It's dark, like night. A house, with a long kitchen bar just by the back door and a garage. A leisurely cigarette, whiling away, standing to look at the back yard that extends into black. The only light is the new moon. Little cats mew at my feet and twist their bodies into serpentine shapes around my ankles. I bend to stroke their silky coats: black ones. Marbelized patterns. Then they startle and dart off around the side of the house.
I glance up and see a shadow. A big one, slow at first as it comes from the distant nothing but clearer as it comes to me.
Panic turns the blood in my veins to ice.
I drop my cigarette half smoked and back into the door which has been ajar the whole the time. I swing the door shut. The door passes through the jam, though it's never done that before. On the outside it swings and hits the brick of the house.
I'm always surprised at this.
I am left face to face with this cat. A big black cat. Not black. Spotted. Then it dawns on me:
It's a mountain lion.
Terrified, I grab the faulty door's knob and try again. The doorjam may as well be air. Jolted with adrenaline, I attempt to quell my shaking long enough to match the door to the jam, to throw the lock in place to secure the door. The door is suspended in air. The house has disappeared.
The mountain lion moves in.