Guilt :

I’ve always lived a relatively normal life. I was the typical teenage girl, though I was a tomboy. I had never once been a girly-girl, or dreamed of holding frilly pom-poms and being popular. That just wasn’t my style. I much preferred to stay in my house, sitting in front of the T.V., playing video games. Horror video games, to be precise. Anything that could scare me, I went after.
Though I loved the fear aspect of games and scary stories, I was easily paranoid. Thanks to this, I very seldom ever let myself feel ‘safe’; I was more-so always in a state of hesitation, like a little mouse in a cat infested home. My friends, family, all of them knew this wasn’t healthy for me. No, not in the slightest. I didn’t care about that though. Fear enticed me, drew me in… My paranoia only grew, and I let it. I watched it grow, like the little fire it was in my heart.
As I lay in bed one night, reading more creepy scriptures, whatever I could come across really. soon, though, I had come to realize my throat felt dry and sore. I set down the laptop and started to try and massage it from the outside, rubbing slowly with two fingers, but to no avail. I knew I had to go from the barely lit living room, and into the dark kitchen that lay beyond the safe haven I had grown so used to these nights. My paranoia naturally did not ease up, but I knew I had to go and get something to drink, if only to ease the sore, dull burn I felt in my throat.
With that, I slipped my legs over the side of the couch, flinching as my foot caught in the blanket I would sleep with. Thanks to my nearly tripping, my landing was not so quiet as I would have wished. I cursed under my breath, but shook it off. Really, I needed to get over it. It was only me and my dad in this old house, anyway. Heck, it wasn’t even old; just a bit warn.
Nothing to fear from a safe, warm family home. With that thought swimming in my mind, I made my journey to the kitchen, sure to flip on the lights the instant I entered the doorway. As I came to stand beside the fridge, I took a look to my left, looking over the blinds that covered the glass-sliding doors.
Despite the thick, white blinds, I always felt something would be just outside the doors, able to see through some unnoticable crack in the covering. The thought made chills run down my back, but I shrugged it off just as quick, turning my attention to the fresh bottle of water I had grabbed. Thanks to my prior thoughts, I knew it would be a long, sleepless night for me.

The days that followed went by nearly the same. My father had gone fishing for most of the weekend daylight hours, and I stayed alone to read or play games, only getting up to use the bathroom or get some food or drink when I needed to. The nights, too, went generally the same. Dad would be upstairs, asleep, and that’s when it would always happen. My throat would sting, and I would go for water… And every time, my mind felt like it was being tugged, and I would always look at the blinds, sending yet another chill through my entire being. Each time, I felt like something knew I was in there, and it was… Waiting.
Of course, I knew that was just me, imagining I had gone through what others had said they have done. Some creature, waiting to spring. It was all just fear, and natural fear. At least, I hoped it was natural. The last thing I need is to be labeled crazy at such a young age.
However, one night, about a week after this had all started to happen… When I walked into the kitchen, I realized one of the blinds was slightly ajar, moved to the point a bit of the night could be seen through the cover. Considering the fact I have four cats, all of which are known to cause mischief, I thought nothing of it. They had probably been chasing each other around, ran into the blinds, and ran off again.
I now turned towards the blinds, ready to go and just fix it, before the all too familiar shiver coursed through me. I let out a weak whimper at the feeling, unable to contain it this time for whatever reason. Once the feeling had passed… I went to do as I had planned. Just as I settled the blind into place, however, I saw a pale, bony hand twitch from the darkness. It looked to be just outside the window pane, and I jolted back instantly with a strangled, startled cry.
I stood there, shaking, for what seemed forever. Of course, my curious mind picked up, and I moved back to look… It was gone. Though my instincts told me to run, go, I shrugged the fear away. Odds are, it was just the reflection of the light in contrast to the night outside. Nothing was there, and I was getting worked up over nothing at all. I returned to the fridge for my nightly water, before going back into the living room.
And… That’s when things started to go downhill. After that first encounter, I continued to see that pale, emaciated-looking hand. Shaking, twitching, just outside the windowpane, from a barely opened hole in the blinds. Every night, I would hastily move the blinds back into place, for fear of seeing more, for fear of… It. For fear of it seeing me, as I have seen it.
But… I know it always saw me. Before I had even seen it… It would watch. Deep down, I knew this, but my subconscious refused to believe it. Oh, I wish I had believed it.
One night, I sat in my father’s recliner… Typing up an email to my friend. However, I felt a disturbance. I wasn’t sure what it was, but I felt it. A presence, if you will, just waiting to poke out and visit it seemed. I looked away from the computer for only a moment, and that moment was enough.
I saw the hand again. It reached out, slowly, from below the opening of the recliner. I felt paralyzed once I saw it, reaching for my outstretched legs, reaching… And then it touched me. The feeling was almost slimy, not what you would expect of such a human looking hand. The nails of it… It just skimmed my skin, caressing…
The paralysis ended as it reached down for my foot. I slammed down on the end of the recliner, hoping to God the emaciated thing would just die, would leave me alone… That it was as weak as the frail hand looked. From below me, I heard an inhuman screech of pain, but it was abruptly cut off as the chain closed in on itself. I sat, shaking for a few moments… Waiting to feel something move. Nothing happened.
I thought it was time to see just what had been under there… See it’s face. I moved slowly, hesitant with such a decision, but I knew it… It had to be done. I moved the leg of the chain carefully, almost as if I expected the hand to lash out at my face. I felt the warm substance on my hands, and knew then… I was safe.
However, when I had revealed what was under there, when the leg was up, I immediately drew my breath in. The smell of metallic blood hit my nose, and I started to dry heave at the sight; there was no pale white, emaciated creature.
The dead, and now nearly decapitated creature was my kitten. One of the twins I had adopted not long ago. Tears welled in my eyes as I continued to cough, almost begging to be sick, praying to everything and everyone that I was dreaming, that I hadn’t done what was laying in front of me.
But as I moved my hand forward to slowly touch the brown, wet fur… And I began to truly cry. It… It made me do this. And it was still alive, watching me… Witnessing me pick up the small, limp body, probably pleased with what it had done. I felt it, felt it so close… I heard footsteps, coming down the stairs, and the presence was gone. Instead, all I heard was the faint mumbling of what I presumed was my father’s worried and upset voice. I could barely hear him over my own tears, over my own grief.
I… Tried to live with myself, after that incident. But it always got harder, and harder. I could hear faint whisperings, always just out of clarity. I could understand what it was saying, though… Or what it was meaning to say. It’s your fault. You killed her. You killed your innocent little friend, your form of a child. She did nothing to you.
Soon, the grief became too much for me. The whispering, the sightings, all of it bore down on me too much. If I couldn’t kill it… There was only one thing left to do. I lay down on the floor, below the open leg of the chair. Reaching up to rest my hands on it, shaking, trembling with grief, fear… But now, with a sense of finality. It would be over, and there would be no more paranoia or mental torture. I heard the noise of my father heading downstairs, and I knew then it was now, or never.
As I slammed down the best I could, feeling the sudden slice of metal on my throat, I could swear I felt a cold nail skim down my leg before blackness overtook every other sense.

I was wrong… It wasn’t over. My dad, he found me, naturally. I knew he would, I heard him after all. He must have called for paramedics, instantly. I don’t know how I’m alive… I must have hesitated. Something stopped me, something made me stop. The metal… It didn’t kill me. It didn’t pierce me how I wished it would, didn’t cut far enough to kill me. I lost a lot of blood, though. It left me weak, vulnerable… I don’t know how long I was asleep, after that.
When I had been awakened, I tried to speak, to tell someone why I did that, but… I couldn’t talk. All that came out was a terrible silence. I learned I had done too much damage. My voice would never return to me. Never would I be able to tell anyone what happened, or what was torturing me so…
Not like they would believe me, anyway. I wonder now, why it had saved me, after leaving me to such a fate… But deep down, I already know. It wants me alive. To know of it, yet not speak of it. To feel it, but not cry out. Not only that, but to wallow in the grief it threw me into…
To live as an unheard reminder that It is always watching from behind the covers.


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