the night we woke the neighbours

“Don’t worry Mr G. the attic’s big enough – it’ll all fit.”
That night, deep into darkness hours there came, sneaking upon them, a creak and a groan.
“What was that?” was the whisper.
“What was what?” came the groan.
Mrs G. gripped the covers, ears stretched out to embrace the …
A pop. Up there. A louder snap. A deep, ominous rumble.
Then there was light.
Hand on lamp, eyes blinking desperately to accept, then to deny the sight of the ceiling bulging – impossibly huge – directly above!
He rose, flinging off the covers, grasping for, then dragging Mrs G. behind him with a desperate strength.
For all his speed the ceiling descended in brutal slow motion, cutting off the sight of his wife’s wide open eyes – pleading for him – begging for speed – then gone.
Her hand was wrenched from his as she vanished in an avalanche of bags, beams and plaster-board.
Too late for anguished love and gut-wrenching sorrow.
Frantically he grabbed her arm again and pulled with all his strength.
Hope sprang into his heart as he felt movement towards him, slowly, sliding.
A triumphant cry – “Yes!” as he stumbled backwards, gripping her still warm hand.
And then the shriek that snapped all the neighbours bolt upright.


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