I go running from the room.
"KEEP GOING ORION! THERE ARE BED BUGS BEHIND US!!!"
I had just finished wrapping my mattress in a giant plastic bag, tipping it slightly to scoot the bag up further, when I saw six bugs crawling on the reverse side.
Orion, puzzled, nearly trips me in the hallway rush to the front of the house.
"Ew. Gross. Disgusting." I'm squirming in a frantic dance that resembles one warding off bees rather than imaginary bed bugs crawling all over.
I take a deep breath and quit wiggling.
"Orion. This has stepped up a level. Cockroaches were one thing. Bed bugs? Disgusting. I can't take any more. We're moving out. We're finding a house. How do you feel about a back yard?" I pause. "Gross."
Then I return, packing tape in hand and wrap it around my mattresses like a girl on a mission.
Orion attempts to nibble the plastic.
"NOOOOO!" I shout so loud I think he feared for a moment the sky was falling.
"Orion, it's VERY important you don't touch this plastic."
We finish the tape job, then I power up the web to construct my plan of attack. Phone to my ear, I inform my landlord that he also needs someone to tackle bed bugs.
"You mean we've been spraying for the wrong thing all this time?" he asks.
My head reels temporarily. I see red.
"No. I have cockroaches too. I am completely cognizant of the differences between cockroaches and bedbugs."
And I apparently am living in the slums, I think, but choose to refrain from including.
"Oh. Okay. Well it costs ninety-five a visit. I'll have him in there by Tuesday."
I let the phone hang up, snap the computer lid shut and turn to Orion, passed out at my feet.
"Cockroaches and bedbugs Orion, can you believe this? We'll show them!" I get up and march out the studio door, list in hand of the various sprays, supplies and powers I'll need.
"Let's find ourselves some bugs. See if we can't give the health department something to think about."
And we're off. Collect and conserve.
Orion sees one move and makes a dive for it.
"NO! Orion, we have to kill and conserve." I step on it enough to keep it still, then scoop it up. We pull out the futon and there's a good cluster of four. "Bingo buddy." He wedges his nose over.
"EW! That one's still moving!" I squish it.
Orion follows me back to the bathroom. I let my collection slide to the whiite porcelain toilet top.
We stick out noses closer. Orion's feet perched on the toilet, checking out our progress.
"12 critters. And they think they're spraying is for nothing!"