I haven't told many people about my childhood. I never felt it was right, but I recently received a call from my father that has made me come to the conclusion that I must share my story with the world. Something is wrong, I know it. I know I should be angry as well, but I am not. Still, I know that something is very wrong, my father wouldn't be calling if there wasn't. His voice sounded shaky, he was so distant. I understand that he may feel ashamed about what he'd done, but then to call me and say what he said? How was I not mad? How am I not? I mean, after what he's done... I suppose I should just tell the story, explain a bit.
As a child I remember having vivid, horrible nightmares, terrifying ones that would lead me to wake up screaming and sprinting into my father's room for comfort. I'd tell you that I had a mother for comfort if it were true, but she passed away in a terrible car accident not long after my birth. I knew even as a child it hurt my father, so I never brought it up. Still, he did the best he could as a father and I had no complaints. Back to the nightmares. I remember them clearly, I actually find myself dreaming them up again after a very stressful day. There were too many to list, but a few I found very haunting.
The first of these begins, like all the rest, with me waking in my bed. It was cold, freezing actually. Like someone turned off the heat in winter all night. I look out the window to see a layer of snow already covering the ground. I begin to try to go back to sleep but spring awake when I hear a small giggle come from my closet.
I quickly shoot my hand over to my bedside lamp and turn it on, the dim glow illuminating a small portion of the room. I manage to choke out a few words "Who's there?" It is quiet for a bit, but I don't dare relax. Then I hear another giggle, and my closet door slams closed. I shoot out of bed and run to my bedroom door, trying to open it but finding it is locked, and for some odd reason I can't unlock it.
I turn around, now feeling a huge wave of terror overcoming me as I see my closet door creak open. I can't make anything out at first, but then I see it. What looks to be a large man dressed as a small girl, school age, steps out. He has pigtails in his hair, wearing a skirt and a little button-up which doesn't quite conceal his stomach. Upon his face rests a mask, the very same comedy mask you see worn by Thalia, the Greek muse of comedy. I try to run, but it doesn't take long until the man is on top of me. He pulls out a long needle and begins to stick it into my neck when I wake up. As a child I would run into my father's room and tell him all about it, he would console me and then I would fall asleep in his bed.
The second dream begins in nearly exactly the same way, only this time it is extremely hot. It is already summer but it seems as if someone has turned the heat all the way up all night. I try hard to go back to sleep but find it is a futile effort, I'm simply sweating too much and I'm too thirsty. I resolve to get a drink of water and step out of my bedroom door. I instantly regret this however, because the second I do I can see a large figure literally sprinting at me. It looks like an older man, though one beginning to decay.
He has weird fungus sprouting from his body at random points and is leaking a weird green liquid from his stomach, leaving a trail as he comes flying at me. I run back into my room and slam the door closed, lock it, and then jump into my bed and pull the covers over my head. I can hear him pounding and moaning at the door. This goes on for a good ten minutes and then all goes silent. I believe it's over and pull the sheets down, then the door unlocks. It flies open and almost instantly is the creature tackling me. It sinks it's teeth into my neck and then I awaken.
I could go on to recall more dreams, but I think it'd be more proper to answer the questions you may have from the opening of this story, mainly the one I, myself, would have, being "Why is he telling me all this?" In order to answer that however, I must tell you one last story, one that was real.
The dreams lasted until I was twelve, until I found out what my father had done. I came home from school a little early that day, there was a release after an assembly, so I beat my dad home. I decided it would be nice to begin working on my birthday present to him, a popsicle stick model of the Empire State Building (don't ask why this is the gift, it's a family thing). I got to work quickly, still tired from the nightmare I had the previous night, only to find I was out of glue. I needed glue, his birthday was literally the next day, I needed to get to work and fast, so I ended up breaking one of the rules my father had set in place: Don't go into the basement. He told me the basement was dangerous, that it had many nails and low hanging pipes and various other things that could harm me. I figured he wouldn't be home for another while, so I had time to do it and he would be none-the-wiser.
I walked down the stairs and found it to be very dark, so dark I needed to head back upstairs and grab our in-case-of-emergency flashlight. I descended the creaking stairs and began my search for my father's tools, thinking he would have glue there. That's when I found it. My flashlight illuminated a small door on the edge of the basement. I never knew it was down there! Naturally I was curious, so I approached it and, with a bit of difficulty, pushed it open... only to come face to face with one of the horrors of last night's dream.
I shrieked, jumped back, and began to cry. I was going to die down here. But I didn't, in fact, nothing happened. I mustered up some courage and looked up... it was just a mask? I cautiously walked over to it, finding various costumes and masks hung all around the room, covering every inch. Every creature, every killer, every horror I had ever had the displeasure of seeing, sat in that room... but none of them were real. I walked through, completely in shock, when I found a large jar of a substance I did not know in the corner, sitting next to five empty syringes, two of which were shaped into a tooth and a claw respectively. The jar was labeled:
"For my son, who I will never lose."
I couldn't believe this was happening. I dropped the jar out of shock, sending the strange substance and shards of glass all around the room. I bent down to pick some of it up, worried my father might know I was in there, and then I saw a picture of my mother, a large picture, sitting on the floor, cracked. The word "Gone" was written on the floor in chalk all around her. I must've not noticed how long I was down there, because apparently my dad came home. I felt his hand clasp my shoulder.
It was over after that, he knew that. I told my school counselor all about it, and she in turn notified the police. He admitted to being the source of my nightmare, admitted to dressing up as all those creatures and then sedating me. He said he did this so he would never lose me, so that he would never have to lose me like he lost my mother. He was the cause of all my fears, my phobias, everything. I was placed in foster care for a while before moving out to live on my own. I got into a good college and managed to become a mild success. Everything seemed OK, until this call.
I hadn't heard from my dad since that fateful day. I'm not sure how he got my number, but I guess that doesn't really matter. What he said shook me, I'll admit it. I don't think it was just another way to scare me, he knew I didn't need him anymore.
I suppose I should tell you what he said, I suppose you are wondering. It wasn't a long conversation. My father simply called to tell me he loved me, to tell me he was sorry. He told me I was the love of his life, and then he was so ashamed that he harmed me. Then he told me that he was with my mother again, and that he was happy. He said they'd be waiting for me, so that he could give me a proper apology and then we could all be together once more. I thought it was a joke at first, but he wouldn't joke about that.
So now I'm sitting here pondering. Oh, it's my phone. I have to check it. The police? For some reason I'm not surprised, I guess I'm expecting it really.
Written by Icarus88