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FICTION: NIGHTY GREGORY M. THOMPSON  

Posted by Scott Wilson

The first night, I kept my back to the bedroom door because the shadowy outline glided back and forth on the walls. No matter which way I faced, the dark, full figure crept its way in front of my eyes.

The black thing stood about seven feet tall and maybe two feet wide and took the form of a human person, but I couldn’t make out any arms or legs or recognizable features to indicate it was a person. When it moved, it slid flawlessly over the white walls, expanding and contracting as it passed over a dresser or bookshelf.

I tried to dash out of the room, but when I made a motion towards the door, the crepuscule surrounded the door frame and created a curtain of murkiness over the actual door.

Once, after two hours of turning this way and that way, I threw a pillow at it and it dodged the pillow. Dodged! It jumped right out of the way and the part I assumed was the head watched the pillow fall to the floor. The thing moved to the wall opposite the foot of my bed and hovered there for the rest of the night.

I don’t know when I fell asleep; I woke the next morning amidst a waterfall of morning sun and no evidence of an object in my bedroom casting its shadow the previous night.

The second night, I brought a powerful LED flashlight to bed with me. The sinister gloom would be no match. When it appeared, the shadow moved erratically against the walls and I didn’t want to risk flipping on the light and not hitting the shadow, my intentions now obvious.

So I drew the sheets and comforter to my chin, clutching them in my right hand. I curled my left hand around the flashlight and slid them under the pillow. Quickly, the warmth soothed me and I nearly fell asleep.

What caught my eye was how the shadow expanded when it stopped jumping around. It grew almost another foot wide and tall. At that moment, I whipped the flashlight out and clicked the power button at the same time, throwing a bright beam of faded white at the shadow.

The light disappeared into the darkness, absorbed into nothingness. Is that even possible? As I continuously aimed the beam at the wall, a swirl of inky blackness coiled around the light, slowly traveling towards me. I immediately turned off the light—the shadow fully returned to the wall—and I sheepishly returned to my fetal position under the covers.

Again, I eventually fell asleep and I arose to the shining dawn.

The third night, I removed everything out of the bedroom except the Queen-sized bed. So now, the thing should not exist.

But it did and it stayed motionless on the wall above the headboard. I pushed as far down under the covers as I could and pulled them over my head so I wouldn’t have to see the strange obscuration stalking me.

I drifted to sleep faster and, in what seemed like an hour later, bolted upright to the first part of the day only Hemingway could describe.

On the fourth night, from directly overhead, the shadow descended from the ceiling.

This entry was posted on Friday, February 11, 2011 at 12:52 AM . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .

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