“Mom, check for monsters under my bed!” yelled Crystal. She was 4 years old and still
afraid of the dark and what might be lurking there. Linda sighed and dragged her tired body to
Crystal’s room joints aching as she knelt to look under the bed.
“All clear,” she said with a smile.
“Are you sure? Because I always hear noises and I feel like something’s there.” “Noises,
you say? Well, I’ll tell you what. The next time you hear that you just sit up and say ‘Go away!’
That’ll teach that old monster. Now it’s time to go to sleep. It’s late.” Linda kissed Crystal’s
forehead and closed the door.
Linda loved Crystal more than anything in this world. Ever since her husband had died
from brain cancer, she was all that was left for her in this world. Crystal was a happy kid and
seemed to have mostly recovered from the grief of her father’s death, but Linda still worried.
After waiting up a bit to make sure Crystal fell asleep, Linda went to bed but slept uneasily, like
she felt something bad was going to happen.
She awoke to the sound of Crystal yelling “go away!” at the top of her lungs. She opened
her door and held her tight.
“Shhh it’s okay, sweetie, there’s nothing there.”
“No! Mom, I swear!”
“Hey, do you want some ice cream? Late night snack? Would that make you feel better?”
Crystal nodded and scrambled to the kitchen. Upon opening the freezer, Linda realized that they
were all out of ice cream.
“Oh, I’m sorry, honey. We’re all out. But I promise you that first thing in the morning
we’ll go to the store and get some.” Crystal lowered her head and trod back to her room
dejectedly. Linda returned to hers and after a while managed to fall back asleep again. She
awoke again to a familiar sound. The ice cream truck. She glanced at her clock. It read 3:07 am.
Her brain was just comprehending that there shouldn’t be an ice cream truck out at this hour, but
before she could think anything, she heard another noise. The sound of the front screen door
slamming shut and Crystal’s footsteps pounding on the pavement.
By the time she got outside, it was too late. Both the truck and Crystal had disappeared
from view, making Linda realize that not all monsters hide under the bed.