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Alone in the Dark
February 10, 2013. 12:02 PM
I wake up, dizzy with reminisces of fading dreams, dreams of falling into darkness. Falling into a chasm, so deep that even light couldn't travel out. I had kept falling, until it hadn't made sense anymore. It almost felt like I had been floating. I didn't expect the hard ground to shatter me anymore, but I was wrong. My eyes burst open, from the mental impact. It was just a dream, I tell myself, the darkness did not last. But it does. I'm still alone on my bed, surrounded by the blackness of the night. I turn a light on, and peek at my watch. It's only 12:02 PM. Wait, I sit up straight and look at the time again. 12:02 PM? PM? I repeat the numbers over and over in my head. That should be noon! I rush to the curtains, pulling them apart. Blackness. Everywhere. I am stunned, but sensible enough not to just stand there. I climb back into bed, wrapping the blankets around me, hugging my knees. My parents are away on a business trip, leaving me alone in the house. It was winter break. I gently rock myself, trying to come up with a reasonable solution. The clock could be broken, or maybe I'm just too tired for my what my brain percepts to make any sense. I glance at the clock every few minutes, as though it will make time speed up. But it seems to do just the opposite. For hours I remain curled up, not moving an inch, waiting for something, anything to happen. Finally I fall asleep again, realizing the worst feeling is loneliness, knowing that you only have yourself.
February 11, 2013. 1:09 PM
Still darkness. Now I am certain something is wrong. My parents should be back now. Anytime now. Any minute now. Any second now. Now I realize, they are never coming back. Wait, I tell myself, don’t jump to conclusions. Maybe their plane was delayed. That is the most reasonable solution I can come up with. Nothing to account for the sun not rising anymore. Maybe it is the end of the world. It had to come someday, I guess. Is everyone else suspended in darkness? If I had a flashlight, maybe I could find others, others who might be as scared as me. All these thoughts swirl around in my head. Finally, I decide to do something. There must be a flashlight somewhere. I am n the second floor, so the flashlight must be downstairs. I use my four other senses to get out of bed and make my way around, bumping into painful objects. A desk corner, a doorknob, a toy? So many things in my house can be dangerous, I realize. I feel as though I’m blindfolded. I recognize the smooth, cold stair railing, running my hand over the wood. I sit down at the top of the stairs, and gradually inch myself down. I know that if I fall, being closer to the ground will cause me less pain. At the last couple of steps, I stumble, and fall, collapsing on my face, the only part of me that hadn't been injured yet. Then, I discern a faint, light, like a beacon in the darkness. In the basement, down another set of stairs below me. Curiosity got the better of me, and I followed the light, like a moth. This time was easier, because of the glow. Finally, at the bottom of the stairs I rounded the corner, preparing my mind for the worst. Suddenly, my jaw drops to the floor.
February 11, 2013. 1:30 PM
It was a prank. The whole thing was a prank. Words cannot describe my anger, and also my relief. My friends had all the windows of my house with black drapes, precluding the sun from seeping inside. They had been waiting in my basement, along with my parents. At first I wasn’t sure whether to start laughing or crying. I just stared at them. And they stared at me. But then, I smiled. After all, I wasn’t alone anymore.