She stood there — waiting — at the foot of the stairs. Why didn’t she do something? Any normal woman would have run for help. As she did so, he could have made his escape. Instead this one grabbed the baseball bat her daughter had left near the kitchen door. He really didn’t want to hurt her, but he’d do whatever it took to get out of there alive.
Quickly he peeked around the corner and again caught his victim’s eye.
Most mornings her routine didn’t vary. She’d take a shower, have breakfast then leave for work. The house would stand empty until her return. Why today of all days did she have to come back?
Again he eased his head ever so slightly around the door jamb.
Shit! Still there. Why didn’t she do something?
He really didn’t want to be there. He didn’t plan to invade her house, but times were hard and he had a family to take care of. He did what he needed to do.
“Lady, please. Just back off and let me out of here,” he pleaded silently.
But his telepathic message missed its target. Still she didn’t move.
Finally it was time for their stand-off to end. He needed to get away. The longer he waited, the more likely there’d be violence – and one of them would get hurt. Summoning courage even he didn’t realize he had, he stepped out into the doorway and planted himself. Desperation turned his body to stone. Their eyes locked. He took a deep breath, stoking the fire already raging in his legs and sprang into the air, leaping over the first set of stairs and only barely touching the landing as he streaked his way toward her. With any luck at all, he thought, the surprise would force her to instinctively jump aside and let him escape.
He was only inches away when suddenly she dropped her weapon and ran shrieking maniacally from the room.
As my sister relived the terror of her “near-death” experience, I wondered. What is it about a tiny little field mouse that turns even capable, “liberated” women into helpless, screaming ninnies?