Kelly laid in bed waiting for her eyes to adjust to the darkness. 3:14 in the morning, this has got to be a new record. That’s when she heard it, the familiar rumble that three weeks ago had sent her husband, half-dressed through the house. First, she thought it was a burglar, then it was a raccoon outside, and now she had no idea what it was.
She heard something hit the hardwood floor downstairs. Kelly looked over at her husband who was still asleep and nudged him.
Chris rubbed his face and grumbled, “What?”
“I heard another noise downstairs.”
“God, Kel. There’s nothing downstairs; there’s no one outside. It’s just us, Sybil, and miles of farm around us. Go back to sleep.”
Chris rolled over, Kelly sat there listening. It must have been Sybil, their white Persian. Undoubtedly, she was downstairs on the kitchen island knocking over a glass. The noise Kelly heard was the cup hitting the floor. The thought of the unknown, made her heart race. She looked across the room at their bedroom door; it was still closed. Kelly couldn’t fall asleep unless her door was locked, and she often checked it multiple times during the night when she got up to pee.
The hardwood floor in the hall outside their bedroom groaned under the weight of something; Kelly assumed it was Sybil. Soon, she would hear the familiar cry of their cat and her claws scraping against the door as she begged to enter. Kelly waited but heard nothing. The house was quiet again. She tried to go back to sleep but something was nagging at her, she had the strangest sensation that something was watching her. She looked around the room; everything was as it should be except for their closet door. As she slid out of bed to close it, she looked down and saw Sybil in her cat bed, asleep.
Chris was already on his way to work by the time Kelly stepped into the shower. The hot water tried in vain to revive her, but the night had been too long, her weariness too deep and set into the bags that had formed under her eyes. There was a loud clamoring over the running water that sounded like the entire wall was about to be ripped from the studs. Kelly turned the water off and jumped out, hair still soapy and grabbed a towel from the rack so fast that she didn’t see the writing on the foggy mirror that read, “when you hear the drums, run.” She opened the door and peered out of it, then dared to open it a little wider.
“There’s nothing there,” she told herself, feeling stupid. She dried her hair and went to the closet to get something to wear. The door was ajar, and there was something stuck behind it. She reached down and moved a shoe that got in the way of the door opening. That’s when she saw it; everything was thrown all over, even the shelves were ripped from walls.
Kelly stepped over the mounds of clothing and into the closet to turn on the light. The door immediately slammed shut behind her. Kelly’s hand groped along the wall in the dark for the light switch. She flicked it up and down, then up and down again, but it wouldn’t come on.
The faint sound of drums filled her ears, the rhythm slow at first but as it got faster, the sound increased in intensity. The back of the closet fell away, leaving only a ball of light in its place. Kelly screamed and tried to move but she was unable to and all the while the drumming, insistent and unyielding. A shape appeared, she could barely make it out, a hand reaching for her through the light. Kelly fainted, when she came to Chris was standing over her.
“What are you doing?”
“The closet,” Kelly mumbled out of breath and groggy not completely sure of where she was.
“What about it?”
Kelly looked around her; she was lying on the floor of the closet, red shoe in hand, ready to fight. Everything looked normal except for her, the shelves were in place, their clothes exactly as Chris had left them that morning. Chris helped her up off the floor and downstairs for some tea to calm her nerves. The closet door closed on its own behind them.