The Ultimate Consequence

Every trap I set was empty, not even one snapped shut. These were clever chipmunks. No matter what I used—peanut butter, pistachios, almonds, walnuts, cashews—each small rodent trap, and I had forty-six of them, would be empty by morning. Every other week, I'd catch a helpless sparrow in one, maybe a stray mouse. The chipmunks, however, were taking over. At last count, I had tallied one hundred and seven, though it did cross my mind that I was being scammed: maybe there were five or six who ran back and forth, in full view, to give the impression that there were more. Maybe my neighbor, Roger, whom I despised, had hired this criminal band of chipmunks to desecrate my home, dig their burrows under my foundation until my basement began leaking water, causing huge financial repairs. Maybe Roger taught them how to remove the nuts carefully, to enjoy the fruits of their devious labor, to watch my face as I walked around, swearing at each open trap, replacing the lost nuts. Or maybe Roger was a chipmunk himself simply disguised as a human. Maybe he was the father of this band of juvenile delinquents, the mastermind of my sorrow. Roger had planned to make my life insufferable so I'd sell my house and he would buy it because he always envied my built-in pool.

It seemed like a perfect plan until I realized my only hope was to kill Roger.

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