For the sake of anonymity l’ll keep some names private, and call myself Beowulf. My story happened around two years ago, I was 26 years old when my family and I had noticed that my grandmother was starting to forget our names, couldn’t recall certain events, and at times seemed in a daze and lost from her state of mind, completely forgetting where she was in that moment. This was followed by her stumbling around the house and falling a few times. One time it got to the point where she fell down and finally broke something, so we had to bring her to the hospital.
After a diagnostic test it was determined that my grandmother was suffering from Alzheimer disease, which was perfectly understandable as it had run through my family over a few generations, and my grandmother was 88 years old. Throughout the next few weeks my mother would drive over to her house to provide care for her, she would escort her to and from bed and cook her food. My mother was also in her senior years, so thinking she could use a break I offered to help out during the weekends. My grandmother owned a Persian cat named Simon, he was a pure-white snowball of fuzz with a scrunched up face, like pug except in cat version.
As I stepped inside her house, the cat would always perk his head up from the sofa and hop down to greet me. During my stay at my grandmother’s house I would help walk her to the bathroom, and seat her at the kitchen table after preparing food. When I checked through the cupboards to find some microwavable popcorn bags to enjoy while watching a movie that evening, I raised an eyebrow in confusion to see that they were all gone, as well as most of the snacks such as cookies and cereal boxes. I didn’t realize that grandma had such a huge sweet tooth.
Next weekend came by and I noticed by Sunday that it wasn’t just food that had gone missing, but also valuables around the house such as jewelry and a few old knick-knacks she had adorning her shelves. I rationalized that she had just misplaced them when I wasn’t looking. At around 9 o’clock I put my grandmother to sleep and was now finishing up washing dishes for the night so that I could head home. Steaming hot faucet water ran over the porcelain plate that I was currently washing. I brought a soap-filled rag over a bit of food that had hardened the previous night.
I tried lathering the soap over the spot, polishing it furiously to get the stain off, but to no avail. My ears perked up at the sound of movement in the backyard, but I dismissed it as some deer or animal walking through the brush. The backside of the house was located close to a wooded area, so it was very common to have deer roaming around across your lawn. After I set myself back to my mission of cleansing the plate from its filth, the sound came again, except closer this time. My ears made out the distinct sound of footsteps squishing their way through the muddied grass that had been ained on the previous night.
This clearly caught my attention as I shot my eyes up to see a man standing about 3 yards away. The features of his face were hard to identify as it was shadowed beneath the darkness of a few trees he was standing under. What I could make out were the the corners of his lips stretched upward into a huge maniacal grin, his teeth gleaming from the kitchen light. The colors of my face drained to white as I heard the ear-splitting cracks of shattered glass hit the tile floor as I lost my grip on the plate, and then I heard a knock at the oor.
I turned my head over toward the direction of the knock, which was at the front end of the house, and when I looked back to see where the man was in the backyard, he vanished. “Am I just imagining things right now, or did the sound of the plate make him bolt? ” I questioned myself. My thoughts had been interrupted as I heard the knock repeated, this time more prominent than the first, along with a man shouting “Police, open up! ” I was immediately shot out of my daze, and slowly approached the front door with hand raised for the knob, but froze in place. The possibility of this guy just being an accomplice ran through my mind.
Maybe he was just helping his buddy lure me out so they could break in, or worse. I let my hand rest at my side, and instead went for the small peep hole in the center of the door. A sigh of relief escaped my lips as I saw that it was a police officer wearing the designated uniform. Quickly, without wasting another second I clasped the door handle and turned it open. “What is the problem officer? ” I nervously asked. “Please step outside sir, we have a few questions to ask you,” said the officer in a serious tone. Still slightly unsure if I can trust the authenticity of his uniform, I ask “Excuse me, but can I see your badge first? The officer complied, pulling out the golden badge to show his badge number, and I am once again relieved and step outside the door frame where I can see his silver-plated name tag more clearly.
It read “Rothwell Garrison”. He asked me a few questions about suspicious activity around the area, and explained to me that yesterday an old couple next door had been bludgeoned in the head by an ax as they were sleeping. In my mind I recalled back to the few occurrences where I noticed tuff had gone missing, but decided against telling the officer this, because it was probably just a few misplaced items.
After coming to the conclusion that he was not receiving any leads from me, he went on his way, and I decided to stay for the night with my grandmother, and call in sick to work the next morning to tell my mother what I was just told when she came by. Another week goes by with the guy still on the loose, but no other deaths had come out of it, so as a result the incident had slipped out of my mind altogether. Around noon I was busy bringing a folded pile of my grandmother’s clothes to the aundry room down in the basement, humming silently to myself as I passed by a door that was slightly cracked open.
I paused as I heard the familiar sound of Simon purring inside, so I peeked through the crack to see him positioned in front of opened closet doors. He poked his head to my direction, and sprung over to me purring as he brushed his furry body against the door. I knelt down to brush my fingers in between the soft wisps of snow-white fur, before straightening myself back up and said “I can’t pet you right now, okay” and continued on my way toward my destination. I hear the creek of the door opening as the cat crawled its way toward the other end of the hall, but heard the long high- pitched sound draw out longer than it should have.
With an eyebrow raised, I decide to turn my head over my shoulder, only to find myself frozen in place, face completely white as I see a man trying to sneak his way passed the door. Instead of realizing the predicament he was in of being caught, he gives me a wide grin, the corners of his lips almost meeting his eyes like a crazy person, and pushed the door all the way to reveal that he as holding a rather large butcher’s knife. I bolted to the laundry room, frantically locking it behind before bounding across the room to find a hiding spot behind the washing machine.
As I was more occupied with hiding and keeping myself silent, I had missed turning the light switch on, which meant that I had to sit in darkness. I glanced over to the door and scanned my eyes over to the frame, wondering why the side of the door was pitch black and not illuminated by the hallway light, then I realized that this guy was leaning his body against the frame. I felt my breath hitch inside my throat as I heard him say “Come out come out little piggy, I can hear your breathing,” he cooed, as if to coax me into opening the door.
Then I heard him scrape the blade against the other side of the frame. I slipped my hand inside my pocket to pull out my phone. The light reflecting off of the screen helped me to see better, and I immediately dialed 911. “911, what is your emergency? “I heard the operator say, causing a few involuntary tears to bleed from my eyes. Hearing her voice was almost saint-like. Through rapid breathing and trying my best to keep quiet I ay “Th-There is a stranger inside my house and he has a butcher’s knife” “What’s the address of your emergency, sir? As I started relaying the information to the dispatcher, I peered back over to the door and saw that the square of light had returned to the frame. “He left? ” I mentally question myself, but then it dawned on me. “Grandma.. ” I breathed out. “Excuse me, sir? We need your address” repeated the lady.
I dropped the phone and scrambled from my sitting position to switch on the light, searching frantically for the nearest thing, and to my dismay all I could see were clothes. Thuffed out an aggravated sigh, and quickly unlocked the door. The police would never be able to get here in time,” the thought screamed in my head as I pried the door open and sprinted across the hall and up the stairs. As I met my destination, I found the stranger just standing there, watching as my grandmother sat silently in the living room as he hid inside the darkness of the kitchen. He flashed me once again that stupid grin of his, and I curled my fist into a ball hard enough that my knuckles turned white, and gave him one good punch across the face!
His head collided with the wall next to the frame of the living room entrance before falling over to his side, knocked out cold. Even in a comatose state he still left a trace of that insane smile. After the police came and handcuffed the man, it was revealed that he was the one who had killed the couple next door, and had been hiding out in my great grandmother’s house the whole time. That would explain all the missing items, but | wonder what he had done with the jewelry. He was sentenced to 28 years in prison. And his name? Grindal. Suiting name for his character I suppose.