A tale to make your fur stand up


It’s almost Halloween. That seems like a good time to recycle a very personal scary story we’re sure many of you can relate to. We’re calling it

No One Can Hear You Scream from the Closet

Trouble has no time for a fake jack-o-lantern.

Trouble has no time for a fake jack-o-lantern.

Mischief here. Because our Not-Very-Good Weekend ended with a Very Bad Day, and it was all Trouble’s fault, I’m taking over this blog to tell the tale. Trouble can just sit in the corner and think about what he did while I type.

It all started with the houseguests. We have a friend who comes to stay pretty often, and we like her. But every time Betty visits, there’s lots of coming and going. It throws our whole schedule off. Naps are interrupted, breakfast often is late, and dinner is just plopped in our dishes without so much as a “bon appetit.” We don’t like that.

This time, on top of all that, people came over to our house Saturday night for dinner. We tried to be good hosts, but it’s pretty hard when guests are sitting in your favorite evening nap spots.

And we needed our rest. Just before the people arrived, all of our toys got scooped up and put in a box in a corner of the living room, and our favorite pile of brown paper – we love to dive and burrow in its crinkly folds – was rolled up and hidden away.

We finally marched upstairs in a huff. If we can’t be the center of attention, there’s no point in hanging around.

That brings us to Sunday.

There’s a little room upstairs that’s filled with rows of hanging things and, on the floor, shoes and small boxes. There’s lots of fascinating stuff to explore – except we’re not allowed in there.

This Sunday morning, though, Betty and our Decca were rushing off somewhere yet again. I tried to get involved with their preparations and offer fashion advice (I am an expert on shoes and love to help select belts, scarves and shoes!) but got nowhere. So I went looking for Trouble to see if he wanted to wrestle or play Thunder Paws. That’s where we run all around the house and up and down the stairs, jumping over each other.

I couldn’t find him – and then I saw the door to the little room was open. I stuck my nose in and heard him whisper my name.

“Psst! I’m in here behind the shoe boxes!”

“Trouble,” I said, shocked. “You know you aren’t supposed to be in there! Come out right now.”

There’s tissue paper…” And he rolled around just so I could hear the rustling.

“Trouble, I’m coming in there right now to get you. We can take the tissue paper with us.”

Trouble just can't stay away.

You can’t see me here, right? But you’re not going to shut me in here again, are you??

Heart thumping, with one leap I landed in the center of the room. My second leap took me into the corner where I could hear Trouble behind the hanging things, now chewing on the delectable paper. It sounded so crisp I couldn’t think about anything else.

And then the light went out and the door slammed shut.

A few minutes later, we heard the garage door go up. And down. And the car drove away.
We were trapped!

She’ll come back,” Trouble said, trying to sound confident but failing. “She didn’t do a nose count and she’ll remember that and come back. Listen! I think I hear the car now.

“It’s your fault she didn’t do a nose count before she left!” I gave him a nip on the ear, I was so mad.

Hey! What’d I do?”

“She stopped doing the nose count because you started carrying on so much. Remember last week? She had her coat on and was ready to go and couldn’t find you. As soon as she called your name, you bolted to the top of the refrigerator and cowered. You actually cowered! And the way you mewed! It was sickening.”

I don’t want to go back to the vet. She always takes us in the morning…

“You’re pathetic,” I hissed. “Help me tip over the laundry basket. We might as well be comfortable while we wait. In the dark. Without any food or water. We could die in here – and it’ll be your fault.”

Huh. You wanted that tissue paper just as much as I did.

“Go to sleep.”

I want my litter pan.

“Go to sleep!”

We were in there all day. It was dinner time when the door opened and light hit our eyes. I’m proud to say that aside from shedding – we shed gobs when we’re upset – you’d never know we spent The Entire Day shut in that closet. We managed to hold it in and, if I dare say so myself, we looked pretty nonchalant when we sauntered out the door to freedom. A stretch and a yawn can mask a lot of emotion.

Our Decca felt really bad about our ordeal. But it was all Trouble’s fault. Worst of all, we forgot the tissue paper and don’t dare go back to get it.

This post is republished, in slightly edited form, from Central Penn Parent, where we were among a group of pets contributing to the Tail Tales blog in 2013 — until someone decided recipes were a better idea. But the recipes are pretty good, so check them out! How about Oreo Candy Corn Bark (it looks like pizza!) for Halloween?