Estimated reading time — 4 minutes
I was fifteen when it happened. My sister was five. It started on her fifth birthday, when she received one of those dolls that’s supposed to look like the owner. It was a standard doll, the same height as my sister, red hair, freckles; it even came with an outfit matching its own for my sister. The only out of the ordinary part were its eyes. My sister had very strange eyes, blue with flecks of brown near the pupil. I used to tease her they looked like toilet bowls with poop floating in them. I’d never seen another person with eyes like this, but the dolls matched them perfectly. I don’t recall who gave her the doll, but I thought whoever it was had taken the time to repaint the eyes as a special touch.
After she opened gifts, my sister and her friends began running around, dressing up, the usual little kid stuff. I, not wanting to get stuck babysitting, snuck off to my room and shut the door. I was immersed in a scary story I was reading, when I heard the door creek open. Naturally, and considering what I was reading, I flipped my shit and turned around as fast as I could. Sitting nudged between the mostly shut door and the frame was my sister’s doll. Had there not been a gang of little kids in my house, I might’ve gotten a bit scared, but I was sure one (or all) of them had placed it there as a prank. I brought the doll back downstairs and that was the last I heard of it for a few months, save for my sisters stories and packing it around with her constantly.
Two months later, things got weird. My sister ran downstairs one day screaming that her doll was being mean to her. Knowing it was just her imagination, but no wanting to upset her, I firmly reprimanded the doll in front of her, then put it on the top shelf of my sister’s closet. She seemed satisfied that justice had been served, and I was a bit glad not to see that thing around anymore. It was a bit creepy how much it looked like my sister. I thought of the times I’d seen her asleep with it, and wondered if I could even tell the difference in the dark. But that was beside the point, because without my or my parent’s help the doll would be trapped in the closet, and I certainly wouldn’t be taking it down.
Later that night, I heard my sister screaming. I ran into the room to see the doll at the foot of her bed. It wasn’t even leaning on something, just standing there, staring at her. I grabbed the doll and bolted down the stairs. My parents came out to see me going down and asked what was going on, but I didn’t stop to explain. I stuffed the doll in our trashcan, the blue and brown eyes stared up at you, almost in an angry way. When I went back inside my sister was back asleep, having been calmed down by my parents, and I was glad to be done with the ordeal. Or so I thought.
The next morning as I rubbed the sleep from my eyes, I saw my sister at my door. I blinked at my blurry morning sight, and when I opened my eyes again she was gone. I walked to her room only to see her sound asleep. Odd, I thought. It must have been a trick of the eye. But later that night it happened again. I was awoken by footsteps and saw what I thought was my sister standing just outside my door. I turned to switch the light on, only to see there was no one there. Once again she was fast asleep in her room when I checked. The garbage hadn’t yet been picked up, so I decided to check the bin tomorrow morning. Maybe my dad was playing tricks on me. The next morning, as I suspected, the trash was empty. While we ate breakfast I confronted my dad.
“Dad, did you put Jane’s doll outside my room last night or this morning?” I asked.
“What? Don’t be stupid, that doll’s out in the trash where you left it”
“No, I checked, it wasn’t there”
“Well maybe some kid saw it and wanted it for themselves, how should I know where the damn thing went?”
That was the end of the matter. Strange, but I shrugged it off. God I regret that.
That night my sister was scared, so I agreed to stay in her room. All night we heard terrible things. Whispers and laughs I swear were in my sister’s voice, footsteps above and around us, we were petrified. But soon enough the noises stopped and sleep outweighed fear. I dreamed of the doll, sneaking into the room with us. But in my dream, it occurred to me that ripping the dolls head off would stop it. To this day I don’t know where I got that thought, but I wish I hadn’t. I awoke to see the doll lying next to my sister in her bed, but I thought I knew what I needed to do. I grabbed the doll in the dark and held it down; I remember it felt heavier than I remembered. I grabbed hold of the hair, so lifelike, and pulled as hard as I could. I looked into the dolls eyes, I had to pull harder than I thought to get the head off the doll, and it looked as if there were fear in its eyes. Finally there was a sickening rip, and the head popped off. I smiled, only then realizing how tired I was. I laid down, kicking the head and body away so I could sleep.
I woke to the sound of screaming. My mother was hysterical; I saw her run into the room, her faced covered in tears. I looked around me, I was surrounded by blood. It was on the floor and on my hands. My mother continued to shriek as she held the dolls head close to her chest, why was she so upset? I’d saved us! Where was all this blood coming from?
I looked around, and lying in my sisters bed, I saw the doll.