Thursday, December 20, 2012
The body in the road: A tale of fear that will MAKE YOU SOIL YOUR UNDERPANTS
We were in the van by the kerb on a dark, wet night. There, in front of us, illuminated by the headlights was... Something. Something dreadful. Something dreadful that had clearly been run over.
"Is it a cuddly toy?" asked Jane, peering through the windscreen, trying to make out what she saw there.
I had no idea, for to me it was just a mis-sharpen lump. Alive or dead, I was not certain. And if it were alive, it would be in terrible agony, and death would be the only relief.
"Oh," she said, horror on her voice, "I think it's an animal. Go and look."
I harboured no immediate plans to go and look, and told her so. For I am a coward of the first water, and I did not fancy putting some poor creature out of its misery above half.
"There's no way I'm going out to look," I said, "and that's final."
"But what if it's somebody's pet? They'll need to be told, and... Oh god, I just saw it move."
There was nothing for it. Coward of the first water or not, I was going to have to get out of the lovely warm van, and identify this lump in the road for alive or dead, pet or wild, and probably wring its neck. I was absolutely certain that the next moments would end in my soiling my own trousers in fear.
I got out, and approached my quarry, fear heavy on my chest like funbags on a Katie Price. The ears on the thing twitched in the light breeze, just making the ordeal worse for me. Dog? Cat? Rabbit? Something eldritch and squamous and not of this world? Ugh...What's that big tear down its side? I can see its insides and... Oh my Christ it's awful... It's... It's a plastic carrier bag filled with rubbish and tied up with a bunny-ears knot.
All that fear wasted, I kicked it into the kerb.
And found it was full of kittens*.
*It was not full of kittens