There was no doubt I had dropped my guard, and was caught woefully unprepared when I first saw him. After more than two years of not seeing that bully’s face, I had gone under the assumption that my nemesis was no longer in the area. Oh, I had thought of him from time to time over these past two years of peace, but I would usually just push him out of my mind after not having him around for a while.
Well, that, and I was getting a little concerned that my main nemesis in life was a raccoon.
Now, this is no ordinary raccoon, mind you. He is enormous. He was born with a criminal mind. And he employs a bunch of other raccoons to do his bidding for him.
And his name is Leviathan.
Well, that’s the name I gave him the first time I saw him outside our office. I was taking a bag of trash out to the Dumpster one night and I saw a shadowy figure hanging out, flipping a coin in one hand and clutching a flask in his other.
Editor’s Note: I know raccoons have paws, not hands. But this is my ridiculous story, so I get to make up the ridiculous circumstances surrounding it.
We had an uneasy relationship over time. I would unsuccesfully try to shoo him away, and he would delight in picking on me — either by just intimidating me through his menacing presence, or by giving me wedgies behind the Dumpster.
Editor’s Note: See above note. My ridiculous story, my ridiculous circumstances.
It was a hate-hate relationship between Leviathan and myself, and one that raised quite a few eyebrows around the office. See, nobody else had seen Leviathan. People would say that they’ve seen raccoons near the Dumpster, but that they were always little ones that didn’t look like they could cause any damage, even if they were inclined to do so. I would often question myself internally over whether or not I had actually seen this giant raccoon, or if it was just a hallucination that I kept seeing two or three times a week.
Then it happened.
Shaun Lambert, the Eskimo who grew up around polar bears and whatever other scary critters that enjoy Alaska, came in to the office one day with a big smile on his face. He had seen Leviathan, and he agreed that this was a monster raccoon. While that did wonders for my own self-esteem, it did little to stop the teasing I was getting in the office.
I came in one day to work and turned on my computer, only to be greeted by new wallpaper on my monitor that featured a giant raccoon. Susan Lyons would laugh at me daily for my fear of Leviathan. Readers began sending in raccoon items to the office after I wrote about the beast.
And then he disappeared.
Poof. No more Leviathan. Oh, there have been a few small raccoons around the grounds of the Coastal Point multiplex, but they didn’t seem like Leviathan’s goons, either. They just seemed like regular old raccoons.
I almost missed him.
And then he returned. I was sitting out on the back deck of the office one night last week, trying to clear my head during deadline, and I saw a little raccoon come out of the reeds beneath me. And then another came behind him. I remember thinking how cute it was.
And then he followed them into the clearing. My heart stopped, and my breathing became labored. Like a wanted felon, he looked both ways before completely appearing, as a beast of his questionable morals naturally would, and then he stopped in his tracks. His enormous head turned to me and we locked eyes. I could see a slight smile at the corner of his gigantic mouth and he stood on his hind legs.
And he gave me the finger.
Editor’s Note: I know, ok?