repentance cat rules the night

by politicalfish

The wind whistles louder than normal, chilling you and sending shivers down your spine as you walk through central campus back to your dorm. Walk- ing back alone without telling anyone where you were wasn’t a smart choice, but it’s too late now. A street light along your path flickers and dies. Then another one. Then a third. They’re all flickering. They’re all dying. It’s pitch black, and you are alone. Right?

In the corner of your eye, something moves. Whipping around, you see nothing. From behind you, a growl sounds. Once again, you turn but find nothing. You pull out your phone, hoping to call someone, or maybe use the flashlight to see better, only to find that it is dead.


Looking up, you see him. The catamount pads to- ward you. Metallic whiskers twitch as narrowed eyes lock on your body, nearly pinning you where you stand. Turning your back on the catamount feels so wrong, but you do it anyway, sprinting towards Davis. Getting inside is your only chance for survival. The catamount can get inside—he isn’t restricted by doors or walls, you know this—but if there are other people inside, witnesses, you will be spared. The doors are locked. There is nowhere to go, to run, to hide. This is the end. The catamount has won.

Fellow UVM students, be warned before it is too late. Have you ever been lying in bed at night, and heard a faint creaking in the hallway? Or how about the sound of a muffled scream outside your window, before it sud- denly goes silent? Have you ever noticed that sometimes, the wind will suddenly roar where it has been a whisper only moments prior? Have you ever thought to yourself, ‘wow there sure are a lot of sirens at night’ and wondered what they’re really for?

“That’s just what college is like,” you say. “Those are all normal college things, stop trying to scare us.”

Oh, honey. That’s not normal, those things don’t happen anywhere else. If it’s so common, why have your friends at other colleges never said anything? You’ve never seen what makes that creaking noise in the hallway, have you? Or seen why the kids outside are screaming? Figured out where the ambulances are going, what they’re really called for? Or why the wind will suddenly howl, covering all other sounds in the night? No, you haven’t. You’ve only heard the sounds and made assumptions. And why would you think anything is wrong? You came in a naïve freshman, just like everyone else, and no one corrected you.

No one told you those are the warning signs. The catamount is nearby. And he might be looking for you.

Rack your brain, think. What did you do? Are you a wellness student who did drugs? An honors kid who is flunking out of the program? A sustainability student who bought a plastic water bottle?

Or maybe you bought a Yerba that you did not finish. Maybe you lied about your sexuality because you just didn’t think that person was hot. Maybe you’re on the men’s hockey team.

Beg for forgiveness. Better yet, beg for mercy. If you’re lucky, the catamount might spare you. You might live to see the next day, having survived another night of the catamount statue hunting down UVM’s worst sinners.

But maybe you don’t want to beg for forgiveness, for mercy. Very well. I can’t stop you. If you truly feel like you deserved that edible for getting through another week of Healthy Minds, Healthy Bodies, be that way, it’s your choice. But don’t come crawling back to me when your Faustian bargain brings about your ruin.

Categories: around town, bemmy, october 25, political fish

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