It’s late at night. I am lying in bed, so close to the edge of sleep that pictures begin to float behind my eyes like a silent film. My head is buried under the blankets, except for a little hole where my nose and mouth peek out for air. My body feels like it’s made of jelly, melting into the mattress.
Suddenly I feel one side of my twin bed sink as if someone sat down beside me. My body instantly becomes as stiff as a week old corpse, my eyes squeezed shut in terror. I am so scared now that I hold my breath for as long as I can. But I hold it too long and the gasp that escapes my lips is loud enough for the entire world to hear. I listen careful, but all I can hear is my pounding heart. I pretend to stretch, feigning sleep and cautiously move my leg; there’s definitely something there.
I know there was no one in my room when I went to bed because I checked, like I do every night. I looked in my closet (twice) and under my bed. I even checked the corner when I closed my door. My bedroom door has not opened; I would have heard the creak of the hinges.
This is not the first time this has happened. Nor would it be the last. When I was very little, I even saw her: a figure standing in the doorway. The silhouette of a woman in a dress with a large hat. I could see right through her.
I wish I didn’t have to breathe. I pretend to sleep, pretend I’m dead. I don’t want this thing to know I am conscious.
I tell myself that this is all just in my imagination. There is no such thing as ghosts. There is nothing in my room.
There is nothing in my room.