The large man walked up the staircase towards the open door.

Thump.  Thump.  Thump.

His coat itched along the back of his neck, right at the hairline.

Thump.  Thump.  Thump.

It had been such a long, hard day at work, he longed for the comfort of bed.

Thump.  Thump.  Thump.

His coat would need mending, he knew.  People in the village, always with their torches and pitchforks.

Thump.  Thump.  Thump.

Where was all the hay? that’s what he wondered.

Thump.  Thump.  Thump.

And after doing the math at $1.60 a torch, that was some action he wouldn’t mind getting in on.

Thump.  Thump.  Thump.

So close he could nearly feel the cool pillow on his face.

“Dear,” his wife said, already cozied up under the blankets, “you forgot to put the cat out before coming up.”

Thump.  Thump.  Thump.

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