Myths and Monsters

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The more you learn,

the less they feel like fiction.

Welcome to Myths and Monsters! This is where we’ll share all about the creatures and stories we find as we delve down to the deepest darkest parts of the internet to expand on our own universe. Some of the stories we come upon are only that; stories. Others still keep us up at night. Read on for a look at some of the terrifying tales we’ve unearthed. And check back for new Myths and Monsters to be added regularly!

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The Black Eyed Kids

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Imagine you are home alone. It’s a quiet evening. You’ve finished dinner and you’re ignoring your dishes in favor of some crime drama reruns. You’re starting to think about just turning off the TV and going to bed. 

Your dog begins to whimper. 

You decide you’d better let him out before you turn in, or he’ll wake you up to go out in a couple of hours anyway. You head toward the front door, expecting him to follow.

But he doesn’t. 

He cowers over by the TV stand, shaking and crying like there’s a thunderstorm raging outside. 

“C’mon, buddy,” you say. 

You just want him to go out and do his business so you can get some sleep. You try to get him moving a few more times with no success. You’re starting to get annoyed with him, when a sharp knock at the door causes you to nearly jump out of your skin. 

The knock comes again.

Huh. That’s weird. 

You never get visitors this late.

You head towards the door and as you approach it, a sinking, creeping dread fills you. Like every piece of bad news you’ve ever gotten or will get is about to be laid on you again all at once. Or like maybe there’s an axe murderer or some guy with a hook hand on your porch. 

You shake it off. 

Quit being ridiculous, you tell yourself. 

You turn on your outside light and look out the peephole. 

You laugh at yourself just a little. Two kids are standing there. One is maybe seven and the other could be eleven or twelve. You move to open the door. 

Then you notice how still they’re standing.

They’re not talking, not looking around. They’re just staring at the door. Straight … Well, straight at you. Through the door.

You hesitate. Then the older child speaks, just like she knows you’re there.

“We need to call our Mom. Can we use your phone?”

Her voice is strangely flat.

You don’t answer.

“Please,” says the little one, sounding almost exactly the same. “Please we just need to use your phone. Let us in. Please.”

Something tells you this is a terrible idea, but they obviously know you’re there. And they’re little kids. There’s no reason to be creeped out by little kids, right? Right?

Feeling like you’re jumping off a cliff, no matter how irrational that feeling is, you slowly open the door. Just like you thought, it’s just a couple of kids, standing outside your screen door. Their clothes look a little funny, although you can’t really say why. 

“Can we come in?” the older child asks.

You already opened the door. She could just open the screen and walk right in. So why is she still asking? Your apprehension is growing by the second, and you’re starting to feel like an overturned guitar string someone is about to pluck too hard. You say, “Step into the light.”

So they do.

And when they look up at you, you see their eyes are pools of liquid blackness.

You scream and slam the door, locking it, panting in terror.

The knock comes again. “Can we come in? We just want to use your phone. Please?”

You go back to the living room, shaking, trying to convince yourself you didn’t just see what you saw. The dog is still cowering and whimpering.

The knocking continues.

So do the pleas to be allowed inside.

Their tone takes on an angry edge and as they night wears on you are sure you are never going to see another sunrise. Not because you’re afraid they’ll hurt you, but because you feel so hopeless you’re not sure if it still exists.

When the first light of dawn starts kissing the eastern sky, the knocking stops.

You just escaped an encounter with the Black Eyed Kids.

Black_eyes_by_megamoto85_(cropped)Artist Megamoto85’s impression of a BEK via Wikipedia.com

There are hundreds of accounts just like the fictional one you just read, by people swearing they have encountered these children. A few unlucky souls have let them in and lived to tell the tale, if their stories are to be believed.

The Black Eyed Kids are one of the oldest, most pervasive urban legends of our time. We can trace them to the very early days of the internet at least. More than some creepypasta or campfire story though, the Black Eyed kids have droves of believers. 

Read on for a look at what we know of their origins and the evolution of their story. 

blackeyedchildrenrealphoto.jpgthoughtcatalog.com

In 1996, Texas reporter Brian Bethel made a posting to a paranormal themed online group. He recounted a harrowing tale of an encounter with two young boys in a parking lot in a small shopping complex in Abilene from the previous summer. He was sitting in his car, making out a check for his cable bill when two kids, boys between 10 and 14, approached him. He felt there was something wrong right away, so he only cracked his window.

The taller of the two boys spoke, spinning a tale of woe about having forgotten their money at home and needing a ride so they could go see a movie. Bethel reported an increasing sense of dread, of something being wrong, of the other child being oddly silent and nervous. He told of realizing the last showing of the movie, Mortal Kombat, had started an hour previously, so their story felt even more wrong. He reported in numerous ways the speaker sounding off, not sounding like a kid, being strangely, calmly demanding. He also reported his hand reaching out to unlock the car, independendent of his thoughts on the subject. When he yanked his hand back, the kids got more verbally demanding and his sense of unease increased. For the first time he was able to focus and really take in the appearance of the demanding kids standing outside his car. Both of their eyes were entirely black and inhuman.

Finally, he took off out of the parking lot, leaving his utility payment for another, less horror-filled day.

Bethel maintains to this day the encounter really happened. He has shared stories of a friend who also had an encounter with these Black-eyed children. He even appeared on Monsters and Mysteries in 2012 to share his story again. While some credit him with simply being an excellent storyteller, many believe his tale and use it as a warning against opening your door to children at night, no matter how convincing or helpless they might seem. 

blackeyedchildren-photomanipulation thoughtcatalog.com

Demons Run Lit began researching the Children for the sequel to Always Darkest. We’d heard some vague rumors about the BEK and thought they might be a cool monster to add to our mythology. We’re a house full of skeptics, but as we poked away at research for Before the Dawn, it became harder to be Scully, and much too easy to sympathize with Mulder. 

There are hundreds of accounts of people claiming to have had encounters with the BEK, all over the internet. The accounts seem to be especially prevalent in the UK and the US, mostly in rural areas. But as Bethel’s story points out, this strange phenomenon seems to plague urban areas as well.

In one particularly disturbing evening of research, Jess came across a story that was a little too close to home. Reported in full on Week In Weird, and in part on many of the websites that carry tales of the Children, is an account of an elderly Vermont couple and their close encounter. No names are given in the account and even the town is unnamed in the first person story published on weekinweird.com. However, the description of the town was so similar to the one the writers inhabit that Jess found herself becoming increasingly uneasy as she read the post. 

The couple in question let in a couple of third or fourth grade aged kids who appeared in the middle of a snowstorm saying they needed a place to wait for their parents. The wife felt an overwhelming sense that something was not right about the kids, but let them in anyway. Shortly after the children arrived, the electricity in the house flickered and went out. The couple’s cats began behaving strangely and the wife noticed the children’s inhuman, black eyes. 

At this point in reading the story, Jess was startled as the motion sensor light in their driveway came on. It was very late at night, so she got up to check the driveway. It didn’t appear that anything was there. After giving herself a silent, stern lecture about getting caught up in nonsense stories on the internet, she went back to her research on the BEK.

During the strange visit reported by the elderly Vermont resident, she stated that her husband, who had no history of such problems, began to have one of the worst nosebleeds she had ever seen. No matter what he did, he couldn’t seem to get it to stop. Shortly after that, the children announced that their parents were there, with no apparent signal to let them know that was the case, and promptly left the house in the same eerie silence they’d maintained for most of their visit. 

Once again, the light outside the writers’ home came on and Jess once again got up to see what might have triggered it, chastisting herself because usually she ignored the motion triggered light. As she expected, there was nothing in their driveway and she went back to her reading. 

The report went on to say that the woman and her still bleeding husband walked to their door and saw two extremely tall, thin men standing at the end of their driveway next to a black car. The children silently got into the car. The couple waved at the men, but the men just stood there looking back at them with blank stillness. After a few moments, they got into the car and drove away. At that time, the husband seemed to get his nosebleed under control and shortly after that, the power came back on.

The woman relayed the events of the subsequent months in a few poignant sentences. Her cats all slowly disappeared, except for her favorite, which they came home to find in a pool of its own blood one day. Her husband continued to have severe nosebleeds that finally sent him in search of medical help, only to find he had a rare, aggressive form of cancer, that took very little time to end his life. The woman who had the misfortune to let the Black Eyed Kids into her home concluded her story with a warning to others to keep the children out of their homes. After her husband died, she began to experience nosebleeds herself, as well as other bleeding issues she thought were of too personal a nature to share. She has sought treatment for these bleeding issues, but they don’t seem to have an explanation, though she reported being certain she was slowly dying. She attributed her story of loss and pain entirely to her encounter with the Black Eyed Kids one snowy night in rural Vermont.

At this point in the account, Jess found herself intrigued by the story and the lack of fictional feel it had. She began scouring the internet for any continuation of this woman’s story for an ultimate outcome. She found numerous other seemingly genuine accounts of people who had encountered the Kids in an up close and personal way, who were all sick or dying from inexplicable illnesses, or with aggressive forms of cancer. The outside light came on several more times during this research. Despite her natural skepticism, Jess became genuinely unnerved by this and went to bed without checking a final time.

Through conversations and (daytime) research, Jess and Keith decided the Kids definitely belonged in The Arbitratus universe. In their world, the Black Eyed Kids are the children of the Fallen Lilith. Lilith consumes the children on Earth and they are reborn to her in Hell, bound to continue her dark work of advancing Hell’s mission. Their version of Lilith is tied up in some of the traditional Judeo-Christian mythology associated with that name, as well as some of the stories of the Woman in White, the goddess Lamia, and the myths of La Llorona that appear to have grown out of those legends. 

Are the Children real or just some dark fairytale of a creepypasta? We can’t really say. What we can tell you is we won’t be answering the door in a dark snowstorm any time soon.

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