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Night Terror

RM Stockton's February prompt. 'Monsters under the bed'.

By Novel AllenPublished 4 months ago โ€ข Updated 4 months ago โ€ข 3 min read

Night terror had taken a hold of me. I tried to scream, but the heart stopping panic and dreadful feeling of impending doom permeated the air and not a sound exuded from the depths of my being. Terror clutched at my heartstrings and twisted her grizzly gnarled fingers until the phantomlike pain broke through the spectrum of my reality.

I had awakened in the midnight dream hour, my body immobilized and frozen in a terrified time loop, I was engulfed in a dreadful frenzy of cold clammy sweat, as rivers of water flowed from my entire body. The bed creaked and groaned, rocking back and forth as if a mighty ocean flowed beneath its very foundation. The roots of the dark living tree emerged like the rabid tentacled claws of a giant twisted eagle, climbing and reaching for me.

I was deep in my horrid nightmare, not knowing if I were asleep or awake. The moonlight played tricks on my mind, for it greatly enhanced the horrors of the night, casting eerie shadows upon the walls and on the already frightening dreamscape of my imagination.

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It is true that my dreams can mirror my life. For the turgid state of my mind before falling asleep had summoned the minions of the devil from hell. He has sent his henchmen and adjutants, now roused from the dark reaches of the pit to haunt my sleep and drive me mad.

It serves me right, for had I not sat for a long time, evading sleep and pondering death, as my mortality flashed before my eyes. One moment I was living a life free from worry or care and the next moment facing a possible life-threatening diagnosis. How many have faced this possibility of leaving this world behind and met it head on, while others tried to fight the inevitable.

I have not yet done it all, I told myself. I have many more mountains to climb, many more rivers to cross before that dark ghoul named death, his dreaded sickle in one hand, comes calling.

Could this be my February Song, I was born on a cold and damp February night a long time ago, a distant memory which is now but a whimper upon the annals of time. News of my pending demise may, hopefully, be highly exaggerated, for no one knows the time or the hour that the grim reaper comes to claim his unwilling harvest of souls.

Hush now, purveyors of unholy cruel and barbaric monsters which await our frailty and vulnerabilities, waiting patiently for the darkness when ghouls come out to play and prey.

They are under the bed, I hear them breathing horribly, wheezing and slobbering like rabid dogs. I try crawling inside of my invisible self, so they cannot see the flesh and blood of me, quaking in awful fear and dread as they draw nearer and nearer to devour me whole.

I, who never prayed, now uttered words of supplication and urgent exhortation to a God I have balked at and denied. Could any existence of such an entity deign to now listen to a wretch like me. If he/she be forgiving, I pray that now be the time which is right for my salvation and forgiveness.

Stillness overcomes the night. Forsooth, the monsters are retreating. Is it my fervent pitiful prayer; or has the devil recalled his fiends and beasts to the bowels of hell. Either way, sweet relief cometh to me.

My dreams shift and the limbs on the trees blossom and bloom like the beginning of spring, as the bare, frost-covered branches begin to develop new buds and shoots. Ash, beech, oak and rowan buds burst first leaves, emerging from alder. Field maple and silver birch's frothy delicate blossoms a joy to behold.

Fitful sleep overcomes my tired mind and body. Gone are the horrid nightmares haunting my dreams. Maybe when I again awaken, all will be well with my soul.

Hark! Was that a growl beneath the bed just before blessed sleep stole my consciousness?

What monsters under the bed?


RM Stockton's prompt.


About the Creator

Novel Allen

Every new day is a blank slate. Write something new.

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Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!

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Comments (12)

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  • ๐‘๐Œ ๐’๐ญ๐จ๐œ๐ค๐ญ๐จ๐ง3 months ago

    Novel, I do not find an option to leave you a tip. Help!

  • Shirley Belk4 months ago

    The struggles within feel like the monsters under our bed and can render us lifeless, it we let them. Love that your prayer ended in a Springtime :)

  • Omggg, this was soooo intense and dark!! I loved it so much! Also, I learned a new word, forsooth!

  • ๐Ÿ˜ฎ๐Ÿ˜ฑ This is incredibly frightening, Novel! You have captured the pure essence of fright perfectly in this brief tale. Just WOW! I should not have read this right before bed! YIKES!! Such colorful, evocative language and you weave it so well into a story that reads like a dream. Incredibly well done, Novel!!

  • I once had a bed setup similar to that freshman year of college, but with twin rather than double beds. The monster under my bed was simply my roommate making out with his sweetheart. Yeah, if you prepare a bed beneath your own I think you have to expect something's going to take up residence there, lol. Great story, Novel. Rooting it in the reality of a distressing diagnosis is a nice touch.

  • Hannah Moore4 months ago

    This is quite the rollercoaster!

  • Mark Gagnon4 months ago

    Your use of descriptors drew me in and kept me transfixed. Written like someone who has been there.

  • Randy Baker4 months ago

    Great story! Got Gothic vibes from this one.

  • Real Poetic4 months ago

    I love this!! Great writing and image selections!

  • Kodah4 months ago

    ๐Ÿ’– Beautifull written Allen! ๐Ÿ’–

  • Daphsam4 months ago

    Wow! I can feel the intensity of fear in your words. This may haunt me when I go to sleep and wonder tonight is there a monster under my bed!๏ฟผ

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