Caleb woke to a pitch black room. His heart was boiling in his chest and his breath rasped. He lay there in perfect stillness, trying to get his fear under control. There wasn't even a sliver under his bedroom door from the kitchen light mom usually left on.
There's something here, in the room with me! He could feel his clammy skin stick to the sheets through his undershirt. He lay there, listening to the stillness and the drumbeat from his chest. Ba DUM! Ba DUM! Except, if he were to try to describe it he'd have to say it was more BaDUMbaDUMbaDUMbaDUM!
His ears strained to pick up any sound in the dark blanket.
Gradually, his breathing slowed. The bolting horse in his chest slowed from a gallop to a canter, and then a trot. The twisted sheet in his hands slowly smoothed. There were times, even in a hot spring night, when a comforter might be a good thing to tuck yourself under. Times when you woke up in a silent scream from a nightmare you couldn't remember. He took a deep, quivering breath. The horse was walking now. He pushed the sheet down to his waist, feeling the soggy shirt cling to his chest. That must have been a good one.
He rolled over, onto his right side. Even though the cast had come off months ago, he still couldn't sleep on his left very easily. He folded the corner of his pillow under his jaw and shifted his shoulders. His eyes slowly drifted to half-mast.
Where's my clock? He thought randomly. Habitually a hard riser, Caleb had taken to putting his alarm clock on the far side of the room, hoping that it would force him to get out of bed in order to shut it off. Maybe then he'd be on time for school once in a while. Mr. Patterson had said if he was tardy again this quarter he'd lose baseball.
Beside him, in the darkness, the two scalding red eyes opened, and then narrowed their gaze onto him. His eyes snapped fully open in shock. As the sick fear scorched through him he felt the shameful hot wetness cross his thigh.
His hands flew out, right arm sweeping across the night stand, scattering wallet, iPod, and house key to the floor. His bedside lamp was also a casualty, smashing to the ground. In the glassbreak, the dying filament flared, a single flash searing the room.
His last terrified view in the lightburst was of rows and rows of naked, gleaming teeth.
Virgins Slain, Dragons Rescued.
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