From: Grace
Sent: Wednesday, May 4, 2016 4:18:33 PM
Subject: Hat Man

When I was younger, perhaps five to six, my family had decided to move to a new house. The house itself was new, and I don't remember exactly- but I believe my family was the first or second family to live in it.

At first, and for a while, things were good. Nothing bad happened, and we were just a normal family. But when he showed up, everything changed. I don't know if I ever would've noticed the man if it weren't for the help of my dog, Phoenix, because I only ever saw Eddy (the name I had given the man when I was a child) at night.

The first time I ever saw Eddy, it was because the dog became irritated and woke me. Phoenix was a sweet dog, and he seldom barked or growled, and it was terrifying for me to awake and see my lovable childhood pet snapping and snarling at my door. But when I became more mentally awake, Eddy was there; peering at me through the doorway. He appeared to be as tall as the doorway itself- and atop his head sat a black fedora-type hat and he had wide white eyes that stared at my own. At first, he did not move, he just stood there, as though he were trying to figure things out. But as the nights passed and I continuously saw him, Eddy seemed to want to move closer to my bedside each night. I, being a child, was still terrified of his presence.

In fact, the presence of Eddy seemed to unnerve my parents, too. When he showed up, my parents began fighting. It got worse and worse as time went by and often I attempted to tell my parents about the shadow that crept into my room each night who had begun to whisper to me. I don't remember what he would say or what his goal was but he spoke to me. I don't think I was able to understand him, that Eddy's murmurings were just inaudible words that were mostly phrases that blurred together; an angry whispering.

I don't remember when my parents actually split up but I do remember that Eddy did not follow me. Instead, he seemed to stay with my dad. Eddy seemed almost drawn to him, as if feeding off of my father's anger and growing paranoia made him stronger.

I can remember blatantly refusing to go to my father's for the weekends, because I knew that Eddy would be there that he'd be feeding off of my father's angry energy and strengthening his growing madness. By that time, I was eight, I think and Eddy had begun to wander the house. He had begun to follow me still attempting to whisper and communicate with me.

It wasn't long before the man that had been my father wasn't my father anymore; just a shell of the person he had once been- sucked dry, seemingly, by the malevolent shadow that had entered our lives. My father got evicted from that house soon after.

Sometimes I still see the shadow, though…staring, whispering.