I must have fallen asleep as I was suddenly woken up by a hard thumping noise. I sat up suddenly, a cold breeze encircling me. Goose bumps rose on my skin, the bedroom window now wide open. I leaned against the board of the bed, my eyes scanning the dark room for anything. Then I heard the thumping noise again, louder, heavier this time. I pressed myself tighter against the board, my eyes frantic as they shot across the room.
“H-hello?” I stuttered, my body trembling. I pulled the duvet up to my chin, my legs against my chest. “Harry? Is that you?”
The silence was finally broken. Heavy breathing came from somewhere in the room, making my body grow cold. Then a scream, an ear piercing scream I recognised instantly. My mother’s. A whimper escaped my mouth, that scream as she tried saving me that night ringing in my ears. I squeezed my eyes shut, shaking my head vigorously. I prayed for Harry to burst through the door, to fight off anything that was in the room. I tried mumbling my nursery rhyme, but the words were jumbled up, refusing to escape myself in a full sentence. That’s when everything suddenly stopped, the thumping, the screaming. But a voice came straight after.
“Rosalie,” it whispered.
My body froze, my arms tight around my legs. I kept my eyes shut, burying my head into my knees. I tried murmuring the nursery rhyme faster, but I couldn’t remember how it went. My head throbbed painfully, the whispering growing louder. Suddenly the covers were wrenched from me, the cold air crashing into me. I stayed huddled up, refusing to look at what was in the room with me. It whispered my name again, but this time it was softer, calmer. I recognised the voice, the voice that used to wake me up every morning.
My head shot up from my knees, tears thickening in my eyes. “Mum?” I asked shakily, my voice barely a whisper.
“Mummy’s here, baby,” I heard her whisper. “Just step a little closer and you’ll be with us.” A corner of my mouth tugged up but darkness just stared back at me.
“Come to us, sweetheart,” my father said after.
“I-I can’t see you,” I sobbed quietly, scanning the blackness in front of me.
“We’re here, baby. We’ll always be here,” the voice of my sweet mother spoke. She began singing our favourite nursery rhyme, her voice sending warm shivers down my spine. I smiled into the darkness, humming with her voice. But then I stopped. Her voice was changing, morphing into something vile.
“One step…” it spoke, my whole body growing cold.
“Two steps…” Her voice was deeper, scarier. I shook violently, rubbing my upper arms quickly.
“Tickle you under there!” it screamed, the voice no longer my mother’s. A pale face suddenly flashed in front of me, that smirk plastered on its face bringing so many memories back. It wasn’t my parents. It was the beast who had killed them. Samuel. He’d tricked me.
“Boo,” he whispered.
I opened my mouth, screaming as loud as I could. I wanted my mummy, my daddy. My lungs pained me, my jaw aching as I couldn’t stop screaming. But it was soon drowned out by Samuel. His laughter rang around us, his mouth open wide as he laughed in my face. Blood dripped from his mouth, staining the mattress cover by my feet. I wanted to look away, bury my head back into my knees, but I couldn’t pull my eyes from his pale face. Tears streamed down my face as his laughter grew louder.
Suddenly the light was switched on. I was blinded, squeezing my eyes shut to stop them from stinging. I was still screaming as someone’s arms encircled me. It whispered in my ear, telling me to calm down. That only made it worse. I curled up tighter, rocking myself as someone’s arms were still awkwardly around me.
“Rosie, calm down. Listen to me. Rosie,” Harry ordered, running his fingers through my hair. I finally forced my mouth closed, peeling my sore eyes open and gazing at Harry sat next to me on the bed.
“H-he…he was here…” I stuttered. “S-Samuel, he was...” I frantically looked around the brightly lit room, the bedroom window closed again. I realised the laughter, the whispers had stopped, the only noise being my screaming, my sobbing.
“Shh,” Harry whispered into my ear.
I pulled my legs away from my chest, letting Harry envelope me in his arms properly. He rocked me gently, planting comforting kisses up and down my neck. “Lay down,” he muttered into my ear, nibbling on it softly.
I did as he said, lying back on the bed. Harry slid down next to me, lying on his side. I rolled over onto my side to face him too, our lips so close to each other. My head sunk into the pillow, breathing in its sweet scent. Harry wrapped an arm around me, pulling me closer to him. He pressed his warm lips onto my forehead, letting them linger there for several minutes. I closed my eyes, focusing on Harry, his touch, his lips on my skin. I wrapped an arm around him, wanting him as close to me as he could get. But I could still here him, whispering, tormenting me with every slow second that passed. The thought of Samuel using my mother’s sweet voice to scare me and taunt me sickened me deeply. It was the first time I’d heard my mother’s voice since that night, but it was only used against me. As I laid with Harry, his body warmth encircling me, the laughter never ended in my mind. It was a constant reminder of who was in control. Samuel. It was always Samuel.
Harry eventually rolled onto his back. I followed him, resting my head onto his muscled chest, one arm around his torso. Harry kissed the top of my head in order to comfort me, running his fingers up and down my bare back, tracing my spine. It calmed me instantly, hearing his heart beat steadily in his chest, his breathing slow, peaceful.
I let my fingers wander over his body, tracing the butterfly tattoo on his stomach until I got down to his v-line. I lightly traced the cut across his skin from the glass, feeling as though I was rubbing away his pain. Harry’s hand quickly moved my touch from the cut. He rested my hand back on the top of his stomach over the butterfly, giving me a certain look only I could read. I knew he wanted me to forget about it. He knew it angered me the fact that he got hurt all because I wouldn’t let him into the flat. He didn’t want me doing something stupid for revenge. Little did we know it would be the first scar of many.
I obeyed him and rested my head back on his chest, running my touch over his abs once more. Harry settled back down, fingers tracing my spine once again. As I pressed myself against Harry, wanting to feel every inch of his skin on mine,. I knew just being here with him meant everything at the moment.
I could feel myself drifting off to sleep, never feeling so safe, so comfortable in my life. I smiled to myself as my body grew relaxed in Harry’s arms. I wanted to thank him, to tell him how much he means to me him. Even though we’ve only known each other for over a week, he was the closest person I had. But I knew that he already knew that. I didn’t need to tell him. He just knew.