By Cassandra Hamill

Age: 15 (30/03/1996)
Year: 11
School: Staughton College

Do you know those moments, when you wake in the middle of the night? Your body convulses and you're soaked in sweat. Your eyes cannot adjust to the darkness. Your hands dance around the sharp edge of your night stand. They fight to get through the cords that are attached to your technology, and the pages of the book you just couldn't put down. They search desperately for the light switch. However somehow they can't find it. You start to panic, feel your heart beat faster. Your brain screams how irrational you are being. But you can't help the thought that someone is watching you. You can feel their eyes pierce your skin. You can hear their quiet laugh as you lose control. You can sense them moving closer. They're about to make their move. The light interjects, momentarily blinding you. As you open your eyes, you scan your familiar room. There isn't anything out of place. Nothing that you should be afraid of. You take a deep breath, laugh at yourself and lay back down.

What happens if one day you can't find the light? What happens if one day someone is there? Somebody is watching you, laughing at you, moving closer. What happens if one day someone preys on you? What happens if one day the light never turns on?

You'll try and run. You will dart out of bed and make for the door. You'll fumble with the handle and stumble as the door opens. Your hand will trace the smooth walls and your feet will stamp on the cold hardboard floors. Your eyes will adjust to the darkness you will be able to make shapes out. But some you will imagine. Like the hooded figure just up the hall. It's your height, it's got broad shoulders. You'll back up and bump into the bookshelf. Your eyes won't leave the figure as it starts to shake. The wind will pick up in your hair as you fasten your pace. Just for a second you will look down as a shiny pendant catches your eye. Quickly you'll look back up and notice the coat hanging from the hat stand flailing in the wind.

You pull yourself back together. A smile comes over your face as you reflect on the stupid actions you just partook in. With a complete sense of calm you walk into the kitchen. As you open the fridge the light comes on and illuminates the kitchen. You can't help but take a second look at the coat. It's still dancing with the breeze. You lean into the kitchen and grab the jug of water. As you straighten up a shadow looms over you. The glass jug falls to the floor, shattering. Your feet sting with every shed of glass. You walk backwards. It's following. You were right. You were right to be scared.

Word Count: 478