Feet pounded down the stairs. The door slammed and he rapidly descended into the dark gray, musty basement. The theme to Spongebob Squarepants frantically hummed out of clenched teeth as he reached the bottom and narrowly avoided squishing 20lb Hugo the cat, sending him hissing up the stairs.
“SPONGEBOBSQUAREPANTSSPONGEBOB” erupted out of his mouth in a panicked attempt to drown out thoughts as he sprinted across the room. His voice screamed the song more than sang it before he reached for the last of the empty canning jars he took from old lady Emerson’s back porch.
Silence echoed through the basement when he stopped singing and smacked his forehead over the opening with a dull thump. Thirty seconds of deep concentration later, his eyes popped open and he cautiously slipped the rusty screw top lid onto the jar. With sweat drenched hair, he collapsed against the wall rubbing the red ring left on his face from the jar. His eyes bulged when he saw the missing cork in the old glass coke bottle on the shelf.