When I was very young, around four to six years old, I used to dream of the most disturbing shit ever.
The worst one would be this recurring dream I always had back then. It was always associated with this creepy-shit scarecrow that the old lady next door always had on her porch.
It would sit on a rocking chair all the time, looking like it was always glaring outside at any passerby. I had no idea why she always had that stupid scarecrow out there...
After all we all lived in the city, for Pete's sake. It would be there all year, so it wasn't like some sort of Halloween decoration, although it would have been a good one.
In the dream, everything would seem normal at first. The sun would be shining brightly, and everyone seemed happy. It would only take a dark turn when I walked by the neighbor's house.
I would get this strong feeling of being watched, and every time I would turn around, to see that scarecrow glare at me. Then it would start to move. Seeing it move would startle me enough that I would run back into my house.
I thought I would be safe back in my own house, but I wasn't. It was eerily quiet in the house, and I went looking for my parents and my older brother.
I would find my mother in the bathtub, with her face distorted in a silent scream. Her eyes were craved out, blood running down like tears.
In my parent's bedroom, my dad was cut up in a dozen pieces.
Frightened, I ran to my big brother's room but he was nowhere to be seen. I go to my bedroom because that's usually the place where I felt the safest at.
The scarecrow is there, waiting for me with a bloody butcher knife. He grins at me, and maggots spill forth as he starts speaking. there is a foul smell, like decaying meat.
"Hello, pretty little girl. Let's play together...."
I really, really don't want to play with him at all, not after what he did to my whole family. I started running out of the house, towards my friend's home. The scarecrow is behind me, always following.
My best friend Lisa lets me into the house, locking the door behind her. She asks me what is wrong, and I tell her what went on at my house. She became frightened too... So we go ask her parents to call the cops. Only, they're nowhere to be seen. It was as if they just literally disappeared into thin air.
So we run to the house of our other best friend, Allison. Allison does the same thing Lisa did earlier. That is, letting us into her house and then asking what was going on. So we recap things for her again.
As we were recapping things for her the scarecrow breaks down the door. He sees all three of us together, and his decaying face suddenly had this creepy perverted smile. "Oh, this must be my lucky day... Three cute girls all together, waiting for me. That doesn't happen often!"
So all three of us run, and for some reason we suddenly end up at school. We're running up the stairs to our classroom, but the scarecrow is on top of the stairs, waiting for us.
It starts to dawn on me that it would be useless for me to run. He would always be there, no matter where I ran to. I would be never be able to outrun him... But I figure my two best friends could outrun him and escape this nightmare. So I decide to become the sacrifice, so that they might get away.
So I stand there calmly while my two friends run down the stairs, leaving me behind.
The scarecrow notices this behavior of mine, and his eerie grin widens.
He raises the knife, and then starts systemically cutting away my clothes, and also leaving small cuts on my body in the process....
I always wake up at this point.
The dreams finally stopped when the police showed up at my next door neighbor's house. I remember that day clearly. The sirens were all blaring, and entire neighborhood was outside watching the policemen put that scarecrow into a bodybag.
The old lady was arrested for some reason, and put into the back of the police car.
I didn't really know what was going on then. There is also another memory I recall, which probably took place weeks later or something.
It was a memory of my mom talking with her neighborhood friends, gossiping about that old lady and the creepy scarecrow.
"Hey, you know that... Uh, scarecrow? Her husband?"
"Yeah. Did you find out why she did it?"
"Well, apparently... She found out that her husband... Uh, loved little girls a little too much. If you get my drift. Apparently he was doing...
"Um, things with their daughter and that's why their daughter committed suicide many years ago. This was years before they moved here, you see. Uh, she eventually found highly graphic pictures of it as proof. She just went crazy, and made him into that scarecrow..."
"Wow, I don't blame her at all. I would want to kill anybody who would do that to my little girl too. But it does creep me out! Jeez, I shudder to think of what would had happened if my children wanted to hang out at that place. Thank God they're never near there."
"Yeah, my children never liked walking by that house for some reason. They never actually met the couple personally before, so it's not like they knew the old man. I suppose children just have a sixth sense for this sort of thing sometimes."
That was the snippet of the conversation that stood out the most in my memory from the events back then.
I didn't really understand what happened back then, as seeing I was too young to comprehend things like death, much less, pedophilia.
But looking back at those memory when you're now old enough to understand... Well, it can be kind of chilling. I was glad the constant nightmares stopped, but I've developed a strong phobia of scarecrows ever since then.