Again it appeared. Every night at eleven, it appeared at the end of my bed. This time it stayed.
I don’t know what it is, I don’t know why it keeps coming, but it would leave by twelve and I could sleep.
Not tonight. Tonight it stayed. I couldn’t sleep tonight.
It followed me. Why was it following me? Why me? Why wouldn’t it let me sleep, leave me alone?
I couldn’t sleep. It stayed at the end of my bed all night and it watched me.
What was it? I couldn’t tell.
It was dark.
I couldn’t see it.
It could see me.
I watched it. I could not see but I watched, and it watched back.
My room was dark.
I was not scared of the dark, rather the thing on my bed, the thing that would not leave, the thing that was watching me, watching me, watching me, w̬͛̚͘a̤͉̜̟͓ͭ͊̄̔̓̉ͭ͟t̠͚͈̱̟̞̊̈̋́̐͆͜c͚̟̖͟h͇͚̗̙͈̆̂ͪ̐̒i͙̞͖̒̓̐ͨn̵̟̓͌ģ̞̤͍̠̦̂̅ͤͧͪ ̡͙̟̰͔̜͓mͪ̎ͧ̔e͈̦̘͚̭̘̽̑.
The sun rose.
I barely noticed.
The light got brighter and brighter, I could soon see my room, see my things, but I could not see the thing on my bed but it was there. It was there and it was watching me.
I wanted to get up, I wanted to move but I could not move, could not allow the thing to get me, could not move.
I was wrapped in my blanket, I was wrapped in my blanket and I couldn’t move, I couldn’t move.
The thing was getting closer. It was moving and I could not, I could not move, couldn’t not wrench my eyes away, couldn’t see but couldn’t move.
It was there. It was not moving, but it was moving. It was closer, it was getting closer, I wanted to move.
Why couldn’t I move?
It was moving, it’s mouth was opening and I could not move.
My mother was calling me.
“Hon,” she called. “If you don’t come down soon you’ll miss the bus and I’m not going to drive you to school.”
I couldn’t reply.
It’s mouth was getting wider.
I tried to move.
I couldn’t move.
It was over me, and I could no longer breathe.
I wasn’t in my room anymore.
Where was I?
Mom would be worried.
The thing was gone.
It’s gaping maw was no longer near me, but I was no longer in my room, and I was terrified. Where was I? I could not be in my room, my room full of colour and stuffed with things, this was a colourless space, as if someone had decided to pull the drain on the colour in the featureless, empty room.
I didn’t like it.
Why was it so empty
I wanted to leave, wanted to move, wanted to do anything but sit here, motionless, in the motionless, empty, blank, room.
But I couldn’t.
I could only sit as the lights got brighter and brighter and something appeared from the end wall of the enormous room, slowly and barely moving closer and closer as I sat there.
I tried to twitch my fingers, or clear my throat, or do anything at all. I could not.
The room grew brighter, too bright.
I could not close my eyes.
The creature that was at the end of my bed was gone, and I was in my room again, my comfortable room full of my comfortable things and my bright walls filled with my posters and I was at home and the creature was gone and I could move.
“Mom!” I called.
No one answered.
“Mom!” I called again.
Again, no one answered so I decided to make my way downstairs, still wrapped in my blanket.
“Anyone home?” I shouted, standing at the bottom of the stairs hoping someone would reply, though I wasn’t surprised when no one did. It was already eleven in the morning according to the clock on the stove, and I could understand the silence now. I hated the silence after that blank, empty, too large room, but it was improved by the sound of cars and animals that reminded me I was not alone with the dreadful creature any longer.
I could breathe.
For a week I was fine, for a week I could sleep, and my mom was starting not to be concerned by my behaviour, and for a week I could breathe.
And then it returned.