The Real Thing 23

Like any Victorian mansion, ours had its own damp, musty brick basement. You could access through a door situated behind the main staircase, next to the kitchen.
Christmas was coming and we decided to through a party between us. Ian suggested we cleaned the basement to have it as a dance and party hall.

As usual, I went to school, and they stayed behind, absorbed by their new project.

When I came back, eager to see what joke was going to be this experiment, I was thrown: you couldn’t recognise the place: they had store all the rubbish in one of the smallest basement room, cleaned it as much as it could, put Christmas light all over. Tables were dressed with gaudy paper cloth, candles were lit and Paul had carried his stereo down.. The party was due at 10PM.
Mary and Ian continued their cleaning and decorating, I made cakes, Paul a music compilation, the others went to buy booze..

We had the best time, music as loud as the stereo could handle, drunk. Dancing like monkeys…
I had far too much too drink and needed a rest, my head was spinning a little so I sat on a trunk in the small room next to the « party hall ». It was cooler there, and darker too.
I listened to the others, cheering and shouting the lyrics of one of the many perfect pop song that Paul had gathered…
« Julie? Juliiie? caaaaaam on, come back in here and daaaaaaance! » I heard from the other room…
I smiled. Got up.
And that’s when I saw it. And froze.

“Julie, Hey!�? Paul was next to me now. “Hey! Cat got your tongue?�? Paul asked looking at me… I swallowed… « no but the rat might have I said », pointing at the biggest son of a rat I had seen in my life.
When I went back in the other room, I was no more in a party mood. I told what I had just seen and Mary went quiet too.
To cheer us up, Paul told us how once in Liverpool, during a rave party in basement, somebody had discovered a decomposing body in a locked trunk.
I went to bed.