12:00AM — A Short Story

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You ever get the feeling that you're not alone as you lie down for bed? This is my version of that experience, as I try to put you, the reader, into that position. Any feedback is welcome!

It’s just after 11:30PM when you crawl into bed exhausted from the day’s activities. As you’re trying to find a comfortable position for your aching body you notice a dark shadow out the corner of your eye. Tossing and turning, you choose to ignore it, you’re exhausted and you live alone, it’s probably just your mind playing games. Rolling over with your back to the shadow you finally find a comfortable position on your side with your right arm extended and your left hand tucked to your chin.

Still you can’t resist the temptation to turn and look. You feel as if you are being watched, but when you look for the shadow it’s gone. So it was just a mind trick you think as you regain your position. With sleep quickly approaching you get the feeling you’re being watched again. You have your eyes closed, but the feeling is definitely there. Someone, something, is watching you.

You steal a peek at the clock, 11:35PM it flashes. Your heart rate quickens as you lie there with your eyes shut tight as possible, sheets pulled to your chin for protection. You feel the presence and that alone frightens you. You’ve experienced this feeling before, but have grown to ignore it. It’s stronger tonight. Wishing you could call your mom or dad to come vanquish the darkness, you open your eyes and risk a glance over your shoulder.

Blackness. Alone. Just as you knew you were. Getting out of bed you walk around checking underneath it, in your closet, everywhere, before returning to lie down. The clock reads 11:45PM now and sleep is as elusive as ever. Cursing your mind for playing such a cruel trick you stay there staring at your ceiling begging for sleep to come. You find yourself watching the ceiling fan as its blades go around and around in a hypnotic display.

Drifting closer to unconsciousness the feeling of being watched intensifies. Rolling over so your back is to the door you beg helplessly for your brain to stop this game and to let you sleep. Except now it feels real. You can sense that you are being watched. Sense them moving closer. The floor creaks under the pressure as they stand next to your bed. Bracing for what comes next you count silently to yourself. One. Two. THREE! You roll over swinging your pillow as if it were a deadly weapon, but it finds only air. Nobody, nothing, is there. You are alone, glancing at the clock it reads 11:55PM.

Heart racing, you cuddle your pillow as if it were your lover here to protect you. Facing the door, you keep your eyes trained on it, unblinking, to make sure nothing enters. Then you decide to go close it. A quick scan around your room reveals that you are alone. Closing the door and locking it you know you’re safe. Crawling back into bed you are now physically and mentally drained, but the feeling returns.

Stronger than ever it feels as if someone is right on top of you. With your eyes shut tightly as possible and pillow pulled close you think Maybe if I stay still and pretend to be asleep it will go away. Your heart stops when you feel an ice cold hand placed on your shoulder. Screaming, you jump out of bed and look around, only to see the dark emptiness that is your room. Dragging yourself back in bed, the clock reads 12:00AM, and you know sleep will never come.

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