I am Ivan. People call me the monster, the dark beast, the boogeyman. But I simply suffer from a disease. I must feast on people’s screams and devour their nightmares. It’s not my fault I need their lives to survive. I’ve been dying for two thousand years now, but even the youngest of children can no longer satisfy my thirst. It’s torturous to live but it would be much more agonizing to be dead. All of the souls I’ve taken still haunt me to this day.

I tear through the streets as I inhale the lightbulbs, sharp static electricity sizzles my burnt lungs. My tall, black legs step through the concrete, causing fractures and breakage throughout the faulty foundations. I inhale the smoke from the molested individuals, the broken and the breakers. I suffocate on the oxygen as I breathe in the dark. I peer through the window of my next victims and memorize the look of the hungry little child as I pick them up in between my long, chipped white nails. I shudder as I see my reflection in the window, even I scare myself. My overgrown, tangled, gray hair falls past my knees as I stand to my full height. My black and bleeding teeth can almost taste the little child. I see their eyes open with fear and I breathe it in. Before their screams pierce the silent night, I slowly press my nails against their throat and I take in the life before it escapes to the stars, at least that’s where I think they go. I set the lifeless body back in the broken bed, and my heart remains shrunken. I can’t deal with the smiles of the dreaming children in the rest of the room so I do the same to them. My nails continue to crack as I snap their little, fragile bones. I hear them cough their last breath as the tortured look is imprinted in my mind. I should be saved from death until tomorrow, I think; as I play with their strings of organs and tiny skulls. They are like string and marbles, with the ability to stick and sway as the wind attempts to stop my sinning. I know it’s wrong but I can’t help it. 

I carve my name into their backs. Ivan. Ivan. Ivan. I scream silent nightmares into the minds of the big people. The woken ones stare in fear and I breathe it in. I’m sorry for causing so much pain but I can’t stop. I haunt all of the weakened because it’s a necessary evil. I taste my own blood as the haunted souls come back to me and punish my broken mind and misshaped body for committing such a horrid wrongdoing. I’m sorry for what I have done to you. To them. But it’s either me or them and to continue my wrongs I must be selfish. I must choose my life over theirs. How could people live without me? Without fear? Without the danger of being alone? I provide a life of fear, a life of adventure. People alive today aren’t just people, they are survivors, even if they don’t know it. Even if they don’t appreciate my sparing them, they still must be grateful for their life because they all take it for granted. And so I must punish them. That’s the only way to justify my transgressions, isn’t it?

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