Have you ever seen him; the little boy just out of view? For me, he’s always been there. Even when I was a kid myself, he was there, just in the corner on the edge of my peripherie. Perhaps that’s the very reason I never questioned it until recently; the fact that I had always been aware of him, to a point, anyway. I’m not entirely sure why I never felt the urge to talk to him, especially given the fact he always seemed as though he wanted to say something, or that’s the way it felt anyway.
It could be that, when I was a kid, I was just incredibly shy, and I didn’t much care to speak to others if I could help it. As the years passed by, I came out of my shell a little bit, but I still feel awkward around new people and I don’t go out of my way to start a conversation with anyone I am close to either. Of course; regardless of the fact that I feel more at ease when I’m alone than when I’m around people, I’ve never been truly by myself, as he has always been there, just to the side of where I’m looking.
I asked my dad about him once, to see if he had ever seen him. He made a strange expression when I approached him with it, but he wouldn’t give me an answer. Whether or not he was familiar with the boy, or if he just feared I may not be of the most sound and stable mind with my claims of seeing someone that nobody else appeared to, he gave me one simple instruction:
“Don’t ever talk to him.”
So, I didn’t. It wasn’t that hard to do, as he was still only to the side of my vision, but I could always feel his eyes on me. When I would awake in the middle of the night due to the frequent nightmares that plagued my younger years, I could still feel him staring at me. Even with my night terrors, I was never a ‘leave the light on’ sort of kid. I liked the darkness. I liked being hidden behind the shadows. I liked not having to see the shaggy blonde hair to the far left of my vision for a time, but I knew he was still there.
When I showered, he would be just out of reach in the bathroom. When I ran around playing, he would follow along, though he never seemed to actually move, he just drifted along beside me, still in that same static, upright pose. When I went swimming at the public pool, he would be under the water with his unmoistened hair, floating to my left, still staring at the white of my eye. No matter where I went or what I did, he would come along for the ride.
My dad never brought back up the question I asked him that day, aside from the occasional check in, to ensure I was staying true to my promise that I would not speak a word to the mysterious child. Unfortunately, this would bring the knowledge of my passenger to the forefront once more. I had learned to ignore him for the most part, but should I be reminded, or absentmindedly attempt to chase him down with my eyes, he would consume my thoughts for a time.
You know how you get those floaters in your eye, and you sort of trace your vision in pursuit of them on occasion? That’s what it felt like. As soon as you acknowledge those damn things, they’re all you can see for a while. Imagine that, but with a shaggy blonde kid, who may have been anywhere between five and ten. I couldn’t exactly get a full visual of him to narrow down features and the like, but I did try sometimes, especially on those occasions when he was the only thing I could focus on.
When my mom died, I was around eighteen. She had been through a lot in her life, which had led her to the more than occasional stay in one mental institution or another, but my dad always stood by her side. I never really knew what ailments she suffered from, but on the night after her funeral, my father and I shared our first drink together; something that would become a tradition in the years that followed.
We didn’t speak much as we both gazed off while sipping slowly on the twelve year old scotch my dad favored over the cheaper one I would grow more accustomed to later in life. Those first swigs burned my throat, but it’s not as if this had been my first drink of alcohol, only the first time I sampled something other than the cheap beer my friends would be able to get their hands on. The more I drank, the more I enjoyed it. Of course, the more my head grew light, the more I felt up to discussing what had happened to my mother. Before my dizzy mind could conjure the best words to approach the subject, my dad began to speak, effectively snapping me back to reality.
“You still see him…the kid?”
He still gazed out into the world beyond the window of our living room as he spoke. It almost felt as though he didn’t want to look at me, though that could have been no more than the effects of the booze, inspiring a bit of paranoia in my thoughts.
“Even right now?”
Naturally, him bringing up the subject, caused my eyes to attempt to chase down the image of the boy, but he followed his normal course of floating away from my pursuing irises.
“You still haven’t talked to him, right?”
“Yeah…I mean, no. I haven’t.”
He just nodded. He still would not break his stare from the darkened world beyond the glass, but I attempted to meet his gaze nonetheless.
“Why…like, why shouldn’t I, you know…talk to h…”
“Just don’t! DON’T EVER!”
He finally faced me as he barked the words, giving me a look I had never seen on his face before. It felt like something between where rage and soul crushing pain met, to my untrained eyes anyway.
He still glared at me for minutes after his words caused my hands to tremble, though it almost felt like we were locked in that dead state for much longer. I knew he was hurting, and I was too, for that matter. My mother had been almost more of a guest star in my life, like a cameo who would come on screen for a few moments. She would stick around for an episode or two, and then disappear until a season or three down the line, but I can’t say I ever really knew her all that well. She spent so much time behind the walls of one hospital or another; be it a medical facility, or a psychological one was dependent on the day, it seemed.
Surely it was one of her numerous physical ailments that put an end to her life, but I knew as little about those problems as the ones that put such a strain on her mind. I don’t imagine it will come as much of a shock to any who have been reading along, what the truth of her mental anguish was.
“She saw him too…” my dad said, finally cutting his eyes back to the window.
It didn’t exactly come as a shock to me either, but it still awakened an array of both rational and completely irrational questions in my head; the first and foremost of which was:
“Did she talk to him?”
He returned such a brief and subtle nod, I could barely make it out. A single lamp was the only thing illuminating the room while we sipped from our glasses, but there was still enough light for me to see the boy. It almost appeared as though he had nudged a little closer into view. It was as though he stood right in front of the chair my father sat in, as I watched him stare out into the moonlights glow upon the trees. I thought it may have been no more than the effect of the strong whiskey that had begun to blur my sight; causing single images to blend into multiples, though the mirage of my dad, just a little behind where he actually sat, was not mimicked by the boy who still stood alone.
“Just don’t…don’t ever…”
“I won’t. I wouldn’t…is that what..?”
I couldn’t finish the question, as I felt it required no answer. I was certain that whatever this boy was had somehow driven my mother to the madness that kept her sealed within a padded room for months at a time, though it terrified me to imagine in what way he had accomplished this. Unfortunately, I would eventually find those answers. To this day, I still wish I had listened to my father on this one.
Six years or so after my mother’s death; just a couple of weeks ago, some bad decisions, along with a messy breakup, left me in something of a self pitying and melancholy state. Life wasn’t especially bad or anything, just run of the mill stuff really, but it was enough to leave me a bit broody for a few weeks. My job was fairly decent, and I lived in a pretty nice house for a mid-twenties bachelor, but you know how it gets. Things can be overall great, but a few little things can lead to a touch of depression.
I had the weekend off, and planned to just sit around the house for a couple of days, though I had no doubt I’d just be wallowing the whole time. I had successfully sat in the same chair for a good three hours straight, accomplishing nothing more than some solo Netflix and chill, when I got a text from my old college buddy, Jerry. He told me some of the old crew had impulsively gathered up to throw an impromptu party, and invited me to join.
I considered whether or not I felt like being around others, but since the only company I’d had all day had been the kid in the corner of my eye, I thought it couldn’t hurt to drag my lazy ass out into the world for a while. Jerry texted me the address, and I took a quick shower to get myself cleaned up. I went ahead and arranged an Uber, as I had no doubt I would be in no fit shape to drive by the time I was ready to come home.
As soon as I arrived, I was handed two matching beers; one for each hand, one of which I gulped down in one enthusiastic chug. By the time the second one was emptied into my gullet, and a third found its way to my hand, I was feeling almost blissfully light and carefree, even with my passenger propped to the left of everyone I talked to. I had an absolute blast catching up with those I hadn’t laid eyes on in months, and some I hadn’t seen in years.
Unfortunately, with good times, there’s often something not so good just waiting around the corner. In this case, that was my ex, Milla, arm in arm with Aaron, the guy she ditched me for. Being beyond lit when they showed up, I did not remotely handle the situation with any sort of dignity, instantly rising from the chair I had been sitting on for the better part of an hour, knocking back one after the other. Jerry attempted to hold me back, but I was in Aaron’s face, shaking my friend’s hand away from my shoulder within seconds.
I pushed my ex’s new boyfriend, inspiring him to take a swing at me. Before I knew it, Milla was crying and screaming, while Aaron and I were carrying on like idiot school kids. He caught me across the jaw, and I slugged him in the gut. He buckled a bit, while pushing me against and over the table that spilled bottles and cans to the floor along with me. My arms got sliced up a bit as I pushed up from the broken glass on the carpet, and I tackled the big guy. We hit the ground, and I kept punching at his face, while my ex attempted to pull me off him.
I was so blinded to everything but my desire to lash out at the poor bastard who had the nerve to steal my girl, that I barely noticed when I caught her across the jaw when I reared back to knock another dent into my target’s face. After I landed the hit, a couple of the guys pulled me away from the guy who was bruised and bleeding on the floor, and I finally realized what I’d done. I felt awful when I saw her crying, while holding her mouth with a stream of scarlet leaking between her fingers.
I went to lean down and attempt to help her, while practically begging for forgiveness, when Jerry pushed me back.
“Just go, man!” He said, pointing to the open door.
“But, I didn’t mean to…”
“But you did! Just go! You’ve done enough,” he turned his back to me, leaning over to help Milla while she sobbed on the floor.
I looked around to see every single eye on me; each with their own accusing stare. I felt my face flush with embarrassment and guilt, while my stomach began to churn. I did what was asked of me, and took off out the door, not so much as looking back. I had no idea where I was, and I didn’t even care. Not only had I hurt the woman I still loved, but I had very likely broken every one of the bridges between my only friends and I.
My head was spinning, and my gut was still in knots, but I just kept on staggering onwards, not giving too much of a shit if I ever found my way back home. After a while, my legs gave out, and I dropped to the concrete, retching into the ditch to my right. I felt awful, both physically and emotionally. I just sat there for God knows how long as cars sped one way or the other on the road beside me.
Eventually, after having grown repulsed by the scent of the alcohol on my clothes, and even more so by what I had ralphed into the grass, I finally picked myself back up, pulling my phone from my pocket to arrange a ride back to my home. I wasn’t exactly at any particular address at the time, so I just strolled to the gas station I saw in the distance and waited for my driver. I didn’t reply a single word to any of the small talk the brunette behind the wheel attempted to send my way, but I did give her a token ‘thank you’ when she pulled up in front of my house.
I just dropped into my favorite recliner when I got back in, absentmindedly flipping the tv on, hopeful to distract my troubled thoughts. It was while I sat there, both feeling sorry for myself, as well as nauseous and loopy from the booze, that I mindlessly spoke the words that would change my life from that day on.
“STOP LOOKING AT ME!” I yelled to the boy in the corner of my eye, after feeling his stare carve into me for far too long.
Perhaps it was that lingering shame of feeling every eye in the living room of my friend’s home glaring at me that caused me to scream out to the child nobody else could see. Maybe I was still hammered and didn’t quite realize what I was doing. It could be that somewhere in my chaos fueled thoughts, I actually wanted to be punished for my actions. Regardless of my reasoning, the penalty began almost immediately.
I was only vaguely aware of what I had done at first, just turning my attention back to whatever show or movie I had been attempting to distract myself with, but when the boy leaned in from the corner of my eye to somewhere much closer to the forefront of my vision, I felt a stabbing pain in the middle of my chest as the realization hit. He was leaned over at the waist, as though he were peeking around a corner, but he was most definitely looking back at me with wide, colorless and blank eyes.
Had they always been like that? I wondered to myself while I fought to look away. After a while, I gave into my spinning head, passing out on that same chair. When I awoke again, sometime in the middle of the night, the boy now stood in the dead center of my vision, still glaring at me with that empty stare. I turned to the left, he followed. To the right, he drifted along with me. He looked to be maybe ten feet in front of me, but no matter where I looked, his static pose would not falter.
Though my pulse was quickenning with the growing fear that I would now be forced to endure his now being perched before me from now on, I staggered to my bedroom, with the child guiding the path before me. I dropped into my bed, to see him with his back seemingly flat against the ceiling, still staring down at me. Even when I closed my eyes, his image remained, surrounded by the darkened nothingness. Fortunately, I was still both physically and mentally exhausted, so I found my way back to slumber, but he was waiting for me when I awoke.
I had rolled onto my side through the night, so when I came back to awareness, it looked as though he hovered above the ground sideways. I felt tense all over as I pulled myself free of the blankets, following the boy who faced me in the direction of my bathroom. My shower wasn’t large by any means, but it looked as though he was embedded into the tiles while I washed myself. He stood against the back wall while I dried myself off, and floated across the floor in front of me as I walked back to my bedroom to fetch some clothes.
Even when I held up my phone to place the call to my father, he peered over the top of it. As my finger hovered above the icon of the goofily grinning picture my dad had allowed me to take some years ago, I closed the application. I wasn’t quite ready to admit that I had indeed done the one single thing he warned me against. I attempted to convince myself I could live with this. I had gotten used to him being in the corner of my eye, surely I could grow accustomed to his new position. I tried to persuade myself to believe this, though my heart continued to beat at a much faster rate than usual.
As the day progressed, my mind was consumed both by the mess I had made of my friendships the previous night, almost as much as the child I could no longer escape. I could still see my television around the kid, but he would not exactly move out of the way enough for me to get a full view. Still, I hoped I could handle it. Yes, this was bordering on a full on disability, as I only had partial vision around the damn kid, but I could deal with it. Sure, I was trembling all over, and felt as though I had to convince my lungs to continue doing their job, but I could do this. There are far worse ailments that others deal with on a daily basis, after all. That’s what I told myself anyway.
That day ended the same way, with the boy pressed against the ceiling, but the morning was a little different this time. As I lay on my side, staring at the vacant eyes, the boy began to move. I sat straight up, unable to look away, and believe me, I tried. His head loosely flipped around as he casually strolled closer towards me. I even tried to back away from him, but that only made it appear as though he was moving in faster. Every muscle in my body tensed as I watched him close the gap between us, with his soundless steps far slower than my racing heart.
He stopped around five feet away from me, but he did not stand still anymore. He swayed from side to side, with his arms lazily swatting his hips like dangling pendulums. I even felt my head following him as he idly wobbled from left to right; transfixed by the disturbing image, while the pulse in my neck felt as though it was fit to burst. Now that he was closer, I could see that his skin was somewhat translucent, revealing veins and rippled muscle tissue beneath the surface. There was a subtle throbbing at his temples, which felt as though it beat in time the blood pushing through me.
I had never paid much attention to his clothing before, but now that he encompassed a far more significant amount of my field of vision, I saw that he was not dressed like someone from this time period. He wore a white short sleeved, button up shirt, with a sort of tweed looking vest and similarly patterned shorts. His grey socks came about halfway up his shins, and down to brown, dressy looking shoes. All of his clothes appeared to be layered in dust or soot, but his pale, see-through flesh looked abnormally clean in contrast. Even the shaggy, short blonde hair looked clean, albeit a bit messy.
Though it was now quite a bit more tricky to see too much around the kid, I still tried to go about my day as I had the previous one, but I was growing more and more afraid that I could not handle this after all. He followed in front of me for every step I took, and though he still did not completely distract me from my self loathing, he sure as hell didn’t help my chaotic thoughts. Part of my mind attempted to convince me I deserved this, but I wouldn’t buy into it. Yes, I had acted like an idiotic and immature teenager at the party, but nobody deserves whatever the hell this was!
The next day, he moved closer again, stopping only two feet from my face. I could even smell him now. A rancid stench of decaying flesh followed the child and I wherever I attempted to go. On the fourth day, he stopped directly in front of me, and I could swear I felt my nose making contact with his. I screamed out from a combination of fear and exhaustion, able to control neither my shivering gooseflesh, nor the pounding in my chest. I continued to yell and curse, while swatting my hand through the image I could no longer even hope to distract myself from. Even when I closed my eyes, he was still there, surrounded by only the darkness.
By the time my rating fit came to a close, I felt light headed and queasy, both from my rapid pulse, as well as the noxious stench the hollow child carried with him. As the hopelessness of my circumstances began to consume me, I reached my trembling fingers up to my eyes, honestly considering the notion of clawing them from their sockets. I clenched my fists before they made it to their target, but I could not escape from the idea that this may very well be my only way out of this. It was becoming more and more difficult to breathe, forcing me to either calm down, or just allow the borderline hyperventilation to cause me to pass out. In all honesty, I leaned to the latter, but I knew he would still be waiting for me when I came to.
Once I finally managed to regulate my breathing to something still far more erratic than my normal breathing patterns, I focused my attention back on the boy, though that wasn’t exactly hard to do as he was practically the only damn thing I could see anymore! He had appeared maybe a little over three feet tall before, but his face was right in front of my own. Whether he was floating in some way, I couldn’t say, as no matter where I looked, all I could see were those lifeless eyes glaring into mine. When I attempted to look down, it was as though his head sprouted from my chest as we still peered nose to nose at one another.
Just as I was preparing to finally give in and attempt to call my father, things got even more grim, causing me to lose my fight to keep myself from losing consciousness. As I felt around the nightstand for my phone, the child reached his own hands to his face, mimicking the brutal actions I had almost considered inflicting on myself. He moved so slowly as his fingers dug into the lids and meat wrapped around the top of his eyes, causing a thick and moist, darkened and foul smelling liquid to ooze from within.
I screamed out once more, in a far more horrified manner than before, as the boy tore away grisled chunks of flesh, along with the blank and lifeless eyes, dropping his arms to his side when the work was done. Even as he stepped closer to me over the previous days, his movements were silent. His footsteps did not so much as creak across the floor, but I heard everything he had just performed before me.
I retched from both the sounds and sight of what I had just witnessed, while gasping for air, in between far more frantic and frenzied screams. While my heart threatened to explode from within my chest, my head grew dizzy and loopy from my constant wails refusing to allow remotely enough oxygen to get through. I blacked out before realizing I was even close to losing consciousness.
The gaping and grotesque wounds from where the child’s eyes used to reside appeared far less fresh when my eyelids sprung back open, and though the symptoms that left me on the floor had not dissipated, they had calmed somewhat. I was finally able to place the call to my father, which was no easy task as I could only see anything other than the boy through my peripherie anymore; where he had once dwelled before I spoke to him. I could instantly tell that my confession made my dad both angry and saddened. He came to pick me up, and he drove me back to the home I used to share with him and my mother, back in far more simple times.
He led me into the house and sat me down upon his couch, before fetching me a glass of that same whiskey we still shared from time to time. Fortunately, I was able to rely on my muscle memory to guide the glass to my lips, though I couldn’t tell when it was empty until I couldn’t spill any more down my throat. After allowing the drink to lighten my head somewhat, my dad shared the story of how the boy drove his wife to the brink of madness and beyond; something that I likely had to look forward to before much longer.
“She was a few years older than you, when she talked to him,” his voice sounded tired as he spoke, though I couldn’t tell what expression he wore, as he was hidden from me behind the hollowed out eyes of the young boy.
“She’d seen him her whole life, just like you. Don’t know what drove her to break the silence between them, but it happened pretty quickly after that. We’d already been married for some years before then, and I’d heard her talk about him from time to time; how he just stood in the corner, since she was a little girl. She even talked to her optometrist about it when she was younger, but they didn’t take her seriously; just chalked it up to her being an imaginative kid.”
I could hear his voice tremble while he spoke. He would frequently clear his throat, as if to regulate his words, or avoid tears from escaping down his face. Of course, he may have been sobbing the whole time, for all I could see. The whiskey was helping me maintain a degree of composure, along with being in my dad’s company, but I still shook from head to toe, my heart still raced, and my stomach continued to lurch.
“After a few weeks of the boy being all she could see, I had to check her into the hospital. They kept her for a good many months, but I could visit her most days. You weren’t even a whole year old by then, so you likely don’t remember that first time. ‘Course, I’m sure you remember some of those later times she was put away for a time.”
Honestly, the majority of my memories of my mom were during visitations to one facility or another. When I was quite young, I didn’t give it much of a second thought. I just assumed it was normal, or at least not far off it. She always seemed so happy to see me, but now that I really think about it, she rarely actually looked right at me. She would face me when we spoke, but our eyes would only meet on occasion. Of course, I now fully understand why that was the case.
“For a while, they found some drugs that helped her some. She said he was still there, but he wasn’t as solid, almost sort of see-through. ‘Course, every different prescription that’d work for her, would only help for a while. She got almost a year out of one of them, but others only get her through a few months at best. We’ll get you to see those same doctors that helped her, well, as much as they could anyway.”
There were those times when she shared the house with my father and I, and I do recall some truly happy days, but she always did seem somewhat distant. They would never last for long, though. She would always have to return to that hospital sooner or later, and my dad seemed even more lost every time we would have to take her back there.
“I never told you how she died…”
I felt his hand on my shoulder, and I reached mine to meet it. He felt as though he was shivering too, but it may have simply been no more than my own body tremors and spasms.
“She told me about how things got progressively worse, but I can’t say that I believed her, or really understood at first. Sometimes wonder if things could’ve worked out differently if… Wasn’t until that last time she got to come home that I knew I should’ve listened. It only ended up being for one day, so I didn’t even tell you about it, since you were spending the weekend with some friends. She seemed so happy to be home at first. She was herself again, you know? That night, I woke up to the sound of her screaming out. I went running to where it came from…she…she’d taken a pair of scissors to her eyes…Thought she could escape him if she couldn’t see…Thing is, after that, he was all she could see.”
I was only vaguely aware of his grip tightening on my shoulder, as my trembling was growing more and more intense by the second. The more he spoke of what my mother endured, the more I realized how screwed I really was. I had already been terrified by the idea of what my life could become before I called my dad, but the more his tale of my mother’s suffering progressed, the more I feared my own sanity would not last.
I hadn’t been permitted to visit her over that last year, but my dad would still go just about every weekend. He always looked so strained and sad when he’d head out, but I couldn’t have known the truth. I felt my father’s grip release, as he sat down, wrapping his arm around me.
“After what she did to herself, she went back to that hospital, well, after the emergency room docs did what they could for her. After a few weeks, I was able to visit her again. She wasn’t even almost who she used to be anymore. What came next…I don’t know if the boy was mad because of what she did, or if it was just the next step, but he…started…hurting her…”
I felt my jaw hang limp and loose. I wished I had listened to his warning in the first place, but I could have never imagined the kid could inflict physical pain! If nothing else, even if this would likely drive me to madness, I knew now, that if I had actually torn the sight from my eyes, it seems it would have only made things much worse for me.
“He began to rot away in front of her, and she said he looked to be getting more and more angry. Even though just about all she could see anymore was those meaty and empty sockets, since back in the beginning of her nightmare, she could still make out where the skin was peeling away from his face. She couldn’t have known what was coming next, until she felt the pain. She said it just felt like punches at first, and only from time to time. She’d wake up in the night after taking a bony fist to the gut, or coughing out food she was trying to eat after a jab at her ribs, but it got even worse than that.”
I had to fight against puking all over my dad’s couch, as I felt even more nauseous from learning about the terrifying future which likely lay ahead of me, as well as knowing what indeed my mother had been through all these years. I could barely believe what I was hearing. Somehow, I don’t believe he only hurt her because of what she did to herself. I had already been terrified at the idea of having one sense blocked, and another filled with the potent and grotesque scent of rotting flesh, but I could barely wrap my frantic thoughts around any of this.
“She said it felt like the bones had pushed through the skin of his fingers, when he would claw into her. She had gashes and yellowed bruises all over, but the docs thought she was doing it to herself. They even tried to strap her down so she wouldn’t hurt herself anymore, but they’d still find her bleeding by morning. I’m sure it isn’t too hard to figure out by now, but she just couldn’t take it any longer, I suppose. She’d been locked away for a long time by that point; hidden away behind those padded walls. I would still get to visit her occasionally, but I couldn’t let you see her like that. I can’t know how she got her hands on enough pills to get the job done, but they said she’d swallowed a good thirty of them.”
I could practically hear the tears now that they had finally unleashed, as my father’s voice quivered and cracked. I had been crying this whole time myself, but it made things even worse when he joined in. In some ways, I wasn’t surprised by what he told me; not about my mother’s suicide anyway. I think I had suspected it since she passed. Those other revelations; however, almost caused me to scream out again. From what he said, it could be years before I was that far gone, but it still hurt to hear how much she had suffered, as well as the realization this could potentially be my own fate too.
We talked and cried a little more, before the drink left me feeling drowsy again. My churning stomach settled enough for me to get to my feet, and my father led me to my old bedroom. I dropped into my childhood bed, allowing the darkness to wrap around the image of the boy who hovered just beyond the tip of my nose. I could still smell his foul stench, but I had already begun to grow accustomed to it. Yes, it was awful, but not intolerable; not to a moderately tipsy and groggy individual, anyway.
Within the days that followed, my dad took me to see my mother’s old doctor. Well, one of them anyway. She went through quite a few in her day, but this guy had been the most effective in treating whatever the hell this is. Given his experience with my mom, he prescribed me something called Clozapine. It’s apparently some sort of antipsychotic, but he found it particularly effective on my mother’s symptoms. It took a few doses, but within a week, the smell subsided and, just as my dad told me, the boy became somewhat transparent.
Yes, he’s still there. I still see those hollowed out, meaty sockets every second of every day, but I can also see the world behind him now. It’s not perfect, and I’m sure it won’t last, but I’ll try to take it, until I can’t anymore. I’m still far beyond scared, but things are a bit more tolerable for the time being. I don’t know what this is, why my mother and I were cursed with it, nor who the hell this kid even is, but I can only hope there is a way of avoiding my mother’s fate. I have no way of knowing if there is any chance of escape, but I have to find out what I can about him, and why he appears to be set on punishing my family.
If there is a way out of this, it has to be hidden behind the identity of the boy. My father said he’ll help me look for answers, though he had attempted this very investigation during the years my mom spent living in this hell. I have to try, though. I may never locate the truth behind all of this, but if I should, I’ll share what I find. If it happened to us, it’s very possible it could happen to others too. It’s probably a longshot, but if anyone reading these words knows who or what he is, or whatever this curse is, please help me!
It’s only a matter of time before the world beyond the boy who used to dwell in the corner of my eye, is hidden away from me for good. I don’t know if I have the strength my mother had. I doubt I will survive for long when the medications stop working. Even now, while things are likely as tolerable as they may ever be again, I feel my sanity waning.
Just, please trust me on this: if you should see the little boy in the corner of your eye, don’t make the same mistake I did. Never, ever speak a word to him.
Credit: William Rayne
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