The events of the previous night were all but forgotten when I went to bed. It was with a terrifying sense of deja vu, that I awoke with the same prickly feeling on my skin. An amorphous black form stood between me and the dwindling fire! Icicles of fear coursed through my veins. Unable to move, I gripped my covers tightly. ‘It’ lifted up my blankets at the foot of the bed and began to crawl under. As my eyes adjusted, I could see the large lump in the bedcovers shift toward the top edge of the headboard. As before, my nocturnal visitor migrated toward the opposite side of the bed.
An electric charge of fear and desperation filled the air. I sought to find a scream but it was trapped at the very bottom of my throat. Instead I remained there, unable or unwilling to flee. To my utter dread, my bedmate’s body was a full degree closer to mine than before. I was already at the very edge of the mattress. There was no more ground to yield. Ours was an uncomfortable, breathless truce.
The next morning, I found the other side of my bed unoccupied. As before, there was no visible signs of intrusion throughout the cabin; yet I knew both experiences had been absolutely real. If the visitor had malicious intent, there was plenty of opportunity to harm me, I reasoned unconvincingly. (Either before I awoke, or later as I slept fitfully beside ‘it’). That circumstantial evidence was somewhat calming but I was still frightened about how the thing came to be in my home and what its motives were. Not knowing was the worst.
As the sun set that evening, I tried to prepare myself for a likely repeat of the previous two nights chilling events. I made a personal promise to assert myself this time. I fully intended to question the dark intruder about its unknown intentions; if my dwindling courage didn’t abandon me. I hoped to witness its stealthy entrance into my home but I must have dozed off. To my skin-tingling astonishment, my new ‘companion’ was already sequestered beside me when I awoke! At such a close proximity, I could even detect a distinct personal aroma. There was a lingering hint of fireplace smoke, alongside an unmistakable feminine scent of honeysuckles in bloom.
‘She’ cozied up to me by slowly inching across the mattress, until her soft form was firmly spooned against my own. The relative ‘safe’ boundary between us was gone. Her flesh was warm in a way that I could not fathom. Her skin was like a fine silk and her figure was intensely pleasing to a man unaccustomed to female company for many years. Despite those notable, agreeable details, I still bristled at being so imposed and intruded upon. I was perched at the very edge of the bed and prepared to bolt from the bed if necessary. The room was dark and I could only make out the faintest hint of her bewitching outline. Finally I summoned up the courage to confront my phantom ‘guest’.
“Who… are you and why are you in my home?”; I squeaked out, almost apologetically. There was only a brief pause before her succinct response.
“I’ve felt your loneliness pervade these woods for many years. I am here to be your nighttime companion if it pleases you; but do not ask too many questions. You may not like the answers.”
Her voice was petal soft, yet self-assured and incredibly charismatic. The strange heat that radiated from her body made me temporarily forget about the neglected fire. “How did you get in?”; I managed to ask.
“I came in through your chimney.”; She responded emotionlessly.
While I realized that none of the circumstances were ‘ordinary’, hearing that my visitor somehow swooped in through the fireplace was temporarily very sobering. It was undeniable evidence of supernatural activity and initiated the erosion of my sanity. “Are you human or…?” I didn’t dare finish my sentence. I was too terrified at the thought of any other possibility.
“Once I was human, a very long time ago.”; She began in earnest. “Now I am a different creature but hopefully my current form is still pleasing to your touch. You must never light a candle or add logs to your fireplace when I am here. You would not want to see me in the light. Do you understand?”