This story is by C.Oliver and was part of our 2018 Fall Writing Contest. You can find all the writing contest stories here.
I am a Monster.
There, I said it. I scare humans. It’s my job. I’m sure you’re asking, in an incredulous
tone, you’re a Monster? It’s your job?? And all I will say is…that’s exactly right! I can see you
shaking your head right now. Oh, I know, Monsters aren’t real, they’re just figments of
your imagination, right? They’re just made up fantasies.
You see, I’ve heard all the arguments and reasons that I can’t be real. It’s impossible for me to even exist!
Because no one has actually ever seen me. No one can touch me. They don’t even know
where I came from, or why. Neither do I. So, in essence, I’m not real. I came from nowhere. Is
nowhere a real place? If it’s where I came from then it must be. I am a Monster because that’s
what I’ve always been, just as you’ve always been you.
Recall a time when you were younger and all alone in your bedroom, and you were just about to fall
asleep and then…you heard something. Something that made chills run up your spine! The floor
creaked, or you heard a rustle, maybe from outside your bedroom door, maybe
from inside your closet or… maybe from under your bed. Remember? You laid very still and quiet.
Then you noticed something move, a shadow… or was it? Something definitely moved though, you
knew it did! You closed your eyes tight, hoping whatever it was went away. You slowly pulled the
covers up a little higher, then over your head. You waited…and listened. Then…
there it was again! That same sound! What was that? Your mind began to run in a thousand
directions. You conjured up every terrifying image of…what? A Monster? Whatever
it is, no matter how hideous or terrifying it is, that’s me! A Monster! You see? I
told you I was real! If I wasn’t, then why did you think about me?
If you wonder what I look like, all I can tell you is I don’t look anything like you. I’m
not “human looking,” and I’m not evil. That’s not what I’m about. There are
other monsters like me and we all strive to do our very best job to scare. But there
are monsters who do look like you, “human looking.”
These are the truly evil ones.
But I think I get a bad rap sometimes. Misunderstood. Not appreciated. Go ahead,
roll your eyes, shake your head. I must be kidding, right? Nope. I primarily scare the
younger ones, mostly at night, but I do not discriminate.
There are aspects of my job that I do like, such as knowing that no matter
how scared I can make you, I will never hurt you, but instead, I can help you overcome
your fears. How? Just as I was able to scare you, you were able, eventually, to get
past your fears, be braver and more confident, and you were able to stop
worrying about what goes bump in the night.
You are welcome!
Is this all I do? Scare humans until they are past their fears? Yes, mostly. It’s
not always easy, not everyone scares the same. But eventually, I will scare you. I
have never failed. Don’t get me wrong, scaring humans isn’t always fun and games for me. I
do hear and see things that…let’s just say no one should have to.
Some nights ago on the job, I was in the bedroom of a young girl, and I was doing all the
obligatory creepy noises and moving shadows, but nothing I did seemed to
work. Then I stopped and noticed the young girl was crying, but not because of me. I noticed
one of her eyes was black and swollen, her arms covered in bruises. She had been hurt.
This wasn’t done by one of my kind. I have seen this before, in other rooms, at other times. This
had been done by a “human looking” monster.
The worst kind of all.
I waited in complete silence, listening to her muffled cries. And then I heard it. The “human looking”
monster was coming up the stairs. Then her bedroom door slowly opened, and the
“human looking” monster walked toward her bed. And I watched. And I waited.
Then I did my job.
There are a few last things I want you to know. First, as I told you earlier,
no one can see me, nor touch me and I will never hurt you. But a “human looking” monster,
that’s different, they are fair game for me to do as I see fit. Second, that “human looking” monster
never hurt that young girl again. Not on my watch. Ever. And third, I’ve never misled you, I am good at what I do. It’s my job.