the Longest Night

Shuuh!  What was that? 


 


Holding my breath, my ears strained listening for the sound again.  It was strange and unfamiliar to me.  Darkness.  Darkness all around me.  I raised my hand to my face, but could not see my fingers! 


 


Did I hear anything at all or did I just imagine it?


 


Nothing.  No sound.  And yet, there was something there!  I was frozen with fear.  I couldn’t move.  My mind said, “Run,” but my body refused to respond.  Forcing a slow, deep breath, I told myself I was fine and nothing could hurt me.  The blackness around me closed in like a blanket until I felt smothered. 


 


Easy…you’re fine.  It will be okay.  Nothing can hurt you.


 


I repeated these words to myself and after several minutes, slowly regained my confidence.  I began to feel more secure in my present circumstance when suddenly the noise was back!


 


Shuuh!  There it is again!  Oh my God!  What is it?


 


Since coming here, I had heard stories about hideous creatures that lived in the area and always came out at night in search of prey.  The eyewitness accounts of these beasts were always vague and incomplete.  Some said the beast had huge fangs and made a slathering, chomping sound when it ate.  Others said it was over eight feet tall with large, hairy arms and eyes that burned into its victim’s, driving them to insanity.  Still others were so paralyzed with fear at the very mention of the beast, they were unable to give an accurate description.


 


Listen.  Do you hear it?  The sound seems closer now!


 


My heart was pounding so loud my ears rang.  No doubt, the beast could hear it too.  I had no weapon, no way of fighting it off.  I could make a run for it, but how far could I possibly get before it ran me down and finished me off?  No.  I couldn’t run and I couldn’t fight.  Perhaps if I just lay still and not move, the beast will pass me by?  Deciding this was my best chance for survival, I stiffened every muscle in my body and tried to slow my breathing, taking short, inaudible gasps.


 


Silence!  Not a sound.  No breeze.  Not the slightest hint of air!


 


I kept telling myself I would be fine.  Over and over, I repeated the same words in my mind.  There was almost a rhythm to it all.


 


You’re going to be fine.  Nothing can hurt you!  You’re going to be fine.  Nothing can hurt you!


 


It became my mantra.  I felt my legs begin to cramp, but I didn’t dare move them.  The beast could be waiting for just such a moment to pounce.  No, I had to remain absolutely still if I were going to survive this perilous ordeal.  As I lay motionless, I thought of my family.  What would they say if they were here with me now? 


 


I didn’t know how long I lay there.  It could have been minutes or hours.  I didn’t want to risk checking the clock, for to do so, I would have to move.  Alone with your thoughts in the dark; when fear grips you, time draws out like a blade.


 


Listen!  There it is again!  It’s really close now!  Oh God, deliver us from evil!


 


Every neuron in my brain was firing, trying to discern the sound!  Maybe there were two of them?  I envisioned them fighting over me, ripping and tearing the flesh from my body as they screamed and shrieked, each proclaiming their dominance.  I felt my heart would burst at any second!  In the grip of unparalleled fear, I passed out.


 


When I came too, the sun had broken and I could finally see light again.  I rolled over and stretched, relieving the tension in my legs.  I stood up and looked around.  Finding no trace of the beast(s), I walked out where I found my mother in the kitchen.


 


“And, how’s my big boy today?  How was your first night sleeping without a light?  See, I told you nothing was going to hurt you.”  Although I was only five, that was the longest night of my life! 

AREALcopper2 AREALcopper2
51-55, M
5 Responses Oct 16, 2006

So sorry to hear that. What a well written amazing story.
All the best.

Haha I loved this! I hope you are a writer. This would make an excellent children's story!

Excellent story, I remember going through the same thing when I was little!

Loved the ending!

Loved the ending!