Folklore Friday: The Black-Eyed Children
Hey, Bookworms! I’m Charlaine LeRoux, and the ladies at Tipsy Mockingbird were kind enough to let me do a guest blog today.
Most people know me as the co-writer of the internationally acclaimed Fall an Ermahgerd Merstery, but what they don’t know is that folklore, urban legends and cryptids are my main jam. They are my jelly. My artisanal fruit compote even. Since it’s October, the time of year when everyone celebrates things that go bump in the night, I thought I’d share one of my favorite urban legends with you. So sit down around the campfire with me. The Midnight Society is now in session.
Imagine that you’re out late. It doesn’t matter why, it just matters that you’re completely alone. You fish out your keys as you walk. It’s cloudy and there’s a slight breeze rustling the leaves. The slap of your shoes against the pavement and the distant barking of an unseen dog are the only sound.
You slide into the driver's seat of your car and instinctively check your backseat for trespassers. Suddenly you hear a knock on your window. You gasp and click the lock on your doors. Two children are standing right next to your car. The boy looks around junior high age and the girl is a few years younger. They are partly in shadow but the hazy glow of the streetlight is enough to make their pale skin seem to glow.
Just kids, you think to yourself. Just kids, no need to freak out but you are still overwhelmed with dread. Your heart is still slamming against your rib cage and the hair on the back of your neck is standing straight up.
“We need a ride.” The boy says flatly. “We got lost.”
There is something wrong with these kids. You can’t put your finger on it but you know it’s true. You do not want them anywhere near you much less in your car but you’re too afraid to move. It’s as if the boy can read your mind. He lifts his face and looks you directly in the eye for the first time. Your breath catches. His eyes are as black and flat as a shark.
“Let us in the car. We’re lost. You have to help us.” he says as he moves even closer.
For a moment you’re afraid that he is going to open the door but it’s almost like there’s a force field keeping him from touching the door handle.
“You have to let us in.” he says, angry now. His nose is centimeters from the glass that separates the two of you and you have never been so afraid in your life. You summon all of your strength and start your car, slamming on the gas. You’re half afraid that the boy will grab on to the car and you squeeze your eyes shut as you rocket forward. After a second, you open your eyes. The kids are nowhere to be seen. Almost as if, they melted into the pavement.
You have just met the black eyed children. Nobody knows where they came from or what they want but they always turn up at night. Sometimes panhandling sometimes knocking on doors. They pretend to be in trouble and demand to be let in. They can’t come in unless you let them but they are always out there. Trying. So ,no matter what do not open your door, not even a crack. That may be the only thing that saves you.