Charlie's Basement

Chapter 1


Chapter 2 - Mouse Hunt

Charlie hunted for the mouse as his dog cowered under the bed. Not a hunter, that is for sure. Silly dog. He gave up with just eyeballing it and grabbed the massive flashlight to go on the "mouse safari" that had been eating all their bread and cookies. No more!

He figured the mouse had come in through the basement initially. He headed downstairs with his huge flashlight, a bag of cheese, a box of crackers, and a box for capturing the mouse. He couldn't remember the last time he had come down here. Had he ever since he moved in two years ago? He couldn't remember. There were boxes all over the place where the movers had been instructed to just dump them back when he first moved in. However, he never bothered to unpack them. This place, this basement, gave him the creeps.

He explored the basement, looking for a light. Scanned his flashlight along the wall. No light switch. Odd. Scanned the light around the ceiling. No lights up there either. Weird. Maybe this house was much older than he realized.

By now he had forgotten about the mouse and was absorbed in the curiosities of the basement. It was an adventure to him. The hairs on the back of his neck stood on end, begging him to turn back and go upstairs. However, his lust for adventure, which he was born with, overrode any common sense that was attempting to take over.

He moved closer to the back of the basement, weaving around the stacks of boxes. Shadows were being thrown by the boxes from his flashlight, just adding to the mystery of it all.

All of a sudden, his flashlight picked up something silver and a foot wide across! It was a large handle. It tarnished but in the direct beam of the flashlight it lit up and threw radiant beams in various directions. His mind raced with so many thoughts all at once, his eight-year-old boy self seemed to take over, and all he wanted to do was pull open that handle and see what was behind that door!

The door was massive in thickness but not tall as the basement ceiling had narrowed down to four feet high towards the back where the door was. The wood looked to be mahogany. He could smell the dankness in the air, the smell of no human having been here in decades, maybe centuries, hanging in the air. Electric energy was coursing through his veins. What was behind that door?

He dropped everything in his hands to the floor except his flashlight and stepped closer to the door. Put one hand on the door with one hand holding the flashlight, and gently pulled. The door stuck, not wanting to give away its secrets.

He pulled a bit harder, getting frustrated and impatient, but the door was stubborn, making Charlie work for it.

He put the flashlight on the floor, pointing it towards the door, and grabbed the handle of the door with two hands, bracing his feet, leaning back, and... PULLED! HARD!

The door started to give a little. He pulled harder, using all his weight to pull back and yank on the door, willing it to give away its secrets.

All of a sudden, the door released from its jarred presence and let go, swinging wide open and sending Charlie stumbling back, landing him on his butt. On the floor of the basement, in the dust and dirt. All the ruckus had kicked up tons of dirt and soot, covering his body, limbs, face, and head with all that grim. He was a mess. And looked like a maniac from smiling wide from underneath that brown mess on his face. He had got it open! He jumped up and started to rush towards the door and stopped just short of the entrance. What was he forgetting? He peered inside where it was pitch black, his mind reeling from the excitement and trying to wrap its head around everything. Oh yeah! His flashlight! He swung around, leaned over, grabbed it, swung back up, and around, and faced that pitch black short tunnel with pure excitement. His adventure awaited!

Charlie was running on adrenaline and hadn't thought about the possibilities of what could be in that secret passageway. Animals hibernating, snakes, who knows? He crouched down to get through the doorway and stepped in to get inside. Stopped, swung his flashlight around a bit, and realized the inside of the passageway was tall enough for him to stand up! Not short like the basement or the door! What a relief! He slowly stretched up, standing tall, let his flashlight light up as far ahead as possible, and his eyes opened wide. This was insane! What were these symbols on the walls? He had never seen anything like this before.

He started to walk slowly forward, his light disappearing into the darkness, not showing an end to the tunnel. He kept stopping, looking at the symbols, his hands feeling them, trying to figure out how old they were.

He finally gave up trying to wrap his head around them and started walking at a brisker pace, wanting to find where this passage led.

He walked about five minutes more when he heard voices. Wait, what? That didn't make sense. They weren't in English. He rounded a corner and could see there were shadows being thrown from lights ahead. He kept walking but slower, not wanting to make his presence known.

He stopped right before he got to them and peered around the corner, just to get a glimpse of whoever was talking.

What in the world? If he hadn't seen it himself, he wouldn't have believed it! They looked like something out of a fairy tale! They looked just like elves! Their torches, as far as he could tell that is what they were, looked to be magical. And there were fairies dancing and flying around them? How could this be? He must not be getting enough oxygen.

He needed to sit down.

Chapter 3 - Exploring


Charlie’s fingers tensed around the key he had found earlier that day in the drawer in the kitchen. It had been there when he moved in. It fit nothing in the house. He grabbed it after encountering the elves. He suspected he might need it but didn’t know why. It looked old and felt heavy. As he walked back down the tunnel, the key felt cold in his fingers and promised to alter his world. He felt it in his bones. He slowed his pace as he neared the corner where he first saw the elves. There were no sounds this time, nor any light. His flashlight quivered as his hand shook with anticipation and unease. He told himself they were elves, but he didn’t know. For all he knew, they were aliens. Or his mind playing tricks on him. Whatever or whoever they were, it was all gone now. He took a deep breath and slumped to the ground. What was going on? Did he hallucinate everything before?


Charlie got back up and dusted himself off. He took a deep, slow breath and steadied himself. Stood tall, patted himself down to make sure he had everything on him. He dragged his feet towards the corner, then walked to the other side. He used his flashlight to scan into the space where the imaginary elves had been before. That was what he was calling them. Imaginary. There were no seats. No remnants of a fire. Nothing to show anyone had been here recently. He was going mad. He walked to the center of the cavern and inspected the entire place, shaking his head in disbelief.

Then he heard the faintest of sounds. He stopped and stood still. Waited for it again and nothing happened. He waited another two minutes and was about to give up when he heard it again. Barely. Was that music? His ears strained to identify the sound, but he was growing in confidence it was music. He looked towards the other end of the cavern where the tunnel continued and knew where he must go. His stomach lurched as this wasn’t what he expected. He expected finding nothing and go back. Curiosity nibbled at his brain with his feet obeying the orders to follow.

Chapter 4


Chapter 5 - Christmas

“Plans have changed”, Charlie thought to himself. This isn’t how he envisioned Christmas. Not with the elves finding his basement door and began knocking on it. Incessantly. Day and night. He couldn’t sleep, watch TV, or gather his thoughts to figure out what to do.

This occurred the day before Thanksgiving. Down in the tunnels, and under his house. Both he and the group of elves looked at each other like deer in the headlights. Caught with no idea what to do next. They stood there for what felt like hours but could only be moments. He finally caught his breath, turned, and bolted. Through the cavern, up the tunnel, and through the huge, heavy basement door. Slammed it shut! Locking it immediately with shaky hands before he started sliding to the ground. He was closing his eyes to calm himself when the pounding began. They had followed him! As fast as his butt touched the floor, it was up in the air, and he was on his feet. Adrenaline running high, blood draining from the face, and breathing shallow.

What in the world was going on? This couldn’t be real! Elves don’t exist!

His heart quickens every time he thinks about the encounter. They’re banging on the basement door for the past month, won't let him forget. Do they have rotation duties to keep up the 24 hour barrage of pounding?

His head was about to burst from the relentless noise from downstairs. He didn’t adorn the house for today as his heart wasn’t in it. No one to celebrate with. Somehow he was at war with entities he disturbed that had been living under his house for who knows how long.