She gasped, horrified at what she found when she got up. The lid was off, how could she have done that? She placed her hand in the tank to find out if they were still there. She rustled the bedding to try for a response.
Oh please let them be here, she prayed quietly.
There was no answer from the occupants. She put some food in and changed the water in their bottle, still hoping they would appear. She was worried. Where were they? They always appeared when it was feeding time. She decided to put her hand right into where she knew they had made their nest. If they were there they would soon respond by giving her a little bite as a warning to leave them alone. Nothing stirred. She had to face facts, her gerbils had taken the opportunity to get out.
Where were they? They could be absolutely anywhere. She placed some food and cardboard around various hiding places hoping for a glimpse of them. The sofa was a big possibility and so was the bookcase. Surely they would emerge soon wanting food and to chew the cardboard. If she were to catch a glimpse of them she would have to block of that area so they couldn’t retreat again. She turned, catching a glimpse of a shadow running across the floor. Ah ha, one was visible at least. She moved slowly towards him, wanting to catch him before he had a chance to disappear again. He was too quick and ran as fast as lightning to avoid capture. He moved so fast she didn’t even see him go.
At least she now had some idea where to look and placed some more food at the entrance. A tiny head popped out, just enough to reach the food before disappearing back. She despaired, they were so fast when they wanted to be and they knew exactly how to avoid capture. They were too clever. Out of the corner of her eye she saw another movement, the other little horror had appeared. Reaching down she managed to scoop up the darling and carry him back to his house. He quickly went mad running around excitedly as if it was a new home.
Turning around she spied the other one trying to climb the curtain. She stopped as laughter overtook her. He looked so funny trying to climb up. She just hoped he didn’t chew them at the same time. She didn’t want to find little holes in the brand new curtains, she knew her gerbils only too well. They chewed everything in reach of them. Only the week before she had a new pair of jeans ruined courtesy of the little darlings! She went to this funny little gerbil still trying to climb the curtain and picked him up, placing him back where he belonged. They looked at her, eyes shine brightly with excitement. They stood up tall, sniffing the air looking so innocent. Looking at them she just laughed, they were so much fun and too cute that she had to forgive them. Anyway it was her own fault this time. She hoped they had enjoyed their little adventure because she would make sure it didn’t happen again!
Copyright 2016 by Cheryl Russell. All rights belong to the author and material may not be copied without the author’s express permission.
2 thoughts on “‘The Great Escape’ by Cheryl Russell”
A lovely short story Cheryl. Well written
I was beginning to think it was spiders or snakes in the tank.
Could have been tropical fish that had escaped lol !!
I look forward to reading more.
Best Wishes and Good Luck.
I enjoyed this very much. Full of life, and I could imagine it happening. Only comment is to that the word ‘little’ was overused in one paragraph. More please.