Dog Gravy

My wife and I decided it was time to move out of the city and buy a house in the suburbs. As a city girl from birth, she was pretty bummed out about it. I had grown up with a yard and a dog, though, and I couldn’t wait to get back into that lifestyle. I bought a hammock at the Lowe’s before we even finalized the buy.

I was taking a break from moving boxes into the house and decided to take a walk through the basement. I’d never had a basement. I wondered if there was any way I could smoke a cigar down there without the smell wafting up into the house and ratting me out when I stepped on an old bowl and fell directly onto one knee. I cursed, which brought Katie running, and examined my knee. It would be bruised, but otherwise fine.

“Did you fall?”

“Yeah. Stumbled over this,” I said, holding up the bowl. I saw it was a ceramic dog dish and frowned. “Kinda sad the old owners didn’t keep it.”

She took it from me and immediately handed it back. “Ew! Gross! There’s dried… dog gravy in there. That’s disgusting.”

I laughed, set the bowl back on the floor and helped unload the rest of our boxes. For the rest of the week, I didn’t have time to go into the basement; I was either working or we were setting our house up into some semblance of a living space. Then I got ready to unpack my home office and decided to set up in the basement.

I chuckled again at Linday’s dog gravy comment and kicked the bowl out of my way. Strange, though, the muck on the sides seemed wet and gelatinous. I was sure it had been dried to flakes.

The next morning, I woke up early and headed down to my computer with some coffee. The damn bowl was in the middle of the room. I was sure I had kicked it into a corner. I bent to pick it up – thinking I would finally just throw it away – and noticed the gravy was fresh. Thick and stuck to the sides, but fresh. And in the light it looked much lighter than the brown mushroom gravy color it had been. The wet residue was red and clotted in areas.

I was overjoyed. I had always been a believer in the paranormal, so I set up a camera to catch what I was sure was a ghost. Maybe I could my house featured on Ghost Hunters.

The next day, I watched the playback. I stuffed clothes into a bag, hurried Lindsay to our car, and got a hotel to stay in for the week. There was no ghost. During the night, a woman broke into our basement through one of the padlocked ventilation windows, inserted surgical tubing into her own vein, and drained it into the bowl. Then she sat it in the center of the room, gave a few sharp whistles like someone calling a pet, and left with a cloth pressed to her wrist. A few minutes later, something pale clawed its way out from the recess behind the water heater and crawled toward the dog gravy.

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