Only In The Dark

A boy with his eye on two worlds and a disappearing family, Oliver Shawl is put to the test to finish his father's work and save man kind from the monsters and demons that walk among us in the dark.
This was my Nano write that I, unfortunately, was late to sign up for due to technical difficulties.


6. Middle Of 5th Grade

As weeks passed they didn’t think much of it. This wasn’t the first time Jen and Tim left for more than a week. When a few months had passed, that’s when they began to worry. Oliver was now eleven, they all believed they’d come back soon. “Maybe we should notify the police? They’ve never been gone this long!” Britney sat on the couch in her sky blue sundress knitting a sweater for Oliver. Kingston sat in the rocking chair, staring blankly at the television.

“I’m sure they’re alright. They just need more time.” He tried his hardest to keep her sane, make it sound like everything was alright. However, he knew something was wrong but he couldn’t go to the police or else the wrong person would find Oliver or trigger their stalker. “Let’s just wait a little longer.”

Britney mumbled under her breath as she knit, “I don’t like this…”

“Besides, if something did happen the police would put out notices and numbers to find them. We don’t want the wrong person to find us… We’ll have to wait patiently.” Kingston says as he rests his head back onto the cushion of the chair. Oliver stood in the hallway, his back leaning against the wall separating him and his grandparents.

As he listened to their conversation, he stared at the floor, through the one eye that wasn’t covered, and imagined his parents bodies on the floor in some hotel. His hands clenched into fists at his sides then he walked up to the guest room he was staying in. He wanted to cry but he held back the urge, he wasn’t a baby anymore and he had to grow up. He had to deal with the fact that his parents weren’t with him. He needed to be brave for his grandparents.

More weeks passed and he had to join a new school that was closer to his grandparents. They didn’t want to risk going back to Oliver’s original house so they had to buy him new clothes and get him new toys. Oliver thought it was dumb that they couldn’t go get his stuff but he wouldn’t argue or cause them problems. He went along with it.

He absolutely hated his new school. He knew no one there and he felt alone. The other kids whispered and talked behind his back; making fun of his scar, over his nose that wasn’t covered, and destroying the little confidence he had. When he had gone to the doctor to get the stitches he was curious on how he had gotten it. He told him that he fell on his bike, his grandparents believed otherwise.

One day he stood in the bathroom at school and removed his bandage, he had only removed it one other time and was scared so he instantly put it back on. This time he stopped and stared at it. There were two long gashes, one went over his cheek, nose, and eye. The other ran over more of his cheek then over his ear; they both were held with stitches. His eye was irritated and tinted pink and the iris was half crimson and half dark brown. His pupil torn in the middle and had a long streak of crimson that connected to both sides of the iris, around it was black as normal. It bothered him how different he looked from other people and he feared the day he would be forced to remove the bandage.

He stared into the mirror at his destroyed eye until movement behind him caught his attention. He turned around quickly to see nothing was there. He hadn’t heard the door to the restroom open and he didn’t see anyone come in… he even checked all 4 stalls to make sure no one was there. He turned back to the mirror and lifted the patch to his eye, he looked back to the mirror to take one more glance at the gash then paused when he saw a short silhouette of a child standing in front of the stall behind him. His breath caught in his throat and chills went up his spine as he stared at the child behind him. He could make out the silhouette of a dress, putting together that it must be a girl. He could see her dark curls that were held up in a ponytail, and she was facing away from him. He swore he could hear his heart hammering in his chest, which meant she could hear it too.

He carefully covered his eye with his bandage and the girl disappeared. He then quickly stuck it back on and ran out of the bathroom, checking the labeling on the way out to see that it was the boys bathroom. He ran back to his classroom and sat at his desk in the back of his class, panting. Everyone watched him enter then went back to listening to the teacher. He never went back into that bathroom again.

Later that night he stood in his bedroom with all his lights on and cautiously removed the band. Everything was the exact same with his bandage on; the few toys he had were scattered on the floor, his bunk bed was in the corner, the window was closed and outside was dark, the lights were still on, his closet door was closed. He considered opening it but instead he watched it as he crept out of his room and into the lit hallway. He looked up and down it. The dark green wallpaper was starting to lighten from the age of the house, the pictures on the wall were of his family and hummingbirds. At the end of the hallway was the bathroom and across from his room was his grandparents room.

He then walked down the stairs, they creaked under his barefeet with each step. When he got to the bottom he was next to the front door. There was a window on each side of it and a coat hanger next to the closet with all of grandma’s cleaning supplies. He made sure everything was the same as he walked past the living room where his grandpa was sleeping and the kitchen where his grandma did the dishes.

He stopped to take a good look at her then walked closer, she looked over her shoulder at him and smiled. “I see ya took off your bandage there hun. Everythin’ lookn’ alright?” He hesitated, not sure if he should tell her everything that he’s been hiding. She noticed the long pause then turned to him, setting down her rag onto the hose of the sink. “I’d recognise that hesitation from anywhere Oli. Tell me what’s goin’ on.” Her dark blue eyes still looked young although she was going on 53. He avoided looking at them so she took his hand and led him to the table to sit down. “Ya can tell me anythin’ hun. I won’t judge ya. I’m here to help with whatever it is.”

“It’s nothing really.” He mumbled to her and she shook her head.

“Don’t go lien’ it ain’t right.”

“Well erm… I lied about how I got my scar mama.” He confessed but didn’t look up to meet her eyes, instead he stared at his hands under the table. “I didn’t want to lie but no one would believe me if I told them the truth. I don’t want to be put in a crazy house like dad said I would if I told someone.” Her eyes grew wide and her hand flew down and slammed the table. Oliver jumped and Kingston in the other room jerked awake. His hands gripped the chair in shock as he looked around the room.

“Your father told ya that? How dare he! When I see him he’s gonna be gettin’ the beating of his life.”

“No! It’s just the truth. Everyone will think I’m crazy.” Kingston sat back in his chair and listened to their conversation in the next room.

“What did happen hun?”

Oliver took in a deep breath as he started from the beginning. He told her of how he woke up and the power was off. The figure in the room. The fight to save his father’s life. The scratch. The scream. He told them everything and by the time he had finished, his grandparents had goose bumps and Oliver was shaking. He then told her what happened in the bathroom.

“No one else knows about this?”

“No.” Oliver replied and Britney gulped.

“W-well then… can you see anything now?” She asked, he slowly looked around the kitchen and shook his head when he looked back at his hands. “Okay. Next time you see something, you gotta come and tell me. Ya hear? You’re not in this alone.” Oliver nodded then got up and hugged Britney tightly. She hugged him back and rubbed his back soothingly.

Kingston listened carefully and when she had finished he yawned to show he was awake and moved around in his chair. “Hey Brit? Do we got any ice cream in that freezer of yours?”

Britney stood up and rubbed Oliver’s head with a smile. “I believe we’ve got some ol’ rocky road. Ya want some hun?” Oliver smiled up at her and nodded delightfully.

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