A tapping noise woke up Brittany. What was making that racket, she wondered?
She slowly carefully raised her head, like a cat does when something annoying happens. Brittany looked around her room.
The darkness did not frighten her.
She lifted off her warm blankets and stepped upon the coolness of the floor. Her white nightgown made her look like a ghost.
Did a real ghost make that noise?
She walked slowly down the hall. Were her parents up? she asked herself as she checked their bedroom.
Her toes went TIP, TIP, TIPPY on the wooden floor. Her heart went THUMP, THUMP a THUMP. Hmm. Mom and dad were still asleep. Dad was snoring as usual.
His ZZZ's followed her to the next room, where her brother Chris slept. Brittany could see a white sign on the door. But she could not read yet.
Mom told her It said NO TRESSPASSING. Brittany had to find out who or what was making the strange noise.
She pushed open her brother's door, very slowly. It squeaked a wee bit. She noticed Chris curled up asleep on his bed. One blanket lay on the floor.
He wasn't making that noise. She quietly closed the door and tippy-toed down the hall.
Now to the kitchen. Maybe Hugo the cat was looking for food. Yes. It must be Hugo. He was always hungry.
Maybe he is drinking out of the sink again and wants to go out. Maybe the tap is dripping. Maybe, maybe.
Down the stairs, one at a time. Hold on to the rail. Down and down. Almost like creeping down a mountain.
Guess what? No noise in the kitchen. Oh, see under the chair. Hugo is sleeping. He is all stretched out, like a huge whale.
His head bobs up when he sees Brittany. He meows, then lays back down and falls asleep again.
He begins to purr like a motor.
Brittany could not find any tapping noise here.
She decides to go into the playroom, where she has to step around all the toys. "Have to be really quiet," she says to herself. "I don't want to make any noise."
Being a little tired she sat down on the floor and listened very carefully. Then she heard it again. It sounded like someone tapping at the window.
Brittany got a chair and climbed up. Her nose was moist as she pressed against the glass window.
Her eyes acted like two flashlight beams, searching for the sounds. She stared into the night and listened.
Suddenly the mystery was solved. It was a tree branch blowing against the window. The wind and maple branch had worked together to make tapping sounds.
Now Brittany could go back to sleep.
She got off the chair and walked slowly around her toys, once again. Then she TIPPY-TOED through the kitchen, past Hugo.
As she climbed the stairs, her feet were quiet as shadows. The stairs only made one little squeak.
Brittany walked past her brother's room and her parents room. Then back to her own.
Her tippy-toes were glad. Finally, they could have a rest.
She crawled under her waiting blankets.
Before too long, she was fast asleep.
Her ZZZ's joined her father's down the hall.
* * *
Richard & Esther Provencher 1999
My wife, Esther and I really enjoy writing. It is an excellent salve, in addition to prayers, a great wife and family during my continuing recovery from a stroke/aneurysm. You can contact us at: email@example.com re comments on our work. We live in Truro, Nova Scotia, Canada. Pray for others.