Last night while I was sitting on the couch putting together a short film for work, a rat ran along the top of the wall towards our shelves of food. The rat spotted me- we locked eyes for a moment. Then he turned around and walked back across the top of the wall to where he had come from- a hole six inches wide in the wall above the closet in our bedroom. The rat stood outside his hole (out of my reach) until he got bored and went home. The rat was the size of a small cat. I spent a while brainstorming on what to use as a weapon, but couldn’t find anything- no bars, bats or large knives. I really wish I had a gun. I’m not sure what the rat eats, because I know we don’t have enough food in our house for him. I saw him twice more last night before going to bed. After I turned out the light, the place was his. I could hear him stomping around until I fell asleep.
I woke up at 3:30 AM because so many mosquitoes were biting me all at once. One was sucking blood from my face when I smacked it and it fell into my mouth. I turned on the light and was able to kill six mosquitoes, all inside our mosquito net. They were all slow and full of blood. As I fell back asleep, with blood still on my hands, I dreamed of killing the rat. I imagined the rat coming in for dinner, finding some spaghetti or left-over pasta spilled on the counter. He is sitting, hunched over, stuffing his face, when I come out of the bathroom and shoot him with a pistol in the back several times and he collapses into his food.
And then it’s wintertime out side. I carry an Uzi in the house to guard against groups of other rats. People mill around in black clothes. Spring comes quickly and I forget what happened next.