Night, Something I would come to fear. Though the terror was already starting to slip into my brain and had always been there since I was little I never thought it would come to the extremes that it had lately. Then again, I had never been in a house that I didn’t like and felt an evil presence to. Was it really possible for something to be haunted? I had always thought that talk of ghosts was just to scare people and let them live in a thrill. Not just ghosts though but demons as well. Wasn’t that all just some made up stuff that the church came up with in order to keep us from sinning?
Sitting on the bus I tried to keep my mind away from the fact that I would be getting off the yellow contraption soon only to go back to the hell hole I was slowly having to call a home. Looking off out the window I began to feel more and more like a freak as we continued to live in the new house. There were very few people that I could confine in now and it seemed as though the days were flying past me and I couldn’t remember a single one. My mind swelled and fed off this idea of my possible mental illness as the bus drive carried off in its normal route. Sadly, my thoughts were cut off with the sound of screeching breaks and being jerked forward. Looking to the front of the bus there was reality hitting me right in the face, it was my stop. Picking up my things I made my way off of the bus only to find my mom’s small silver Honda civic waiting in my best friend’s driveway to pick me up and take me ‘home’. Luckily there was no sign of Ryan. I couldn’t remember much of yesterday just like any other day though there was one thing that was sticking into my mind like a sore thumb. Granted yes, my mom and her new boyfriend yelled at each other about as much as her and any other of her normal little ‘husbands’ did. Last night was a little different though.
Throwing my backpack over my shoulder I worked my way quickly down the stairs of the bus making sure to keep my eyes on the stairs. Last thing I wanted at the moment was the embarrassment of taking one wrong move and sliding the rest of the way to the ground. Luckily I made it off perfectly fine and like a normal person that wasn’t slowly losing their mind. While half of my embarrassment was saved for the non-trip moment, my mom decided that I was blind and honked her horn to do a sound check on my ears. Running over to the car I got in while throwing my things down to my feet. The car started back up and soon we were off to hell.
Getting home things started off as they always did, everything was calm. Of course I don’t think people quiet understand the term ‘calm before the storm’ unless they’ve lived one out. Sure enough as I made my way down to my room my mom and her little boy toy were loving one another, the typical act. Making my way down one of the 2 sets of stairs to the house I tried to ignore the little act as much as I could. I had to admit I seemed rather cut off from the world, all of it by choice. My friends had been ripped away from me, my ‘parents’ seemed a little too busy with their own things and I had just lost the only step siblings I had ever had, my one chance at having brothers and a sister. That was until a few weeks ago.
I had always thought my mother couldn’t have kids, at least that’s what she had told me. When getting called out of my room I didn’t think the news to be told was ever going to coming, blind sighted was the best way to put it. As I sat down on my mom’s bed those weeks ago she and Ryan decided to drop the ball and say they were going to have a baby. Instead of reacting the way any soon to be older sister would a totally different action took place. Tears had swollen into my eyes and my throat closed itself off of air. I felt as though I was told someone had been killed, possibly myself. As my ‘parents’ sat and looked at me in confusion and thinking that everything was a possible action of joy I had completely fallen apart. Sooner than later it had clicked into their head that the tears flowing down my face were not that of the good kind, instead I was crying like a 2 year old. Finally the ability to bring words to come from out of my mouth came too. Nothing I had to say was relieving, instead they were nothing more than selfish, let alone when they came from an only child.
I began to ramble out in pure sorrow that I didn’t want to be an older sister, that they didn’t have enough time for me as it was let alone if they were to have another child. Looking to my mom the guilt trip soon started as I told her all about how it was always going to be me and her, no matter what. Before long I had a few sets of arms wrapped around me to try and calm the tears. A feeling that I couldn’t seem to find comfort in. What was wrong with me? Here I had been crying because I wasn’t getting attention but when I got it, I felt nothing.
Even though that morning had happened and I stated what was wrong and how I felt, things hadn’t seem to change. In fact it felt as though it was getting worse. My mom and Ryan were talking of getting married, though it seemed like they spent more time at the sports bar down the street then they did planning a wedding. Sitting in my room I wrapped myself up into the little music that I had just like any other day. While my stereo sat on the floor, a set of headphones were plugged into it while Evanescence blasted away into my eardrums. I tried desperately to get lost in my homework though it seemed I couldn’t get wrapped up into it enough, nor my music. The act upstairs had gone away and the true colors of my home were starting to show. Yelling once again filled my childhood, it wasn’t the first time I had heard it nor was it with the same men my mother had fought with in the past. Getting sick of it all I tried to hide away even more of the yelling but it was as if the walls were made out of nothing but thin paper. A surge of sadness washed over me as I didn’t know what to do, thoughts of running away had passed through my mind more than its share of times. The thought of that wasn’t scary, the thought of being found though was. I knew that my mother would be more then upset with me, let alone the kind of trouble that I would get in.
Looking to the window I changed the thoughts of jumping out of it and instead looked to my closet, something that had been terrifying me more than anything since we had moved. It was one of the first things to really set me off about the new home. I didn’t understand the layout of it. It wasn’t so much the basic things about it but the ones that seemed to have no since at all. Like the crawl space in the down stairs closet, there wasn’t just the one door leading to the ground, there was two. The second door sat on the wall and upon opening it you were lead into what I was later told was, the storage room. A get away that was no more than 3 feet tall. As if one door to that room wasn’t enough though there was a second one within it, this one leading to a closet and lastly that closet leading to what would become my room. This little storage room was small enough for me to fit into and it was the place the litter box now called its home. The walls of the room being foiled, a wonderful place to grow weed in seeing how that’s what the last owner had used it for.
My mind began to puzzle how long it would be until someone would realize that I did run away. With that the gears in my head started to turn. In tears I grabbed the stuff piglet my mom had gotten for me when we moved to Oregon for the last time. We had nearly nothing in our names and with her first paycheck she had gotten me the stuff animal. Searching about I then grabbed the ragged piece of woven yellow fabric I had called my baby blanket. With those two objects and a pillow in hand I opened the closet and crawled into the small room before closing the closet door behind me. Being scared to death of the little room I now found myself in there was no stopping the tears that streamed down my cheek, what had been running away now seemed like a self-punishment. Slowly though the tears began to stop and the fear washed away. Soon I had fallen into darkness, asleep.
Waking up was nothing like I thought it would be. There was no hand on my shoulder shaking me frantically while their voices cracked, calling my name in the joy/hope that I would wake up and was in their care. There were no sounds of birds outside the window as if I had been not bothered at all and simply plucked from the dark tomb I had hidden away in and placed child-like into my bed with the hopes of a new day. Instead I found myself still in my small get-away of a hole. Creeping from the storage room’s concealment and into my room there was a small pleased feeling to myself as I attempted to wrap my mind around my mother’s face, the flutter in her heart as she searched frantically for me. Was it wrong of me to wish worry upon her? I didn’t care, not at this moment and with the hell I felt they were putting me through. I quickly and quietly rushed out of my room and noticed that the bottom part of the house was dark, the only light coming from upstairs with the small amount of day light mixing with a light my mother had left on in the house to make it seem like someone had lived in it. This wasn’t a good sign, or was it? Perhaps they had run out to look for me. I was hoping otherwise though and planning to see them upstairs, instead I was proved wrong. There wasn’t a single soul in the house, not only that but it looked like there was no sign of worry. It was like they hadn’t even noticed that I was gone, I was literally a wallflower. Standing in disbelief as my plan had all fallen apart and merely back fired I turned towards the dark area from which I had come from. The idea of walking back down there sent chills up my spine and I felt as though I was frozen in place, not being able to return even if I wanted to. Swallowing hard I placed my hand against the railing of the stairs and made my way to the living room, relieved to find a small ray of light that would perhaps protect me like a blanket, only it didn’t.
Hours had passed it seemed like though it could have easily just been mere minutes that I sat alone in the living room. The clouds and night sky had suffocated the light from outside and I was left with the soft glow of the light bulb my mother had left on. While the world got darker my mind fell into the same mentality. I began to panic as shadows threatened to swallow what little light I had, the one thing keeping me from going crazed. In a fit to gain myself I quickly placed myself into a mediating position and focused on the remaining light to the walls, begging it to keep alive. Words spilled from between my lips in a whisper as I fought with these shadows that danced on the edges of my light, either reality or my thoughts playing tricks on me. Either way it all felt too real and seemed as though the thread of my mental sanity was on the verge of snapping and sending me into a state of which I would never come back from.
This is something that I assumed had taken hold, at least that’s what I attempt to trick myself into thinking.
Being so involved with the shadows I was battling I didn’t have time to watch the creaks of the house, the shifts of darkness in the corners of my eyes and soon, the figure that was standing below me. At first it was only a glance of which I had seen this, this creature that would come to haunt me to my grave, fitting if you ask me. Soon it had my full attention when I realized compared to it, the shadows stealing my light were child’s play. I couldn’t believe it, it was like a horror film, I had to be dreaming, I had to. Standing below, at the bottom of all the stairs, outside the bathroom, down the hallway from my room was a figure. Not just any figure though but one that a child of my age could only describe as death. A tall figure stood covered from head to toe in all black, what seemed to be a large rode and it was fixed on something, luckily not me, not yet. As my breath caught in my chest and the urge to scream at the top of my lungs came to I was instantly sucked of all the air, the ability to make a sound at all as the figure’s head turned and looked at me. Before long all I could remember was simply that, and that alone as I slipped away into something I can only assume was sleep. Perhaps it was fear sending me into shock, fainting without the early effects, everything went blank though and this is what I had to wake up to.
“Wake Up! Ariel wake up!” I hear being shouted into my ear as a hand violent shakes me, the sound of ragged breathing puffs into the air and I quickly awaken with a jolt. My heart contracts rapid in my chest as my mind feels swept of everything and the world is slowly awakening, ink bleeding into the corners of my mind reminding me of everything I seemed to have temporarily escaped. Looking up I find the man my mother has been attempting me to call a father standing before me, Ryan. The look on his face is frantic as he pulls me to my feet and the world around me swirls in a blur as if I had been in a drunken state. Without a moment to think of what’s going on a mountain of words swirl around me as I’m pulled to the front door, my mind being aware of the stairs. “Your mother needs help, she’s drunk. Drove her car into a ditch. She’s ok but we need to go help her.” Information funnels in and out of my mind as I attempt to grasp onto it. The only things that I’m able to register is that my mom is in trouble and that I’m needed, to me this is the only thing that matters.
Now in time with the night air as I break out into it I rush to the old rust color pick-up truck Ryan had deemed his will nothing is making sense still, all I know is that I’m needed. Throwing the door open I haul myself into the truck trying to quickly calculate into my brain where it is that she could be, how bad is the damage, and how long is Ryan going to take to get into the car. Luckily I’m answered with not too long at all. With a few angry grumbles the truck comes to life like a beast within and gets thrown into reserve, everything starting to slow down as the lights are cut keeping our travel in the cover of night. None of this making sense and nothing else around me mattering until we pull out of our street and I happen to glance back into my rearview mirror, a cop car sits looking empty though I have no idea why it would be there of all places. Now that my mind as been focused on something I start to awaken from my dreamy state of mind and before I can speak fear creeps into my throat and my breath is knocked from my lungs as the cop car slowly starts to move, the turn signal of the truck I’m now sitting in is heading the wrong direction and a tension thickens the air.
Fear cuts through my body as I grip the bench seat of the truck as it wildly whips out onto the main road and plummets down the nearby hill making a mad dash for a getaway. The cop car behind me begins to do the same as red and blue lights rapidly flash in the mirrors and its siren screams into my ears. Whipping my head towards Ryan, the driver I begin to loose hold of that once mental sanity and screech into the night wind, “Where are we going?!” My eyes flicker to the speed-o-meter only to find the needle crawling higher and higher, a crazed look is to Ryan’s eyes and I know there’s no getting around this. With my body now no longer apart of me I begin to think like a convict, or a citizen, I’ll never know which. What I do know is that all I can do is beg and reason with him, “Ryan you need to pull over, please. You need to pull over…” My words not breaking into his thoughts and the idea of stealing the steering wheel and making the right thing to do into my own hands I make one last call, a scream, “PULL OVER!” This one finally breaking through. Turning slightly Ryan looks at me before slowing down and turning into what becomes a dead end. The engine lays running as the cops flash their bright lights to the truck, both men out now and yelling for Ryan to exit the car. While I had my one jump at glory my mind once again goes on shut down as if its last function had fried the system. Instead all I can focus on is the digital clock of the radio to the truck. The numbers meaning nothing to me as I realize slowly that there’s no one in the truck with me, my breathing still slightly ragged from the rush of adrenalin as my heart plays the same beat.
Before long I’m finally pulled from this state as a bright light pierces through my window soon followed by a soft tap. Turning my head like the living dead I look towards the blinding light before seeing that a man is motioning me to get out of the car. Stiffly I find my body doing as its told only to find it’s an officer with a grim look to his face. In a small attempt he tries comforting me as he leads me to the curb across the street and tells me to sit down. Just like leaving the truck I do as I’m told as a bewildered look coats my face. No longer do I feel as though I’m within my body but instead I’ve gone into auto-pilot and no one is at the wheel. In front of me I watch the men talk to Ryan as he stands with his hands behind him at his waist, he’s hand cuffed. After a while the officers place him into the cop car and then talk to the side as if this was some sort of football huddle, only the attention isn’t on the game at hand. It’s on me. The officer that had found me explains about me as the other man looks over his shoulder and eyes me, the words make no sense to me at all except for the sentence, “I would have shot her if she moved.” My eyes shift away from them as I can’t even find the brain power to absorb that piece of information and how my life could have been ripped away from me. My brain can’t absorb anything of the rest of the night besides the fact that I had hugged Ryan in a last goodbye, for some reason I had begun to cry, from anger or fear, I’ll never know which. Next I come to realize that I’m going home, at least something like that.
When my brain finally decides to come to I realize that I’m sitting in Ryan’s parent’s house, our neighbors across the street. Nothing seems out of place and I can’t read the mood of anyone around me, not even my own. I sit in the living room with a blank feeling until I hear that my mom is going to come get me. A wave or relief is filled with a mix of anger as she comes into the room. The smell of alcohol sweeps off of her breath and I can’t make out the fact that she’s having a hard time speaking, I merely go into attack mode. A wave of rage floods me and I’m about ready to tear her a new piece of my mind until I see face I hadn’t seen in a long time, one that I’d never thought I’d be happy to see. It was Dawn, my old crushes boyfriend and an old neighbor/family friend. For once it seemed like he was sober and he took me and my mother away from everything, even that horrible house that I had been pulled from. Soon I find myself sneaking into my old crushes room after being told that I could use his top bunk for the night while Dawn took care of my mother. While any girl would have a hay day realizing what position I was in at the moment I could honestly ‘love’ was the last thing on my mind. Cody had been my crush in god knows how long, I had forgotten how long but he was also the only friend I could think of at the moment that I could possibly count on, though he had left me high and dry a number of times. Slipping into his room I made my way into the top bunk and found my mind instantly slip into sleep, not recalling anything for the next few days, where I had been or what I had done. In fact looking back to it all I can’t remember anything until one day when I would finally be ripped away from everything.