My pet cat Snuffles had a habit of staying in the attic for extended periods of time. It wasn’t unusual for her to be up there so late on at night when I wanted to go to bed however if I didn’t commit to the usual routine of kicking her out for the night, she would have at some point (usually around 3am) come into my room, hop on my bed and meow in my face until I woke up to stroke her. I had work tomorrow so for her to do this would be very much an inconvenience. She was always a smart cat, she had this really funny way of climbing down ladders where she would roll around the first step, run down three with scraping claws and then jump off the rest until she would land with a fairly heavy bump.
I decided to lure her down from the attic with her usual favourite toy, a small ball covered in a tuft of feathers with a jingly bell on the end. The jingles drove her completely crazy and I knew as soon as she heard it she would come scuttling across the attic to try and attack the toy. The string was long enough for me to chuck up there but I wouldn’t be able to see her grab onto it. I couldn’t just go up there as for one my cat hated being picked up so trying to get her down that way was pointless and well half climbing a ladder and playing with a cat was a hazard waiting to happen.
I walked underneath the attic hole and tried the light switch, I watched the room above flash like lightning before the bulb burst and it was left in darkness.
“Wonderful,” I muttered to myself. I knew the lightbulb was going to break at some point, it had been a while since it had last been changed so I wasn’t worried. I got hold of the stick of the toy before flinging the thing up into the attic, I heard a soft thud and jingle as the toy collided with the floor. I then wiggled it around a bit.
Jingle. Jingle. Jingle.
I took a couple of moments. Then I heard it, the sounds of soft scuttling paws across the floorboards. I knew my cat would take the bait, she always did. The sound stopped when they reached the midway point of the attic, then it was replaced with a loud pound and some scratching. I tried to pull the toy like you would a fishing rod so I could bait her. It was stuck. I assumed it was latched onto my cats paw as she played around with it, I could still hear the constant jingling and every so often another thud. “Feel free to come down anytime soon,” I chuckled quietly to myself, tugging on the toy finding my cat surprisingly strong. The end wouldn’t budge. I needed to lead her to the opening of the attic, then as usual she would get the hint and come down on her own.
I'd recognise that sound anywhere: my beloved Snuffles.
“I get the point Snuffles, just come down already!” I told her before I felt something soft and fluffy circle my ankles. I looked down to see Snuffles pressing herself up against my skin, meowing at me. “What the…” I looked back up into the darkness, I could still hear the scratching and the faint jingling of the toy as something was still playing with it. I looked back to my cat whose eyes had dilated as they looked towards the opening and then suddenly I watched as all the hairs on her back stood up and she hissed at the ceiling. I dropped hold of the toy as it hung in the air still attached to whatever was holding it, then there was silence. I could hear my heart thumping in my head and for a moment I was frozen to the spot. Snuffles bolted. Then the scratching came closer to the edge, it was heavier now like it was using it nails to drag itself across the floor. I didn’t even look to see what it was as I ran down the stairs hearing something clonk against the metal of the ladder like it was trying to pull itself down. I heard its nails scrape against the metal and I was out the door by the time it had hit the second floor with a very loud bang.
I rushed to my neighbour's house and called the police, there was no way I was going back in that house with that thing. When they finally arrived there was no sign of anything inside my house.
I could have believed I was just imagining things…
Except that I found the cat toy, covered in some kind of black oozy liquid and my floorboards completely shredded.