Something woke her in the depths of the night. Propping herself up on her elbows, Lidia looked past the foot of the bed towards the slight figure outlined in the doorway to the ensuite bathroom.
“What are you doing up, hun?” she mumbled sleepily. Turning down the coverlet, she patted the bed beside her invitingly, “Come cuddle up with me.”
It was only when the child slowly approached that Lidia realized she did not recognize her… It? What had she invited to her bed? The girl was wearing a long colourless nightie, and her lightish hair was divided into two tight braids that fell past her ears. Almost reaching to each shoulder.
It was not until Lidia turned her eyes away that she saw the second figure standing beside her bed. Almost touching her. A slender waifish girl with long dark hair obscuring her face. What could they want with her? Lidia quickly looked back to check on the first child. The girl was now sitting cross-legged beside her. Her mouth stretched wide, baring her teeth in a facsimile of a smile. Lidia couldn’t maintain eye contact with her cold hateful stare.
She did the only logical thing. Sliding slowly under the covers, she pulled the coverlet tightly over her head, and kept her eyes tight shut. It was just the optic palsy flaring up, she told herself. Causing the double vision that occasionally plagued her.
She whispered like a protective spell, “Double vision double vision double vision.” Cold seeped into her pores, raising the hairs on the back of her neck. Time dragged by until, surprising even herself, Lidia fell sound asleep. When she woke up to the light of day, she was alone in her bedroom.
Every night she began waking at the same dark hour. But there was no repeat of the vision. She pretended to convince herself it had simply been the palsy. In combination with a trick of light and shadows. Nothing more. Of course nothing more. She was able to sweep the memory away into the recesses of her mind. Eventually her insomnia passed.
The next time Lidia woke in the night, she sensed she was not alone. She looked beside her bed. The willowy dark haired girl loomed. Strands of black hair still hiding any expression. Lidia turned her head. Braids was cross-legged on the bed in her self appointed spot. Baring her terrible smile.
Lidia could only close her eyes and softly whimper, “Double vision double vision.”