Tugging

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I sleep carefully. None of me wanders off of my king-sized bed. My shoulders are covered, and my feet are usually wrapped in my blanket. The pillow and blanket don't come off the bed, either. I've slept like this since I was little. Wrapped in my blanket so nothing can harm me; on top of the bed so nothing can climb up, or drag under. Call me superstitious, or afraid of the boogeyman. You'd be right.

But Dad left, and mom's working two jobs to pay for everything. I'm still not old enough to work. The thermostat is a few degrees lower during the winter, and higher during the summer.

I wake up, and there's no blanket covering me. For a second, I feel like opening my eyes, but I don't. I'm afraid of that, too, so I keep my eyes closed and stay still. A minute later, maybe two, and it's too cold. I need that comforter, so I swing my feet around, swiping across the bed. Nothing. It's on the floor. I don't want to reach down there. I contemplate calling out, yelling for my mom, maybe I'll pretend I had a nightmare again. No, I think she's working tomorrow morning. I stay quiet, keep my eyes closed, swallow, and reach towards the ground. I grab onto the familiar fabric and pull it up as quickly as I can.

I can't get the entire thing on my bed, though. I pull, but it's caught on something. I keep my eyes closed and I'm still cold and I pull, pull, pull. One last time, and it finally comes up, a big bundle on my bed before I can smooth it out and get myself covered again. I kick it up into the air so it'll untangle itself, but I guess it falls off the bed, and then a good half of it follows. I sigh, and tug again. I pause after the first try, and then I feel something pulling, pulling, pulling. Back under the bed.





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