Louis swallowed nervously. “Uh, it’s… it’s…”
“Silly,” Richard said. “It’s silly.”
“Really? Because the way you guys were talking about it, it sounds pretty serious,” Julia replied, folding her arms across her chest. The two brothers looked at each other once more. Richard grunted, shook his head, looked away. Louis sighed and looked at the floor.
“You don’t have to tell me if you guys don’t want to talk about it,” Julia offered softly. “No, no,” Louis said. “It’s fine. It’s just sort of embarrassing.” He took a deep breath. Julia let her arms drop, her features soften. “I’ve had these nightmare since I was maybe eight or nine. I’m always the same age, just a kid, and I’m by myself. Usually in bed, but sometimes I’ll be in a different place, like a field or a playground or something. I’ll just be sleeping or playing, minding my own business, when I feel this presence watching me. Like I’m being stalked.
“Back when I was a little kid, that was all the nightmares would be. Then I started seeing the Thin Man.
“He’s dark skinned. Like, this super deep blue. Like the color of the night sky, you know? And he’s got no clothes and no features at all, and everything about him is long and thin. His legs, his arms, his fingers. He’s probably ten feet tall, and his arms hang down past his knees, and moves real slow and purposeful, like a spider on its web.”
“Wait,” Julia interjected. “If this thing was just, like, a stick figure in the shape of a human, how’d you know it was a man?”
Luis shrugged. “I don’t know. It just always seemed like a man to me. Like, it was male.
“Anyway, at first, he would just watch me. But the nightmares started changing. He’d be closer and closer in each one, until finally he was standing over me.
“And that’s when I started seeing things through the Thin Man’s eyes.”