Black-Eyed Children

Have you ever heard of the black-eyed children?

They used to live in wooded areas, long before men started knocking down the trees, but since have moved to parks, fields, and even the occasional back yard. Sometimes they can be seen playing in the dark, far away from the other children, like shadows dancing in the distance, but eventually, after their presence has been accepted or forgotten, they’ll wander closer toward the other children. They call their names or play games with them, but you don’t think anything of it. You’ve seen those children at the park every time you come, and you forget that you haven’t ever seen them with parents.

When you bring one home, you won’t know it; because by that time, it’s too late.

Eventually the body of your own child might be found, or the remains at least, buried haphazardly beneath a tree or floating in the river like a piece of discarded driftwood, after the other children feed and their eyes have been taken and replaced by the black lumps of coal just like the others.

The one you brought home won’t even look like yours, but that’s a part of their charm. They are masters at blending in and seeming like they’ve belonged there the whole time – after all, they have your child’s eyes. Your friends won’t know; your neighbors won’t know; their teachers won’t know. All you’ll be left with is a distant feeling, like Déjà vu, that something was different once. 

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