The baby monitor crackled and hissed for a moment before the toddler’s cry woke them. “It’s your turn,” said Becky, and she rolled away from the noise.
“It’s always my turn at three ay em.” Eric sat up and scrunched his face into some semblance of determination.
“Lucky me,” she said. He could hear the smile on her face. As Eric leveraged himself out of bed, he listened. “That’s her frustrated cry, isn’t it? Not hungry or confused, right?” Becky didn’t answer, apparently taking seriously her duty to get some sleep. Eric turned on the monitor camera and his heart skipped. There in the crib sat his little girl, uttering cries of frustration and facing a scorpion.
He’d never remember what he said, but whatever it was got Becky out of bed right behind him. “How the hell did that get into her crib?” he yelled, made loud by fear as he ran for her room.
They burst into the nursery, Becky awake enough to be calling 911, and froze. Their daughter was silent and still. Breaths caught in their throats, they dashed forward to find her sleeping peacefully, shreds of the scorpion scattered about, a smile on her face.