The Night of the Opossum, Part I
a short thriller by Rachel C. Parton
It was a warm Monday night in July in metro Detroit. Douglas and Rachel Parton had arrived home from a mission trip to Jamaica the night before, and they were still elated and starry-eyed with fond memories of the trip. Rachel had spent all day Monday unpacking and doing laundry, while Doug had returned to work. As the clock struck midnight, the two were exhausted and greatly anticipating the soft cradle of a pillow around their tired little noggins.
However, as Doug entered the bedroom, something seemed amiss. The closet door was open, as laundry had been sorted throughout the day, and from the corner of his eye, Doug saw something move.
"Rachel - don't come in here," he called loudly, in a voice that immediately caused Rachel to freeze.
"What is it?" she asked timidly.
"... I don't know," Doug responded. At this, Rachel curled up into a little ball on the chair in which she was sitting. However, she wouldn't be able to sit still for long, because Doug continued, "Bring me a golf club."
Moments later, the door slammed. There was banging, and then the door opened, Doug ran out and slammed the door behind him quickly. Eyes wide, Rachel again questioned, "What is it?!"
"You don't want to know," Doug protested.
"Just tell me!" Rachel insisted.
Doug paused, then said disgustedly, "It's a possum."
"WE ARE GETTING OUT OF HERE." Rachel immediately headed for the computer and began Googling critter control services and hotels simultaneously. Doug decided not to try to kill the opossum, because he "didn't want to get blood everywhere." So he got on his cell phone, trying to reach their landlord. This continued for about half an hour, until Doug was finally able to get ahold of a critter control company that was open 24-7. In the meantime, their upstairs neighbor, who was in the process of moving out due to a supposed mite infestation, got wind of the situation and came downstairs to join in the excitement. She was eager to see the intruder.
The critter control guy finally arrived around 12:45am. Rachel cowered in the office, refusing to look at the offending opossum, while Doug got the camera to take pictures for evidence, and the upstairs neighbor kept rattling on about how opossums "have six babies - there must be tons of them!"
To be continued...