Live To Scream Another Day

I startle out of a deep sleep, utterly confused as to what I’m hearing. Juno perks her head up as there’s another round of flapping and crashing noises.

Am I getting robbed? Wait, my alarm system was set. No one got in my house. What the hell is going on?

I close my eyes again, hoping that I can just ignore what’s happening and go back to sleep. There’s more ruckus in my house so I force myself out of bed. Juno excitedly jumps down as the two of us leave to investigate this intrusion.

I tentatively make my way to the kitchen where a black thing is flying across the cabinets. I scream and run back to my room. Juno loyally follows me.

I close (and lock) both of the doors to my bedroom.

What am I supposed to do right now? How do I get that monstrous flying beast out of my kitchen?

Luckily, my older brother lives about ten minutes away. He’ll know what to do! I grab my phone off the nightstand–it’s just after 8:30am–and call Sean.

It rings a few times before he answers.

“Why are you calling me so early?” My lazy ass brother’s groggy voice whispers through the phone.

“THERE’S A BAT OR SOMETHING IN MY KITCHEN!” I scream.

“What are you talking about?”

I quickly give him a recap of my morning so far, not knowing how much more exciting it is going to get. I’m hoping that he’ll come over to help me get rid of it. After all, he’s my older brother. He’s supposed to protect me, right?

Instead, he mutters, “Go get a gun and shoot it.”

So Sean is less than helpful and I hang up. He texts me a link about what to do if there’s a bat in your house. Once again, not very helpful.

I text him back, but he doesn’t respond. I can only assume he’s gone back to sleep. He won’t be assisting me in my time of need.

I take a couple of deep breaths to calm my nerves and gain courage. This is my house. I’m not going to let something take it from me!

I look down at all of my exposed skin from the shorts and t-shirt I slept in. I suddenly feel very vulnerable. I put on jeans, a bra, large hoodie, and socks. For good measure, I grab a baseball cap.

Wearing a bra has given me a false sense of security. I take another deep breath and leave my room, closing the door so at least Juno is protected.

I need a weapon–and not a gun like my useless brother suggested.

I tip-toe through the dining room, keeping as wide a space as possible between me and the kitchen, and make it to my utility room. Leaning against the wall is (what I hope will be) my protection–a broom.

Fearfully clutching my makeshift weapon, I creep back to the kitchen. I sneak glances through the opening, but don’t see anything. I use every angle through the doorway, trying to get a sighting of this demon. Still nothing.

It has gone completely silent and there’s no movement, as if it knows I’m coming for it and is biding its time to attack.

I strengthen my grip on the broom and enter its domain–my kitchen.

I quickly scan every corner, but there’s no sign of it. One of my cabinets is cracked open. Using the end of my broom, I poke it closed and wait. When nothing happens, I hit the cabinet a couple of times in an attempt to startle it into moving.

There’s a small gap behind my microwave. I push it back to no success in revealing its hiding place. A folder looks suspiciously swollen. I poke it and it falls flat.

Maybe I’m just crazy and imagined it earlier. Though, Juno saw it, too. It’s in here–somewhere.

With absolutely no idea where it is, I’m forced to come to two revelations. 1) It’s a clever little monster. 2) There’s something worse than having a flying beast in your house. Not knowing where it went is terrifying.

I’m slightly confident I’ve checked the kitchen as best I can, so I continue my search through the house. It doesn’t appear to be anywhere in my office. I walk down the hallway to my guest room. There’s something orange on the bed and I forget about everything else as I’m overcome with a curiosity as to what it could be. I take a few steps into the room as I try and figure out what it is.

The monster takes flight and out of the corner of my eye, I see its horrific dark wings as it comes for me.

What happens then, I can only describe in one way: I lose my shit.

Screeching and cussing, I run and slam the door shut. Still freaking out, I fumble into my bedroom and shut that door as well.

Juno excitedly greets me and I pet her absentmindedly as I try to figure out my next move. It would be much easier to defeat the creature if I had help.

Sean has already established that he doesn’t care about me and is more worried about sleeping than helping his darling, younger sister.

I put shoes on as I resolve to trek outside to ask my neighbor for a cup of sugar. To be clear, by “cup of sugar,” I mean “come help me get this thing out of my house before it kills us all.”

Oh, have I mentioned it’s snowing? That’s right. At every passing moment, I’m getting more and more secluded and isolated from the outside world–no doubt this thing’s doing. This is like a horror movie, only it’s actually happening to me.

My neighbors have a young daughter, so I don’t feel guilty for knocking at their door a little after 9am. I knock and wait. No answer. It must have already gotten to them.

I push through the snow to get back to my house and call another potential ally: Erica. I forgot that she sleeps in until 12 or 1 most days and wake her up. Once I get through explaining what has happened so far, she says something that makes Sean’s earlier advice seem much better.

“You should leave it in there for now; it’s probably good for it. It’s cold outside.”

Very evenly, I respond, “I don’t give a shit about its temperature.”

Nothing useful results from the conversation. I hang up and have to accept another truth: I’m alone. No help is coming for me. I must conquer it myself.

I go back inside my house to it crashing around in my guest room. It won’t stay contained for long.

Even though it’s snowing and freezing outside, I prop open my front and back doors. I need to get it outside so it can go terrorize someone else.

Wanting more protection for the upcoming battle, I grab a beach towel to supplement my broom. My plan: I’ll use the broom to swat at it if it comes too close or to encourage it to move out of the room to go outside. If it stops moving, I’ll throw the towel over it and move it that way.  Simple. Fool-proof.

I open the door to it flying in manic circles around the room. As I’m finally able to get a good look at it, there’s another truth forced on me: I’ve been freaking out over a bird–a bird that has been pooping on my floor.

Before I can dive too much into that thought, it notices the open door and flies straight at me. I scream and drop my broom, holding the beach towel above my head to protect my face from its assumed talons.

I stumble as it continues to fly at me and my back hits the door to my bedroom. It wasn’t secured properly, so it opens and I fall back. As it flies into my room, it grazes my shoulder.

Reminder: the front and back door to my house are wide open. So, if there were any neighbors around, they would have clearly heard me scream, “SHIT! IT TOUCHED MY FUCKING SHOULDER!”

I yell at Juno to follow me and the two of us run outside.

As I stand there, snow heavily falling down, I can’t help but feel defeated. Somehow, it kicked us out of the house and has now set up residence in my room.

I stay outside for a couple more minutes as I try and figure out what to do. Juno looks at me as if I’m crazy. To be fair, I think I might be.

I go back in the house and grab the broom that I discarded so quickly previously. Juno is at my heels as we walk into my room. She immediately runs to my sliding closet, which is open about four inches or so. There’s some flapping in there at her intrusion. I call Juno back and curse myself for not closing the closet all the way last time I used it. Now it’s with all of my clothes, probably pooping all over them.

There’s a discarded feather on the floor. I don’t know how else to interpret besides a warning–a subtle threat.

I slide my closet halfway open. The bird doesn’t react to give away its position. I poke through my clothes with the broom. Even though that move hasn’t worked at all yet, I’m somehow still surprised at its failure.

Keeping my head up to spot any impending signs of attack, I squat down to pull out a hamper full of (used to be) clean clothes. This opens up my view of the closet and I can see the bird. It’s standing in the back…just watching and waiting.

Unfortunately for the bird, Juno sees it and rushes forward. The bird flies out of the closet, causing me to drop everything again and scream. Juno chases it out of my room and follows it back to the kitchen.

The bird flies maddingly around the cabinets. It’s absolutely panicked and at one point, sits in my fruit basket.

Great, now I have to throw those apples away.

It swoops too close to the floor and Juno jumps up…and misses. For some reason, the bird lands on the ground next to my trashcan and Juno leaps on top of it.

I yell at Juno to get off and even though it’s in her instincts to attack it, she manages to listen and backs off.

The bird takes flight one last time and finally notices the back door that is open and flies away. Though I don’t see it actually leave, Juno’s entire body language changes and that tells me all I need to know.

As things settle down and I’m cleaning the bird poop off of my floors, another unsettling truth comes: I’ll never be able to be a Disney Princess. Birds don’t sweetly sing with me; they try to kill me.

I will now share the image of the beast that terrorized my Saturday morning.

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