*Wordcount: 558 words.
In the dead of night, in a dark storeroom below an ostentatious house, all was quiet. Dust sat contentedly, over furniture and wine bottles and all manner of knicks and some knacks, as it had for years. Cobwebs built up in the dark corners of the room, and a spider crept and crawled its way towards squirming prey, a moth or some similar.
Amidst it all, the goblin giggled.
The family upstairs was wealthy, not terribly wealthy but close enough. The father and mother both earned an ample salary doing whatever jobs they did, and the children (three of them) grew up more privileged than they realised. The house was kept clean, for the most part (the storeroom comes to mind), and the family were vigilant against pests and infestations of any kind.
Had they known about their, ahem, goblin problem, they would likely be mortified.
The goblin, of course, would not consider himself a problem. In fact, he was quite fond of himself, and fancied that he was one of the handsomest goblins he had ever laid eyes upon. Considering he had met frightfully few goblins (they tend to be fairly solitary creatures), this might not be the greatest of boasts. Of course, the goblin would disagree: he considered himself a superb boaster! Overall, his opinion of himself was very high, but he couldn’t help it if he were just one of the greatest living goblins of all time.
And now, while the family slept, he had free reign.
This time of the day was his favourite, and it also happened to be the only time he was awake. Selective hibernation, he liked to call it. Napping is what others would call it. A rose by any other name, eh?
Anyway, it was time. Time for frolicking, time for mischief, a time to give in to any whigmaleerie he saw fit. Which, in the case of goblins, often meant playful (but annoying) shenanigans.
First, he targeted the socks. Just one out of a pair, from one of the children and from the father (who had a fungal problem and, thus, a smell problem). The other family members had been (and would be) targeted at other times. Moving various household items around was one of his favourite activities; shifting things around to confuse and frustrate the family. A spoon put with the forks, a most heinous, and hilarious, act.
Flip the toilet paper so that it would hang the wrong way around (it shall be left up to you which way is the wrong way), unscrew a light bulb just enough to break the current, and nick a small but treasured item from a family member. Tonight, the mother, and the item in question a piece of jewellery. An earring or somesuch shiny thing, the goblin didn’t pay much attention admittedly.
And, lastly, he would retire to the storeroom for one last thing.
He had discovered a delicious beverage down there on one of his first nights in the house. “Wine”, he had discerned. The goblin did not care much for what it was, but he loved it. He snuck a bottle away, and drank a fair share while the day started to break.
As the family awoke, a goblin stumbled to his hiding hole, drunk and content, and selectively hibernated his way to another night of mischief.