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Fog Children

February 3, 2016 at 12:00 AM
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Rating: 6.9/10 (350 votes cast)

Staring at the clock, Brandon heaved a sigh as the digital numbers switched once again, marking the death of yet another minute as he sat outside the Sun Theater waiting for his girlfriend to get off her shift at the Flying Saucers bar. The gently humming engine of the older model Dodge filled the air, along with a soft mist that was coming from the nightly rainfall. The city of San Antonio had suffered from these strange heat waves before, but never these heat showers. It would rain just after the sun went down, which in the summer was late, cooling the hot streets too quickly, creating a thick fog that the people of the Southwest were hardly equipped to deal with.

Brandon flipped his headlights off and rolled up his windows, locking his doors out of habit. With the fog rolling in, you never knew what kind of crap you were going to see. There’d been reports on the news that gangs of teenagers had been using the clouds as a means to carjack people, sneaking up on them and just yanking them from their vehicle. Brandon smiled; no way that would happen to him.

A sudden knocking on his window caused him to jump in his seat, dropping his cell phone down to the floorboards. Cursing under his breath, he looked up to see who had knocked on his window.

Two young boys stood in the pale light of the Sun Theater’s glow, clothes immaculate. Brandon watched as the taller boy, the one on the right, motioning for him to roll down the window. The boy on the left was smiling, his glistening white teeth luminescent in the roiling fog.

Brandon stared at the kids for a few moments, looking them over. He knew all the movies at the Sun were starting up or were on their last round, and there was no way they were going to be interested in the bar… in fact, they were of that delightful age where Brandon couldn’t exactly tell how old they were. They were somewhere between ten and fourteen, and lanky; they had red curly hair and freckles while the one on the left was dressed in an old video game tee shirt the one on the right was wearing his Sunday best. As the fog licked at their edges making them indistinct, Brandon rolled his window down a few inches.

“Yeah, what do you kids need?” Brandon asked, trying to sound friendly.

The one on the right folded his arms behind his back and teetered slightly to lean on his right foot. “Well sir, we were coming to the movies to see the new action film and we realized we left our wallets at home.”

The boy on the left nodded, eyes still not meeting Brandon’s as he kept twitchily looking around.

Brandon nodded, urging the boy to continue.

“So you thought you might get some random adult to fork over some cash for you two?” Brandon asked, reaching down to pat for his cell phone. The fog rolled over his hood, obscuring the chipped paint and warped metal from view. From the light of the Sun’s marquee, the two young boys shadows split into three distinct lines, stretching out over the car as they stood by silently watching Brandon fumble.

The boy on the right’s head drooped. “I wasn’t planning on asking you for money, not at all. We just want a ride, see?”

The other boy nodded, his smile widening even further.

“A ride?” Brandon repeated, not bothering to look at the boys as he watched them from within the dark car’s interior. “A ride where?”

“Well, that depends on you actually,” The boy said, now standing directly outside the window of the Dodge. Brandon jolted, looking up as he tried not to spaz about the boy’s sudden movement. Looking up through the inch slit of glass at the boy’s silhouette, Brandon blinked. Had he been that tall?

“What do you mean?” Brandon asked, looking at the darkened figure as it peered down at him.

The boy… no, the man that stood there seemed to lengthen and grow as he peered down with shadowed eyes. His clothes were no longer church perfect- no, they were tousled and dirty. The skin that was apparent was blocked by flecks of fog dancing over him. Brandon stared up at the figure for what felt like minutes, until he heard it.


The figure had tried to open his front door. That seemed to break the spell that had fallen over Brandon, snapping his gaze away from the shadow figure while rolling his window up as quickly as he could. As it sealed in place, Brandon thought he could hear an angry hiss of a serpent being denied its dinner. A palm slammed into the window, the fingers impossibly long and willow-thin to be that of a child, or even a normal human being.

“Come on Mister,” the boy’s voice implored from the fog all around him, a dark humor underlying the plea. “The ride would be quick, we just need a lift a couple miles.”

“Get the fuck away from me!” Brandon shouted, flipping on the headlights for his Dodge so he might have some chance of finding his phone.

Standing in front of his suburban were dozens of black forms, all thin as reeds with mirrored eyes of inky darkness, partially wrapped in tendrils of fog bouncing the brilliant lights of the Dodge back into the cab.

Brandon screamed and dropped to the floorboards as his suburban started to shake, the heavy steel exterior scraping as innumerable fingernails pried and pulled at the edges of the Dodge in search of an easy opening. The voice of the boy, now seemingly from everywhere, was growing deeper by the second, a thick gravelly baritone that was commanding Brandon to open the door.

“This isn’t happening,” Brandon said to himself as he turned on his hands and knees to face the seat, his eyes never leaving the floor. “This can’t be real!”

He heard the handles being depressed and repressed in and out on all four doors repeatedly and let out another scream when something climbed up on top of the vehicle. Looking up, Brandon could see the skylight.

Open, wisps of fog sinking in like sinister fingers looking to pry a wound apart. Brandon climbed up onto his knees and slammed his fingers on the side panel, rolling the glass closed as he felt something shuffle about atop the vehicle. At the very last second, a hand dripping of darkness hit the glass wetly, smearing a greasy line that was only made that much more pronounced by the reflecting headlights.

Brandon turned, eyes closed, and reached up to grab the keys, killing the engine with a silent pull, the lights dying, along with the sounds.

Sitting in the roomy space for his pedals, Brandon remained silent. As did the night. No voices, no cries. No scratching of nails on steel.

His moment of peace was broken when his cell phone rang, violently and loudly, causing Brandon to yelp as he sought to silence it.

“Hello?” He answered hesitantly.

“Hey baby,” Rebecca said from the other line, weariness creeping from her voice. Brandon smiled. His girlfriend was calling him. He almost laughed.

“H-Hey honey,” Brandon said, crawling up into the seat of his suburban, sticking the keys back into the ignition. The lights came on, shining over the parking lot and onto the front steps of the Sun. He saw his delicate little girlfriend standing there, holding a large cake. “What have you got there?”

“Oh one of the cooks had a birthday and he’s diabetic, they said I could have the cake. Figured it could be a reward for how well we’ve been doing on the bills.” Rebecca smiled over the line, her tiny body walking out towards the suburban. “Do me a favor and unlock the back, ‘kay?”

Brandon smiled and pulled the lever unlocking the back gate, which lifted up slow enough to allow a breeze to breathe across the back of Brandon’s neck. Brandon slowly started to choke as Rebecca’s voice grew deeper, gravelly, all while laughing over an increasingly staticky call. Staring forward, a wave of fog rolled from beneath the Dodge, billowing like drapes caught in a wild wind as the feather light claws of the dense mist danced over the hood and windshield, scratching like nails on a chalkboard.

Credit: Nicholas Paschall

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From the Mouths of Lambs

December 13, 2015 at 12:00 AM
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It had been an unseasonably mild November day, and my lounge was flooded with the kind of beautiful caramel light that only seems particular to bright Autumn days. My fiancé, a Sports Coach at a local Secondary School, had left that morning for a tour with his rugby team.
“Are you sure you’ll be alright without me?” Jon had asked before he left, cupping my face between his large hands, calloused from too much hockey.
“Actually, I can’t wait to have a break from you!” I’d laughed, ducking away from his reactionary tickle, and chivvying him out the back door, where I stood to wave goodbye.
“Okay, you little toughie,” he’d chuckled as he climbed into his car, “But remember; no playing with matches, no running with scissors…”
“How about talking to strangers?!” I’d called, as he pulled away, waving a huge hand out of the window.
So now I sat down to begin the long, but not entirely unpleasant job of filling in Christmas reports for the children at Nursery school where I worked. I loved my job, and was good at it, despite the endless paperwork, and gradually diminishing pay. I also, honestly, loved to spend time alone. I’d poured myself a large glass of wine, and set a Nina Simone vinyl playing on my beloved record player, feeling surprisingly content, despite the long night of work ahead.
Jamie is a very polite, well-behaved boy, who has begun to show a real interest in drawing…
…. Sonika has become a lot more confident, and is now very sociable with the other children…
…. Leila has been working very hard on her numbers, and is always the first to tidy up after herself…
The children under my care, all aged from two to five, were generally delightful. They were at that inquisitive stage of life that informed so much of their character; when the seeds of who they’d later become were sown. I filled in the reports at an impressive rate, stopping only to replenish my glass and change vinyl, revelling in the freedom of being home alone.
I worked on, uninterrupted, until there was a knock at the door, which jolted me out of my reverie. Standing up, I glanced at the clock, and saw that I had been absorbed in my work for several hours. The music had stopped playing without me realising, and the sky visible through the large windows was now a luscious midnight blue.
There was a second knock, this time from the back door. I was somewhat startled – I hadn’t heard anyone walk down the path by the house, which led to the garden – but also relieved. Only our friends and family knew that the front door was in fact always locked and bolted, as it led directly into Jon’s office. This meant that any knocks from the back door were almost certainly someone we knew, and wanted to see.
I swiftly passed from the lounge into the kitchen, and opened the Yale lock on the back door, puzzled by the decidedly short shadow in the frosted glass. I swung the door open, and did a double take.
Standing on the back patio, looking down at the floor, was the sandy head of a young boy.
“Oh,” I heard myself say in surprise, before a confident voice interrupted.
“Good evening, I’m so sorry to disturb you. Can I come inside?”
I was immediately struck by the intelligent little voice with which the boy spoke. Still slightly dazed by the sudden interruption, I tried to take in who I was looking at.
The boy seemed to be around twelve years old, with blondish hair and freckled skin. It struck me that his clothes seemed more suited to a younger boy; he wore knee-length shorts, a dark blue jumper with a sailboat motif, and shiny, buckle-up shoes. I’d seen it before; children being dressed by a parent who weren’t quite ready to accept their child’s ageing, instead trying to contain them in a time warp, perpetually six years old. However, these children usually complied with this, either retaining the painful shyness of their early years, or constantly teetering at the edge of a tantrum. However this child was precocious: a confident, calm boy, who seemed unperturbed by the dark closing in around him, and perfectly content to knock on the door of a stranger, unannounced. Nonetheless, he kept his chin tucked into his chest, apparently examining his shoes in a rictus of timidity.
“P-pardon?” I stammered, still taken aback by the situation.
“Good evening, I’m so sorry to disturb you. Can I come inside?” the boy repeated, even reproducing the inflection of his first statement. Crouching down, I tried to peer into his face. His eyes were tightly clenched shut.
“Are you alone out here?” I asked gently, “Have you lost your parents?”
I couldn’t explain the acid-like sense of nerves that was beginning to rise in my stomach. There was something about this boy that was making my fingers tingle, as though he had some terrible deformity, but he looked perfectly normal. I chalked it up to the strange circumstances of a knock late at night, and began to look around for another sign of life. My back garden ran straight into a field, and the nearest neighbour was almost a mile away.
“Can I come inside?” the boy insisted. I was now beginning to feel irritated, and straightened up, folding my arms. I gave myself a small shake, and forced myself into work-mode.
“Why do you want to come inside, hey? Where are your parents?” I asked firmly, despite the jittering in my chest. “I’m happy to help, but I need to you explain what’s happened.”
There was a pause, and I got the distinct impression the boy was deciding what to say next. It was similar to when I found kids stealing biscuits from the Nursery kitchen – I could practically see the cogs turning to generate an excuse. His shoulders rose and fell with his quick breath, and his fists clenched in anticipation.
“Do you promise you won’t be angry?” the boy said, in an expressionless voice. It was almost as if he was reading the phrase aloud for the first time – he asked flatly, awkwardly. The roiling in my stomach was now, decidedly, fear.
“I’m sure there’s nothing to be angry about, ok?” I said, crouching again, and trying to look into the little boy’s face, his eyes still tightly clenched. “Just tell me why you’re wandering about here, and we’ll sort it out.” My imagination was beginning to run wild with the shadows. I began to imagine this was simply a decoy; that he was part of a gang, waiting just beyond my line of vision, to run into the house. Or maybe he himself was a thief, carefully disguising himself as a child. I was beginning to panic, when the boy suddenly seized my hand. He fingers were cold and dry, surprisingly strong. Slowly, as if he was balancing something on his head, he began to raise his face to mine and open his eyes.
I understood why he’d kept his eyes shut.
I found myself looking into two onyx pits, shining oil-back eyes, without pupil, iris or whites. I could see my own shocked face reflected twice back at me. I gasped, recoiled, and the boy’s lip curled in angry response.
“You said you wouldn’t get angry!” he hissed, his child-like face warped with rage. I felt myself flush red with shame, and immediately regretted my reaction. What if it was some kind of birth defect, or disability? I thought of the children at work, and tried to backtrack.
“No, no! I’m not angry at all!” I cried, waving my hands as though fanning a fire, in what I must have felt was a pacifying fashion. “Listen, why don’t you pop inside, and we’ll try to call your parents?” I said pleadingly. I immediately wished I had not.
Just as quickly as the anger had come, it was gone. The boy widened his sloe-coloured eyes, stretching his mouth into a smile that seemed to fill the bottom half of his face with teeth. Now, he truly did look disfigured – as though his mouth had been slashed into an impossibly wide grimace.
“You need to say it properly,” he said.
“What do you mean?” I asked shakily. I was beginning to understand what felt so wrong about the boy. The year before, my grandmother had died from cancer, and I had sat by her bed in the hospital for the last few days of her life, holding her hand. I loved my grandma dearly, but there had been something wrong during those last few days; something sickening. It was as though her dying body had changed the very essence of her; as if she had one foot in each world. Now, just like then, I had that feeling. My whole body was reeling away from an unmistakable presence. Death.
“What happened to you?” I breathed, my own words surprising me.
“Ask me inside. I’ll tell you.”
“No, I –“
“Ask me inside,” he whispered insistently, now calm and compelling. He already knew he’d convinced me. His huge black eyes were now moist, filled with anticipation. He seemed almost to drool.
I blinked, took a sharp breath. My body was moving without my will. I was stepping back from the door, spreading my arms wide, never once looking away from his eyes.
“Come inside.” I said.

“I’m home!” Jon cried as he shunted the back door open with a shoulder. Heaving his bag inside, he listened for a response from Mia. He was met with silence.
“Mia, hello!” he called again, shutting the door behind him and walking into the kitchen, exhausted. A bottle of white wine stood on the counter, open and warm. Jon chuckled, and scooped it up from the side.
“Seriously?!” he shouted, still laughing to himself. “It’s not even 10am! Was it that hard to spend a week without me?”
Then, from behind the door to the hallway, a thud.
“Mia?” Jon called, moving towards the hall, “Don’t even try to scare me, I will tickle you until you-“
The door swung open. Jon staggered back, gagging.
The carpet in the hall was completely saturated. No longer beige, it was impossibly crimson; soaked with blood, surely more blood than one body could possibly hold. The air was thick with it, the walls splashed, as though something had been thrown in it.
The week that had passed since its first spill had let it warm; around the radiator, it was beginning to dry and flake. By the door, a large pile of mail was soaked.
Jon was frozen, almost hypnotised. It was then that he noticed a heap at the bottom of the stairs, like a pile of discarded clothes. It too was covered in blood, but Jon distinctly recognised Mia’s grew cardigan.
His body seemed to understand before his mind did. With an involuntary whimper, he realised something within the pile was moving jerkily, savagely. He had only a moment in which to wonder, horrified, what it was, when an emaciated hand dropped onto the sodden carpet, knocked aside.
As the small blonde figure arose from the other side of the heap with something wet and purplish in its mouth, Jon could only wonder dimly, deliriously which piece of his fiancé was the last thing he’d see.

Credit: Luella

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Come Play With Me

September 6, 2015 at 12:00 AM
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Stepping through the doorway I had to hold up a hand to cover my eyes. The sun was incredibly bright and there wasn’t a single cloud in the sky. This had given me the sad delusion that there would be some semblance of warmth to be had but the bitter cold air shattered that happy thought. I wrapped my coat tighter around me, doing the top button up which I always hated to do. It brought on feelings of claustrophobia, probably linked to the fact that it constricted my neck ever so slightly.

My shoes hit the tarmac and I began to walk out into the playground, a line of excitable children following me out before dispersing among the play equipment. Some sat in small groups on the circular benches, loudly talking about political power within the class. A smile crept over my face. Who knew eleven-year-olds could discuss things in a way to make them sound like teenagers.

Other classes were emerging now and a few more teachers to help keep watch. Jenny caught my eye and smiled and I gave a small nod in reply.

Soon the playground was swarmed with children, running around, playing games, excitedly discussing television shows and which video games they were playing. Plenty felt the need to come and share this information with me and I went along with this, laughing and smiling. Although they could be the cause of a few accidents, the playground in a primary school often felt like one of the happiest places to be. I was content but obviously alert to any potential dangers.

It was then that I noticed her. There was a small girl, younger than the age I taught, maybe six or seven years old from her build but she was slumped in a corner next to a fence, hugging her knees to her chest. She wasn’t wearing a coat, nor was she wearing the school jumper with our logo emblazoned on the front of the chest. She was sat on concrete, huddled in shadow, her dark hair cascading over her face as she looked down.

She must have been freezing!

I assumed she’d had some sort of argument with a friend and was away from the others, either sulking or genuinely upset. Either way, I had to console her and to send her back inside to get her coat.

I walked over and squatted down next to her, getting to the same level as her to make sure she didn’t feel at all threatened.

“Hey there. Are you ok?”

She shook her head, shaking some hair loose from her shoulders so that it covered even more of her face.

“What happened?”


It was at this point that I began feeling uncomfortable. I had no idea why. I’d had conversations just like these a dozen other times. Some children felt like talking, some needed consoling, some just needed space and we gave them that. They usually spoke when they were ready. This situation though, something about it had me on edge to the point I could actually feel the adrenaline kick of a flight or fight response.

“Aren’t you cold?”

Another shaking of the head, then a meek voice came forth from the mass of hair, “I never get cold.”

Some of us never grew out of that bravado, but children almost always responded like that. They were never too cold or tired or anything else that could be perceived as weakness, at least, not when asked.

“Well, I think we need to get you inside to get your coat. Or at least your jumper.”

“No.” The voice was no longer meek. It was commanding and the head shifted slightly so that it was raised more towards me, revealing her face to me.

I tried my best not to, but I recoiled slightly. In this light, the shadow of the fence, her eyes appeared entirely black. No iris, no sclera, just pure black ovals reflecting my own face. She sighed gently and her eyes closed again. “I want to play.”

“Well,” I began, slowing my breathing and keeping the momentary fear out of my voice, “you can play after we get your jumper.”

“Will you play with me?”


She tilted her head back now, the hair falling away as her eyes snapped open suddenly. Again, those eyes…the pure black pools reflecting my own concerned face.

“We have to play. You have to play with me.”

I had stood up and taken a few steps back. She was shaking now, but it didn’t seem to be shivering. There was no fear and nothing about her that suggested she was cold…it literally looked like she was shaking in anger. Her blank, expressionless face had contorted into one of anger, her eyes narrowing and her lips pulling back until her teeth were bared.

I had stumbled back a few more steps and then had frozen. I felt simultaneously terrified and embarrassed. I was a senior teacher in a playground full of children and other staff and was retreating in horror from one infant.

I opened my mouth to speak and then the bell went, the ringing which symbolised the end of playtime. The anger vanished from her face and her eyes closed again as children rushed around me, between us, none of them stopping to look at her as she rose from the ground.

I found my feet and walked towards where my own class were lining up, my eyes locked on her as she stood upright and once more I was shown the darkness behind her eyelids as they opened. Her lips pulled up into a smile that chilled me more than anything I had encountered in my teaching career and then, lost in the throng of running children, I lost sight of her.

Once she was out of my sight it was easy to dismiss what I had seen as just a trick of the light, my own senses tricked, causing me to become afraid which in turn caused my senses to let me down again.

I never saw that girl again, never noticed her so I could confirm or disprove what I had seen and I moved schools not long after that, transferring somewhere closer to home. I had begun to put it out of my mind, dismiss it entirely. Then I stumbled upon a newspaper article, one which spoke of a black eyed girl who had been frequently seen in Staffordshire. Looking into it I found hundreds of accounts of those who had witnessed the black eyed children. All describing the same sense of fear, dread and foreboding which accompanied them and the anger the children displayed when it was discovered they were anything but normal.

Apparently most of these involve these black eyed children asking to come into your home, saying they need help. Or coming up to your car, begging for a ride. I have no idea what happens if you allow them in and the teacher in me would find it difficult to turn them away. All I would say is…

Look them in the eye before saying yes.

Credit To – Pazuzu’s Crypt

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The Fourth Child

August 28, 2015 at 12:00 PM
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My mother, my siblings and I moved into this awesome new house a few months ago. It’s a really cool plantation-style home out in what was once a rural area outside of New Orleans. By now the area is a little more built up, so it’s really more like a spacious suburb.

Anyway, it had been about 9 months since our father died. My mom really wanted us to get away from our old house; it was full of too many memories. She wanted us to have a cool, spacious house to play in and give us a fresh start. Apparently we got this place at a decent deal because the former owner was this old woman who passed away and her family wanted to get the extra house off their hands. She died peacefully in her sleep, but it still made us a little uncomfortable so no one moved into her bedroom. We just let it be a guestroom if anyone had visitors.

We have a wonderful neighbor named Miss Leah who lives next door to us (about a half mile away). She’s a small but powerfully built woman who welcomed us to the area with open arms. The former owner of the house was an old friend of hers who she visited all the time, and my own mother soon took on the role of her new friend. They immediately became best friends, always giggling in our kitchen on the weekends.

Miss Leah loves telling tales of Voodoo and even practices it herself (many people in New Orleans do). She mostly practices the “light” voodoo, like charms for good luck and protection. She told me that you can talk to spirits if you write them letters and put them in a place where they know to find them.

I started seeing her every now and then, late at night when I can’t sleep, sticking envelopes into our mailbox (I can see it from my window). When I’d go out in the morning, though, no envelopes would be there. One night I saw her doing the usual mailbox routine, and as soon as she walked far enough away, I ran out to see what she was putting in our mailboxes. I saw a little, silvery, unaddressed letter to Maggie, which turns out to be the name of the old lady who lived in our house before us. I always thought Miss Leah was joking about talking to the dead, but it’s clear she practices it herself. Just to test things out, I stood at that mailbox, watching it for a few hours. Eventually, the sun began to break over the horizon so I figured I had waited ample time. I opened the mailbox.

The letter was gone.

At first I was in complete disbelief, but then I was overcome with excitement. If Miss Leah could talk to Maggie, maybe I could talk to my dad!
I keep a little shoebox under my own bed. It’s full of little trinkets and pictures that remind me of my dad. I go through it every now and then, when I miss him most, as a sort of therapy.
A few nights after trying to rationalize what had happened with the note to Maggie, I decided the best way to test it out was to try it myself. I wrote a letter to my dad, which felt silly at first because I don’t know what dead people like to talk about. I wrote:

“Dear Daddy,
Miss you! How are things on the other side? Mom bought this cool house for us and we have a fun neighbor lady named Miss Leah. We’re all doing ok over here but I especially miss waking up every morning to the sounds of your loud singing in the shower. I hated it back then, but now I realize how funny and charming it was.

I placed the note into my special shoebox and slipped it back under the bed. When I woke up in the morning, it wasn’t there. I wasn’t sure how to handle it. Did he really get the message? Does he write back? What do I do now?

Well, I still needed to go to school that day so the excitement of my supernatural letter-writing subsided and I headed over to the bathroom to get ready. My older brother was singing his lungs out in the shower, something unusual for him, but I figured he was trying to become more like our dad.

I knocked on the door, “hurry up in there! I need to pee!”
The singing continued.
“Jay, how much longer are you going to take?”
The singing continued. Then someone tapped on my shoulder. I turned around. It was Jay. He said, “Calm down Julia. I’m not in the bathroom. Is the door locked? Lemme see if I can jimmy it open for you”
He opened the door with ease. The bathroom was empty. No singing. The shower wasn’t running, but the tub was wet. I walked in and started brushing my teeth, amused by what had just happened. I noticed the mirror was a little bit foggy, as though from shower steam. There was a message written in the mirror. It said “How bad do you miss me?”

I walked the fine line between being totally freaked out and super elated that my dad was communicating with me. I wrote another letter that night.

“Haha I miss you more than you can possibly imagine, Daddy! Don’t ever doubt that. But tell me, how are things on the other side?”

That morning I woke up. The letter in the shoebox was gone, but I noticed a new letter near my door. It looked like someone slipped it under there. I opened it up. It said, “what do you want most from me?” I found it weird that my dad wasn’t really carrying the conversation well, but I decided I’d write a quick response and go to school. I wrote:

“Well, I guess what I want most is for you to come back and play with me like old times. But I know that’s silly.”

When I got back from school, I went straight to my room to check on the letter. I opened my door and my dollhouse, which we stored in the attic, was smack in the middle of my floor. My mom had been at work all day, my brother was still at swim practice and my sister went to the mall with her friend after dropping me off at home. I don’t know who could have moved it…except maybe my dad. I saw a note next to the dollhouse. It said, “PLAY WITH ME.”

My body froze. Something was unsettling about this whole setup. I didn’t feel like I was in danger or anything, but I just wasn’t comfortable. I walked to Miss Leah’s house and she was sitting in her rocking chair on the front porch with her cat, Rufus, in her lap. I told her I knew about the letters she wrote to Maggie.

“Ah yes, sweetheart,” she said. “Even though she’s passed, I haven’t stopped talking to Miss Maggie one bit. She’s was my best friend, and I want her to know how much I love her and how much Rufus misses the little tuna treats she’d give him. I write her almost every day, just updating her on my life so that when I pass, too, it’ll be like she didn’t miss a beat.” She asked me if I was thinking about writing to the dead, too.

For some reason I didn’t feel comfortable telling Miss Leah that I had been writing to my dad already. I told her I was “considering” writing a letter to my dad and that I would try it out that night. She laughed, “OK honey. You’ll have to let me know how it goes tomorrow.” I played with Rufus for a little while as Miss Leah talked on the phone with her nephew. The sun started going down and I figured it was about time for dinner so I said goodbye to Miss Leah and Rufus and walked back over to my home.

My mom and everyone else were already back.

“My god where have you been!” my mom yelled. I told her I was hanging out with Miss Leah, which eased her nerves a little bit since she knew I had been home alone for a while, which scared her. My sister was grounded for abandoning me for the afternoon, but she said it was smart for me to go to Miss Leah’s. She then said, “You know that dollhouse was expensive, right?” which seemed like an odd question but I answered, “Yes. I suppose. Why?” and she explained, “Well, I guess I just wish you’d taken better care of it, is all. I saw it in your room when I was looking for you and I could see you picked off all its paint and there were some dings and dents and I just thought it was such a shame. Also, next time you’re getting something from the attic, wait until I get home and I can help you, honey.”

Bewildered by my mother’s comment, I ate dinner in silence. Afterwards, I helped with the dishes and made my way back to my room with apprehension. It seemed like the dollhouse was in great condition last I saw so I knew something must have happened after I left. I prayed my mom was just seeing things, that the dollhouse was, indeed, exactly how I left it. I opened my door.

My mom was wrong. The dollhouse wasn’t a little dinged up. It had been ripped to bits. Its tattered remains were strewn about the floor. Even my little dolls were mangled with their arms snapped backwards and their heads missing. I couldn’t fathom what had just happened. Then I saw the letter…


My hair stood on end. I could feel the rage emanating throughout the room. I tried to rationalize. I tried to tell myself that the context made me sense rage, but there was nothing to worry about. But how can you rationalize things when you’re going around writing letters to dead people who break your furniture? I felt terrible that I had upset my father this way. He bought me that dollhouse himself, so it must have hurt to destroy it. I immediately wrote a new letter to my dad saying:

I’m so sorry for not playing with you. I love you, but I think we need to let go. You belong on the other side and I belong here. I just want to say one more thing to you. Something I never got the chance to say before:

Goodbye Daddy.


I slept with my brother that night. He was nice about it–didn’t even ask what I was afraid of. He could tell I was disturbed and he didn’t want to push me. Before we went to bed, he did say one thing. “You know there’s no such thing as monsters, right?”
“Yes,” I whispered. At that point I wasn’t sure if I was lying or not. It was still comforting to say it. I didn’t think I was dealing with a monster, or at least I wasn’t sure about it. I didn’t even really know what a monster was supposed to be. A dragon? A Boogeyman in your closet? An angry father?

The next day was Saturday, and I still wasn’t comfortable being in my room for long. I got dressed and walked to Miss Leah’s. I wanted to leave the house without checking the shoebox. It felt like I was leaving an angry parent, and wanted to give them time to cool off before we talked again. Miss Leah was sitting with Rufus, as usual, and they both watched the bluejays hop around in their yard—Rufus slightly more attentive than Miss Leah.

“Well hey there sweetheart,” Miss Leah called out. “How’d it go last night?”

I knew she was talking about the letter and I knew she’d know exactly how to fix things. But before I could begin speaking, she interrupted “Let me guess, it didn’t work.”

“Why would you say that?” I asked.

“Because I know better than anyone else that spirits can’t move physical objects. I have to use my special charm paper to write to Maggie, and I doubt you got any charm paper.”

I felt a little ashamed after that. I’m not sure why. I guess I just felt like I’d been deceiving Miss Leah. I didn’t tell her the whole story. I just told her I thought it worked because the letter was gone.

“Well, Julia. My best guess is you’ve got a prankster in your house. Probably your brother; he’s too silly for his age.”

She went on about all the things she’s told Maggie. She said it didn’t happen often, as it was hard for Maggie’s frail little spirit to do much of anything except read, but Maggie would sometimes write back. Maggie said she hadn’t crossed over yet, but when she did cross over, she wouldn’t be able to get letters anymore. Maggie said that she loved Miss Leah and her letters, but one day, she’d need to move one. She said eventually, Miss Leah wouldn’t have the strength to write letters and they would become fewer and fewer. Once Maggie knew it was too hard for Miss Leah to write anymore, she’d cross over and wait patiently with Petunia, another one of Miss Leah’s cats who had passed away. Maggie said Miss Leah would know when she crossed over because her letters would stay in the mailbox, and no one would take them.

I wandered home later that afternoon wondering if my dad was ever going to cross over. I wasn’t sure how to feel. I know what I saw and what I did. I wrote letters to my dad. I left them where he’d check (our box). They were gone later. I heard him in the shower. I saw his message in the mirror. I saw the dollhouse and his notes. I know no one in the house could’ve moved the dollhouse. I was certain it was Daddy.

I arrived in my room, fragments of the dollhouse still scattered about the floor. I remembered the last letter I wrote. The one that asked my Dad to move on. I was afraid he’d be angry with me. I was afraid he’d accuse me of not loving him enough, of lying to him. I didn’t want to check the box, but I needed to see if he got the message.

I opened it. The letter was gone.

But in it’s place was a new letter. It said “Julia” on the cover, so I knew it was for me. I figured he wrote back. I opened it. And I was horrified at what I saw.

“Daddy isn’t here”

I bolted down the stairs and prepared to run back to Miss Leah’s and explain everything. But I didn’t have to. There she was, giggling with my mom in the kitchen. I started walking toward them, but there was something on the other side of the division between the kitchen and living room, where I could still see it but Mom and Miss Leah couldn’t. We put a framed picture of Dad there in order to remember him. There was a note on the picture. It said, “SAY A WORD AND THEY’RE DEAD”

I wasn’t sure what to do. I knew I needed to keep quiet, but I also knew that something very, VERY sinister was going on. And there was nothing I could do to stop it.

My sister and brother were going to a big house party, and my mom wanted to go hang out with her girlfriends that night, so Miss Leah actually came over to take me to her house for the night. My mom tried to apologize for the late notice, but I was so excited to get out of the house and away from…whatever it was, that she didn’t even get to finish her apology.

That night, Miss Leah let me stay up late with her and Rufus. At around 12 am she started writing a letter on her special charm paper. It was very thin, and glowed a silvery hue. I asked her how to make it and she said that it comes from the soul. We walked to my house together and put the letter in the mailbox. The next day, my mom picked me up and we stopped by the mailbox because someone had pulled the lever up. There was a note for Miss Leah there, and I knew exactly whom it was from. The paper had that same thinness and silvery glow. Mom wrote it off as someone dropping it off in the wrong box and asked if I would run back and give it to Miss Leah.

I sprinted down the street to Miss Leah’s. She opened the letter and began reading while I sat and waited with Rufus. When she was done, Miss Leah’s face turned pale. I never thought I’d see such a white, porcelain complexion on a live human being. All the color was gone from her face and she trembled. She was clearly disturbed. VERY disturbed. She told me not to go home, that she’d call my mom and everyone would come over for lunch. She immediately put down the letter and picked up her phone. Once her back was turned, I took the letter to read it.

“Dearest Leah,
So sorry I’ve taken such a long time to write back to you. It seems that I lack the spiritual power necessary to write. Heck! I could hardly even write when I was alive and had hands.

The lady who moved into my old house with her family is lovely as ever and I want you to know that I’ve been watching y’alls friendship and I’m so happy for you. I miss giggling in the kitchen with you, but watching you and her talk is almost as good.

I’ll bet you met all her children as well. Most of them are sweet as can be. Jay has a heart of gold and seems to really care for the family. Catherine has a great sense of humor. Always makes me and the rest of the family laugh. Julia is a curious little one. She reminds me a bit of you.

Then there’s the fourth child. It’s a vicious little thing. You know the one I’m talking about? The one with the black eyes and the long, dark claws that lives in my old room? It’s always causing a ruckus.

I’m glad I’m dead because that little scoundrel really gives me the creeps. It watches poor Julia as she sleeps and leaves awful little notes around the house.

I noticed the other day that it’s started taking knives out of the drawers at night and bringing them under the bed with it. That mother should really do something about keeping it under control.

Perhaps you could help with that?

Can’t wait for your next correspondence!


I couldn’t breathe. I just sat…frozen…as Miss Leah screamed into the phone.
“Oh god please tell me y’all are ok! Pick up the phone! Please PLEASE pick up the phone!” She decided to call 911. When the police got to my house Miss Leah and I waited outside. They found my mom, my brother, my sister. They found them all over the house lacerated into shreds of flesh. They couldn’t determine how it happened, figured it was a wild animal or something.

But Miss Leah and I knew how it happened. While we were waiting outside the house we both looked up into my bedroom window. Standing there, in the room where I slept at night, was a black eyed child with an evil grin that stretched ear to ear. It raised one long, sharp finger….probably 12 inches long, to it’s mouth as if to say “shhhhhhh…”

Credit To – J-Rog

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August 23, 2015 at 12:00 AM
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Arthur Willow lie awake listening to the rustling noise in his closet. He was fourteen, much too old to believe in the clichéd thought of a monster in a closet.
Yet as he tried to force himself asleep for yet another time this month, the rustling grew louder than it had before. Whenever this noise occurred he justified it as a rogue toy, or a raccoon stuck in the wall.
There was no point in checking the closet, he had before and there was always nothing there. So the sound continued on into the night, until as per usual, Arthur finally shut his heavy eyelids.
“Arthur, breakfast!” His mother’s voice echoed up from the kitchen.
Arthur rubbed his eyes, rolled out from the warmth of the covers, and started his routine. He opened the door to the closet, glanced around at old toys, a pile of clothes he outgrew, and a rather large bunny his grandparents had given him for Easter. He never found anything during this routine, and that gave him some comfort.
“How did you sleep, Honey?” Arthur’s mom asked as she plopped two pancakes out of the frying pan, onto his plate. Arthur was always impressed with how strong she was after his dad passed away.
“Wonderful.” Arthur lied.
His mother gave him a worried look, patted his messy hair, and started cleaning dishes. Arthur finished breakfast and put on his coat.
The freezing air nipped at his cheeks as his shovel sank into the driveway snow. Neighbor children ran up and down the block pelting each other with snowballs, and making snow angels.
Arthur watched the snowflakes fall briefly, then returned to the warmth of his home.
Arthur removed his coat, sat on the couch and began to read. The noise had become more frequent, silent nights were becoming rare. Sleep deprivation had caught up to him, and Arthur took a much needed nap.
He awoke to gunshots. Arthur’s eyelids flew open, and he sat straight up. Through panicked breaths his eyes raced around the room and saw cowboys on television in a shoot-out. Mary, his little sister, had turned on the T.V. while she in the cushy recliner holding a doll.
“Mary, you should have let me rest.”
“I sowwie.” Mary looked genuinely sad.
She was only three, so it was near impossible to be upset with her. Arthur’s mother walked into the room and the rest of the evening was spent in the living room with his family. Before his father passed away having a good relationship with his family was not as important, now they relied much more on each other.
Everyone said goodnight and Arthur returned to his room. He uneasily laid down under the covers and waited. Just as Arthur was on the edge of sleep, it began. Arthur was starting to believe he was going insane. Once again he forced himself to sleep.
He awoke to his closet slamming. At first it didn’t register with Arthur. He rolled over and looked at the clock, it was 5 a.m. When his sleepiness drifted away he sat up staring at the closet door. Using the sliver of morning sunlight available Arthur could see that the floor in front of the closet was damp. He quickly flung open the closet door, threw the pile of clothes out of the closet, scattered toys, and chucked the rabbit. There was nothing.
Arthur replaced the contents of his closet and returned to bed. He laid in bed wide awake until breakfast.
At breakfast he sat down and his mother gave him waffles. “Some neighbor children built the cutest little snowman in our yard.” His mother said while she handed him syrup.
“I’ll take a look at it when I go to shovel snow.” Arthur replied.
The snowman outside was small and poorly made. It had classic twigs for arms and rocks for eyes. A scarf was loosely wrapped around its neck. The scarf seemed familiar to Arthur. It was blue with small rubber ducks scattered all over it. It was exactly like a scarf Arthur wore as a child. In fact it was Arthur’s scarf.
Arthur ran back inside and searched for his sister. “Mary?” Arthur jogged upstairs and checked his sister’s room. Mary sat on the floor coloring from the light of the window.
“Mary, did you build a snowman outside using my scarf?”
“Tury did et.” Mary replied without looking up from her coloring activity.
“Who’s Terry?” Arthur analyzed Mary trying to figure out if this was some sort of joke.
“My friend.” Mary seemed completely serious.
“When do you see, Terry?” Arthur asked feeling his heart sink.
“Night. He watches us.” Mary kept coloring away as if this conversation was normal.
Arthur lie awake that night. No matter how much sleep gripped him, he wanted to stay awake and watch. He forced his breathing to become very slow, to appear to be sleeping. Around 3 a.m. Arthur heard something very strange. The sound of shifting floorboards, he deduced, and then the door opened.
To Arthur’s shock, the rabbit plopped out of the closet and remained motionless. Arthur couldn’t believe it, the rabbit was alive? This made absolutely no sense. It had most likely been purchased at a Wal-Mart by his grandparents. How was an Easter toy alive?
While Arthur’s eyes were fixed on the rabbit, the door slid open more. A small boy slowly stepped out of the closet. He stood there seemingly staring at Arthur. Arthur became so terrified, but kept his determination and remained still.
The child had dark brown hair, and murky gray skin. His eyes remained fixated on Arthur, unblinking. Arthur stared in horror as he realized the boy’s eyes had no pupils or color. They were completely white.
For minutes, which felt like hours to Arthur, the disfigured child stood in the moonlight watching Arthur. The horror of the situation had overtaken him, and he laid in bed paralyzed by his gaze. After around twenty minutes, the intensity of the situation had become too much and Arthur began to cry. The small child almost appeared to be startled by the sound. He slowly walked across the room, appearing to study Arthur.
Arthur remained completely still as the child approached. The child’s cheeks were sunken and his white eyes were glazed over. The child stopped getting closer when their noses almost touched and Arthur could feel his breath.
Then the child shrieked.
Terry’s scream made Arthur’s stomach churn, and he leapt backward on the bed in terror. Suddenly Terry ran out of Arthur’s room and down the hall. Arthur remained frozen with his back to the wall staring at the entrance of the room. While processing what had happened, he reflected back to what Mary had told him.
Had he ran into Mary’s room?
The overwhelming fear of this creature was stifled for the welfare of his sister. Arthur grabbed his battered baseball bat and headed down the hall.
He half whispered, half yelled “Mary?..” while he slowly walked with his bat up checking every corner. Finally he made it to Mary’s bedroom. Her window was open, and cold air was rushing into the room. Arthur turned the lights on, and searched the room. Mary was gone.
The police were called to the Willow family home that night. Arthur never spoke to his mother or the cops about what happened. The police said they found two sets of small footsteps side by side in the snow leading to the woods before they disappeared. They searched the neighborhood, and woods long into the night to no avail.
Early that morning Arthur once again searched the closet. He recalled back to the noise of the floorboards shifting, then he started putting pressure on the floor. The boards gave in a little, and Arthur managed to pull out a few.
Beneath the floor, Arthur found an odd crawlspace. This must be where Terry had been hiding, right under the rabbit, beneath the floor. Inside he found some of his old toys and various drawings. The drawings consisted of what Arthur could tell was Terry and Mary. Arthur became sick when he saw that Mary had gray skin, and white eyes.
The last picture had Terry and Mary on a distinct hill in what appeared to be the woods. Arthur stared at the hill and realized, he had seen that place before. When he was younger, he played in the woods and more specifically on that hill.
Arthur grabbed his coat and boots, then sprinted out the door into the cold morning air. He rushed through the woods dodging rocks and limbs. Off in the distance he saw the hill from his childhood. As he approached, he began to make out the figure of Mary laying in the snow.
“Mary!” Arthur yelled as he dropped to his knees beside of her body. Her skin was gray and frost bitten, her hair slightly covering her white eyes. “Mary… wake up..” He gingerly picked her up and checked for a pulse. There was none.
“Mary you can’t die, you’re my sister..” Arthur said with tears running down his face.
Mary slowly turned her head and screamed.

Credit To – Zolast

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Her Eyes

December 15, 2014 at 12:00 AM
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I never knew something as simple as a knock on the door could forever send me into a frozen state of terror. It all started with a cold and rainy autumn evening. The wind was blowing fiercely, whistling through the little cracks in the windows and door frames. I was sitting by myself in the living room, watching a terrible homemade zombie flick when I heard a dull thud of foot steps walking up the stairs to my porch.

I muted the television, sat upright, and turned my ear towards the front door. I heard the storm door open then slam shut within two seconds of it opening. I quickly stood up, stumbling over the small ottoman sitting in front of me. I turn on the light in the entryway then peek through the curtain on the little door window to see who was there. No one. I glance out further to see that I had left my driver’s side window cracked open. I curse under my breath and grab my keys from the side table and run outside to my car. I quickly roll my window up, then run back into the house, soaking wet.

I hastily shut the front door, as to not let any heat escape. As soon as it latches, the knocking begins again. Annoyed, I sigh, thinking I forgot to latch the storm door. I turn the knob, ripping the door open when I see a child standing in front of me on the porch. Startled, I gasp loudly, clutching my chest. The child, a girl no older than 10 years stood on my porch, in a raincoat, looking down to the floor. “Are you all right?” She says nothing. I take a step closer to her “Hey, can I help you with something?” I’m starting to panic inside a little because something seems terribly “off” about this girl. Then I notice, she’s completely dry. Not a single drop of rain has touched her coat. I look around to see that my porch is flooded where the wind had blown the rain against my house. Even if she had been on my porch this whole time, she still would’ve been drenched.

I stand there, staring at this child who wouldn’t even look at me.
“Little girl. Please answer–”
“May I please borrow your phone?”
Her voice is calm and kind of deep. She never takes her eyes off of the ground. I inhale sharply, surprised by her sudden question. I weakly ask, “Who do you want to call? Do you need the police, your parents, who?” I’m trying to stay calm, but my voice is shaking. Something is terribly wrong, but I can’t figure it out.

The girl stands very still, and starts sniffling. “May I come in? It’s so cold. Do you have any food?” I stare at the girl, confused by her monotone voice. I don’t feel comfortable letting her inside my house. I feel bad because she’s a child, but something about her terrifies me. I tremble, “What is your name? Where do you live?” The rain suddenly stops. Like turning off a faucet. The wind stops, also, making the neighborhood twenty times quieter. I get shivers down my spine. The girl slowly lifts her hooded head, finally making eye contact. I try to scream, but the only thing that comes out are aggravated breaths of terror. Her eyes. Oh my god. Her eyes. As black as the abyss that she had likely crawled out of. Her pale white skin glowed a soft white, making her eyeballs so much darker. She stepped closer to me, “Please let me in, I’m so cold.” I stare in fear, when the wind and rain turn on like a switch behind her.

I slam the door in her face, running to my phone. I dial 9-1-1, barely holding on because I’m shaking so much. “9-1-1, what’s your emergency?” I try to explain what’s happening, but just sound crazy. “There’s a girl. On m-my porch. Not wet. Black eyes. Oh my god.” I hear the lady from 9-1-1 trying to calm me down. “Ma’am? Ma’am? Calm down please, I can’t understand you. You said there’s a girl on your porch?” I stutter, “Y-yes. She’s out there. IT’S out there. She has black eyes and wants to come in. I won’t let her in!” I hear her knocking on my door. Each knock louder than the rest. I cry out, “Leave me alone! I’m not letting you in!” The knocking ceases. I sigh in a small relief. The woman on the phone asks me where I am and if I need a police officer to come. I say “Yes, please hurry.” Then hang up. Ten long minutes later, I see police vehicle lights dancing on my living room wall. I sigh in relief, and hear a loud banging on the door. I run, a little hesitantly, and answer it. “Thank god you’re here, officer–” I gasp. No officer. Only his car, sitting in the rain, driver side door wide open. I walk out onto the porch, frantically searching everywhere for him. I run to the back yard, dripping with rain water, shouting, “Officer! Officer, where are you?!” I run back to the front of the house when I see that awful girl standing in front of me, glaring at me. She sounds aggravated now. “Let me in so I can use your phone. I’m lost. Please help me.” I dart up the porch stairs, shoving her out of my way, throwing her off the porch. I look back to see her ankle twisted in an impossible angle. She doesn’t scream or cry, she just stands up, limping towards me, dragging her ankle behind her. I scream in horror, slamming and locking the door behind me. The knocking continues. I just want it to stop. I have to do something. I run to my kitchen, open the silverware drawer and pull out a sharp knife. The knocking will not stop.

I walk toward the front door, raising the knife above my head, and grabbing for the door knob. I quickly open the door to see the Officer standing in front of me, his gun drawn, pointing at me. Out of instinct, he fires, shorting me in the chest. I drop the knife, and fall to the ground. He enters the door and kneels beside me, yelling into his radio that he needs backup and an ambulance. He puts pressure on my chest as th blood pours out of me. I look behind him to see the black eyed girl standing directly behind him, looking down at me, smiling with her sharp teeth glistening. I’m choking on my own blood at this moment. Gasping in terror, my eyes widen. They never close again. The last thing I ever see is that girl and her harshly blackened eyes, smiling down at me like she just won a prize.

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