The Wee Man

The Wee Man
by D. A. Watson

“Keep going, Daddy,” the wee man says, looking up at me from his bed, all soft hair, pale skin and big shining eyes. I squirm in the chair by his bedside, a chill prickling the skin of my back, an icy lump in my throat. I want to tell him “No, that’s enough for tonight,” but it’s impossible to deny him anything.

I reluctantly lower my eyes to the page of his latest storybook. Oversized text. Vividly drawn. Lurid colors. Terrifying illustrations. The cover like cold dead skin on my fingertips. The books began arriving in the mail last week, every day, addressed to the wee man. No return address. No publisher details. All with the same title: Children’s Stories.

Dread squeezing the marrow in my bones, I keep reading.

“The boy-prince shivered, listening to the sounds coming from under his bed: the slithering, the thick, gurgling chuckle, the tap-tap-tapping of claws on the floor. He wanted to cry, but knew he had to be brave. No one believed him about the monster, not his father the King, not Gidaneon the wizard, not gallant Sir Radstrong, the captain of the guard.

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