It all started the day the cat ran away. That’s when the house started shrinking. Don’t ask me how; I don’t know. But each hour the rooms seemed to get a tiny bit smaller; walls closing in; ceiling encroaching on head-space. My girlfriend told me I was going crazy.
Going? I thought I was already there.
The day grew darker. The house got smaller. I walked in circles, thinking as long as I walked I could keep the walls from crushing me. My feet wore a path along the carpet. And then my knees. Hands and knees. Belly crawl. Slithering like a snake.
Now I lay here, stretched between kitchen, hall and living room, wood from the door frames pressing into my shoulders, back and legs. Trapped. Out the window of what used to be my living room, I watched the sloping meadow beyond. The sky looked grey and angry. Was it angry at me? The cat?
I dozed. Woke. Dozed again.
When I woke this time, I realized the door frames no longer ground into my body, threatening to cut me into a multitude of sausage-like pieces. In fact, the constrictions around me felt, if anything, looser. A surge of joy washed through me.
The cat must have come back. The house was expanding!
No, not expanding. I was shrinking. Shrinking like the house, smaller and smaller and smaller.
A huge grey paw reached in through the broken living room window, claws like saber blades.