Author Topic: Black-eyed Child (Black-eyed People Redux)  (Read 654 times)

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on: 09:39:02 PM 10/11/16
   We met in December, three days before Christmas Eve, which made our anniversary a pretty easy date to remember. It was at a holiday party my brother, Greg, was having at his apartment. Greg had gotten into SIU on a football scholarship, and I was proud of my little brother for getting into the same school as me. My little bro had always been the more popular of the two of us, he was the brains and I was the brawn, but I was ok with that. However, being the smart one came with being labeled as socially awkward, and the worst part was that I was. High school had been more uncomfortable than anything, but college was pretty good. I had a few friends, went to strategic games, science club, and things like that, and Greg had taken the entire semester to spend time with his favorite (and only) brother.

    The party started out small, but quickly got bigger and bigger as Greg’s friends texted and called their friends, which turned our kiddie pool of a party into a tidal wave, and that’s when I first met Julia. My little bro introduced her to me, probably hoping to hook me up, saying that she was a bad ass Debate Team captain. I had to laugh, wondering how much Greg had chugged to use the words ‘bad ass’ and ‘Debate Team captain’ in the same sentence. Julia’s raven black hair framed her face, and made her sparkling green eyes pop out like the star on the top of a Christmas Tree. The debate captain must’ve caught me staring, she giggled and held up her half drunk Screwdriver.

    That’s about where our conversation started, we found our way to Greg’s half destroyed couch that he picked up off a curb before winter, and we started talking. We had a lot in common, amazingly, we both loved the anime Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure, when I mentioned how I used to watch Bill Nye as a kid, Julia started drunkenly singing the entire theme song. Hell, we got the entire party shouting out ‘Bill, Bill, Bill, Bill!’ at one point. Eventually, Greg got a call from his super, and the party was over. I asked what his superintendent said to him, and Greg gave a nervous smile before saying “I might have to move into your place after next semester, big bro.”

    The wild party goers slowly migrated out to their cars, their friends and partners crowding into the cold, metal boxes on wheels. I was about to head out to my own Sedan, feeling more tipsy than drunk, when I felt a warm hand on the shoulder of my coat. I turned to face Julia, she’d sobered up a little after having a few cups of Greg’s favorite coffee. “Hey Derrick,” she started, her voice a little nervous, “I know this sounds kind of weird, but do you mind taking me home?” When I asked her why, she revealed that my little brother had taken her car keys after she told him she was going for a beer run… after we had just watched her toss almost a half a bottle of vodka in Screwdrivers a few minutes before. Being the gentleman, and hopeless romantic, that I am, I told Julia I’d drive her back to her place.

   It was cold that night, almost below zero, as we sat in the car and waited for it to heat up. Julia was wearing a big, puffy jacket, but I could see her shivering like she was completely naked in the middle of an endless tundra. I pulled out of the parking lot as soon as I felt a blast of warm air come from my car’s vents. We pulled onto Main Street, and Julia became my navigator as I drove my own, personal ship through the white, snow filled streets. More of the fluffy flakes came down, faster and heavier than it was that morning, and soon the only thing cutting through the darkness was the headlights of my car.

    “Almost there,” Julia said, “just a little…” My navigator covered her mouth quickly, and I knew this was a good time to pull off to the side of the road. The raven haired woman pushed open the door and quickly rushed out to the snow covered curb. The sounds of her tossing her cookies make me realize my own stomach was starting to tie itself into a square knot, and that’s when I noticed the girl. The girl’s hair was like a dark curtain in front of her face, her face was pointed down at her small, bare feet in the icy snow. The light from my car’s headlights put her into an eerily bright spotlight, and I swear to god the poor thing’s skin was blue with frost bite.

    “Hey,” I said softly, taking a few steps toward the poor girl, “what’re you doing out here?” Maple Avenue, the street we were on, was a back country road, there wasn’t a house for the next few miles up until an intersection, and from the look of the girl’s skin she had been out for the last few hours. She didn’t have a coat on, or shoes, or anything other than a long sundress, the kind a mother would give to her daughter to play dress up in.

    The girl’s voice broke the silence that has surrounded me, and it made me shiver in my leather jacket. “Mister,” the young girl’s quiet, sweet voice seemed to echo like a gong, “can you take me home? Please?”

    I could feel Julia’s hand on my shoulder as we both looked at the girl. I knew the right thing to do, this poor girl was just standing there facing us with her eyes pointed straight at her frozen feet. “What’s your house’s number, kid? I’ll call your mom and tell her we’re on our way.”

    “I don’t know my mommy’s number. Please mister, let me into your car.” she said as she took a step forward,her feet dragging in the snow like a ship through the ocean. “I can tell you where I live.”

    My passenger pulled at my coat sleeve, and I turned to look at the raven haired woman I was taking home. “Derrick, I think we should take her to my place first. She looks like she’s freezing, and we can call the cops and tell them once we get there.” At the mention of the police, the sound of a body falling into the snow hit up like a truck. I rushed towards the girl, hoping she was still conscious, that her heart was still beating. 

    Her eyes… Her eyes made me stop in my tracks. The entire eye, including what should’ve been the white, were completely pitch black. Her eyes were so dark that they were like mirrors, reflecting my face down to the curve of my ears. The girl began to scream at the top of her lungs, but it sounded as if she had the voice of a full grown man. The girl’s screech was like a runner’s pistol to me, and I rushed back to my car. Julia had started to ask me something, probably what that sound was, but all I did was tell her to get in the car. After that, Julia would call me her hero in public, saying that I saved her from some sort of mugger that tried to trick us into giving him a ride. We both knew that was a lie, but we also knew that no one would believe us, even Greg said I must’ve been drunker than he thought when I told him about the girl with black eyes.

    Julia and I had been together for a year when I finally decided to pop the question, and we hadn’t seen that girl or anything like her since that night.It had been four years after I asked Julia to marry me when our daughter was born. We named her Alexandra, after Julia’s grandmother. She had her mother's black hair, and she looked beautiful as I held her in my arms, like a little cherub from those Renaissance paintings they show you in art class in middle school. I still remember the day I got that call from my wife, and she had told me about how our eight year old daughter had been killed by a hit and run driver. She was wearing the sundress I had bought Julia on our honeymoon in Hawaii.

    When I finally got to the hospital, Julia ran into my arms with tears pouring down her face. Later on, I asked the doctor where exactly the accident had taken place. He told me it was on Maple Avenue.
     (Based on the short horror story Black-Eyed People by an anonymous author)