As I descended the stairs to the underworld of our house, a fear consumed my eight-year old body. This place, though absent from maps, was too familiar to me. This basement was a war zone. An army of devious crickets attacked the territory. From the towering shelf barracks they waited with stealthy patience. Thunder from the pernicious furnace drowned their chirpings as they planned strategies. Suddenly, a flank of crickets would leap at me from a window, followed by a sweep from the dryer.
These skirmishes ended as I galloped up the staircase to civilization, waving my white flag of surrender.