“Good night.” She whispered to me, her sweet voice cradling me into a deep slumber. “Good night,” I whispered back, letting sleep take me away. The creak of the bed as she left my side and another, louder one as she climbed into her own bed at the other side of the room. Then her breath, every breath was so calm, so soothing. Even if she would wake up halfway through the night, choking and gasping, she would always sing me to sleep.
She needed it more than me- the warmth, The comfort of a hand in her own. But whenever I had tried to turn the tables, she had refused firmly. She didn’t want me to have to get to sleep by myself without her hand comforting my passage into the unknown- does that make sense?
After ten years of living with my sister, it was starting to- make sense, I mean.
I had always wondered why my sister would always wake up screaming each night. I asked her once, my tiny five-year-old face wrinkled into a frown, trying to decipher what caused my sister such pain. “Nothing Sabrina.” She said softly, her long, thin fingers weaving through my brown hair.
Her nightly fits went on, our parents started getting worried about her, and about me. They decided to make us sleep in separate rooms so that she wouldn’t scare me, but I talked them out of it.
I wanted to be there- to comfort her. I couldn’t bear the thought of her sitting awake in bed, all in a heap, her eyes wide in fear, and sweat trailing down her forehead, mixing with tears as it reached her cheeks. I wanted to hold her hand for the few seconds it took our parents to reach the room.
They always came running up to our room when she screamed. And the days when they weren’t home, Elina would, our nanny.
But Amber, my sister, didn’t like the attention. She didn’t like to disrupt the vacant silence of the night with her screams. So, as time passed, her screams were reduced to gasps that did no one harm. That no one even heard, no one except me.
Each time she woke up, I would rush to her side and kiss her softly on the cheek, pressing her clammy hands against mine. Then she would sing me to sleep and climb back to bed, her shallow breathing, my lullaby.
Finally, one day, she told me, as she sat with my hands in hers, at three in the morn.
“I love you, Sabrina. That’s why I have to fight it.”
“What does it want?”
I just sat there staring at her hands linked in mine. I wanted to tell her to give me away because I couldn’t stand to see her suffer, but I knew she would never do that.
If only I would have convinced her.
She woke me up one night, not by screaming, she touched my feet softly and whispered my name.
“What is it, Amber?”
“We need to leave.”
“Right now. It’s here.”
I sat up, her voice was a hurried whisper, barely audible. Her eyes were wild and her jet black hair was pulled back hastily into a ponytail.
“It wants you. Please, let’s leave. Trust me.”
I stared at her blankly, my mind was still foggy from my sleep.
She pulled me up by the hand even before I had registered what just happened.
Then I heard it, a scream. “Mom?” I whispered. Amber grabbed my hand, helped me put on my clothes and then we jumped out the window.
Another scream, I looked back as we ran through the driveway and out into the street.
Then I saw it, a man dressed in a worn-out suit, with dark blue matted fur, sharp claws, and red gleaming eyes. It was running towards us, it was faster than us, we knew it would catch up.
Then suddenly, Amber jerked to a stop. Her hand rested on a knife I never knew she had. She whispered frantically, “I’ll hold it off. Run!”
But I just stood there staring at her as she ran towards the monster, yelling at me to go.
I watched as she pulled out her knife and the monster slashed at her with his claws. I was watching as she fell down into the soft grass, and as the green turned to red. I watched, my eyes blurry, as she sat up, and in a faint attempt to save me, threw her knife at the monster as it sped towards me.
Her knife hit it square in the chest. It fell to its knees, black blood pooling around it.
I ran to my sister, who was lying in a red pool of blood, dead. Her blood flowed out of her scarred chest like rose blossoms in mid-spring.
Tears mixed with blood as I cried over her dead body. As the first beam of the sun hit her skin, she dissolved into the golden. “Goodbye,” I whispered.
About the Author:
The author of this short story is anonymous, her pen name, however, is StabbedPages. She writes poetry much more often than stories and enjoys playing with words almost as much as any other fan of literature. You can check out her poems and a few other short stories on stabbedpages.wordpress.com or on her instagram account, which she has created under her pen name.