"I know there is nothing to be afraid of, Mom, but if you could only open the door for me I am sure it will be all right."
My mother looked down at me from that high, high height way above me and I could tell from the way she shook her head she was disappointed in me.
"Bobby, you are almost nine years old now and nine year old boys are not, I repeat, not ever afraid to open their own closet door!"
I knew she was right but my tummy was still turning over and I had that terrible feeling that my pancakes and syrup were about to leave it the same way they just went down. I had this sudden urge to run to the bathroom and do number one but since she was already in my bedroom, I just had to get her to open the door and end my reluctance to take the risk all by myself.
The noise in the closet awakened me a few times during the restless night but I just turned over the other way and drifted right back to sleep.
In the morning, I tried not to look in the direction of the closet and just went to the bathroom and brushed my teeth like everything was normal. I didn't say anything when my mother gave me the delicious pancakes and my older sister was on her silly phone the entire time.
I was glad to see her go out the front door and run to her school bus because I didn't want her to witness my pleading with my mom to open my closet door so I could get my schoolbooks and my backpack. I remembered a similar incident with the closet when I was only about five years old and still just a little kid. That seemed so long ago now and I was much closer to being all grown up.
It took forever waiting for my mom to put on her silly lipstick.
I just don't know why girls did such a stupid thing.
Even my sister was starting to do it and it made my mom real mad for some strange reason.
"All right, Bobby, let's see what is in the closet that has you so scared."
Slowly, she opened the innocent looking door and we both looked into the darkened space trying to see if anything was moving or if anything might have gotten inside when we weren't looking.
All I could see was coats and jackets and my old games and toys and even the stacks of comic books and coloring books that I never threw away even if I didn't use them anymore.
I reached in and grabbed my backpack and my homework from the night before. I was happy now that I had finished it all because there was no time to do it this morning. My mom was already late to work and she told me to hurry or I would be late for school.
My school was within walking distance but she always walked with me because I didn't have any friend to walk with me going in the same direction.
While she was still standing next to me, I turned on the flashlight from under my bed and lit up the corners of the closet looking for any problem that might have caused the noises from the night before. I thought I saw a bit of movement under my tennis racquet and I saw a pair of tiny eyes staring back at me with a steady gaze.
My mom shouted out,
"Bobby, that's a mouse!
Close the door.