When I was younger, the dark held a seemingly endless plethora of monsters. These monsters were the most vile, disgusting creatures imaginable. They would peer out from behind the doors of my closet with their yellowing, bloodshot, slit-like eyes. They would reach their scaly, slimy arms out from under my bed, in order to grab my ankles as I ran the few yards separating my bed and switch board. They would make noises throughout the night. Subtle enough to not attract the attention of my parents, yet loud enough to ensure I didn’t get a wink of sleep.

Today, years later, when I am old and brave enough to sleep without a night lamp, the dark still holds the same array of monsters. They too have aged with me. They too have evolved. These monsters have moved to a comfier, swankier residence. They now live inside my brain. These monsters are smarter than we give them credit for, as my fears grew up, so did they.

Click, goes the switch. I trudge to my bed, my eyes slowly adjusting to the darkness around me. I arrange my blanket and pillows and try to position myself as comfortably as I can. I close my eyes and sigh in defeat as my monsters return once again to visit.

“How was your day?” They ask.

“Good.” I reply tiredly.

“I think you mean bad.” One of them hisses while the rest cackle at the wit encased in this reply.

“If you don’t mind, I’ve had a long day and I’d like to go to sleep now.”

“Oh, we’re sorry, we won’t be long. In fact this will be over the sooner you admit how pathetic your life is. We’re all ears you know. Think about it, we’ve stuck with you longer than any of your so called friends. We aren’t sick of the very sight of you yet, in fact we’re your only constants, so you’d better watch your mouth when talking to us.”

All of them murmur in agreement.

A silky, yet somehow unpleasant voice speaks out, “Have you realised how utterly repulsive you are? It’s a wonder anyone even speaks to you, but we all know what’s actually going on in their heads.  Face it darling, you’re all alone. Your parents are sick of you constantly being a bitch. Your friends are regretting the first time they spoke to you, even he hates you now. Don’t tell me you can’t see the disgust in his face when he looks at you. We’re all you have now, so you’d better listen to what we say. “

I nod silently, tears streaming down my face and drenching my pillow.

They all laugh like mad hyenas.

“Is the little girl sad? Does she want her mommy? Does she want a hug?”

The laughter is almost deafening. I childishly place my hands over my ears and shake my head.

“Treat yourself like the filth you are. The only way to combat the pain inside is by hurting the outside in equal measure. They will cancel each other out, and you’ll finally look the same on both surfaces.”

“You should be ashamed. Look at everyone else, they’ve been dealt the same, and in some cases even worse hands than you have. Yet you’re the one crying like a baby. You disgust me. You disgust everyone.”

“What’s the point in hoping stupid girl? Can’t you see your future? It’s as black as my eyes. Look into my eyes, there’s no point wincing, LOOK.”

“Everyone would be better off without you.”

“Disappointment!”

“Failure!”

“Weak!”

“Please go away.” I whimper.

My plea is met with even more laughter.

“The fun’s just begun sweetheart, we still have so much left to discuss.”

“Oh shit!” One of them hisses. “The sun’s up.”

They all slither back into whatever crevice they crawled out of. The last one in whispers, “it’s not over yet girlie. We’ll be back.”

“I know.” I whisper, as the world around me wakes up to a bright new day.

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7 thoughts on “Why I’m afraid of the dark.

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