There is something at the edge of the woods. I can see it through my bedroom window facing towards the woods. Close enough that I can throw a ball at it if I throw hard enough but far enough to where I can’t see what it is.
It is dark outside, except for the glow coming from the downstairs kitchen light, where my parents are sitting watching a movie. I can hear the movie and I can hear them murmur to each other every once in a while.
So… If they are down there…
Then who is at the edge of the woods?
It is probably nothing. I squint, taking a step closer to the window, hoping to make out what it was. Squeeeeek. I jumped. It was just a toy, the kind that makes noise when squeezed… or stepped on. I took my eyes off the window just long enough to see what I stepped on, When I looked up… it was gone. Where did it go? Did it go away? Or… did it move closer. Movement caught my eye. Whatever was at the edge of the woods moved. Just a tiny bit. Just enough to catch my eye.
Did that mean it was alive? It could have been the wind. Was it an animal? No… it was clearly the outline of a man. The shape of the man (it couldn’t be a man there it was just a tree branch or something not a man) seemed to be 8 feet tall. No human can be that tall, right?
No human being… except maybe a basketball player but we don’t have basketball players in this small town of ours. It could be possible that it was, in fact, a man or such height… but what did he want?
No, it couldn’t be a man. It was just my eyes playing tricks on me. Right? Wrong. By now I can see that it was clearly the shape of a man. I can’t trick myself that it wasn’t a man… or a woman. I mean, that’s a possibility too, right? Was it a hiker, lost in the woods until he/she stumbled upon a house?
The hiker would have approached the house. This… person just stood there. Seemed to sway a little, too. Was it… dancing?
Was it a… serial killer? Escaped convict? Escaped mental ward patient ready to take its next victim? Dear god… I don’t want to die.
That’s when I noticed it. The man swayed slightly and I noticed that… that… it wasn’t eight feet tall. It was floating a few feet off the ground. Floating. I did a retake.
Only demons and witches and ghosts and all things bad float. Not human beings. Is it watching me? As I stare at it… is it looking back at me?
I stand as still as possible, as if I am turning invisible by doing so. Consumed with fear by the thought of the… demon at the edge of the woods. I thought about grabbing a flashlight and opening my window. But then it would be aware of my presence, if it weren’t already. That thought sent shivers down my spine. Instead, I opened the window and strained to hear. Is it whispering?
A gust of wind blew and the thing moved flailed. I ran.
I ran out of my bedroom.
Into the hallway.
Down the stairs.
Into the living room.
Both of my parents were both asleep on the couch. I woke my dad up.
“There is something at the edge of the woods,” I cried.
He assured me that there wasn’t. It was just a deer or something, he said.
I pointed out of the window, where I can see it through the window.
He began to assure me once more that there was nothing out there when he stopped.
Because he saw it too.
My dad woke up my mom and ushered us upstairs, where my dad grabbed the baseball bat he kept by his bed and a flashlight.
He went out there, out into the dark, to confront the man, demon, witch.
My mom and I waited as she stroked my hair.
A minute went by.
We both jumped as the back door slid open and someone walked in. Whoever it was walked upstairs.
The doorknob turned.
It swung open, revealing my dad. He was covered in sweat and he looked pale, as if he just saw a ghost. He refused to talk about it.
I slept in my parents room that day. It took me awhile to fall asleep, but I did. In the morning, I woke up to find both my parents missing from the bed.
There was a commotion outside, where police cars and an ambulance were parked on our gravel driveway. There was an officer talking to my dad. I can hear the word through the open window, just snippets of conversation.