Her eyes fly open. Did she hear something just now? Yes. There it is again, a scratching sound. It sounds like it's coming from the window.

For some reason, she can't see the bright light of her digital clock beside her bed.

The scratching sound has stopped. Waiting in bed, she holds her breath, wondering if she's just imagining things. She had been dreaming before but she can't remember because the-


It's coming from one of the windows behind her, where the fire escape is. The sound is scary and it makes her skin crawl. But there are no trees around the window, so no branches could be scraping-unless it was a person, standing on the fire escape.

She lets her breath out, little by little, so as not to make a sound.

Get out of bed now.

Just get up and run to the door.
It's not that far.

Or maybe you can scream. Scream as loud as you can.

But she can't. She's terrified. It's silent now in the room she shares with her roommate. Her roommate is still asleep and didn't hear the scratching at the window. She doesn't like her roommate, the one who constantly bullies her. Even when she first came to the group home, that older girl bullied her.

She listens for a moment and hears the faint snoring of that girl, sleeping just a few feet away next to her bed. Maybe she can go back to sleep now. She closes her eyes and as she relaxes her body she feels someone (No, something) sit on her bed. It can't be her roommate. That girl never got out of bed.

She is afraid to move. The person (or thing) sitting on her bed stays there, not getting off. But the windows are locked, no one can get in. How could they have opened the window?

She can't move. She can't move!

Don't even breathe!

The thing will get her. It is not a person, it can't be. It gives off a scary feeling, like it isn't human.

She barely opens her eyes now, trying to see the clock by her bed. Her back is to the window and the creature. It is sitting, not moving. The clock is dark, not on. Did someone unplug it?

Down at the foot of her bed she can see shadows. One tall shadow and one small shadow. Two people are standing there. But this only scares her more. They do not move and they do not speak.

It's Chucky and Freddy.

Chucky and Freddy Krueger are coming to get her.

She shuts her eyes tight.

Imagine a box around you. With all your might. That's what you can do. Imagine a box around you and pray they don't get you. Don't breathe and don't open your eyes. Don't let them see you looking at them. They'll know that you are awake. If they know you are awake, they will-

(Don't think about that)

Just pray they don't get you.

Pray they don't...

Pray they don't...




When she opens her eyes again, it is morning. The clock beside her bed blinks 12:00, on and off, in bright red digits.

Red. Blink. 12:00. Blink. Red.

She knows she didn't unplug it-unless the power went out.

Her roommate has slept the entire time. Was it all a dream?

She gets out of her bed and goes to the windows. They are both locked. The dingy carpet floor under her bare feet creaks with her weight. Last night there was no sound of people walking into her room, or beside her bed.

She traces her hand along the window pane.

It looks like it has been scratched from the outside.