I’m Afraid Of The Dark :
I’ve always gotten scared of the dark easily. Maybe it was the stories my older brother used to tell me when we were little. Always explaining in-depth how there were monsters under my bed, and how if I left my closet open at night, I would be dragged screaming into the darkness.
Looking back now, I can see how foolish I must have looked to my parents. Such as peeing in the bed, the first time my night-light had burnt out. Or the time I had gathered all the pillows in the house to build a fortress, which I then defended with a flashlight and plastic hockey-stick. I was always so skittish, and terrified of the things that were never there when I awoke. It must have been hell on my parent’s to have raised such a frightened child.
Perhaps I would’ve overcome my fear in my High-School years, if not for the (admittedly funny) antics of my older brother. Where he had hidden himself under my bed, and convinced several of his friends (my Girlfriend included) to hide inside my closet. So to make sure the plan came off without a hitch, and to prevent anyone from spoiling the joke, he called my cellphone and told me to meet him at the local gas-station to pick up some chips and pop for our Zombie movie night. I was so gullible to fall for his trick, thinking that he just wanted some snacks and drinks for us and our dates that night.
It was about an entire hour later that I finally realized he wasn’t showing up to the gas-station, and it was starting to get dark out. So I grabbed our junk-food and started heading home. Trying to keep ahead of the long dark shadows that were dragging themselves across the town as the sun began to settle behind the hillside. Luckily my fear of darkness didn’t manage to break my nerves, so I was able to climb the front steps and get inside just as the last of the light in the sky went dark. But there I was, alone, in a dark house…
I dropped the snacks at the door, and went fumbling desperately through the house in search of a light-switch. Yet every switch I hit did nothing. It had been the work of my brother’s friend Derrick, he had flipped the breakers the moment they had seen me come jogging towards the house. But at the time I was just a frightened kid searching for the safety of light. *Thump!* I heard a noise upstairs…*Thump*…I heard it again…*THWUMP!*…I ran to the closet and searched for a flashlight in the blinding darkness. My hand’s fumbling around as I desperately rummaged through coats and shoes, until my hand finally found that sweet little tool. *Click* I ignited a beam of light into the house with a single thumb movement, giving me the sense of safety I had so desired.
Using my new-found weapon against the darkness, I took a deep breath, and made my way towards the stairs. So I proceeded slowly, taking each step one at a time, trying to be as brave as I could. During which it seemed as if an eternity had gone by, until at-last I reached the top. When suddenly all my bravery disappeared, because my door was open. Every other door in the hallway was closed, except for my own.
I gripped the flashlight tightly in my fist, and I made my way towards my doorway. Shining my weapon of light into the room, I took several steps into the room. When suddenly I heard a noise, sending my entire brain into a frenzy of terrified thoughts, causing me to instinctively drop the flashlight and dive into my bed. Only after I had wrapped myself into a ball under my covers, did I hear a soft sound coming from my closet. A sound almost like giggling, but stifled under someone’s hand.
But before my brain could translate and process the information, a pair of hands reached up from below and grabbed me. I screamed and attempted to get free, when suddenly I felt the covers around my body become tight and I was pulled shrieking onto the floor. Upon which time I pissed my pants and started bawling my eyes out. As my brother emerged from under the bed laughing, and everyone else was standing around me having a fit of laughter that was turning faces red, I realized what had just happened.
After that night, my girlfriend broke up with me. Possibly out of embarrassment, and possibly because the story spread throughout school like a wildfire the next day. It was the worst time in my life, and it was all because of my brother, and my fear of the dark. So I planned to get even with him, spending weeks writing out various ideas and storing them away in my closet to prevent un-intended eyes from reading my notes. Every night I’d think of better and better plans, going through at-least two-hundred pages during that time. Must have been a month that went by when I was finally ready to get my revenge.
So on the weekend our parent’s left us alone at home, while they were gone from town. I hid myself in the closet across from my brother’s room. Making sure to phone him before he got home from my…err…his…girlfriend’s house. I told him the power had gone out and that I had been electrocuted very badly when I had tried to cut an exposed wire on the old TV in his room. I cried and make choking sounds as I had learned in Drama class, and told him how I was scared and hurt, all because I had simply wanted to get revenge on him for his prank. I’m sure my lie worked, because he had run down the street and burst in through the front door only ten minutes later. Then he bounded through the darkness up the stairs tripping, and knocking over things in the hallway, all thanks to my new knowledge of turning off the power breakers.
He threw his door open and screamed into the darkness for me. Yelling things like “I’m here!”, “I’ll call an ambulance”, and “I’m sorry I ever scared you!” were some of my favorites. But I think the best part, was when I emerged from the darkness behind him and turned on the flashlight. He spun around and I could see tears streaming down his face. “You bastard!” he shouted and he gave me a tight hug, “I didn’t think you would do something so mean, just to get revenge for a prank”. I smiled at him, and then I pushed him away from me. “But that was just a prank of my own, THIS is the revenge part” I said as his eye’s widened and he was pulled into the closet screaming.
Now to be honest, I was never afraid of the dark because of the stories my brother told me. I’ve only ever been afraid…because he was right. I had only been so terrified of my brother’s prank, because I had thought that it was the darkness coming to get me for failing to uphold my side of a bargain. I had promised them that I would hand-over my brother in exchange for them to stop tormenting my dreams, and before that moment, I had been considering letting myself get taken in exchange for his safety. But I guess it was that prank that finally did it…bravo…you instead got yourself taken by the monsters in the closet Brother. Maybe he’ll find a way to get back at me from beyond the darkness, or maybe he’s just been digested in a monster’s belly, but all I know…is that I’m still afraid of the dark.