I thought that the sound was coming from under my bed. I had never heard anything like it before.
I prayed. Out loud.
“God, I hope I’m not going crazy. Please help me not to be the only one in the house hearing this.”
After I said Amen, my roommate screamed at me from his room on the other side of the wall.
“Jay! Do you hear that?”
Answered prayer is a beautiful thing. At least now, if I was going crazy, my roommate was going with me. But my comfort didn’t last very long. The noise was still there and it was sounding creepier by the minute.
The house had a history.
It was one of those old houses that you will find in every small, southern town. It was old and pretty much everyone has lived in it at one time or another. Oh, and they all said that it was haunted.
A friend came over one time and stopped in the hallway leading to our kitchen to point out the fact that there used to be a transmission from some old car sitting over in the corner. His uncle lived there and apparently liked to keep transmissions in the kitchen. Sadly, the transmission wasn’t there anymore so that couldn’t be what was making the noise.
Another lady that lived there at one time told me about her friend Virginia that used to come and visit. By the way, Virginia was dead when she was coming over for those visits. As the story was told to me, Virginia would come in to the bedroom with a set of keys and pull on people’s toes. What is it with stories about dead people carrying keys?
I don’t believe in ghosts so I laughed off the story about Virginia when it was told to me. But I have to admit, while I was laying there in my bed, listening to the sounds of death, I thought about Virginia.
My roommate and I met out in the hallway where we had a conference to try and figure out what that noise was. When we couldn’t reach a consensus we decided to follow the example of every idiot in every horror movie that has ever been made. We were going outside to check it out.
You do realize, right, that there would be no such thing as horror movies if it wasn’t for the idiot that decides to go outside and check things out? People don’t like to watch movies about responsible adults that just roll over and go back to sleep when they hear a weird noise.
I led the way out. When I put my hand on the doorknob, I thought that this might be the last time I ever see this house again. I had lived a good, full life. There were worse ways to die than at the hands of a crazy lady with keys.
I opened the door and stepped out onto the porch, into the cool night air. My roommate told me to stop and then disappeared back into his room. He came back out carrying a .38 Special. The gun, not the band. Suddenly I felt more confident as I led us back out to our hopefully now less certain death. Can you shoot dead people? Or the undead? Whatever they are.
And then a thought hit me that I had to share with my roommate.
“Hey. You’re the one with the gun. Maybe you should lead the way.”
And so he did.
Eventually, we made it back inside. It turns out that Virginia wasn’t coming back to look for her keys or pull our toes.
There was, however, a cat having babies under our house. Cats having babies, they tell me, make strange noises. Noises that sound sort of like old ladies carrying keys. And that leads us to the moral of the story.
It is perfectly normal for a strong, mentally stable, and macho young man to be afraid of a pregnant cat. But if you happen to hear one and decide to go check it out, just follow the guy with the gun.