longer had a choice but to descend fully, grab the flashlight and complete the task. She would not be deterred! She was climbing down while Fred waited up top, looking on nervously. “Sally dear. Please be careful.”

Sally was not a tiny woman. Years of caring for her husband had left her with more than a few extra pounds. Despite the years and extra weight, Sally was quite agile. She made her way gracefully to the bottom of the stairwell, stepped off the ladder and knelt down to retrieve the flashlight.

As she did this, a long arm, hair and grey, reached out from a dark corner of the stairwell and clamped its hand-claw onto her ankle. Sally screamed with fright at the startling predicament she found herself in, while Fred looked on tensely not knowing what to do.

“Oh Sally! I told you not to go down there!” he cried.

Sally looked up at her husband and saw the love in his eyes. The creature gripped her ankle tighter. Judging by the strength of the creature, she knew it intended to pull her down into the dark hole it had dug.

She knew at that moment she was about to be eaten alive by this horrid creature, whatever it was, and it would happen while her beloved husband watched.

She refused to be made a meal and flipped her chubby body around. Then she began stomping on the creature’s arm. Bones cracked as she stomped away, crunching and grinding noises drifted up through the stairwell opening.

Fred looked on in horror.

As she continued to stomp on the creatures arm, it began to turn to mush. The thing howled from within its hole and blood began to spurt from the cracks that began by so much impact.

Fred could not speak. He was terrified that his Sally would be lost in the stairwell, drug deep inside the hole where that thing had its nest.

Finally with gusto, she kicked the thing into the hole and grabbed a hold of the rungs of the ladder. She began climbing quickly, rung by rung, not bothering to look down.

When she reached the surface, she turned to her husband and said, “We really need to get an exterminator out here, Fred. The rats are getting harder and harder to control. And they’re getting really big!”

They locked arms and headed back to the house where they’d spend the evening in front of the television.

>> >> It Lives in the Stairwell

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