When the cat’s away, the mice will play (Part 1)

When the cat’s away, the mice will play (Part 1)

The old house did not look particularly scary during the day, it was just an ordinary red-painted house with some broken windows, tarnished paint and some cracks in the foundation. The yard however looked like a miniature jungle, weeds everywhere that surely hadn’t been whacked for years, and further down the yard, an old, mossy and overgrown well with the rope still attached and a wooden bucket hanging on its crank.

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I looked curiously at it and then scoffed. “This is it then?” I asked disappointedly while turning towards my friends who stared at me in confusion.
“What do you mean, Emma?” They said, nearly in chorus.
“I mean, this isn’t that bad, it’s just worn down, what’s scary about this?”.
Tom walked up to me with a blank look in his eyes. “It’s not the appearance that is scary… No one who’ve entered this house has ever come out”.
I had known Tom for several years, and he’d always been easily startled and scared which I’ve always found both funny and kind of cute.
“Oh?” I replied, “And, who has ever entered this house?”
Tom started twiddling his thumbs “Well, eh, only homeless people looking for shelter really”.
I sighed, “Ah, homeless people, and who reports these homeless people missing?”
As Tom was about to reply as his older brother Matthew who I’d gotten to know over the years through Tom, stepped in to defend his vague accusation against the house.
“We’ve been watching it, day and night for the past few days, we’ve seen people go in, but we’ve never seen them leave, isn’t that right Lulu?”
Lulu, whom I didn’t really know outside of being Matthews girlfriend since a month back, and seemed to be shy or maybe even scared of me, nodded slowly.

As I didn’t live in the direct area of Tom, I’d never seen the house before. We mostly played games and watched old Disney movies on his old clunker of a TV, playing outside wasn’t really our thing and according to us, the sun was basically the devil himself.I had overheard Matthew talking about the abandoned house with Lulu about a week ago, and I couldn’t help but to ask Tom about it. Tom hadn’t seemed to eager to answer my questions, so I decided to talk directly to Matthew about it instead. He explained that the house was supposedly haunted, that an old woman once lived there with so many cats she was the very manifestation of the term ‘crazy cat lady’, she had passed away about 5 years ago and her cats donated to different families around the area, but her spirit still lived on inside the house calling after her cats, waiting for them to come home.He was planning on showing Lulu the place, and asked if me and Tom wanted to go with them, I was very excited about it whilst both Tom and Lulu looked hopelessly drawn into something they’d rather stay out of, I figured that Lulu was a wimp just like Tom and that this could maybe help them overcome some of their irrational fears, if not, then at least it’d be a hoot to watch.

I ran straight up to the porch of the house before any of the others could say another word. I looked towards the roof of the house where bits of drainpipes hanged loose, as the wind shifted one could hear the wood creaking and see the old pink and white curtains wave towards the insides of the house.
I looked back towards the others, “Are you guys coming?” I asked in a lighthearted tone.
They looked at each other for a second and then started walking towards me over the gravel-paved driveway. Once they reached about half-way they suddenly stopped, looking startled, they stared at each other, towards the ground, and then towards me.
“Emma? D-Did you feel that?” Tom nervously asked.
“Feel what?” I asked in confusion.
“The ground… It-it shook… I swear”
“Nonsense” I said shaking my head as I ran back to them, placing myself next to Tom and starting to jump up and down on the gravel. “See? The ground isn’t shaking, unless you’re now going to claim that I am THAT fat?” I said, laughing as they just stared blankly at me.
“Oh come on, you guys are just being paranoid, let’s go inside instead!”
I rushed up on the porch, my steps bending the planks of the porch slightly, they seemed to be moldy. As I got closer to the door of the house, I started to feel a smell, an enclosed, musky and slightly ammoniac kind of smell. I grimaced as I reached for the door handle.

“It’s probably locked anyway, let’s just go home?”.
Lulu said whilst nervously looking around with her hands in her pockets.
A small click was heard from the door as I turned the handle, I pulled lightly and the door opened, the smell I had felt standing on the porch suddenly grew incredibly strong and I had to pull up my shirt to cover my nose and mouth to hopefully mask as much of the smell as possible, the others doing the same while swearing over the foul smell.
As we entered the house we found ourselves in a long hallway with windows on the right side and a spiraling stairway leading both up to the second floor, and down, to the basement on the left side. The house looked bigger from the inside, especially with the spiraling stairway, I didn’t really expect that, it felt so grandiose, especially once I noticed the blue and golden carpet going up the stairway.
I walked closer to the stairway and looked up. You could see the railings at the top where the stairway flattened out, like a balcony indoors, how quaint, a house like this here? The area wasn’t exactly poor or modern, but it wasn’t that old or rich either. I started moving up the stairs while looking at the paintings hanging above the railing, old fisherman and lighthouse paintings with storms, sharks and whales portrayed on them.
As I reached the top of the stairs I looked down at the others making their way up, seemingly in awe about this entire place. Upstairs was another long hallway with doors on either side, it kind of started looking like an old hotel, except there was no lobby in sight. The house kept creaking and the floorboards bending as we walked down the hallway.
All of us decided that we'd check a room each and then get back to the stairway when we were done.
The room I decided to go into was the one closest to the stairway, it was a peculiar room as there were no ordinary furniture in it. It had a brown fur-carpet across the entire floor which were full of stains and the room was filled with cat toys and cat beds. The toys visibly well used, as some of their stuffing were ripped out or had parts missing from them, the smell from earlier being even stronger in this room. I started walking backwards out of the room in disgust as I concluded the stains were most likely cat piss and the smell was getting unbearable.

As I walked out and closed the door, I could hear a sudden scream coming from further down the corridor, I looked worryingly down the corridor when Tom and Matthew popped out of their respectively chosen rooms also seemingly confused about the commotion. Realizing that Lulu hadn’t come out of the room she went into, Matthew started yelling.
“Lulu?! Are you okay in there?”, as he started walking towards the door where the sound came from, then, suddenly, Lulu herself burst out screaming in terror with scratch marks all over her arms and face. I then saw something that froze me to the core… Her legs and waist were covered in what seemed like… Mice… With black fur and red eyes, chewing at her body and clothes, ripping off pieces of tissue and fabric vigorously as she cried, running towards us. Following a bit behind her out of the room was a black fur wave consisting of mice relentlessly throwing themselves after her, biting into her skin to stay on and feast.

In panic I started running down the staircase with Tom and Matthew following closely behind, we tried opening the door out, but it was to our despair, locked, and there was no visible way to open it unless you had a key.

Suddenly, the entire house went completely dark. We pulled up our phones as quickly as we could whilst forcing through the shock and shakiness and turned on the flashlights. As I shined my flashlight at the windows, I nearly dropped my phone… The entire window was covered in greasy, black, furry, red-eyed mice, staring viciously at us, basically glued to the windows, hissing, noticeably not wanting us to leave. Lulu could still be heard screaming upstairs, coming closer, trying to reach the stairs.

Then, suddenly, a loud crack along with a high pitched scream could be heard from upstairs and, following the wooden pieces of the railing, a body, covered in mice slammed into the floor. The screaming stopped right as the body reached the floor, only the gnawing, hissing and chewing of the mice could now be heard along with our heavy breathing and crying. The thick and dark blood from the mice being squashed underneath the body hitting the floor, squirted onto the walls and staircase, nearly hitting us at the door.

We all screamed and in pure panic ran towards the stairs leading down the basement, except… Tom, didn’t move, he just sat next to the door crying, screaming, staring at the mice that were now consuming Lulu, his phone, now on the floor, revealing the entire spectacle, as the mice were chewing through skin and flesh, ripping her apart, piece by piece, right into the bones. Eating away at her nose, lips and eyes as they hissed menacingly, I couldn’t bare myself to watch anymore. I looked back at Tom.

“Tom!” I yelled trying to get him to come with us. He shook his head, still in shock whilst staring at the mice. I started walking towards him when abruptly the black wave of mice that was following Lulu earlier poured down from upstairs, hundreds of red eyes gleaming in the darkness of all the fur, completely but slowly blocking my view towards Tom as he was consumed by the dark, red eyed mass while his scream slowly died out.

Matthew forcefully grabbed my hand and dragged me down the basement and closing the door at the bottom behind us.

Locking it in the process.

Submitted May 15, 2019 at 08:31AM by 9lynx5

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