My house is haunted
My house belongs to “them.”
They are everywhere. I put something away, it jumps back out. I walk down the hallway, something walks behind me. The television turns itself on, the lights flicker, a dish falls to the floor. Sometimes, a piano plays. In the thick veil of early morning, I hear them and feel them. They stalk me, they surround me, I am not alone.
My movements often disturb them. A dawn ago, I closed my front door, then opened it again. I only wanted my jacket, but one of them was waiting. Two eyes peered in the dark. A hand reached, clutching something. They were awake, creeping toward me. They did not want me to leave.
On another morning, I rose in the dark as usual. My husband slept in the bed, still snoring. My mirror, dim with filtered street light, reflected a bare outline of my face. I picked up a brush and a hair dryer, leaning in close to see myself. The noise deafened me when I turned the dryer on, but maybe I could be quick. Maybe . . . .
I was not quick enough. Drawing back to look at the mirror, I saw one of them below my hip. Two eyes, clear as stars, gazed up at me. The one who owned them was waiting for me; waiting, waiting until . . . .
I turned off the dryer.
“Mommy?” The three-year-old boy spoke with a sudden, piercing voice. I jumped, nearly falling backward. “Are you done drying your hair now?”
I gazed at him, sorting through my own confusion. Eventually, the fog cleared from my mind, and I smiled back. “I’m so sorry I woke you, sweetheart,” I picked up my son and hugged him close. Last year’s dinosaur pajamas clung, skin-tight, to his legs. He had done it again, walked into my bathroom early and silent, not knowing or caring how it unnerved me.
“Want to lay down with Daddy?” I offered.
He rubbed his eyes sleepily, nodding. I gave him a kiss on the forehead, and placed him with his father for a few more minutes. His day would start soon. Mine was already underway.
Tonight when I go home, I expect to see lights flicker, hear pianos play, and feel them around, just outside my view. See, my house is haunted . . .
. . . and I like it.
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