It COULD have been a Brown Recluse

A few weeks ago, Doug was in California for a week of training. Without Doug’s tech humming and his cacophony of body noises, our bedroom is eerily quiet at night. As I sat in bed wasting time on a game instead of doing something useful, I heard a bug hum. I wasn’t sure if it was wings, pinchers or legs, but it was most definitely a creepy crawly noise. Since our bedroom is the basement of our old house, we get all manner of ghastly invertebrate visitors when spring begins to arrive. Of course, if you’ve read anything I’ve written for the past decade or so, you know that nothing is worse than Brown Recluse spiders and by default, any and all spiders are probably the Brown Recluse variety. Even as you sit there now, the Brown Recluse hordes are probably evolving new camouflage that makes them look like harmless ladybugs.

I tried sitting very still and silent in the hopes that the mutant Recluse would leave. It made a bug noise again. I called the oldest boys. When I say called, I mean that I used my cell phone to call their cell phones. I don’t mean called at the top of my lungs. For one thing, I didn’t want to wake the two children who were already asleep and for another, my vocal cords were nearly paralyzed by an invisible airborne toxin that the Recluse was diffusing into my air supply.

The high school senior disrespectfully mumbled something about studying for an AP Chemistry exam and dealing with it myself. I will be revoking his trust fund as soon as I create said trust fund. The eldest son sighed and said he would bring the troops down to rescue me. I waited for the Ghostbusters.

Unfortunately, instead of proton packs, he carried a cat in each arm. One cat was asleep and the other was visibly miffed at being uprooted from whatever he was already doing. Both cats were unceremoniously dropped on the bed. The sleeping cat immediately curled up in a ball and drifted deeper asleep. The other cat gave me a blank stare as I pointed at the direction of the bug noise. “Get the bug! Get it! Good kitty. Get the bug!” Failing to respond to being addressed as though it were a dog, I picked the cat up and put his face near the sound. He hopped on the dresser, casually swatted something under the spinning storage unit for Blu-Rays and then proceeded to get himself stuck inside that spinner.

I extracted him from his self imposed trap and lifted the spinner to see what he had hidden underneath. The second it was raised, the cat who was supposed to kill the Giant Radioactive Spider, slapped the moving insect to the ground. The cat jumped in one of his secret teleporters and disappeared from the room as I looked closer at the bug.

As my friend from a company that does termite control in North Chicago, IL confirmed later, it was a stink bug. But it COULD have been a Brown Recluse.

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