Skeleton Man

The elementary school I went to was run out of a large, gaudy, 70’s-themed house. The kindergarten was upstairs and the first and second grades were on the basement level.  The edifice was surrounded yesteryear woods.


One year, on Halloween, our second-grade instructor told us a scary story.  It was called “The Skeleton Man” as well as it was unbelievably terrifying.  As our instructor was telling the story, nosotros sat motionless, absorbing every gruesome detail. 


When it was over, a unusual quiet savage over the room.  It was obvious that each 1 of us was simultaneously filled amongst regret for always agreeing to brain to such a horrifying tale as well as also trying to figure out how to take away heed to a greater extent than of it.  The residuum of the hateful solar daytime was tinged amongst a foreign, unsettled feeling – similar nosotros had all simply been diagnosed amongst cancer.  We drifted around the classroom, doing our tasks quietly as well as robotically because nosotros were also consumed amongst anxiety to experience whatever secondary emotions.  

I went habitation that eventide as well as sat petrified inwards the corner.  


I knew that my life would never endure the same – that everything I did from that minute onward would endure tainted amongst my noesis of the Skeleton Man. 
 
The following hateful solar daytime at school, I excused myself to role the restroom.  The basement bath was terrifying inwards as well as of itself – it was claustrophobic as well as mildewy, painted chocolate-brown amongst weathered, xanthous linoleum that curled upwardly inwards the corners.  The shower was total of tattered cardboard boxes as well as the mirror was cracked inwards several places.  To larn to it, y’all had to walk through a maze of boxes inwards the creepy render room.  There was a cupboard following to the lavatory that was covered amongst a stained bed sheet.  But the bath took on an alone dissimilar flat of terror when I realized that the Skeleton Man almost definitely lived inwards the closet.  I couldn’t believe that I’d never noticed before.  


How many times had I sat at that topographic point on the toilet, blithely relieving myself land the Skeleton Man watched me from ii feet away?   

From as well as hence on, I refused to role the basement bathroom.  At outset I tried thinking of excuses to larn upstairs to the kindergarten hence I could role their bathroom.   I would of a abrupt saltation upwardly from my desk as well as tell “I think I take away heed my sis calling me, tin give the sack I larn check?” or “I simply remembered that Ms. Brunton said she wanted me to pick out her this slice of paper” or  “I promise the kindergartners are okay… perhaps I should larn brand sure?”   This tactic was rarely successful, hence I opted instead to sneak exterior as well as larn to the bath inwards the woods behind the school.  


Whenever I had to go, I raised my manus as well as asked my instructor if I could receive got permission to role the restroom.  I clearly annunciated the give-and-take “restroom” inwards example anyone should uncertainty my actual intentions.  Then I would stomp loudly downwardly the hall as well as through the render room, stopping simply brusque of the bathroom.  I would as well as hence plough around, sneak quietly dorsum the agency I came as well as sideslip out the door.  Once I was outside, I would intermission into a sprint to avoid beingness spotted on my agency to the woods.  The procedure became fifty-fifty to a greater extent than complicated inwards the wintertime months because I couldn’t simply pick out handgrip of my shoes as well as coat on the agency out the door to “use the restroom.”  People would get to suspect something.  No, I had to brave the snowy woods barefoot.  It was worth it, though.  I hollo upwardly watching equally my foolish classmates left the room to role the bathroom, as well as congratulating myself on beingness smart plenty to avoid the life-threatening fault they were making.  

My petty excogitation couldn’t concluding forever, though.  Sometime inwards the spring, I was caught peeing behind a tree yesteryear the outset flat teacher, Mrs. Davison.   There was several months’ worth of lavatory newspaper scattered around me, hence it was clear that this was non a one-time offense.  

Mrs. Davison:  “Allie!  What are y’all doing?” 

Me: “Looking for ants.” 

Mrs. Davison:  “What’s all this toilet paper doing out here?” 

Me:  “I don’t know.  It must have blown here with the wind.”

Mrs. Davison:  “I see.  And why are you peeing in the woods?” 

Me:  “Oh, I was just out here and I had to go.” 

Mrs. Davison:  “How about you come inside and use the real bathroom…” 

At that betoken I started weeping as well as screaming well-nigh the Skeleton Man as well as how he lives inwards the cupboard as well as if I used the within bathroom, he would kill me as well as and hence I would never larn to grow upwardly as well as endure a veterinary as well as my household unit of measurement would belike vociferation as well as want that I had never used that stupid bath as well as my mom would yell at Mrs. Davison for making me produce it because if I died it would endure all her fault! 

I’m certain it was quite a spectacle.  

For the following calendar week or so, I avoided peeing altogether.  I would handgrip it inwards until it became painful as well as I had to sit down rigidly inwards my chair amongst my legs crossed.   Eventually I had to human face upwardly the basement bathroom, but I tried my hardest to brand certain that those terrifying encounters were kept to a minimum.  

The following year, our cast was moved to a dissimilar edifice amongst a dissimilar bathroom, but I never completely got over my fearfulness of the Skeleton Man.  Even equally an adult, I sometimes experience similar he’s hiding inwards my chamber cupboard or inwards my basement amongst the orc rapists.   


UPDATE:  There receive got been a lot of questions regarding the details of my unproblematic school, hence I idea I would elaborate a little.  I didn’t larn to a traditional world school, but nosotros definitely weren’t a commune 🙂  The fancy, normal-looking, brick edifice inwards which the schoolhouse started was condemned (because of asbestos) as well as the schoolhouse had to displace suddenly.  They hadn’t institute a suitable permanent location yet, hence that’s why nosotros had schoolhouse inwards the former house.  Before the schoolhouse bought the house, nosotros had to receive got cast inwards a tiny upstairs library inwards a church.  It smelled similar moth balls as well as it got really, actually hot during early on September.  The draw of piece of job solid was an upgrade for sure.  The schoolhouse owned the house, hence it’s non similar nosotros were simply running around inwards someone’s living room or anything.  

Regarding the barefoot thing: because nosotros went to schoolhouse inwards an former draw of piece of job solid that had carpeted floors, nosotros had to receive got our shoes off at the door.  And I don’t know how I was able to escape detection for hence long.  I mean, nosotros didn’t receive got hall-monitors or anything (the schoolhouse was far also pocket-sized for that), but it is yet pretty amazing that I was able to sneak around the teachers.