Knock, Knock, Knock.

I picked this up from “the creepiest thing that has ever happened in your house at night while you were alone” thread over on Reddit and boy is it a good one. Slightly not for the faint of heart.

This one is absolutely true.

Many years ago, I lived in a big, old, three-story house that had a room on the middle level that we converted into an office. I used to write financial reports late at night that were published early the next morning.

The office had a few computers and my toddler son had been playing on one of them for most of the evening, right up until I finished my work at around 9pm. By then he had fallen asleep, so I switched off his monitor, scooped him up and took him to bed, flicking off the light as I left.

For the next couple of hours I relaxed in another room watching TV with my wife. She went to bed around 11pm, and at midnight I decided to do the same. I realised I’d left a window open in the office, so I went in there to close it.

The house was silent, and the room was pitch black dark and ice cold when I walked in. Colder than it should have been for the time of the year, even with the window open. I paused for a moment in the center of the room to think about this, and then it happened.

Knock knock knock.

Something was tapping on the glass. But it wasn’t the random tappings of a bird or another kind of animal, it was completely uniform. It sounded human, but I was on the second floor, so how was that possible? It was so dark that I couldn’t make anything out against the black glass, but a few moments later it happened again.

Knock knock knock.

By now I was already feeling on edge. Then, something happened that chilled me to the core. Because out of the corner of the room, to my right, and from the darkness, a high-pitched, almost squeaky voice began to speak quite loudly.

I can see you.

I froze on the spot. My blood went cold. My bowels prepared for evacuation. My God, I thought, I never wrote that book. Any book.

It spoke again, but with greater emphasis on that all-important word.

I can seeee you.

I determined that I was almost certainly done, so I figured: what the hell. I turned slowly to my right and walked into the darkness, until I finally reached my son’s computer. Nothing there but an empty chair. But no talking now. Just silence. A horrible silence.

Carefully, I reached over and switched on the monitor. The screen brightened, and there it was: something red, and horrible. Once again it tapped on the glass.

It was Elmo from my kid’s Sesame Street game.