A miniature paratrooper skid on the high glossed buffet and retreated to the line of family photos and a couple of golf trophies.
“How is it,” I asked Vivian, our neighbor, over tea, “that I never see pests in your house.” She cackled. “Believe me, we all have ‘em.”
“Well,” my eyes narrowed, “it’s about time they quit crossing our borders.” I slapped down the fly swatter upon an immigrant ant that ventured across our counter. Vivian jumped. “He didn’t have his green card.” I shrugged with a smile.
“Call pest control,” my neighbor thanked me for the tea and excused herself. If only these uninvited guests would be as considerate. My lip quivered as I watched an eight legged trapeze artist swing from one corner to a curtain.
We were invaded when we first built the house. But back in those days Joe would come to the rescue, clad in argyle socks, a Cantebury cap and Bermudas, ready to drive any vermin away. He was my hero.
Since then, between the mortgage, raising four kids, and just life, I learned to deal with the gross intruders myself.
In Joe’s spare time he could be found perfecting his golf swing, while my preoccupation had become the house, and everything in it, creepy crawlies included.
After an earful of overpriced estimations I closed my eyes. Time to face your trepidation and get these creatures out once and for all.
With an armful of insecticides, and enough mousetraps to take care of any wandering rodent in town, I held my head high as I gallantly strode through our hallways. Brandishing my nylon bristled wooden sword, with Rubbermaid etched across it’s band, I dared any beast to just try and spring up behind me.
The bandana, fastened tightly against my head, began to itch as I knew I was closing in. My forehead pulsed with excitement as I spotted my foe’s earlier whereabouts; a track of doo along the edges of the cupboard.
I tried to radio Joe, but he was gone out of the vicinity. My meager cell phone wouldn’t reach him through the thickened brush and oak trees that stood now as barriers.
Crraaasshh. A loud bang came from the garage and I set my aluminum canned artillery down. Gulping my fear, I inhaled more bravery and held my rapier made of timber above my head, just in case.
The door abruptly swung open and I jumped back in alarm, expecting my foe to now be walking on two feet.
A camouflage hat appeared through the doorway as I breathed a sigh of relief. It was my captain. He wielded an iron club and I spoke in confidence.
“You came to help,” my voice rose in exuberance.
“Actually, I was trying to find something.” Joe viewed my assemblage of weapons and smiled.
I was hoping for a word of acknowledgement. Instead, “Are we having fun?”
I glared at him through the sweat that now slid down my face, but he just ignored my passion and looked around.
“Have you seen my golf hat anywhere honey?" His eyes now met mine.
Suddenly a large dark enemy crawled towards us along the floor. “Crraack”, went my sword and I lifted it up to view the remains of squashed ant on the tips of my bludgeon.
“Good shot.” The commander patted me on the behind.
“So, honey,” he spoke casually. “Care to hit a few with me on the ‘ol green?”
I looked at my bristled rapier and for a second I thought of what I really wanted to do with it. Be nice. I thought quietly.
“You’ve been working hard and I know you and I don’t get out much lately. So I was thinking…” his voice carried through the hallway as I ran for my purse and a comb for my hair.
The weapons fell to the wayside. I was ready.
Another battle would begin shortly on another field. This time my sword would be a golf club and my beloved captain would be with me. I was just relieved to get out from these four walls, where webs spun wildly and paw printed plans were developing in obscure places.
I kissed Joe on the cheek. “My hero.” He chuckled and rubbed the camouflage paint streak from my face. “We’ve got to get out more.”
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