The Villain With No Name
This all started when I was around 7 years old. I don’t remember how exactly I met him, but I always remembered him following me around; he followed me to school and on vacation, basically, everywhere I went he was with me. He was also always up to no good, always causing trouble as if he enjoyed other people’s inconveniences.
For example, once we were at the market and there was a pregnant lady nearby who was reaching to a higher shelf to grab one of the tinned foods. He noticed she was struggling and made all the items on the shelf fall down. The worst part is, no one can see him but me. As a child I never thought he was a demon, I thought of him as a friend, because he was always with me.
I was never able to see this friend of mine, since he was always standing in the shadows wherever we went. Other than the horns that twisted from his head and his sharp talons, I couldn’t see him, yet I always knew he was around me, like I could sense his presence ever since I started seeing him. As a child I called him Villain, because of the mischief he caused. He never told me his name so I named him “Villain with no name”, which I later shortened to just Villain.
Villain became more violent and cruel as time went on. From making people experience almost harmless inconveniences, he went to locking the neighbour’s children in our basement, which was his safe place when he got scared. My parents never went down to the basement so he decided it would be a homey place to nest- or so he told me. I asked him why he brought the children to the basement.
“I get lonely down there sometimes. I just want company, and those kids are the kindest people around here.” Villain replied in his demonic, deep voice.
“But why don’t you just take me down there? I can keep you company, we can even play hide and seek or tag!”
“Oh dear, you aren’t allowed down there, if your parents find out you’ve been going in the basement, they wouldn’t let us play anymore.”
“I don’t know, that’s just what they said.”
So, after that, I never enquired him about the basement again... Not until I started hearing screaming from there. My parents weren’t in a good place financially throughout my childhood, and could barely afford my school fees and our regular provisions, so we lived in a rented one-story house. The basement door was at the end of a short hall and my bedroom was beside it a little further down. Every night after Villain started bringing kids into the basement, I heard children screaming, groaning and scratching from the basement door, which meant I never slept well enough.
“Villain? Why are the children always screaming and crying in the basement?”
“They are just having fun. We play games because it’s easy to get bored down there.”
“Why do they cry, though?”
“Michael always falls down when we play hide and seek, that’s all.”
I believed Villain. I mean, he had no reason to lie to me. I never slept well, sometimes I didn’t sleep at all, there was always screaming and crying every night, especially when Villain brought more children into the basement. Every night, after screaming for a long time, the children would stop, everything would become silent. Villain would come back after the yelling stopped.
“They’re asleep.” he said every night, only to bring more the next morning.
The police were always in our neighbourhood, trying to assist all the parents who reported their children as missing, night after night. At the time, I didn’t piece that it was Villain who was keeping the kids, nor did I know the weight of the situation and disregarded it as a mere coincidence.
I lived with Villain my whole childhood, but the longer he was around, the more I grew scared of him. He caused even worse problems for others and started coming out of the basement with his talons dripping with blood. I never questioned him, in fact I barely fancied speaking to him. He realized it and asked me several times.
“Why are you not speaking to me?”
“I am!” I said defensively.
“I’m just tired, nothing else.”
“Is someone bothering you at school?”
“What? No, everything’s fine.”
“Tell me if someone does, I’ll deal with them.”
His sentence made my heart drop. I almost questioned him on how he was planning to deal with someone bullying me at school, but stopped myself in fear of what he might respond with.
Years passed and I got used to Villain being around, not the crying, though, I could never get used to the crying and blood-curdling screaming. One night, I came home from school late, as I had been working on a science project with my friends. I drove up to my house, only to see blue and red sirens flashing. There were police cars parked in-front of my house. I jumped out of my car and ran inside, hoping what I thought had happened didn’t. I saw my dad, handcuffed and being led out with the police. My mother’s face was pale and there was a look of fear on her face.
“What happened, mom?” I said, panicking.
“What about it?”
“You should see for yourself”
Reluctantly, I walked to the basement, a police standing in-front of the door followed me in. I froze. I will never forget what I saw that day. The room was drenched with blood; on the walls, the floor and even the ceiling had splatters on it. In a far corner, there was a pile of children’s bodies laying on the ground, holes carved in their stomach and many of them had been decapitated. The walls had scratches and bloody handprints dragged across it. I couldn’t believe it. Villain had done this, yet my dad was the one getting arrested.
“Such a shame. You never truly know the demon in someone. I’m sorry, I know you never thought of your dad like this before.” Villain said from behind me, patting me on the shoulder.
“It was you...” I began, half petrified with terror.
“Don’t be delusional!”
“It was you! You were the only one who came down to the basement. You said you were playing with them, not eating them.”
“You’re being silly. Of course I played with them. I guess your dad just got his hands on them first.”
“My dad didn’t do anything!”
“Don’t worry, no one expects either parent to do this. Hey, at least he didn’t do anything to you.”
I stared at him in disbelief. Was he hinting something? I didn’t enquire anymore, in fear of my life.
I moved out a year later with my mom. We needed a fresh start, and I needed to get away from Villain yet I didn’t dare mention it to her. I ran off without telling Villain, fearful that he would follow. The last time I saw him was when I drove off, far away, from my troubles and from the years of torment I endured. He stood at the window of my room, waving, still hiding in the shadows but his blood-covered talons visible. I didn’t wave back.
I live with my mom now and I’m 18 years old. My dad’s still in jail, paying for the crimes that he didn’t commit. I thought that moving out would be better for me and my mom, to leave the horrifying contents of that house behind, but I was wrong. Villain never left my side, I still feel him lurking around, his presence tracing after me; just he doesn’t say anything now and I can’t see him anymore. What’s worse is that every night I hear the scratching, distressed yelling and crying. It’s always there, the sounds ever stop until sunrise. Every night I have the same nightmare of the basement, and Villain luring those children into it in the dead of night...