A while ago (I won’t disclose how long ago.), back in 9th grade, I used to live in a small apartment called Cedar Cove Condominiums. You might recognize the name. If you do, then you probably live or have lived in Cedar City. While I lived there, I went to Canyon View High School. In order to get to that school, I went along a path that took me past three fields, infested with prairie dog holes. One day, while I was walking home along this path, carrying my gym clothes, I saw something out of the corner of my eye. I turned to look at it, but it was already gone. I shrugged it off and continued on my way. Somewhere along the middle of the second field, I saw something again, in the same fashion as the first time. I was quicker this time and managed to catch a glimpse of something entering a prairie dog hole. I walked closer to the hole and saw a small prairie dog sitting in it, staring at me. I saw something behind it, but it was too dark to see what it was. I tried to coax the prairie dog out of its hole, but it just sat there, staring at me. I gave up and continued walking home, taking one last look at the prairie dog. It was still staring at me, but now it was out of its hole.

I walked home and did what I do most every day: either watch YouTube or play video games. Finally, the time came for me to go to sleep. However, something strange happened. At around 12:50, a bright light came through my window. I tried to ignore it, thinking that it was a car pulling in. The light stayed there for about a half hour before disappearing.

Thank God, I thought to myself.

Then, something very peculiar happened. I heard a scratching at my window. I ignored it and tried to go to sleep, but it wouldn't stop. It kept on for fifteen minutes before I finally got up and went to my window, determined to find out what was making that scratching noise. I opened the blinds and found a most interesting sight. It was the prairie dog that I saw while walking home, sitting there staring at me. It was holding something large in its mouth, but it was too dark to see what it was. I sat there, staring at the prairie dog for a minute before it began scratching the glass again. Slowly, hesitantly, I opened the window and let it in. It landed on my dresser and looked up at me, seemingly waiting for something. I held out my hand and the prairie dog went over and sniffed it, dropping the object in my hand afterwards. It felt warm and wet. I went over to my light switch and flipped it on, looking at the object in my hand again. I dropped it in horror as soon as I knew what it was.

It was a human finger, cut off at the second knuckle, still seeping blood. I slowly picked it up, went over to my window, and threw it out. As soon as it was out of the window, the prairie dog jumped out and retrieved it, bringing it back in and dropping it on my dresser. I looked at the prairie dog and it looked back, seeming to be begging for me to keep the finger. I picked it up and put it in a small cracker box that I keep in the corner (for reasons that not even I know of). I went back to the prairie dog and looked at it. Call me crazy, but it looked like it was smiling at me. I held out my hand and the prairie dog jumped into it. I put it on the windowsill and ushered it out, but it jumped right back into my room. I tried again to usher it out, with the same results. Finally, I gave up and looked around for something for the German Shepherd Gerbil (I will refer to it as a gerbil from now on most of the time, and the way its fur is colored reminds me of a German Shepherd.) to sleep in.

I found another small box that I kept in the corner, next to the cracker box. I grabbed a pair of scissors and cut a small piece of my blanket off. I put the blanket piece in the box and used tape to keep it in place. I put the makeshift mini-bed on my headboard and put the gerbil in. He (I assume it’s a he) sniffed the bed and sat down, closing his eyes and going to sleep. I smiled. He looked so cute! I gave him a small pet and turned the light off, climbing into my bed and falling asleep.

I awoke at 6:00 to the sound of scratching. Looking up, I saw the gerbil scratching at my window again, this time trying to get out. I got up and went over to the window. He looked up at me, expecting me to open the window for him. I did so and he jumped out and scampered off. Shrugging, I closed the window and began getting ready for school.

After school, I went back along the path to my house. It was rather uneventful for a while, until I remembered the prairie dog. I looked over when I saw something in the corner of my eye, and sure enough, I saw him running into his prairie dog hole. I went over to the hole and looked inside. The gerbil was staring at me and had something behind him, just like last time. I tried to coax it out again, with the same results as the day before. I sighed and walked away, continuing on my trek back home. Once there, I continued with my daily activities and, when the time came, I went to sleep. Once again, at around 12:50, the same bright light shone through my window. Getting out of bed, I went over to the window, curious to see what was causing the light, but when I reached my window, the light disappeared. Hesitating for a second. I lifted the blinds to find nothing out there that could have caused the light.

I lowered the blinds and began walking back to my bed when the light came on again. I stopped and looked at the light. I slowly approached the window again and the light disappeared once more. Shrugging, I went back to my bed. The light appeared once more, but this time, I was quick to react, because as soon as the light came back on, I was at my window, pulling the blinds open and looking outside. This time, I caught a glimpse of a black van before it disappeared, the light with it. I sat at my window for what felt like an hour before I saw a familiar sight: the gerbil was scampering towards my window again.

This time, the gerbil was carrying something different. When he jumped into my window, I took the object in his mouth and turned the light on. This time, it was an eyeball with a green iris. Groaning in disgust, I put it in the box that held the finger. Picking the gerbil up, I put him in the little gerbil-bed-thing and crawled into my own bed. This time, the gerbil hopped up and laid down next to my head. I paid him no mind and went to sleep again.

Morning came and, with it, more scratching at my window. I got up and saw the gerbil once again scratching at the window. I opened it and let him out, then continued on with my day. I went to school, did everything I needed to do, then walked home. I didn't bother with the gerbil because I knew that he wouldn't respond to me when I tried to usher him out. Getting home, I called up my friend (let’s call him Tristan) and asked him to bring a small camera, small enough to fit on a rat, that he had made (He’s a technical GENIUS.). He brought the camera and gave it to me, asking me why I wanted it. I told him the events that had happened the last couple of days, and at first, he didn't believe me. Then I showed him the box that held the finger and the eye. He immediately believed me and also asked if he could stay and see what happened. We called his parents and asked if that was okay. They agreed, then we asked my mom if it was okay, and she said it was alright. We played games until it was time for the light to come on.

The same time as always, the light came on and I opened the blinds and, using a small camera that I had (bigger than a rat, mind you), took a picture of the van. Me and my friend checked the picture and saw that it looked quite good, despite the bright light coming from the van. We waited at the window for a while, and, sure enough, the gerbil came and hopped inside. My friend commented on how it looked like a german shepherd, and I sarcastically said, “Really. I didn't notice.” I strapped the camera onto the gerbil and put him in his gerbil-bed. I grabbed my friend a sleeping bag and he climbed in while I got in my bed. The gerbil got up and laid down next to my head again, falling asleep.

6:00 AM. More scratching. I got up and let the gerbil out, making sure to turn on the camera. Afterwards, I went back to sleep, since it was Saturday. Me and Tristan both woke up at around 11:00 and started playing video games until his parents came to pick him up. I kept playing video games until the time came for the gerbil to arrive. As usual, he jumped up and gave me another body part. This time, it wasn’t a body part. It was the camera that I strapped to his back, except it was destroyed. I grabbed the camera and the gerbil jumped out, grabbed something else, and hopped back in. It was a piece of paper. I took the paper, uncrumpled it, and read it. It said, in big, bolded letters,


I put the paper down and looked at the gerbil. I could swear that it was frowning at me. I put the gerbil outside and closed the window. He hopped back up and began scratching at the window. I ignored it and went back to my bed. Somehow, despite him scratching the window, I managed to go to sleep. When I woke up, I didn't hear the sound of scratching. I breathed a sigh of relief and got up, getting ready for school. I went on with my daily routine with no change, although I remember running past the fields a little faster than usual. While at home, I called up Tristan and told him what had happened. He came over as soon as possible to see the damage that was done to his camera. I showed him and he almost fainted. I also showed him the note that came with the destroyed the camera, and he said that he received a similar note. He stayed for the day and we played video games, then his parents came and picked him up, leaving me to my thoughts.

I slept peacefully that night, no lights or scratching to be heard. That morning, I awoke feeling extremely well-rested, however I had a strange feeling of depression. I shrugged it off and got ready for school. While I was at school, I didn't see Tristan. He wasn't at breakfast, lunch, or any of his classes. When I got back home, I tried calling him, but got no response. I tried e-mailing him and got the same results. I tried contacting him any way I knew how. Finally, I went over to his house and knocked on his door. His mother opened the door and welcomed me inside. I asked her where Tristan was and if he was okay. The second I said Tristan’s name, tears began flowing from her eyes. She told me that he had disappeared last night and that everything he had was gone. The only thing left in his room was a piece of paper that said,


I knew that the note was addressing me. At that point, I ran back to my house. While running, I decided that I was going to tell my mom about what had happened and ask her to move. When I got there, however, my mom was nowhere to be found. Everything in her room was gone except for her purse. There was nothing inside it except her car keys, her wallet, and a note. Written on the note, in big, bolded letters, was:


I freaked out, almost breaking into tears before I remembered my camera. I could show the picture of the van to someone and ask them to help me. I rummaged through my room, but instead of finding the computer, I found another note that said:


At that point, I used my mom’s money to buy a hook-up trailer. I put everything I needed in it, along with my video game consoles and a television, and drove off. I drove to California and settled down in front of a small department store that my brother owned. I’ve been living there ever since, and every night, I see a white light outside my window at around 12:50, and after an hour, the light goes out and I hear a scratching at the window next to my bed. When I wake up in the morning, I always have a note on my forehead that says:


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