The Possum (Short Story)

It’s dark and cold but that’s how I like it. It makes me feel safe to be able to snuggle up in blankets. I want to stay like that and never come out. I like the feel of cold air on my face, not so cold it makes my lungs hurt but cold enough to make my nose cold to the touch. I had always wanted to live underground. It means light doesn’t wake me up in the morning. I don’t have to wait for the sun to go down to go to bed. I can have my own schedule. Well it should depend on work too but I work from home so it doesn’t matter.

I stretch and reluctantly crawl out of bed. It’s tempting to stay there all day but I need to get up and put the shade cloths up over my garden. It’s going to be hot and I can’t let the sun fry everything. I pull on shorts and a t-shirt and step into thongs. Outside it’s already starting to heat up even though the suns barely up. I turn on the pump at the tap and connect the sprinklers. I let it run while I tie up the shade cloths. I check the tomatoes and beans and pick the handful of ripe ones. There is a snail on my cauliflower. I pick it up, drop it and stand on it. It makes a satisfying squelchy crunch. I turn off the water and go back inside.

The possum sits staring at me with wide frightened eyes. It’s the size of a big rat, it’s definitely a ringtail. I should have known better than to leave the door open even for that short time. I walk towards it slowly. I get within a meter of it before it bolts. It dashes around my house knocking books, glasses, paper, pictures and stationary onto the floor as it crosses the bench. I quickly shut the door that leads to the hallway connecting to the rest of my house. Now it is at least contained in one room. I open the door that leads outside. I try to chase it towards the door but it has other ideas. It’s on my bookshelf now knocking more books and pictures onto the floor. I make another grab for it but again it evades me.

I stop chasing it. It crams itself into the space above the books on the top shelf and sits staring down at me. I get the stool and place it in front of the shelves. Then I get a cardboard box and a wooden spoon and hop up on the stool. I manage to get it into the box with only a little prodding from the spoon. Then I quickly shut the box, hop down from the stool and carry it outside. I shut the door behind me before opening the box. The possum jumps out and runs up the nearest tree vanishing from sight.

I go back inside letting out a sigh of relief. The temporary chaos and excitement that invaded my house was gone. I could relax again.

This is a fictional short story. Here is the exergesis.

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5 thoughts on “The Possum (Short Story)

  1. Wow did this really happen? I think you are telling a real event…but one time I responded to someone’s post because I thought it was real and then they said “no It was fiction. Didn’t you see in the descrption?”

    Then I felt stupid and embarrassed, so that is the only reason I am checking.

    This was well written and exciting as the creature ran around , knocking everything over. I was scared it would bite you.

    I once had a bat in the house. It was just me as a single mom with 2 little kids. I was afraid for them to get bitten and I was afraid for myself too.

    I finally caught it with a makeshift net…that was one of those pop-open laundry baskets with the mesh.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m not sure if it was dangerous or not. But my daughter was afraid of it, and I had to catch it so we could go to bed.

        I asked my father in law t9 help me, because he was the only man in the house at the time and it was his house.

        But he did not really care. He pretended to try for 2 minutes and then he just left us to fen for ourselves. And he went to bed.

        Liked by 1 person

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