“Have a good night, baby,” said Mom, tickling my ear and neck with her warm kisses.
I was scared to sleep without my lights on, so Mom got me a smart bed lamp that automatically shut itself off after an hour, or how much time you limit its lifespan, but having that lamp plugged in was such a waste of money because I stayed awake throughout each night, staring at the ceiling with my mindset into the oblivion while subconsciously waiting for the lamp’s light to dim then run out.
I waited for her to come. Sleep, that was. She visited me every night a little past twelve, with her hypnotizing cicadas that raucously lulls louder and louder with each screeching move the clock took.
I woke up, with my body involuntarily unable to move. Though my eyes were open, erratically moving in circles to see what was surrounding me, but the room was mostly pitch black—except for the sliver weak light breaking through the window.
I tried moving.
But it took all my strength to move a finger.
Millions of needles as cold as unforgiving shards of ice rained and plunged into my arms, each pinning me down onto my bed.
I screamed my lungs out.
The difficulty of breathing accompanied everything. Inhaling. Exhaling. The crushing of Feeling upon my chest. Beating. Thumping.
There was this dark entity on top of me that made the shadows of the room appear like daylight. I was bombarded with thoughts, thinking what it was. Hallucinations seeped into my reality. Its eyes glowed bright red. Then second by second, pairs of red eyes shone around the room. They were moving in unison, rocking back and forth. Or, at least it seemed like it, with the movements of their eyes. I heard them singing to me, harmonizing each other. The creature on top of me moved. Its head, next to mine. It was whispering nursery rhymes into my ear as if it were trying to swoon me back to sleep, but I was far much too scared to do so.
The dark figures stabbed me in the abdomen. Each of them. One after the other. The pain was so strikingly mortifying; I kept screaming and screaming. The sheer unimaginable form of terror, pitch black terror, was inexorable. I screamed. I couldn’t move, couldn’t run, let alone fight. It was useless. I was soundless. I was helpless. It was hapless.
I sat up on my bed trying to recollect myself from that morbid experience.
I heard the back door opened swiftly. Hurried footsteps began dashing, crossing the linoleum in the kitchen, straight through the hardwood in the dining area, into the hallway, and up the stairs. It stopped in front of my door. I could see the shadow through the partition between the door and the hardwood floor. It started knocking. “Nick?” It asked as if I were trying to call it. I felt alive for that moment; my eyes welled up. “Mom,” I mouthed, with the veins popping on my neck. I tried speaking, but nothing but soft growling escaped my parched mouth. My mother couldn’t hear me. All of the sudden, the knocking stopped. The shadow disappeared.
Everything was gone.
The glowing eyes. Gone.
Pitch black, still.
Shortly, my door slowly unlocked, opened squeakily, then revealed a dark shadow. The light from behind pierced my eyes. Everything was a blur, still. My eyes were adjusting from the light. The shadow came in without moving its feet. Its eyes glowed. The door shut.
I was immobile.
The blurred, black image darted across the room straight toward me. It disappeared. I felt the bed slowly change its form. It was in my left blind spot. I can hear its breathing. I felt the coldness of its breaths. Sucking in. Sucking out. The sound. Closer. And closer. And colder.
My hair abandoned my skin.
It popped its head. Right in front of my face. Its whole head was covered with blood, I think, with its eyes still glowing bright red—a rusty stench crawled into my nose.
I shut my eyes,
reminded me none of this is real.
The doors slammed open. I heard footsteps rushing out of my room, down the stairs, out the hallway, straight to the dining area, to the kitchen. The backdoor banged. Everything happened again.
Only this time, it happened in reverse.
I could feel my fingers, twitching.
I heard my mom whisper her good night. The breathing was not warm this time.
She put me to bed, put my blanket on me. And then I was lulled by the cicadas, harmonized by the ticking clock.
There were softer and colder whispers heard moments after going back to sleep, “Not yet. You are not ready yet. I’ll come back when you are.” I knew I was going to die someday—not from an intruder, but dreaming about my death, and then slowly realizing it while suffocating. To me, the whisper sounded disappointed and excited all at once, telling me the end is near.
I abruptly opened my eyes, cautiously pulled up my body to realize it was dawn and the light penetrated the only window.
My mom stoically stood in the corner of my room, smiling at me—it was discomforting. She had this tiny, her natural smirk like she knew every single thing about me. I made eye contact with her—my eyes zoomed into hers, focusing on the pitch black of her pupils to the point where they filled my entire sight. It gave me the intelligence of thinking. I remembered I was twenty-six at the time, living on my own. That is not my mom. The lady turned into an old hag, pierced through the air right at me, trapped my growl-bellowing mouth with her cold skeletal-fingers. She whispered,
Life was chipped away.
I am Nick ToPhobia
and I hope you have a good night.
©2016, Quiyet Brul