The dog barks
, and I freeze, listening
hard, neck stretched to prick unprickable ears...
I hear nothing
Then another dog, down the road, barks too, and I relax
, certain it was one of those mystery canine choruses.
I settle into my chair to give Viper
a look... my lover asked me to see what I thought.
The sound from the television
makes the silence of my sleeping house loud
...and suddenly there are footsteps
in my house.
The tread is stealthy
...and I am afraid
I cannot move.
I can't... breathe
All I can do is think
... There's no way out from here. If there's someone in the hall, I cannot get out without passing him.
Then the door curtain rattles and he comes into the room.
He walks to me, kneels down, and wraps me in a hug.
"Happy Valentine's Day, Love"
And I cling and cuddle him, trying to get my breath back, and I say....
"Scare the shit out of me, why don't you!"