Outside My Bedroom Window

July 8, 2008
By Shiphrah Meditz, Austin, TX

I am afraid. So afraid. I sit in my bedroom, my blinds pulled down. My room is very dark. I cannot stop shaking. That face will be forever burned into my memories. My hands twitch spasmodically and I sit on them.
Deep breathes.
Isn’t that what doctors tell me when they examine me? They stick needles in me strap big metal machines to my chest. Then they merely shrug and tell me it is nothing but nightmares. I want to believe them. I want to think I am only crazy. They have medicine to make craziness go away.
I totter up.
My knees feel like putty and I must grab at the wall for support. How white my hands look, like dead spiders scuttling over the crack in my wall. I stumble into my bathroom.
Fumbling hands smack a switch.
Pale green light floods the room. Like the hospital corridors. Like those horrible eyes. I turn on water and splash my face. In the mirror is reflected me. But those blood red eyes are not mine. That pale, wet face looks like an antediluvian monster, not mine.
I gasp.
Where is the medicine? There it is. A small bottle. Why were all medicine bottles small? And white. They’re always white. I gulp down a handful of pills. Some splash into the running water. Buzzing fills my head. This cannot happen to me? I’m just a girl! I should be buying pretty dresses, flirting with boys, going to dances… With a sizzle the light goes out overhead. Darkness smashes my eyes blind. I fall to the floor, cool tiles pressing against my face. Is this the medicine taking effect? I hoped it was.
Now, if I could just go to sleep. Blissful, quiet-as-death sleep filled with no dreams, no monster outside my bedroom windows. But, wasn’t that beast only a product of my fevered brain? My numb brain thought as rivers of peace extinguished my burning nerves. No, there was no terrible, gashed face. No twisted, wolf-like body. No razor-sharp claws. No fangs, no dripping saliva. No burning red eyes. Outside my window was a simple patch of grass ending in a white picket fence. And beyond; my neighbor’s house and a maple tree. Delicious peace flooded through me. Gradually lead heavied my limbs, my brain, my eyes.
I fell asleep.
It was morning when I woke up. I had a splitting headache. Grey daylight suffused the room. The terrors of night were gone forever. I felt like singing. So I did; hummed something inane and stupid as I stood up and walked confidently out of my bathroom. How foolish I had been. The doctors were right. Take the medicine and all my troubles would be over. I raised my blinds and looked outside.
The sun was so very bright and the entire world seemed to sing. No creature stared back at me and growled my name on animal lips. I shook myself angrily for last night. No wonder all my friends called me crazy? It was all just bad nightmares. That’s all.
Prove it.
Where did that thought come from? But, I nodded. Fine, I was not afraid. After all, the morning was so innocent, so sweet.
I opened a window. Some dust drifted into my eyes and nose. I sneezed. Everything, so normal, so…
I screamed.
There it was the face, the monster, the terrible, dead eyes. And now there was no glass between it and me.

The next day the entire town of Fallwater, Illinois rang with the news. Ann Wright, daughter of James and Mary Wright and second year student of Brownsville High School had disappeared. The only clues were a half-emptied bottle of pills in her bathroom and an open window. And, in that window were three drops of blood.

She was never found.

A week later, a boy who lived a few streets down from her house had to go to the hospital. He had begun screaming about a monster outside his window. The doctors laughed among themselves, gave him relaxing medication, and sent him home again.

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