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The Rainbow Cat written by Moon Raven

11

11.The Rainbow Cat

It was early autumn and I had just ended my three-year-marriage with Tom Sullivan that summer. My parents had died just before I married Tom, and for the first time in my life, I was alone. Trying my best to start over, I decided to buy a house in Northeastern Pennsylvania where my parents had grown up. I had never been there, but I remembered the stories my parents used to tell of their days growing up in the small town of Bear Creek, getting married, and moving to New York.

I thought it would be a good place to find a new start and try to rebuild my life, so I talked with the realtor and began my task of house building. On the first day, I was shown the first of the three houses on the street club, Bunker Street. I remember immediately being met with a feeling of absence and loneliness as I drove down the street and looked out at the houses.

"Were all these houses for sale?" I asked myself. They all looked empty and had not been lived in for some time.

As I pulled up in front of the house, I noticed the realtor was not there. Maybe he's inside I thought, so I walked up to the door and knocked. Sure enough, I was greeted by Charles, the realtor I had spoken with on the telephone. He took me inside and began showing me the house.

Immediately, I noticed his shoes. They were the strangest shoes I've ever seen. Like something you would see in an old Martian movie, or maybe something a carnival geek would wear. What was this all about, some joke? Why was he wearing those? But, he said nothing about them and seemed to be completely contented, so I said nothing of it.

As he showed me the first floor, I was taken aback by the many strange murals painted on the walls of the rooms. If I was to buy this house, those would be the first things to go indeed. "The previous owners were very artistic, as you can see." said Charles. I cannot help but chuckle slightly, thinking about his shoes. They certainly seem to conflict with his serious demeanor.

After I was shown the first floor, Charles took me to the second; it contained three very old-looking bedrooms. As Charles showed me the first of the rooms, I suddenly began to feel uneasy. "This is the master bedroom," Charles began, "it's a bit small as you can see. But as you are unmarried, this should not be a problem."

I took some offense to that comment, but my attention was suddenly averted as the sound of scampering feet flew down the hallway. "What was that?" I asked.

"What was what?" asked Charles.

"That noise." I said. "Like an animal."

Charles and I examined the hallway and the other two rooms, and finally decided that it must have been the house settling. Finally Charles took me to the third floor, a very large open attic. "Large enough to be remodeled into another floor, and perhaps rented out." Charles noted. After he finished with his descriptions and stories about the house, he began to walk to the stairway. "Now if you will follow me." he said.

But I noticed something that Charles neglected to mention. A square in the ceiling that looked like it could have been a door. "What's up here?" I asked.

Suddenly, Charles' stone-face began to look uneasy. "It simply leads to a balcony, nothing more." he said.

I pulled down the small door to reveal a small stairway going up to another room. I walked up, but Charles did not follow. I entered a small empty room that did indeed have an outside balcony. However, to my surprise, I noticed that the room was not empty. Sitting there looking up at me was a cat. He must have come through the balcony I thought. But, there is something very odd about him. That cat was variety of colors. Am I seeing things? I thought.

What kind of cat is this? I took a step closer, but the cat ran past me and outside to the little balcony. I followed him out and was treated to a wonderful view of the neighborhood and the mountains beyond. Soon, however, I realized that each house in the block had a similar little balcony. In each balcony had a cat; multicolored just like the one on this balcony. I suddenly felt a great sense of sadness and a feeling of uneasiness, as though each cat was staring at me. I immediately turned around and descended the stairway back to the attic.

"Charles?" I called.

But Charles was gone...

By now I was frightened and ran down to the second floor, I made my way to the first floor stairway and stopped. There was something coming from the bedrooms.

A glow.

I walked slowly to the master bedroom and glanced inside. The glow was coming from behind the drapes, and then I noticed it... those shoes! Those shoes that Charles was wearing were beneath the curtain.

"Charles!" I called, but no one answered.

Then I realized that there were several pairs of shoes, as though several people were standing behind the curtains. Terrified, I screamed and ran as fast as I could down the stairs and out of the house!

Once in my car I paused for a moment... something was wrong.

The yards on the block were now overgrown by grass and weeds, the trees looked dead and it was completely silent. As I started my car and began to drive away, I could see that same glowing coming from the second-floor windows of each of the houses. I began to drive faster, leaving the bizarre place behind. The last thing I remember is glancing behind the mirror, and seeing that glow in the backseat of the car.

Yes, that is the very last thing I remember.

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