A quick glance under the desk. Throw the wardrobe open. Push clothes aside to make sure there is no one inside. Close the wardrobe. Step into the middle of the room. Breathe. Quickly bend and kneel forward, your hands on the ground, ready to push you back up as fast as possible. Check under the bed.
No one there. As every night.
Get back up. Walk towards the light switch. Look around the room another time, the eyes resting for a few seconds on each window. Second floor, but who knows what can climb that high?
Nothing suspicious. Mentally pace the room – two steps, then the jump.
Flip the switch. Large step with the right, large step with the left, then a quick jump to escape any possible hands.
Climb under the covers. Cocoon yourself. Try to sleep. Try not to have nightmares. Continue reading
It was pulling her hair and she scratched her head, but she didn’t look. She didn’t believe me when I told her. I’m sorry, I really am. She just would have needed to look and it would have gone away. I didn’t want to hurt her, okay?
I need to get out. It can get in here. It always comes in when I look away. I need to look or it will come close. It can’t get close.
WHY WON’T YOU LET ME OUT?
Doc, PLEASE LEAVE THE LIGHT ON. Why do you always turn it off? I know you say this is just for me as therapy and secret, but I know you will read it. I know you will. Please, please, PLEASE leave the lights on, okay? Continue reading
TRIGGER WARNING: Child death; violence; abuse.
Let me tell you a story about a place you know.
You know Barnam House.
Everyone I ever talked to about it, they all knew the Barnam House. Most don’t remember where or when, but they heard talk about it or saw the pictures or watched the documentary. And when I describe it, the large white doors, the high walls, the walls with flaking blue paint and the yard outside, always immaculate except for that one, longish patch of dead plants – then they remember. They see the picture again.
I bet right now you can see it. The old trees slowly moving with the wind, the wind whistling and howling past, and of course that one top window shutter that keeps opening and closing, opening and closing, but not in the same pattern as the trees move or the wind whistles.
The Barnam House. There are different stories about it. Some say the Barnams simply left, from one day to the other. There was something they feared and so they left without ever telling anyone. That’s why, if you look through the shutters and you’re lucky enough to have enough light, you can see that there are still plates on the dinner table. Continue reading
A hand reaches down, grabs a handful and throws it into my open mouth.
Cold. A crunchy, nearly sticky feeling. A taste like iron. Like blood.
The taste of snow is mostly the food residue and slime and bacteria and dead cells on your tongue.
I can still see every moment of that day. Play. Rewind. Slow motion. It’s all there, a movie, locked in my head for the rest of my life.
It snowed today. When I saw the first snowflakes, this morning, sitting in my car, I felt a shiver. Since then the tape keeps playing. Keeps rewinding. Keeps playing. Continue reading