It curls from under the closet door. It is formless, and yet horrifying in shape. Dark shadows have consumed it, and now it can only appear where even the moon cannot reach.
Hands like blackened claws slowly push open the door. The wailing hinges warn the child.
The small figure on the bed stiffens, then curls up tightly, head disappearing under the covers.
Hissing in displeasure, glowing red eyes peer from the darkness. Then it begins to move forward. A skeletal frame, cloaked in shadows that never rest. One withered foot emerges, pressing into the carpet. Sharp, hooked nails pull at the loose threads.
Bones whine as they scrape against each other, grinding as the creature elongates from the small closet.
Slowly the head follows, so gaunt it’s mostly shadows. The eyes are sunken, the skin stretched thinly across the bones, translucent. The whiteness of the skull underneath glares in contrast to the hollowed cheeks.
A lipless mouth is stretched widely, curling up at the sides in a leer. Unnaturally sharp teeth gleam from darkened gums. Brown stains the wicked incisors.
It whispers forward until it is looming over the bed, its back arched, and its limbs disproportionately long. It soothes the covers over the trembling ball.
Come out, it croons in a guttural hiss. Let’s play. Like a dying cat it laughs. Come out, it repeats, call for your mother, for your father. Its hand hovers, waiting, always waiting for its chance.