Saturday, July 9, 2011

Holly: 1, Shelob: 0

"Watch out, Sam. There's a spider web across the length of the kitchen."

I'd just finished eating the last piece of bacon, tormenting Nala mercilessly the entire time. The cat has on more than one occasion licked up the bacon grease off of a plate if no one's watching.

She's a smart cat.

Sam was in the process of packing his lunch, and I'd looked up just in time to see a single thread of the web glinting in the morning light. Heeding my warning, he came to a dead stop, looking for it. I pointed it out to him, and he tore off a paper towel and proceeded to knock it down, no spider in sight.

"That's weird. Definitely not a cobweb," he noted as he threw the paper towel away.

"Don't tell me things like that," I shuddered. Spiders and I... well, we're not friends. "I'm just wondering how you'd missed it."

Sam shrugged. "It was up pretty high."

Knowing my fear of spiders, Sam proceeds to amuse and distract me as he finished packing his lunch. In the course of cleaning up breakfast, all thoughts of spiders and webs disappeared from my brain. Mission accomplished, he kissed me and then headed to work.

Later in the afternoon, I realized that there was far too much blood in my caffeine system. Understanding the direct relation between my writing and caffeine intake, I walked back into the kitchen to make another batch of coffee. I set it to brew and then tidied a few random things around the house while I waited. Re-entering the kitchen, I poured myself a mug and went to fetch some half-n-half from the fridge.

Walking along I caught a glimpse of black and felt something brush against my hair. Immediately I started batting at my hair, thinking a fly had somehow managed to get into the house and avoid the cats. I look around, surprised that I cannot hear it buzzing.

Now, my eyesight isn't the best in the world. In fact, it's pretty atrocious. Because of this, I often make assumptions based on the general size and color of objects.

So here I am, batting at the air about my head like a madwoman at what I think is a fly, when my brain repeats what it just realized: I cannot hear the fly buzzing. Pieces snapping into place in my brain, I shrieked and ran into the laundry room. I pulled clothes away and ran my fingers everywhere, trying to find any trace of the bug. Coming up with nothing, I turned and looked back into the kitchen.

Sure enough, there in the middle of the kitchen, hanging at about head height, was a spider dangling at the end of its thread. In my delusional state I'd been playing tether-ball with an arachnid.

Blood pounding, adrenaline pumping through my system, my vision tunneled down to where all I can see is this spider. Briefly I toyed with the idea of exiting the back door and walking around to the front of the house and just waiting for Sam to come home so he could deal with it. I discarded the idea, unwilling to call my husband home to deal with a spider yet again. (Yes, this has happened on multiple occasions. I fear, loathe, and hate anything with eight legs. It's irrational and I'm not proud of it, but there you go.)

Eyes darting about for something, anything, to deal with this intruder, they lit upon a broom in the corner. I reached out and grabbed it, not comprehending the fact that the dustpan was still snapped onto the end of it. I spun around, broom in hand, and with a resounding crash I smacked the spider out of the air and to the floor.

What followed was five minutes of me pounding the broom and dustpan into the floor with all the incoherent rage and violence of any murder done in passion. When I finally stopped, all that was left was a shattered dust pan and a messy ball of spider guts.

Breathing heavily, I slid down the wall and sat on the floor, closing my eyes and waiting for my body to calm down. Minutes passed, and when I opened my eyes I could not help but start laughing.

Nala was licking up the remains of the spider, purring the whole while.

Total Word Count: 14,544

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