Irrational Fears is a spooky story about two boys who are left home alone when their parents go out to dinner, one dark and stormy night.
It was almost eight in the evening when Mr. and Mrs. Jackson informed their children they were going out to dinner. They told their eight-year old son Evan he would have to stay home to take care of his five-year old brother Eric. As he watched his parents drive away, Evan felt more mature and responsible. He was the man of the house now.
He prepared some milk and cookies for his younger brother, then put him to bed. When the little boy was asleep, Evan went to his own bedroom and put on his pajamas.
Looking out the window, he saw that it was already dark and the wind was blowing hard. Then, he happened to catch sight of something that made him a little uneasy. On the corner of the street, there was an old man in a black raincoat. He just seemed to be loitering there, standing completely still.
Although Evan couldn’t see his eyes in the shadows, he had the frightening feeling that the old man was staring directly at him. He pulled the curtains and tried to put it out of his mind.
He flopped down on his bed and switched on the TV, flipping through the channels until he came across the weather forecast. It said that there was a bad storm coming. Evan switched the channel again and paused to watch a documentary about a serial killer who hides under your bed and waits for you to fall asleep. It made him quite nervous.
He changed the channel again and watched some music videos to take his mind off scary and disturbing things. Gradually, his eyelids began to feel heavy and he drifted off to sleep.
It was after midnight when Evan suddenly awoke with a start. The television was still on and there was a rock video playing. The volume was very high. Evan got out of bed and turned the television off.
He looked out the window. The wind was shaking the trees outside and the rain was pelting down. There were rumbles of thunder and flashes of lightning. It was then that saw that the old man in the black raincoat was gone. The street was empty.
“Why haven’t mom and Dad returned yet?” thought Evan.
The boy slipped back into bed and pulled the blanket up to cover his face. Just then, he thought he heard a noise. It was very faint, but it sounded like the click of a lock. In the quiet of his room, he strained his ears to hear every little noise.
Was it his imagination or was that the sound of soft footsteps padding across carpet? Was that the slow creak of a door opening? Evan couldn’t be sure. His heart was beating fast and his breath was coming in gasps. He tried desperately to listen, but there was nothing more. The house was eerily silent.
Evan slipped out of bed, trembling with fear. His eyes were almost popping out of their Sockets. He opened the bedroom door and walked down the hallway to his little brother’s room. Eric’s door was standing open.
Evan turned on the light and gasped. He saw something that he never wanted to lay eyes on, something that for years he had only seen in childish nightmares.
His little brother lay lifeless on the bed. His glassy eyes were staring at Evan, his neck was twisted at an odd angle and his tongue was hanging out of his mouth. On the floor, there was a crumpled pillow. The little boy had been silently suffocated in his sleep.
Evan was so horrified, he could barely breathe. Tears streamed down his cheeks as he ran downstairs. Grabbing the phone, he called his parents’
One ring… Two rings… Three rings… Four rings… Five …
There was no answer.
At that moment, Evan realized that the front door was open. Cautiously, he stepped outside, into the darkness. Droplets of cold sweat were pouring down his forehead and his knees felt like jelly. Wiping away the tears from his eyes, he came across a sight more horrible than anything he could imagine in his wildest nightmares.
His parents’ car was sitting in the driveway. The doors were open, but his parents were nowhere to be seen. Evan experienced a sinking feeling in the pit of his stomach. He was about to turn and flee when something at the other end of the garden caught his attention.
There was something hanging from the twisted old oak tree. Two frayed ropes were swinging from a gnarled branch. At the end of the ropes dangled two solitary figures.
A woman and a man.
Evan fell to his knees in despair. He never noticed the bent figure in the black raincoat emerging from the shadows. He never heard the footsteps crossing the lawn, creeping up behind him. He never saw steely glint of the big axe in the moonlight until it was too late.
With a sickening thud, Evan’s head rolled across the front lawn and came to a rest in the wet grass.