The Basement

The BasementThat noise, that noise, that wretched, eternal noise. I can’t take it any longer, the rap tap tap always coming from the basement – the forbidden basement.

I throw of the sheets. No more. Every night I hear that same rap, tap, tap. Every night it torments me until I can no longer stand the sound. It drives me crazy. No pillow is thick enough nor door sealed enough to shut out that noise. That horrid noise.

I’m going to go down there. I have to. Surely my hosts will understand. Surely they can’t blame me for investigating the noise despite their warnings. No, in spite of their warnings.

Rap, tap, tap. There it is again. I’ve made up my mind and swing my legs off the bed and onto the cold wood floor of my rented one room apartment. As I push my body off the bed, the old hickory creaks and groans under my weight.

Rap, tap, tap. In anticipation, the tapping gets louder and urges me forward. I don’t care what I find. I’m furious. I must know. I must!

As quietly as I can muster, I creep down the hallway, using my hands to feel my way in the dark. The floor creaks but my bones and joints pop louder from being disturbed out of their midnight slumber. Rap, tap, tap; rap, tap, tap. It hastens, growing louder as if a choir of drummers were begging me forward, insisting that my night culminate in their performance from beneath the home.

Pale orange light glows from beneath the basement door. I had never seen that light before, but I didn’t care. It was no longer the curiosity that drove me but my insanity and my desire. It propels me onward, through the door and down the stairs. Rap, tap, tap. Rap, tap, tap. Rap, tap, tap. I must know!

Suddenly, the rapping stops. The tapping ends. And I’m face to face with it. I shouldn’t have come. I regret coming, but I know it’s too late. So does he. He, I mean me. It was me doing the rapping. Me doing the tapping. How can this be?

“I shouldn’t have come,” I manage to stutter.

Me doesn’t speak. He simply raises a small iron pipe above his head. I shouldn’t have come.

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