Guy in the Shadows

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  • Dedicated to Cera Conner (my annoying little sister)

He is always watching.

Tomorrow is my little sister's tenth birthday. I am happy Eileen will never have to go through what I did. Oh wait. Maybe I shouldn't say that. I just jinxed her! It's not like it matters that I did. It won't happen to her. Never to Eileen.

On my tenth birthday was the first time I saw Shadow. Now I know you are wondering who this is. I don't even know who he really is. I just call him Shadow because I don't know his real name. It's not like I ever talk to him. I only see him at school or in crowded places like Wal-Mart. He is always behind me. Always following me.

I know that sounds creepy, but it's true. I tried to tell my parents, exceptionally after he started to showing up in my pictures. They just thought I was crazy. They even sent me to a mental home for a month! Talk about scaring a ten year old for life! But that was 5 years ago. Now I have learned to keep my mouth shut about Shadow.

At lunch I am staring off into space when out of the corner of my eye I see him. He is sitting at a table across the lunchroom, all by himself. He is staring straight at me! He doesn't even make an attempt to hid it. "Hey Veronica. Do you see that guy over there? He is staring straight at me!" "Natalie there's nobody at that table." Crap! I realize I just gave away my biggest darkest secret. Now she is going to think I am a crazy freak. Well, maybe I am. "I have to go," I say standing up and picking up my backpack. "Ah, do you have to," Veronica looks up at my face," I mean are you ok? You look really pale." "I'm fine," I lie," bye V." I turn to walk away but Veronica talks to me again. "V.? I thought we weren't doing the nickname thing." I sigh, "well, V. is easier to say than Veronica." "Well, if we're doing nicknames then I get to call you Lea." I give her a confused look. "Veronica, Lea isn't in my name." "I know. Lee is. I could call you that but it is a guy's name so I just added an a. So, bye Lea." I laugh," bye V." She scowls. "That nickname sucks. I'll think of one for you to call me." i shake my head. Veronica is the happiest person I know. i turn and walk away. i see Shadow get up to follow me. I ignore him, like he ignores me. I mean if you were going to stalk someone wouldn't you at least talk to them first to get to know them, but no, he doesn't do that. He is just my shadow.

When I walk into the atrium I turn around. Shadow is not behind me. I smile. He never follows me into places that are not crowded. I walk into the library and sign in. I go to the lab that is filled with Macs. Thankfully there is not a class here. I need to start writing my paper for Civics. We have to write a paper on any political issue. I throw my backpack in the rolling chair next to me. I log on to the computer and pull up a blank Microsoft word document. I start typing. 'I am a Democrate and I am proud to be one. The reason behind me being a Democrate is that we say we are the land of the free, the place where you have rights, and the place where you can be what ever and who ever you want to be. If we are truly the land of the free then why are the Republicans. trying to take away people's rights'

I sit there trying to think of more to write. Soon the announcements come on that single the end of the school day. I log off of the computer and gather my stuff.

When I am walking to the bus, I turn around. I nearly tumble into a group of jocks. Shadow is so close. To close for my comfort. I keep walking hoping he will just go away. When I get to where the other students from my bus stand, I turn around again. Shadow is gone. I sigh with relief.

When I get home I go straight to my room. I am super tired from trying to avoid Shadow all day. As soon as my head touches my pillow I am out.

When I wake up the house is completely dark. I don't think anyone is home until I look at my phone. It is 3 in the morning! I climb out of bed and tiptoe to my little sister's room. Eileen is on top of her bed fast asleep. She looks so peaceful that I don't want to wake her. I pull her blanket out from under her and cover her up. She looks so adorable that I have to go back to my room and get my phone. As soon as I take the picture I set my phone down and kiss her on her forehead. "Happy b-day," I whisper. I pick up my phone and tiptoe back to my room.

I grab my phone cords and hook my phone up to my computer. I want to download the picture. Maybe I can print it off and give it to her as a present. I pull up the download window and wait. As soon as it downloads I freeze.

It's unbelievable. This is not happening. This was never supposed to happen to Eileen. In the back ground of the picture as clear as day is the face of a young boy. He looks about the same age as Eileen. Eileen was not supposed to be like me. I was the only one being followed. Now she will be, too.

I have to get rid of this picture. She must never know. Wait. What if she can't see him? What if this happens to every girl, and I am the only one that can see it. Maybe I should let Eileen see it, but what if is she sees him. What am I going to say? You and me are being followed by some guys who we have never met. She will think I am crazy. Well, maybe I am.

I save the picture on my computer in a file that contains the rest of my special pictures. I will decide what to do tomorrow. I climb back into bed and fall quickly back to sleep.

As soon as I open my eyes, I know something is wrong. Eileen is in my room. She never comes in here. She is sitting in my desk chair, staring at my computer screen. She is going through all of my pictures. I just up and turn off the computer.

"Hey," she yells," why did you do that?" "Why are you in my room," I retort. She looks down at the floor. "I just...um...wanted to get on the internet." My eyebrows jerk up. "Then why were you going through my pictures?" She peeks up at me and sees that I'm still staring at her. She quickly looks away. "I...I didn't know you took pictures. I thought you hated doing that." I sigh. "Eileen...I like doing it. I'm just not good at it. Do you understand?" "So that's why you hid it?" I nod.

My mind is jumping back and forth from telling her and not telling her. Finally I decide I am going to tell her. "Eileen...I have to show you something." Her face lights up. Right before I turn on the computer our mom yells," Eileen, Jesscia's here." She jumps up and runs out of my room. Mom said she could go hang out with her friend while we set up her party. I hadn't realized it but I had slept until one o'clock. I guess I will have to wait until after the party to tell her.

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