I have no name. I have never concerned myself with names. I been living in the Anderson Ranch for the past…I do not even know. I been through so many families, they all look the same to me.
Every so often, a family moves in, and I chase them away from the Ranch. Sometimes, if I am lucky,I take a soul with me.
I enjoy terrorizing the families. I love the fear and the screams that the children make at night. What amuses me the most is when the adults seek the aid of the church or some Indian healer to rid their house of me.
Nevertheless, I stay. I always stay.
The families always leave even if that means they lose a member in the process. I have no sense of time so I do not know how long the ranch has been empty. Therefore, I wait. I wait patiently for the next family, the next human to move in here so I may return to my dark deeds. Eventually, a family does move into the ranch. It could have been years later. It could have been months. It could be days.
I do not know, but now, a new family has arrived. Outside my window, I can see a bright red truck. Yes, a brand new family, how exciting. I see a father, a mother, and a little girl.
I will take the girl. Yes, the girl. I will take the girl.
The mother jumps out the truck, and she quickly grabs boxes. My attention falls on the father, what a curious sight. He opens the door for the girl, and he carries her. She is much too large to be carried. I see her eyes, and I realize the little girl is blind. In my many years on this ranch, I do not recall a disabled child. Perhaps I should keep watching and remain patient before I begin.
The family has settled now inside their home.
They put up calendars on their wall so now I know they have been in this home for perhaps three months. They have already settled into their routine. The father leaves for work in the morning. The blind girl leaves for school and mother stays and tends to the home. Unlike most mothers I have encountered, there is darkness around that woman that invites me and tempts me.
Sometimes during the day, I rearrange things and slam the doors. However, as life continues in the home, the family grant me a bigger distraction than I could ever provide them. The father works late in the evening while the mother cares for the blind little girl. The blind girl uses her stick, or her hands to maneuver through her new home. Being that she is so young, she depends heavily on her mother. Her mother refuses to talk to her and randomly strikes the girl across the head.
The home has become a literal hell on earth for the little girl. Her mother does not speak to her at all so the girl is at the mercy of listening to her mother’s footsteps to avoid her brutal beatings. During suppertime, the woman places the child’s meal in front of her. The little girl trembles with fear and she is slow to begin her meal.I realize it is because she is waiting for the next swing across her head.
I cannot properly haunt and scare the family because I am so shocked that a mother would torment her blind daughter so. I have never seen such a thing in my existence.Later that night, the mother angrily puts her child to bed. The little girl is sobbing and extending her hands clumsily to protect herself, but she is often too defenseless.
Finally, one night, against my better judgment, I pull a poster off the wall. Its startles the mother and she stops striking the child. Unsure, she leaves the child’s bedside and tries to pick up the poster. When she bends down, I run my claw down her spine. This frightens her, and she leaves the room immediately.
The little girl sat frozen in her bed, and she did not relax until she hears the door shut except her mother did not close the door. She does this to taunt the girl.
The little girl would never get any sleep, waiting in fear for the door to close. I close the door for her sake.
The girl sighs and finally lays in her bed, afraid to sleep. The poor thing will remain awake until her father arrives and kisses her goodnight. She finds solace in her father’s arms. However if, he does not work the long hours, the family could not afford my home. The little girl will never complain for she fears it will hurt and distract her father. So quietly she suffers, praying at night that one day her mother will stop.
What a poor sad house. It even shocks me.
“Hello?” the girl says in the darkness, “Are you here now? Can you talk?”
I do not respond. My job is not to protect a little girl from a horrid mother. I want the entire family out my house, and that woman is causing an enormous distraction.
I am the monster. I am the demon. I refuse to be upstage by a bitter, dark woman.
“I want to thank you. I know if daddy were here, he would protect me. Thank you. I hope you stay.” She says as she lays her headon a pillow.
I waited until the little girl’s father returns home and I left the girl’s room.
I have been protecting the girl from her cruel mother. I have become resentful to the mother who has ruined my plans and turned me into a babysitter and a caretaker to that sweet little girl. I do not hide my resentment from the mother, and she has grown to fear me.
She has called upon the service of the church, shamans, and other stupid things people do when their home is haunted. Silly things, remarkably silly things.
One day, the little girl, brought home a book. It is a book created for humans with sight. She tells me that she overhead some kids speaking highly of the book, but she cannot read it without those little bump marks. I have grown fond of the little blind girl so I read the book to her. Her mother overheard us in the room and became horrified that her daughter was able to speak to the same demon that tormented her so. She runs to her bedroom and tears the book from her small fingers.
Her face turns red as she tears the book apart piece by piece, “So you are doing this! You are doing this! You and your ghost! You !”
I take offense to that. I am not a ghost. Ghosts cannot hurt you. They have no body. The dead can never hurt you. You know why? Because ghosts are dead.
The mother leaves the little girl’s room and runs to the bathroom. All the while screaming at the top of her lungs. Mother opens the tub faucet and the tub fills rapidly with water.
The mother yelled for her daughter, “Allison! Allison come here! Come here!”
Oh, I see what is going on here.
“Mommy I already took a bath. I do not need a bath mommy.” calls
Allison fearfully. Mother ignored her pleas. She opens the bathroom cabinets and takes out a bottle of bleach. She opens it and pours it into the water-filled tub.
Allison stands outside the bathroom door, shaking her head, “Mommy we take baths before bedtime. It isn’t bedtime.”
“Keep quiet ! You brought this ghost here! Get in the tub!” the mother yells on the top of her lungs.
I whisper to Allison to leave the house. With her arms, stretch out to guide her, she runs. Mother furious at this brash disobedience, she runs after her daughter, but she does not get far.
The bathroom door slams in front of her, locking her inside.
After I finish, I wait with Allison outside her house. We sit on the doorstep while we wait for her father to come home. He later discovers her body in the tub, drowned, poisoned by the bleach and he called the police. I could not resist the temptation to pour the bleach down her throat. She was a truly heinous woman.
Perhaps, it was months later, I do not know. I have no sense of time but father decided to leave home and start fresh with his daughter in the city. From the window, I watch as father packs the last boxes and he enters his truck.
Allison leaves the car door open. I believe it is an invite for me. She wants me to join her. I have never left the ranch before, and I have a terrible temper. I do not know if I will fare well in the city, but if a mother of a blind child did not care for her and her father must provide for her, who will protect her?
Besides there have been so many deaths on the Anderson Ranch, I doubt another family will come along and move in the Ranch ever again. I join Allison in the car, and I decide to stay with her.
“Will you stay with me forever?” whispers Allison.
“Yes I will.”
“Are you a monster?”
“Yes I am.”
“That’s alright.” She says. “In the Bible, some of the angels look like monsters. That’s alright.”
She is a naive child, but I care for her nonetheless.
In Hell, they warned us, while we wander all over the Earth we will meet monsters that are more horrendous than we are. They warned us that sometimes the biggest monster are not from Hell. They warned us.