I’ve been hearing some strange tapping in the attic lately. This morning I’ve decided I should go up and look. My wife asked me what I thought it was. For all I knew it could have been a squirrel, a racoon, or even Jay Leno. I told her it was probably a lost buffalo. She said I was brave to go up there face possible danger. I just said “bah!” and smiled the smug smile of a man afraid of nothing. Now that I think of it, I should have milked that moment for all it was worth. Surely, battling unknown beasts agrees more with the feminine notion of what makes a man heroic than figuring out a difficult Sanskrit passage does.
Anyway, I went up there and shone my torch around. I didn’t see anything move or any trace of anything living up there. No buffalo. I thought maybe I had scared away whatever was tapping up there. If I stayed still, in the dark, maybe it would show up. So I turned off my torch (and my headlight) and waited in the dark. While I was up there, I thought of a few practical jokes; the most horrible of them having me scream “Aaaah! It’s got my face!” I should point out that few people know that I like practical jokes because a) I don’t perform them in formal/semi-formal settings b) I censor myself because I tend to think up practical jokes that would be pretty scary to whomever would be at the receiving end. So I didn’t play any joke on my wife. When afterwards she admonished me because I had told her the joke I had in mind, I had to press the point that I didn’t execute it. Anyhow, waiting in the dark didn’t help. I didn’t see anything and didn’t find any trace of any creature so I don’t know what I heard up there.
While reflecting on the experience, as I was packing up my gear, I realized I had been a bit careless in going up there. I have a good sturdy crowbar I could have brought with me but I didn’t. What if I had found headcrabs up there? What then?