Black Widow Invader

Thomas Shahan

Well, we have had worse black widow situations. 

Six weeks ago, I noticed the sticky, discordant web of a black widow at the foot of my bed. An icy chill crept up my back. I would keep a nightly vigil for a week. Flashlight in hand, I inspected the web for signs of habitation. No spider. I demolished the web and forgot about it.

Until today. While making my bed, I discovered a sturdy new web, connecting the lower part of my mattress (which rests on the floor) to the bookshelves alongside it. Shudder.

All day, I watched that web, as if the spider would surface to deliver the ultimate jump-scare via a poisonous bite. Watchful, I kept an eye on Liev lest he cruises too close to the web. At 6:30, I closed the shades and put the AC on max. Twenty minutes later, faithful flashlight in hand, I spotted the evil black spider, fiddling in the space between bookshelves. My scalp creeps and prickles as I think of it.

She was so large, so ripe, and so sinister that I could not imagine squashing her. The wet crunch she would make would contaminate me with her spidery-ness. I left that to Egor. Brrr. I am disturbed that such a loathsome creature made her nest so close to my bed and baby play area. Yuck.

ETA I had nightmares all night about the spider creeping on my leg, getting entangled in Misty’s fur (she sleeps at the foot of my bed), and biting Liev. Sometimes I want to bomb our house with pesticides.

ETA II A palate-cleanser for an illustration as I cannot stomach any Latrodectus mactans photographs. 

 

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