Third installment - Life with Arthur
In the morning, I was to learn that Arthur liked to gad about. That day I found him beside the pantry, where he stayed for the duration. The following day he sat beside the fridge. And so it was … with each and every day after becoming a guessing game as to his whereabouts whenever I made my initial foray into the living area of the house. I could never be so bold as to place a bet as to his position - he could be anywhere. In fact, it became a natural thing, as soon as I got up, to start searching high and low until I found him.
Over the subsequent days, we did, however, come to an arrangement – we made a kind of a pact, if you like. I promised not to belt him with a rolled-up newspaper if he promised not to frighten the stuffing out of me.
As time passed our promises held and it was at that point I named him Arthur.
One morning, after a horrible night spent wrestling with the bedcovers, I stumbled blearily into the lounge-room, tripped on the edge of the rug underneath the coffee table and wind-milled my way over to grab onto the curtain cord. Arthur had been sitting there peacefully behind the edge of the curtain but was now streaking across the wall at a speed faster than light. He stopped at ceiling height, spread himself out then went on to wave his legs furiously at me. I don’t know if he was sending me semaphore messages like, ‘you clumsy clot,’ or ‘why don’t you look where you’re going,’ or whether he was waving at me in blind anger because he was not impressed at my blundering intrusion into his quiet morning. I must admit, I bid a hasty retreat myself when he first moved from his cosy nook and was watching his communication efforts from the corner of the hallway.
It took a while for Arthur to settle down and resume his position at the edge of the curtain. I think it was the creaking of the fan as it turned on its axis that sent him scurrying back. Or maybe he was ruffled enough and didn’t need any more help. Especially from me!
In the meantime, I decided to sit in the chair underneath Stephen instead of my normal repose of on the couch. It was way too close for comfort to Arthur. I figured that, with the mood he was in at that moment he might choose to tackle me in face to face combat and that was something I did not want on my daily agenda. I have actually experienced this several times in the past and all I can say about it is … you’ve got to be really careful not to put your back out.
Anyway, Arthur was not very friendly on that day. I think he thinks, I breached our code of ethics and over-stepped a boundary in our promises to be honourable to one another. If not that … he was just plainly pissed off.