Tapping : Tapping. I could hear tapping.
My eyes drifted to the faint glow of my alarm clock. 4:42AM. I knew I’d be up in only an hour, so I closed my eyes again. What had woken me in the first place tapped loudly once more, louder than the first few. My heart pounded in my chest. I was wide awake now, but too fearful to move.
Maybe it was Mittens, I told myself. I really did want to believe it was my cat, but she still remained at the edge of my bed. She stared at me with her large green eyes, and meowed. She didn’t seem bothered by the noise at all, and she’d been a skittish cat as long as I’d known her.
Obviously, it had to have been my imagination. I gave up on sleep and stood on my hardwood floor, walked to my computer to retrieve my houseshoes from the desk, then stopped.
The tapping started again, with a few scratches and scraping that almost made it sound like broken Morse code. Tap, tap-tap, scratch, tap, tap.
I turned, wondering if Mittens had followed me and managed to make the sudden noises. But no, Mittens was gone. My closet door had been opened just a crack, just enough for Mittens to have gone inside. I guess I left it open before I slept. I flipped the light switch on my way to the closet. Just as I reached for the doorknob, something soft brushed across the back of my leg. I nearly screamed, it had startled me so badly, and I stumbled backwards onto the floor. I stared at my bed’s underneath, staring into a pair of playful green eyes that shone white in the light. I didn’t expect to see Mittens whole body, seeing as she was a black cat with a name fitting for her white paws. I chuckled nervously, my heartbeat still pounding in my ears, and crawled towards the bed. I said her name, hoping to lure her out without reaching under the bed, knowing the skittish cat would most likely scratch me out of fear. The eyes blinked, and I heard her meow.
It had come from behind me.
I twisted around to see what was behind me while sitting up on my knees. My cat purred and flicked my back with her tail, meowing again. The realization struck me hard, so hard that I faced forward while falling backwards again, catching myself just in time on my hands. Mittens jumped away from me at the sudden movement. I saw her flee to my desk, but I hardly noticed at the time. I was too focused on the bed. The eyes had gone.
In one quick motion, I stood and practically dived for the door, turning the knob and only opening it a little before my closet door slammed behind me. I froze, afraid to turn towards the sound. I heard Mittens scramble through the bedroom door’s crack. I listened in horror as something began to furiously tap at the closet’s interior, with its occasional scratching. It even went so far as to pound on the door a few times before scratching and tapping. I still don’t know how long I had stood at the door, listening, before I snatched my phone and left the room to call the police. From what I remember, they found nothing but Mittens hiding at the top of the fridge.
I’d still gone to work that morning. On my way back home, I decided to stop by the store and buy a frozen pizza and ice-cream, as well as some wine if the tapping started again. My brother had given me a movie to watch before all of that happened, a comedy. Just the night before that…that thing came into my home. I checked the closet the instant I came home, relieved to find it still closed, and I left the bedroom. I’ve never been so grateful to have an old home with locks outside of the rooms’ doors, being able to lock that creature where it resides.
The movie started, and Mittens had already curled up next to me and fallen asleep. About halfway through the movie, my laughter was interrupted. I nearly dropped my spoonful of ice-cream onto the floor at the sound of tapping. I ignored it and gulped down some of the wine, waiting for it to stop. It eventually did, followed by the sound of a closing door. I slept on the couch that night with Mittens, and fell into a drunken slumber.
That had only been last night. When I’d awoken only an hour ago, I felt a very warm hand wrap around my ankle that had dangled off of the couch. Before I could react, I felt sharp teeth sink into the back of my ankle that seemed to come from the hand, and I kicked the thing away with a scream. Within the few seconds I stayed, I now realize that black fur had been scattered around me and stuck to me, matted together with what might have been blood. I didn’t notice before because I just ran, without any hesitation.
I’m hiding in my closet now. I don’t know where Mittens is, and I don’t want to know. My phone is on the coffee table, where I’d left it last night. I can hardly stand on the ankle the creature bit, and I can feel it swelling painfully. It almost feels infected with something. What’s bothering me now is that it’s scratching and tapping on the door as I speak. They’re getting faster and harder, it’s frightening me that I’m stuck in here having to hear it. It just might drive me insane.
What frightens me most isn’t the thing outside of the closet. What scares me most, what makes my heart skip a beat and makes my hands shake uncontrollably, is what is carved into the inside of the closet door. “BEHIND YU”
I just turned to see what had been carved onto the wall on my right. I’ve never wanted to scream more in my life. “NEXT T YU”. I immediately faced the closet door again. But…It’s not just the words etched into the wall that’s bugging me, as much as it should.
What scares me is that I can hear tapping behind me now.