When I was a kid all the children used to play in the woods on
the edge of town. Deep in the heart of the forest, there was an
old, run down, and ragged house that everyone whispered about.
There were all kinds of rumors about it being haunted, or that a
monster lived in the basement. My father even said he heard about
a family of cannibals that made it their home. One day while
playing in the woods, my brother, who was nine at the time, was
bragging about how he was the bravest kid in school. After a
while, I got sick of hearing him gloat, so I told him that if he
really wanted to prove himself, he should go into the basement of
the old house. Of course, I didn't think he would go through with
it. Nobody ever set foot in the house, but he was determined to
prove his bravery. I remember feeling guilt and anxiety when he
walked through the door. He stayed in there for quite a while,
until the sun had set, but he finally came out at dusk. Needless
to say I was relieved. When he returned, I asked him if he saw
any monsters in the basement. He simply grinned, answered, "Yes,"
then blinked his eyes. At that moment I felt my blood run cold.
It wasn't the grin. While I found his smile disturbing, it's not
what had caught my attention. Nor was it his answer, as my
brother was a known prankster at the time. The thing that worried
me, that chilled me to my very core, was the fact that when he
blinked his eyes, they shut the wrong way.