As I lie in bed, the nightlight casting long shadows across the walls, I can't help being scared.
I hear a fierce prairie storm approaching, thundering hooves upon the warm spring air. Then the rain starts. Huge battering rams against the windows; echoing with each pounding strike.
Streaks of lightning burn across the sky incinerating the air above our house, their light blinding me through tightly closed lids.
Serpents and spiders leap at me from the momentary blackness after each bolt of lightning before my vision returns. Branches sway in the howling, snarling wind, crashing against the house; relentlessly, unceasingly they hammer away at the siding, frail protection from what lurks outside.
But it isn't the demonic storm outside, Mother Nature's raw fury, no; it is what lurks in the dark inside that I fear most.
The closet door creaks open with each gust of raging wind, the power dims and the nightlight flickers, then winks out. Suddenly all is dark, the silence is deafening as floorboards creak.
Slowly coming closer and closer, I hear no footsteps, only the creaking of the floorboards as some silent terror approaches the bed, unseen in the suffocating darkness.
I pray for a searing bolt of lightning to illuminate the demon that so silently stalks me.
A scream of terror as I see it in the dark!
"Dad!" My son screams in fright, clutching his teddy bear closer to him.
"Sorry son, you snuck up on me. You know how I hate the dark on nights like this, especially with your mother away." I say, my voice trembling with pent-up hysteria.
"It's okay dad, it's just a storm, but I want my nightlight back." He says with all the indignity an eight-year-old can muster.