I sat on my leather sofa in my bedroom and closed my eyes. My breathing slowed down and I could hear and feel my heart beating in places I didn’t know where possible. My biggest toe tingles and my middle finger couldn’t stop tapping on the leather sofa. But what was most surprising to notice was the fact that my mind had gone completely empty. The voice in my head that was usually louder that my speaking was silent.
I tried focusing more on my surroundings without analyzing anything. The first thing I heard was the ticking sound of an antique clock hanging on my wall. My mother had given me this clock yesterday, for moving out on my own 2 weeks ago.
I felt the cold breeze on my warm skin, coming from the open window in my bedroom. My cat Siem, curling himself against my right foot and purring softly. And a creaking sound coming from the attic door I wasn’t opening.
I blinked my eyes open and as my eyes adjusted to the light that shined in my room, my inner voice had returned only to frighten me with thoughts about,-who could have opened the attic doo-.
As I tried to calm my breathing, it hit me. I lived alone, Siem was still curled up against my foot. So it couldn’t have been him. -Was it the wind? Could the wind really reach as far as the attic?-. My hands were getting sweaty as I rubbed them against my pajama pants. I got up from my seat and slowly walked towards my bedroom door. Siem clearly annoyed with me, jumped up only to take my seat on the sofa.
While I was standing by the door I tried listening to whatever was happening in the attic. But heard nothing. I walked into the hallway and stopped at the bottom of the stairs leading up to the attic. The door to the attic was clearly open. It was too dark for me to see anything inside because the attic had no windows. -What could have opened the door? Should I say ‘Hello?’-. Assuming there was someone in my house besides myself , I doubt they would greet me back. -Perhaps it was a ghost? Do I believe in ghosts? No, no definitely not. It must have been the wind-.
If only there was such a thing as liquid courage. I would have swallowed it as if it were water. Burst into the attic and turned on the light as if it were nothing. Unfortunately there was no such thing as liquid courage. I had to do this on my own even though I was afraid. I decided I should walk up the stairs open the attic door wider and turn on the light. Mind you, the light switch was hanging from the ceiling in the middle of the room. Darkness was a fear I hadn’t let go of since childhood.
The 9 steps leading to the attic looked like 99 steps, but I had to do it. I took the first and second step and noticed Siem following right behind me. The third and fourth step where a lot easier. As nervous as I was the possibility of absolutely no one being in the attic was quite big. That thought encourage me to take the fifth step.
Something dropped on the attic floor and I froze in place. Siem dashed passed me into the attic. I heard his light footsteps onto the wooden floors.
‘Siem, comeback’, I whispered.
I heard a growl and a hiss that came from Siem. Siem ran out of the room. Somehow I had found the courage to move and ran up those last four steps and closed the attic door. I ran down the steps grabbed Siem and went inside my room. Once I closed the door I took a seat on the ground against my bedroom door. With a heartbeat that had accelerated and heavy breathing, I wondered what had fallen on to the floor. Siem struggled to get away from my hold so I let him go. He seemed to be doing just fine as he curled himself up on the leather sofa. It must have been a rat or something this is a very old apartment building. And Siem is the kind of cat that would be afraid of rats. Fact is he’s also afraid of spiders. A great alarm you see. When he notices a spider he starts to hiss and I know immediately what he means and I grab my shoe to kill the spider. Thinking of “Siem the spider alarm system” calmed me down tremendously.
Still sitting on the ground I scoot beside the door. I slowly opened the door and look out in the hallway. Silence filled the room. The soft breeze coming from the open window blowing against my neck and hair. Siem made a sound and I turned to look at him. He seemed way too comfortable after what had just happened. And I realized I had been exaggerating.
I closed the door and tried getting up. But was pulled straight down because my hair had been stuck in the door. I rubbed my painful scalp and opened the door, only to see two green eyes staring back into mine.