The couch seemed curiously resistant to flipping, and when I got down on my knees to check its stumpy wooden feet I realised why.
“Who fixed these angle brackets on here?” I asked, to sound as much as possible like “why did you, Creepy, fix these angle brackets on here?”. They were heavy, L-shaped bands of iron and there seemed to be one on each foot, with large bolts holding them to the feet and even larger bolts driven straight through the carpet and into the cement. These latter bolts were in fact industrial rivets of some kind and I realised I would never get them off – in fact I was forced to wonder at what point Creepy had gotten them in, since I’d never seen a rivet gun around the place – but the spanner was a match for the bolts attached to the feet, at least, so I started working on them. “And how?”
“It’s a mystery,” Creepy said from somewhere above and behind me, in a muffled voice that immediately set off alarm bells in my head. I dropped the spanner and turned to see him poised, abseiling-style, on the front edge of the couch frame, facing out. The rope was wrapped firmly around his waist and then clasped in his hands and teeth for good measure, and I followed its length back across the room to where he had apparently affixed it to the leg of the television. It was a big old television, but it’s still a testimony to Creepy’s half-cooked-spaghetti physique that it seemed to be bearing his weight without complaint.
“I’d ask what you’re doing,” I said, “but will instead fast-forward to asking you to stop.”
“I’m going in,” Creepy said deliberately.
I looked up from the bolt I was working on, looked back down at the scummy carpet, looked at the couch in between, then looked up at Creepy again. “Going in what?” I demanded. I leaned in, reached under the couch and poked up from beneath. There was another expanse of saggy felt, although I could feel probably-wooden slats above it. I couldn’t see the felt below by looking into the guts of the couch from above, but there could only be centimetres in it. “There’s nothing there.”
There was no answer, aside from the rustly sound of rope unspooling. I looked up again, and sighed.
Creepy had gone in.