Here it was, mid day on a Sunday and we had nothing to do. The power was out because my dad had called an electrician to fix the wiring so he can work on writing his dumb book. How did they expect two 14 year olds, like me and my friend Luke, to find entertainment indoors?
“Can you think of anything to do, James?” Luke asked. I shook my head.
We didn’t have much to do in this small town. The town we lived in was mainly dominated by farmers. There’s nothing in this town but restaurants, churches, and a park that hasn’t been fixed up in probably longer than I’d been alive.
Luke toyed around with my Rubik’s cube, twisting and turning it, but to no avail. He stared blankly at the ceiling, tossing it up with one hand and catching it with the other. “Dude,” he said, turning to me after catching the cube. “Remember that massive cornfield you see when you first come into town? That’s not that far right?”
I shrugged. “I guess not, it’s probably like a ten minute walk.”
“Then lets go there and play hide and seek or something.” he suggested, jumping to his feet and letting the Rubik’s cube drop from his hand.
I followed him out the door and we both headed to the cornfield.
The chill of the early autumn air made the hairs on the back of my neck stand on end as the dead leaves crunch beneath out feet. We’d been walking for about five minutes and I already felt tired of walking. I don’t get out to walk very often, other than to get the mail and take the trash out. My parents typically do the rest around the house, leaving me bored with videogames as my only means of keeping busy.
We’d finally made it to the cornfield. The cornstalks had all almost completely yellowed and dried out. Luke put his hands between two stalks and separated them, creating and entrance for him. He took a step forward, paused, and turned to me. “Are you coming or what?”
I came up next to him and created and entrance of my own in the stalks. We were in.
As we talked through the corn, one row of stalks separated us. I could still see him walking next to me, walking about the same brisk pace that I was.
“I think what we should do first is play hide and seek.” he said.
“Who’s gonna hide first?” I asked
“I guess I will.” he replied. “Stay there, close your eyes and count to twenty. Good luck.” he said with a smirk on his face.
I did as he said, closing my eyes and beginning to count. I could hear the crunching of his footsteps getting further way and being replaced by the wind making the dead corn stalks sway. “Eighteen. Nineteen. Twenty!” I called out. “Ready or not, here I come.”
I opened my eyes and saw nothing but the same rows of corn in every direction. It’s gonna take forever to find this guy, I thought. I thought back to where I remembered the footsteps coming from and walked in that direction. I continued to walk until I saw the end of the cornfield on that side. Admittedly, it wasn’t a very big cornfield. I turned around and began walking in a new direction that was diagonal to where I came from.
Not too long after walking that way, I heard a slight rustling and started to follow it. It led me to what I believed to be the center of the cornfield. I saw someone crouched down. It was too far away to tell, but I thought it was Luke. I crept up on him and as I got closer, I jumped out toward him, letting out a cheesy monster noise.
To my surprise, however, as the person turned around, I knew whoever I was standing in front of, it definitely wasn’t Luke.
The person appeared to not be wearing any clothes, except for a pair of underwear that looked as though it had never been washed. His hair was dark brown, long, and scruffy, with some small twigs and pieces of dead leaves in it. His eyes, probably the most unsettling thing about this guy, they we solid black. There was no way to tell where he was looking, but based on the twisted grin that was starting to spread across his face, he was definitely looking at me. He raised a long, boney finger to his lips and made a soft shushing noise.
I backed away from the creature, the cornstalks I walked past swinging back up, slowly making this creature disappear from sight. The creepiest thing was, it never moved, it just continued staring at me.
Out of pure panic, I ran from that cornfield. I ran down the street, past neighborhoods lined with houses, not stopping to catch my breath for a single moment before finally making it home.
When I saw Luke at school the next day, he looked pretty upset with me. “You realize you straight up abandoned me in there right? I waited for you for nearly an hour, only to find that you chickened out or something and left me.”
“I’m sorry,” I said. “But there was this thing I saw in there when I was looking for you. It kept staring at me and freaked me out, so I ran. I’m sorry dude.”
“Whatever, let’s just get to class.”
He and I made our way through the crowded hallway and through the door to our math class. I took my backpack off and slid it under my desk as I sat down, Luke taking a seat behind me in the row over.
As the bell rang and class began, the math teacher stood from her desk and started writing a couple of equations on the dry erase board.
I heard Luke murmur something behind me from under his breath. Was he talking about me behind my back? I turned around and my heart nearly stopped.
I saw Luke with the same solid black eyes staring back at me. His mouth warped into the same twisted smile from the creature in the cornfield. He raised a finger to his lips and made a soft shushing sound.