It’s that time of year. The air is getting crisp, the nights are getting long, and my book list is getting short. Time to stock up and settle in. As I dust of the shelf to prepare it for some new edgy talent, I catch a moving shadow out of the corner of my eye. Is it just anticipation of the next thriller on the shelf; a bit of fall jitters; or does something more sinister lurk behind the door to the den?
Uh oh, I think I heard a scratching. It could have been Jack Bauer drawing his weapon as he flew by the window on his way to save the world. Was that, “Sorry, ma’am, I’m a federal agent,” I heard? Or was it the crackle of cooling glass from Jack Frost nipping at the window? Maybe it was Jack the Ripper whisking a surgical knife swiftly from beneath his black garb.
Okay, enough of this. Snap out of it. It’s time to switch gears. A little popcorn and T.V. is just what the doctor ordered. It might not make sense to you, but a good horror movie always calms me down on a stormy night like this. If you see that it’s made up, it can’t be real, right? Something grade B… “Evil Dead II” will be just perfect. I feel better already just watching ole Bruce as Ash heading off toward the cabin in that silly car again. Oh yeah, popcorn. While the microwave is popping I think I’ll run downstairs and grab a soda. Darn. The basement fridge is empty. Oh well, out to the garage.
Hey! What happened to the lights? Always the optimist, I realize that the breaker box is down here too. It must have been the microwave that flipped a breaker. Arms extended, a little dizzy from the sudden blackness, I turn and slowly head toward… Ouch! I must have tripped on something on the floor. Disoriented now, I try to get up, but my left leg won’t hold any weight. Still in utter blackness, something crashes to the right, followed by grumbling. Is someone in here? Deep breaths, it’s just my imagination.
The utter vacuum of sight and sound from the power failure overwhelms me. I sit completely still surrounded by the nothingness. I can hear my heart beating in my ears. Now completely disoriented, I slowly extend my arms and lower them toward the ground, hoping to latch onto a familiar object that will orient me. My left hand finds something, rounded at the end. It moves! My hand jumps back as I gasp. A shoe!
So what is it: a zombie, or maybe a serial killer? Did someone deliberately cut the lights to the house, or this the first chapter in an apocalypse? I think I’ll skip the movie and start loading up my Kindle. Better yet, I’ll head to the book store. If somebody’s going to have a bad day, I’d rather read about it or write about it than be about it. How about you?