The absolute darkness filling the back bedroom seemed to shift and ripple as it were curtains of inky blackness suspended throughout the room and she
stirred from her slumber and rolled over onto her side at the very edge of the bed, seeking a cool spot of sheet to lie on amid the heavy blankets
that covered her small bed. Still full of sleep, her eyelids flutter a little as she begins to awake and then as she starts to make out shapes through
the dimness her eyes open wide in astonishment.
Watching her awaken are four children, at the side of her bed. The darkness moves and shifts and where these four little kids stand alongside her
bed, they appear lit somehow, with a faint glow from behind them. As if somewhere behind their small figures there is a torch shining. But there is
nothing behind them, just the bedroom wall decorated in large flowery wallpaper.
While the four just stand there, her 5 - year - old mind tries to make some sense of this situation. She feels no fear, only wonder and delight.
The children are all around her age and they look, to her young mind, just like the ' kids ' that she watches on the small TV in the corner of
their living room while her mum prepares her dinner. Only difference is that in all the shows that they watch on TV everyone is dressed in shades of
grey, black and white. But here.....these kids are all in full technicolor. Just like she has seen at the picture house when her dad takes her to
watch the movies.
A boy, the one closest to the head of her bed is wearing a bright red baseball cap, with a large letter ' A ' in white on the front. he has a red
zippered jacket with white stripes on the cuffs and collar over a white t- shirt and blue jeans, to her he looks so typical of a little american kid
from a TV show set in suburbia, where everyone is always smiling. As she gazes at his face she can even make out the ginger pigment of the freckles
peppering his cheeks and nose. He smiles at her with twinkling blue eyes. Next to the baseball cap boy stands a little girl in a yellow cotton dress,
her golden hair in pigtails tied off with white ribbons, smiling a big toothy smile with a large gap where her top front tooth had been.
Alongside her a boy, this one in checked shorts....and as her eyes move over the short rank of kids it becomes harder for her to make out the
features of the last two children.
She knows that the furthest away from her is another girl, and she is holding a large red ball, but even though she squints and peers at her she
can't make out her face, she only knows that this last one has no smile, only shadows where her mouth would have been.
As she strains a little to see the last two kids, baseball cap boy speaks, drawing her attention back to him.
' Come and play with us ' and he speaks with the same american twang just like from her TV shows ' Yeah ' says the pigtail girl in
the same sing song voice... ' Come on...come with us, we are gonna have fun ' and she reaches over in front of baseball cap boy to take her hand
from the blankets and help her out of bed.
Suddenly a streak of fear shivers up her spine and even at 5 years old, she knows, something is not right. How did these kids get in her room and
who were they ? She did not recognise them at all, not from TV and not as any of the children that she plays with out in her street.
Her mother would never allow her to bring any of her friends home to play in her room during the day time, never mind the middle of the night when she
should be sound asleep.
The cold realisation hits her then that if she got caught playing with these funny little kids in her room at night she would get the sharp edge of
her mother's tongue if not her hand.
Shuffling herself up into a sitting position, she draws the blankets up under her chin.
' Who are you ? and what are your names ? ' she demands from baseball cap boy. ' We want to be your friends, we want you to come and
play with us,.... come on ' he insists and he beckons to her to follow him as he turns his back and steps away from the edge of her bed.
As he does so,so do the other three kids also turn away from the bed, as if to leave, except they were all now facing the flower patterned wall,
two feet away from her bedside, no door there and the only window in the room was at the opposite end of the wall covered up with heavy closed
curtains. As she watches their backs move away from her, the torch light dims slightly in front of them, and she tries to figure out.... where are
they going to ??
Baseball cap boy turns his head back around to look at her one last time and she sees in complete nightmarish horror that he has no cute freckles
and sparkling blue eyes now and no smile.
The skin on his face as as pale as her bed sheets and where his eyes and mouth had been just moments ago were now in their place black open pits of
darkness that looked to her as deep and black and frightening as the big black coal bunker outside their front door that she was sure was a hide out
Her eyes opened wider than they had ever been before as she stiffened and her whole body froze in total panic.
Through the black abyss that was his mouth came a screechy wailing voice.....
' We will come back for you ' .....and they all four melted through her bedroom wall and disappeared into the darkness.
Probably not The End