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Sunday, January 31, 2016

The Forbidden Basement

(the following is a writing "prompt" which I found somewhere on the, followed by the story) You are renting a room in someone’s house as you transition to living in a new city. The owner tells you the basement is 100% absolutely off limits. You don’t bat an eye at this request until you start hearing noises from the basement at night. After several weeks of this, you sneak downstairs.

Slowly, cautiously, I creeped downstairs, like the creeper that I am and everyone knows I am. What were those awful noises coming from the basement? Soon, I would have my answer.

And my revenge.

I took each step one at a time, not necessarily to be quiet, but because I used to take them two or three at a time, and then one day I tripped and impaled my eyeball on a nail. Learned my lesson that day, I did. Or did I?

With reckless abandon, I skipped the last three steps. Only then, as I was sailing through the air, did I notice Mrs. MacGregor’s cat Burmy sitting on the landing. “Oh no!” I cried. “Stupid cat! Get out of the way!”

“Mrow,” said Burmy, and he slunk away before I landed on him. Unfortunately, Burmy had been sitting on a cactus, and this left the cactus wide open to impale my crotch.


And thus did the cactus impale itself upon my crotch. I writhed around for several minutes on the floor. Boy, what a day, huh?

When the pain finally subsided to the point that I could stand and remove the cactus, I knocked on the basement door.

Seconds later, it opened. Before me stood a wizened old man, about half my height, with a long white beard and pointy hat, wielding an oak staff. “Welcome!” he said, and gestured to the room behind him. “Come in! I’ve been waiting for you!”

“Boy, you sure are wizened and about half my height with a long white beard and a pointy hat, if you know what I mean!” I said to him, and barged in. He chuckled. “My dear boy, I get that all the time. Please, sit down.” He said, pointing to a rusty old couch.

Wait a minute. Rusty old couch? RUSTY OLD COUCH? Couches aren’t rusty! Something isn’t right here!

Quickly, I turned around and bolted for the door. But the old man pointed his staff and the door slammed shut. I tried to open it, but it would not budge. “Budge you stupid door! Budge!” I yelled at it, pounding it with my pelvis.

The old man chuckled. “My dear boy, I get that all the time!”

I gave up on the door. It was unbudgeable.

“I should’ve known you would have an Unbudgeable brand door,” I said, pointing to the label on the corner of the door. It read UNBUDGEABLE.

“Yes. You should’ve,” he replied, more sternly now. “Be seated, my dear boy.”

Reluctantly, I headed for the rusty couch and had a seat.

“Would you like a cookie?” he asked, holding out a tray of delicious looking chocolate chip cookies.

I spat on them. No one offers me cookies and doesn’t have me spit on them. No one.

“Oh dear,” he said, looking very sad. “Those were my favorite cookies.

“It all started back in 1923…” he went on, describing how, I’m assuming at this point, these particular cookies came to be his favorite. The story went on for nearly two hours.

“Wow, that’s a great story mister!” I cried with delight when it was over.

“Thank you, my dear boy,” he replied, a single tear drop running down his cheek. “It brings me great joy to tell it. You may go.”

With that, he pointed his oak staff at the door, which immediately flung open.

“Come visit anytime my dear boy!” he said, embracing me in a hug. What a delightful and wizened old man. With that, I stepped out the door and marched back upstairs, never looking back. The door shut behind me. I could just picture the old wizened man, pointing his oak staff at the door, and the door shutting. It brought a smile to my face. And tears of joy. And love.

The End