I've had a fear of darkness since l was a little boy. I'm not sure what it was about the dark that made me frightened. Maybe it was the fact that all the imaginary monsters I created in my head suddenly became real, and I couldn't see them. Maybe it's the fact that I hate being alone, and when it's dark, that's exactly how I feel. I was lying in my bed like every other night, waiting to fall asleep. My mother and father had gone next door to a get-together, and had left me home alone. I didn't mind really. I got to watch what I wanted on the telly, and ate whatever I wanted. The only problem was that I was alone. I wanted to call friends and talk, but they were not allowed to receive calls this late. I crawled out of bed to go the kitchen, and fix a snack. Halfway down the stairs was when it happened. The overhead light flickered, and then died. Every other light source in the house followed. I tried to stop myself from screaming for help, because I knew that there was no one. I clutched onto the railing to guide me down the stairs. It took a while, but I could soon see things. Objects became slight outlines of reflected moonlight. I could now guide myself through the house, but where would I go? Mother hides the matches and I can't reach the fuse box. (I would not dare go into the basement anyway.)
I slowly made my way into the living room. My knee bumped into something big. A large hideous beast, whose intent was to tear me to little pieces? No, just a simple couch. Or was it? I could feel the couch's fabric and sighed with relief. I got myself together and proceeded across the living room. My destination was the phone. I would call my parents and they would come home to save me. Something grabbed onto my foot and threw me to the floor! Was it the bony hand of some decaying human? No, it was the corner of the carpet that had caught my foot. Or was it? I got myself up and tried to adjust my vision again. I stared at the wall and shivered. It moved. The wall was actually moving. I backed up away from the wall. Hands and faces tried to press through the wall like it were rubber. Then I looked more closely. it was the shadows of the tree cast from the moonlight outside. I laughed at myself for being so silly. I took one step forward and noticed something else. A shape of a man standing up against the far wall of the room. Actually it looked more like a shadow. I looked around the room and noticed more figures. All dark, all big, and all coming closer. I dropped to my knees and stared at them. I stared at everything, the couch, the carpet the wall, and the shadows ... my god, the shadows ...1
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.