Does Brian Seem Different to You?

The doors to his room were all closed, even the closet door. The lights were off, except for a small plug-in night light in the shape of a train. The dim light suggested safety rather than demanding it.

Despite all of the precautions, Brian was afraid. He was afraid because he wasn’t alone. He had heard movement under his bed the past two nights. Tonight, he had snuck a flashlight into his room from the hardware drawer in the kitchen. Tonight he would confront the monster under his bed.

Just as he was about to fall asleep, he heard a scratching sound that awakened every cell in his body. Heart racing, he leaned over the edge of the bed and looked at his monster.

It was like looking into a mirror. He saw himself, except the boy he saw was a lot dirtier, like he had been rolling around in coal dust. He was pulling himself out of a pool of shadow on the floor that the flashlight couldn’t seem touch.

“What are you doing?” Brian whispered.

“Trading places.” His twin answered back.

And then there was one.

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