February 19, 2008
By Sarah David, Pawtucket, RI

Ronnie sat at his desk, pen and paper in hand, completely and totally distracted. The cold air seeping through his opened window sent a shiver through out each and every nook of his fatigued body. He stared down at the paper before him, and let out a sigh of hopeless frustration. The clock downstairs in the sitting room struck 12 a.m.
"This is ridiculous." Ronnie complained. He had been up all night trying to come up with something clever to write about for his English class. He never was much of a creative writer, in fact, he always thought the genre of fantasy was a complete and total waste of time. Who wants to read a story about wizards, flying dragons, and princesses anyways? He was a college student, in his mid thirties, and the last thing he felt like doing was writing a fairytale.
Ronnie threw his pencil down, finally admitting defeat, and wearily dragged himself towards the foot of his bed. Slowly slipping off his robe, Ronnie sank down into the warm comfort of his sheets. Before he could drift of into sleep, he heard a noise coming from downstairs. Convincing himself that what he heard was merely just the wind, Ronnie turned onto his back and attempted to doze back of into dreamland.
No more than ten seconds had passed before he was again awakened by a noise. This time, he recognized the noise as a faint knock coming from the front door.
"Are you kidding me?" Ronnie moaned as he reluctantly dragged himself out of bed. He stepped into his slippers and gave a quick glance towards his bed post. The alarm clock read 12:35 a.m. "You have GOT to be kidding me. Who in the world would be visiting at this time of night?"
Dazed and confused, Ronnie dragged himself out of his room and glided towards his front door. When he was no more than two steps away from the door, the knock was made again. This time, it was more firm and determined.
"Alright, alright! I'm coming!" Ronnie was astonished by the rude manner of his visitor. Quickly he tied the strings of his robe tighter around his waste, heaved another sigh of frustration, and reached for the lock.
Before he even had the chance to turn the lock on the door nob, he saw the nob slowly turning towards the right, then towards the left, then back towards the right again.
Ronnie stopped, frozen in terror and fascination. Who was at the door? Why were they at his house at this time of night? What, in the name of god, could they possibly want?
His fear quickly turned into aggravation, as he grasped the handle and yanked it open with such a force, he almost lost his balance.
"Hello?" he yelled out into the darkness of the night. "Hello? Who's there!" He was answered by silence. He listened closely for several minutes for any sign of life on the other side of the door. To his surprise, he heard nothing. Confused and embarrassed by his fear, Ronnie slammed the door shut. He locked the top and bottom locks. He clasped the chain on the top of the door shut, just in case.
He turned around and dashed up the stairs to his room. When he reached his doorway, he stopped and pondered for a moment.
"Isn't it a little too late to be playing ding dong ditch?" He said out loud to no one in particular. Quickly shaking off all thoughts that rushed through his head, Ronnie shrugged his shoulders and crept back towards his bed. Before attempting to fall back to sleep, Ronnie walked over to the far corner of his room, and gazed out the window. He didn't quite know what he was searching for, but he had a feeling it had something to do with the night's excitement of the "unknown intruder". Disgusted by his fear of what probably was a bunch of neighborhood kids playing tricks on him, he slammed his window shut. Giving one last look out the window, Ronnie crawled back into bed.
He tossed and turned for about a half hour and tried to find a comfortable spot on his pillow. He grew extremely frustrated to the point where he threw his pillow onto the floor and rested his head on the comfort of his mattress. He wiggled his body around in his sheets for what seemed like forever. Ronnie turned to his right and squinted, trying to see the time shown on the alarm clock. He finally made out the figures "30" and eventually the "1" that was shown in front of it. He shook his head.
"Have i really been up for over an hour thinking about this crap?" Burying his face in his hands, he murmured some words of comfort to himself attempting to get his mind off the troubles of the night. When he had almost succeeded in calming himself, he heard another noise from downstairs. This time, it was not a knock. No, no. This time it was...could it be...someone opening the door?
Ronnie froze. He was unable to move, think, or speak. Maybe it was just his ears playing tricks on him. He attempted to convince himself that the noises he heard were just figments of his imagination.
All too soon he heard footsteps slowly making their way up the stairs. Overwhelmed by his own terror, Ronnie again found himself unable to move. As the footsteps came closer and closer to the top of the stairs, Ronnie was almost certain that he could hear a heavy breathing of someone else in the house. Could it be the unknown guest who had payed him a visit just hours before? He had been acting a little rude towards whoever it was, which was understandable taking into consideration the time of night and his current state of mind. A glance over at his alarm clock showed that it was currently 2:00 a.m.
The footsteps suddenly made an abrupt stop right in front of his bedroom door. Ronnie stared out into the darkness of the empty hallway. He shivered as the cold night air blew in from his opened window. Ronnie starred in horror.
"I distinctly remember....yes...i closed that..window..." before Ronnie could finish his sentence he felt a force grab him by the neck and push him down towards the floor. He wrestled and tried to resist the force, but it was no use. It was too strong, whatever it was. In the midst of the struggle Ronnie tried to see his attacker, but he saw no one in the darkness of the room. The force put all it's weight on Ronnie chest and kept a firm hold around his neck, determined to suck the life right out of him.
Ronnie was soon forced onto the floor, as he scrambled around for a good five minutes, making a desperate attempt to reach the lamp on his night post. If he could just reach that lamp and flick it on, he could see whatever "it" was that was attacking him.
When he felt that hope was almost lost, he finally was able to wiggle his arm over his head and switch on the lap.
Ronnie opened his eyes and saw nothing.

Dead silence. Ronnie looked around him and saw no one in the room but himself. He was on the floor, grasping his pillow with both hands.
"It was a dream?" Ronnie asked out loud as he wiped the sweat off his forehead. "But it seemed real." Ronnie quickly pulled himself up off the floor and brushed himself off. He was slightly embarrassed by childish manner he had behaved in. Thirty year old men just don't get scared when they have bad dreams.
He glanced over at his desk and realized that he had not finished his story for English. With a sigh, he dragged himself over to the stool and began to write once more. The clock downstairs struck twelve a.m.
Halfway into his first paragraph, he heard a faint knock at the door. Ronnie put down his pencil and starred off into space in horror.
"Who in the world would be visiting at this time of night?"

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