Loose change from my novel
This is a short from something I wrote years ago called "That Which Was Them". It's a future piece told by a reporter.
The nights were horrible out in the field; if you had any imagination at all, watching the sun disappear behind the horizon dropped your blood to the frosty level where movement was stiff and exaggerated, and revived the dusty childhood fear of lying in the dark wondering what was hiding under your bed or in the closet. Wanting to know, yet afraid to look for fear that there was something or someone really there waiting to grab and pull you under. It was unbelievable how many hues of black and gray the night had, and how deep they were as they swirled around you like a black mysterious tide that threatened to drown you in your own fear. No matter how many people were near you, you always felt alone because you knew they felt the same.
Perhaps it was an innate fear passed on in our evolution to dread the dark—the unknown and the unseen that lurked and thrived in its dank womb. When the moon came out, it made it even worse; its swollen presence casting its pale unnatural light from another dimension and making the shadows that reached across the landscape look more and more like the enemy crawling across the lines; it made you bite your nails in anticipation and put that hysterical quiver in your voice as you whispered a prayer, “Please God, fuck the boogieman and get me through this, and I’ll never sleep again.” after all, is it paranoid to think that people are out to kill you when people are out to kill you? Yeah, nothing like that delectable fear of the gloom that brought the sweats in the cold hours of darkness as the rain fell and sobered you to the fact that at some time—any given time, that boogieman was going to reach out and pull you under and drown you in that riptide of fear…he was coming, and there was nothing you could do about it but wait and pray for dawn…