Written by J.S. Wilsoncroft
I remember the first time I saw the red eyes. It was in the middle of the night and I had woken up freezing cold. My room was like an ice box which was odd because it was in the middle of July. I got up from my bed and closed the window. Feeling parched, I had decided to go downstairs to get a glass of water. I stepped out into the hallway and stopped. There were two red eyes staring up at me from the bottom of the stairs. Shivers grew up my spine, making me shiver again. I shook my head and blinked a few times, thinking maybe it was just my imagination playing games with me, but the fiery red eyes were still there, staring up at me, watching me.
I felt stiff, like a statue. I couldn’t move, only staring back at the creepy eyes.
I knew I should have been scared, but for some strange reason I couldn’t respond. I could visually see myself screaming, running to my parent’s room and waking them up, but my feet were frozen to the stairs and my lips remained sealed. It was like I was having one of those out of body experiences. I could feel tears streaming down my cheeks as well, but I wasn’t feeling the emotion of being scared. I was numb.
Then I heard the strange music. It was nothing like the hard rock bands I normally listened too or pop rock songs that was played on the radio. This music sounded different, from a different era. I tilted my head towards the direction of the music, towards the eyes.
“Don’t sit under the apple tree with anyone else but me. Anyone else but me, anyone else but me.” A male voice sang quietly.
My eyes were glued to the two red eyes as I slowly walked down the stairs, humming along to the song, which was odd because I had never heard of the song before in my short (17 year) life.
I followed the eyes as they led me into the dining room, where the music grew louder.
“Don’t go walking down Lover’s Lane with anyone else but me…” The male voice continued to sing.
“Who are you?” I gasped and spun around expecting to see someone standing beside me, but no one was there. It was then I realized it was my own voice that had spoken.
The music stopped and the red eyes disappeared as quickly as they came.
A whoosh sound brushed against my ear and suddenly my heart was pounding in my chest. The front of my pajamas was soaked with tears or maybe it was sweat and I was shaking uncontrollably.
It was like I had finally woken up from a bad dream.
But was it really a dream?
I quickly flicked the light switch on the wall, temporarily blinding myself. When my eyes finally adjusted to the bright light, I glanced around the dining room expecting to see someone or something, but everything seemed to be in order. I took a deep breath and walked in the kitchen for a glass of water. My hand shook violently as I grabbed a glass from the cupboard. I turned the faucet and filled the glass with cold water, then sat down at the table.
My skin felt cold against my damp pajamas as I continued to shiver, wondering what the hell had just happened.
“I was dreaming. There’s no other explanation for it. I was walking in my sleep.” I told myself as I downed the last sip of water and returned the glass to the sink.
I slowly walked through the dining room, glancing at every corner, then turned off the light and headed back up the stairs. As each step I took, my breathing became more erratic.
There’s someone in your room Lily! Don’t go in there!
It was happening again.
Lily wake up! Don’t go in there. He’s in there, waiting for you
“Who? Who’s in there?” I heard my voice, but my lips didn’t seemed like there were moving. It was the strangest thing I had ever experienced and it was scaring the living shit out of me. I felt like I had no control what was going on with my body or what was even coming out of my mouth. My feet continued to carry me up the stairs towards my room, but I couldn’t tell if it was my conscious or sub-conscious mind telling me not to go there.
Am I sleep walking again?
“Lily!” A male voice whispered my name.
My feet stopped just outside my room. I could feel my heart pounding again as I struggled to catch my breath. Now my hair was soaked, clinging to my neck and face.
“What the hell is going on?” I screamed, clasping my chest, trying to calm my heart down. Then the strange music started again.
No, no, no, don’t go walking down Lover’s Lane with anyone else but me, till I come marching home.
Goosebumps covered my entire body. The voice came from behind me.
I slowly turned around and gasped. Standing before me was a young man wearing an early 1900’s tan army-like overcoat with matching colored pants and a metal tanker helmet. Again, my mind was screaming for me to run like hell, but I stood there, cocking my head to the side, my dark wet hair dangling like a wet mop, staring back at this strange yet familiar looking soldier.
A strange sensation came over me as he held out his hand, “Lily, my love. Come sit under the apple tree with me.” He smiled and the red eyes appeared again.
“Evan!” I whispered, then gasped, surprised that I knew his name. His red eyes squinted as his head tilted back and let out a deep belly laugh. He takes my hand and leads me towards my bedroom. His hand felt like ice blocks, but for some strange reason it didn’t bother me. I felt warm inside. The shivers and goosebumps had gone away.
We stepped into my room and the door slams shut, making me jump and squeal.
“Shhh…come sing with me.” He turned to me, his infra-red eyes boring into mine.
“Are you Evan?” I asked, wondering how in the hell I know that name. The corner of his lips curled up so tight into his cheeks it reminded me of The Joker from Batman, minus the make-up of course. I glanced down at the small brass nametag on his uniform. It read STINER.
Stiner? Stiner? Where have I heard that last name before? Evan Stiner?
He glanced down at his breast pocket, at the nametag and chuckled.
“Is it all coming back to you yet? Do you remember me yet?” He whispered in my ear then begins humming the song again.
“Don’t sit under the apple tree with anyone else but me.” He leaned down and kissed my hand and suddenly I got flashbacks of myself standing under an apple tree. Only I’m not alone. He’s there too, his eyes still red and blood dripping from his hands. I glance down at the ground and notice something moving in the puddle of blood. I kneel down to get a closer look and scream. It’s a human heart and it’s still beating. I fall back on the ground and clasps my chest. It’s all wet and warm. I look down at the bloody hole in my dress and everything goes red.