It was night-time when Oswald began to play on the porch with his teddy bear. The rain was fast forming. He felt the wind blow against his cheeks, so he ran into his room, shut the door and covered himself with his blanket. Soon, he could see lightning and hear thunder. Oswald peeped through his bedroom window and quickly covered his face when he saw a strange animal-like man staring back at him. Oswald was breathing heavily underneath his sheets, hugging his teddy tightly, sweating.

After a moment he walked quickly to his parents’ bedroom and knocked, but there was no response. He knocked again but still there was no response.

“Mommy, mommy, open the door, I’m scared!” he shouted. He began knocking rapidly, until his sleepy mother opened the door.

“What is it, Oswald? Can’t your mommy get a little sleep?” she yawned. He quickly hugged his mother’s legs and she lifted him up to her chest. Tears began to fall from his eyes. His mother, although half-awake, could tell there was something troubling her baby boy.

“Make it go away, make it go away!” he cried.

“Make what go away? Oswald, are you alright?” she asked.

“The monster outside my window, make it go away, mama!” he cried.

“Oh, silly boy. You probably had a bad dream. Come sleep beside me. I’m very sleepy.” She walked to her bed, laid Oswald beside her, and fell fast asleep.

“Mommy, mommy, are you still awake?” he asked, but there was no response, only loud snores. Oswald clung to his mother and he fell asleep too.

The next morning was foggy and chilly. Oswald stood up and tip-toed to the kitchen, where his mother was making porridge. She put a ladleful of porridge on a plate for him and left a little for herself. He sat down and began to eat. Then he looked at his mother, confused.

“Why the face?” she asked.

“Mama, where is papa? He was supposed to be here,” he asked, scratching his head.

“Oswald, we’ve talked about this,” she said, and rolled her eyes, “your papa is a huntsman. He has to hunt so that we can eat and sell some of the meat.”

“But he was supposed to come home last night. It was raining and there are no houses in the forest.”

“Well, maybe he camped in the woods or something. Now eat your porridge before teddy finishes it.” Oswald began to gulp his porridge quickly. Just then, his father walked in. He was a tall well-built man with forget-me-not blue eyes. He was carrying a lifeless deer on his shoulders. He was dripping wet. Oswald forgot all about his porridge and ran into the arms of his father.

“Daddy, you’re home!” he cheered.

“Yes, I am,” laughed his father, in his booming voice.

“Why didn’t you come home, dear? It was raining cats and dogs yesterday,” asked Oswald’s mother.

“I camped in the woods with my fellow hunters and we resumed hunting when the rain was less furious,” he said. “And I’ll go hunting tonight too,” he added.

“Fine by me, but Oswald was worried sick about you.”

“Oh Oswald,” he laughed, “you care for your daddy now, don’t you?”

“Yes, I do. I want to be a hunter just like you when I grow up.”

“Well, jolly good!” he exclaimed. He put his fresh kill in the pantry and went to shower, for he reeked of animal blood. He changed and joined his family back on the porch. No matter how much he showered, he always had a strong animalistic smell, but he didn’t mind.


Tell us: What do you think the monster could be?