“Bedtime!” called his Mom.
“Aw, do I hafta?”
“Yes sweetheart, it’s that time.”
“But the monster comes at night!”
“Oh don’t be silly honey! There are no such things as monsters. Wherever did you get such an idea?”
“I hear him. He talks to me sometimes in the dark. I don’t like him. He’s scary.”
“That’s no way for a big strapping boy of ten to talk,” said his Dad. “Stop making things up just to try to stay up longer. Now go on, up to bed. There’s nothing to be afraid of.”
He didn’t want to go to bed. His parents didn’t understand. He wasn’t lying.
He got into his pajamas and brushed his teeth as slowly as he could.
“Hurry up up there!” his father shouted. “Stop wasting time and get moving!”
“I’m doing it!” he shouted back.
He got into bed and his Mom came in to tuck him in.
“Good night hon,” she said, kissing him on the forehead.
“Can we leave the light on please Mom?”
“Oh don’t be silly!”
She turned out the light and shut the door, plunging the room into darkness.
He lay there in the dark, waiting for the voice he knew he would hear. It didn’t come every night, but he had a feeling that because he told about it that tonight it would come. Eventually he fell asleep.
He jerked awake, sitting up in bed, his heart racing. Was it here?
“Hello,” said the voice out of the darkness.
“Oh you know that doesn’t work.”
“I know. What do you want?”
“Want? Why should you think I want anything? Can’t we just talk?”
“Please don’t hurt me.”
“Now why would I do that? We’re friends you and I. Aren’t we?”
“Now you’ve hurt my feelings. Why can’t we be friends?”
“Because you’re scary.”
“Oh really? And why is that?”
“Cause I can’t see you.”
“Oh my dear boy, trust me, you don’t want to see me.”
“Why not? Are you ugly or something?”
“Let’s just say I would look too familiar and yet like nothing you’d seen before.”
“I don’t understand.”
“Why are you here?
“I told you: I want to be your friend.”
“I already have friends, friends at school and stuff.”
“Oh I know. But none of them are like me. None of them know you like I do. Do they?”
“I guess not.”
“And it’s nice to have a friend you can share your deepest secrets with, isn’t it? You don’t have a friend like that, do you?”
“No, I don’t.”
“Well. There you have it then. We should be friends.”
“Well I guess it’s OK, you’re not going to hurt me?”
“No, of course not.”
“Ah, good. And friends do things for their friends, right?”
“Uhm, yeah. I guess.”
“Excellent. I want us to be the best of friends and I have something that we can do together that will make us both terribly happy and we’ll get to do whatever we want to from now on.”
“Oh yes. You just have to do as I say tonight. Think you can do that?”
“Sure, I guess so.”
They talked for nearly an hour more and by the time they were done talking, he was not ever going to be afraid of the monster again. They were now good friends.
When the police found him the next day, he was sitting in his bed covered in blood, smiling.
“My god, what happened?” asked the Chief when he arrived at the scene.
The bedroom was like something out of a horror movie. There was blood everywhere. It was splashed on the walls and the ceiling, it dripped off the edges of the bed onto the floor and there were the small footprints of a child in it everywhere. There were two lumps on the bed covered by the sheets. He went to pull the sheet back to take a look.
“You don’t want to do that if you’ve had breakfast’” said a detective.
“What’s the situation?” he asked, dropping the sheet back into place.
“We got a call from the maid this morning; she found them when she got here for work around eight. Near as we can tell, at about four this morning the kid went downstairs and got a butcher knife, came back up here and went to work on Mommy and Daddy. The Coroner lost count of wounds at over a hundred on each plus they were cut up pretty bad.”
“What do you mean cut up?”
“Into bits. He switched parts of them. Mom had Dad’s arms and vice versa. And other stuff too. I told you didn’t wanna look under the sheet.”
“Jesus. You get anything from the kid?”
“Yeah, well that’s the weird thing.”
“He fucking switches their body parts and you tell me there’s a weirder thing?”
“Yeah. He was just sitting on his bed smiling when we got here. Covered in their blood too. We asked him what happened and all he said was that the monster told him to do it.”
“I told you it was weird.”
“Where is he now?”
“On his way to psych of course. He’s only ten”
“Jesus. OK Let’s get this place photographed and cleaned up.”
What if some monsters are real?
Note: Every week we choose from four topics to write about. This week one of the topics was “What if” and I choose that.
Your comments and creative criticism are more than welcome.