It has been seven years since I woke up to hearing my mother calling out my name at midnight from downstairs. I just moaned and tried to go back to sleep. When I heard her voice call out to me again, I got out of bed. We both slept on the second floor, me sleeping in the room right next to hers, making it strange to hear her downstairs in the middle of the night.

I left my room and walked toward the stairs. When I reached my mom’s room, though, I heard it open and I was pulled inside. I tried to fight, but it was difficult.

“Stop, or else it will hear us…” I heard something whisper into my ear.

I instantly relaxed. It was just my mother. Strange thing was, it was pitch black, except for the glow stick she held in her hand. She had released me, and I turned to face her. She held the glow stick close to her face, so I could easily recognize her.

My eyebrows furrowed as I looked at her.

Didn't I hear her voice downstairs? What does she mean by ‘it’? I thought. God, I should have asked her when I had the chance.

She aimed the glow stick toward me. “Whatever happens, no matter what you hear, do not leave this room. And whatever happens, do NOT let go of this glow stick. If I call out, do not answer my calls until sunrise. Understood?”

Her brows were furrowed, her nose was wrinkled, and because of the fact that she was now pushing the glow stick into my hand with both of hers I agreed to do as she told me. I took the glow stick and she left.

It was not long until I heard her ear piercing screams. It was hard to listen to, since it sounded like she was being mutilated. I heard glass smashing apart, things banging, things clanging. It sounded as if it was happening all over the place.

It was horrible; I had to cover my ears to keep out the sound, but it did not help at all. I crawled into mom’s bed and curled into the fetal position, glow stick in hand. My chest had grown tight, my body shivered lightly, and I felt myself start to cry as the sounds kept coming, until the house went all quiet.

It was eerie. One moment it was loud and relentless; next, it was quiet and calm.

Bang! Bang! Bang!

My breath hitched at the sound of something penetrating wood, kind of like nails. It stopped, then came again. It sounded muted, like the thing banging into the wood was lodged into something else…

It stopped, then came again. It stopped, then resumed, more persistent than before. I felt a shiver go down my spine. I heard the front door open, followed by the sound of something heavy being dragged out. After a space of time, I heard the sound of the door closing.

I heard the sound of my mom calling out to me from the front door. My mother had told me not to answer her calls no matter what until sunrise. I closed my eyes, bit my lower lip, and stayed quiet as I heard my heart beat loudly in my chest. The sound of her voice, it sounded like that of somebody who had gone mad when I had last seen her. That voice was my mother, but… It was calm this time, too calm…

I tried to keep my breath calm as the voice kept calling out. I held up the glow stick in front of me like a lantern to see inside of the room. It slowly became more and more difficult to keep still as she got closer and closer to the door.

“David! Where are you?” I heard just outside the door.

I felt hot new tears swell in my eyes and my breath hitched. A loud, inhuman, hysterical laugh filled the whole house, making my chest feel hollow inside.

“Found you, David…” I heard my mother say, just as the blinds showed signs of morning.

The door never opened…

It was seven o’clock when I had the strength to finally move. Still, I sat in the fetal position with the glow stick in hand. I stayed close to it as it started to fade, then completely went out.

I hadn’t moved, even though my back was in pain from stiffness. My heart and breath finally went back to normal and my tears finally stopped falling. I stretched out on the bed and cracked my spine back into place. I laid down for a little bit, due to pain of having a strained back.

When I felt ready, I started to get up and open the door.

There was nobody there, but the floor, walls, the railing…

They were covered in blood and the railing to the stairs was broken as if somebody had been pushed through it onto floor below. Both the hallway to my room and the hallway downstairs were destroyed, and the pottery and the coffee tables they were on were crushed and scattered all over the floor. The only difference was that the first story hallway had the broken railing from the top of the stairs.

I walked downstairs and toward the door. I turned to the living room, noticing that everything there was also wrecked. It appeared as though a tornado had gone through there and obliterated everything inside. I also noticed that the majority of blood was in there, with an imprint of a large cross in the center of all of the blood.

I opened the door outside and went onto the porch. Noticing a bloody cross in the middle of the yard, I walked towards it.

As I got closer, I noticed that there was somebody on it, kind of like they had been crucified. I walked around it to see who it had been. When I was in front of it, I felt myself vomit.

It was my mom…

Her eyes had been gouged out, her chest cavity ripped open and her insides had been taken out.

My neighbors had called the cops some time during the night from hearing massive crashing coming from my house. They thought that there was a thief in the house and we were having a hard time fighting them off. The cops found me in front of the cross with my mother on it and they took me in.

The cops interrogated me for hours on end for weeks after that. I kept to my story that there was something else in the house and that was what killed my mother. I had to go to court and everything. It was not until they had shown me the picture of my mother in court towards the end that everyone was moved to call not guilty. I had bawled my eyes out at the sight of my mother's dead body.

I have always kept that glow stick with me, never letting it go. The psychiatrists said that my love for the glow stick was caused by the shock at first, but it had grown on me. Every night it glowed, even though it should have died that first night. Whatever the cause, I have felt safe in its glow.

I moved out of state and tried to settle, but… that… thing…that had killed my mother followed me. Every single goddamn night that thing would call out to me with my mother’s voice throughout the house. Because of that I held the glow stick up like a lantern to see my surroundings.

It was not until recently that I noticed there were markings on the walls in my room at night, whenever that monster is in my house, but it seems to fade with the sunrise. 

Today, I made a peep hole in my room door to see whatever that thing is that uses my mother’s voice. The sun has set and I am holding up my glow stick like a lantern. Usually I fall asleep with it in my hand, but I want to find out what the hell is calling out to me. I wait until I hear my front door open. I wait patiently as it keeps calling out, getting ever closer to my room.

Then, I get out of bed and get close to the door.

“David, where are you?” I hear it call out just outside my door, before sunrise.

At this time, I look out from my door’s peep hole. What I see outside my door chills me to the bone. It is my mother… Just as she looked the last time I saw her, her eyes gouged out, her chest cavity ripped open, all her insides missing. Worst of all, she wore a horrid smile on her face that sent chills through my spine…

“Found you, David…” I hear and watch her say. She laughs that inhuman, hysterical laugh just like the laugh of that night.

I accidentally drop the glow stick. I hear an earsplitting shatter of glass and a horrifying scream of someone who was being ripped apart before my glow stick goes out.

My heart skips a beat, my stomach churns, and I reach down to grab the glow stick. I reactively pull back when I feel glass where it should have landed. I reach down, more cautious about the glass on the ground. My heart races through my chest as I keep trying to find it. Only the touch of glass, liquid, something squishy, and rug meets my urgent hands.

The room brightens up with the rise of the sun. When it is finally bright enough, I stop reaching out, trying to find the glow stick, noticing that there no longer was a glow stick, but just glass, blood, and tiny organs that could fit in something the size of the glow stick. I also notice that the woman could have come in, but never did.

With my hands shaking, breathing shallow and fast, and heart beating fast, I stand up straight, turn to my door, and open it up. The lady is no longer there. I close the door before I shuffle to my bed. I lay down on the bed.

Is this just a dream?

I just stare blankly at the ceiling. I just stare.

I scream at the top of my lungs.