Once Upon a Dream

A collection of short stories, poems, and ideas.

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3. Two Minutes Before Midnight

                     The night is dark as I lie restless in my bed. My eyes are heavy, my mind is heavy, but they refuse to relinquish their grip to time. I twist and turn, trying to get comfortable. But then my mind is caught unaware with a sudden sound. A creak of floorboards, a steady thump of footsteps, one that isn't familiar to my ear. And my ear is reliable. And I am grateful that I closed my door this night. I slip from my covers as silent as possible, my feet touching the cold wooden floor. But like always, my metal bed frame is obstinate in its choice to remain in silence, letting out a barely audible squeak. Just barely. The footsteps have stopped. I stand, paralyzed, in the middle of my room, staring at my door's handle. Even in the dark, its white marble gleam is visible. And I watch it turn. My mind registers that maybe I should move, and in the small time that the door is silently swung open, I have hid behind my dresser. It is right next to my bed, with me hidden at an angle that you could only see me if you turned to the perfect angle. The dresser, a conspicuous choice, it may seem, but this is my house. And I have played hide-and-seek in it. The open door reveals darkness, a figure without a face, a figure masked in shadows. It walks in, the footsteps a tune I have not heard on these wooden floors. My eyes adjusted to this darkness, even I can not see a face. The figure lumbers to my bed, and from the darkness, my eyes are not fooled, conjures a gleam of silver. Pointed. He reaches to the covers on my bed with a darkened claw. Where I used to lie. And he swishes the covers back in a wide arch, thrusting the blade down into my empty bed. He is confused, that much is obvious, but not concerned. He leaves the side of my bed, but now entering the room adjacent to mine. My sister's. Damn door. It never screeches when necessary. I realize where he is and can't stop the tears running down face. Silent tears. Because I am helpless. A mere child. I see him above my bed. The blade raised high. Above her bed. And my hunched state does nothing to block out the screams that I hear. A wail that pierces right through my lung, and I open my mouth in a silent scream to echo hers. Silent screams. Slash, slash, slash. Scream after scream. And then it falls silent. But still echoing in my mind. And the tears soak my skin. Only moments later does my cowardice end and I jump up, screaming through my soul, and enter her room. But the figure of darkness is gone. The only thing my eyes detect is the scarlet sheets. And the luster of empty eyes. 

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