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  • Writer's pictureJeff South

Blogtober 2021: Sacrifice


"Did you close the bedroom doors upstairs?"

My wife eats her rice and toast and reads the morning's headlines on her phone on Yahoo News per her routine. I'm not eating because I'm emotionally hungover after yesterday's incident with the attic door. I sip some pineapple-orange juice and stare straight ahead per my routine.

"I've not been upstairs in a couple of days," she says. "Did you have the doors open?"

I nod. "Yeah. I had been leaving them open, but I just went up there and they were closed."

"I thought we were trying to keep those closed up there because of Scooter."

She is talking about our 13-year old gray and white cat who will urinate on certain objects in the bedrooms per his routine.

"We were. I just thought the sunlight coming through was nice to look at. Brightened things up, ya know?"

She sets her spoon beside the bowl of rice and looks at me. "Are you alright? You've been acting weird."

How do I answer her question? Do I tell her I think our house has a poltergeist and it's probably my fault? We've made jokes over the years about the house having a ghost because of weird sounds, but it's that sort of ha-ha-funny-kidding-not-kidding-but-just-kidding-no-really in-joke. We've experienced things we've been unable to explain in the past, especially at the first apartment we lived in. I should tell her, of course. Yes. Absolutely.

"I'm good. I'm fine."

I will tell her later. After I've had some time to plan the conversation. Her skeptical expression tells me I'll need to have this conversation soon. After a few seconds of examining my face, she pecks me on the cheek.

"Try to leave the doors closed. I don't want Scooter peeing all over the quilts." She leaves and I decide that I will leave the doors open and some quilts covered in cat piss is a sacrifice I'm willing to make.

I drink the last swallow of juice, release a long sigh, and make my way upstairs to the office. I pause at the Executive Washroom and weigh my need to pee before starting work, then decide against it because I don't want to risk seeing a face in the mirror. I look down the hall.

The bedroom doors are closed.

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