Never Whistle Outside at Night

Never whistle outside at night.

You stroll in fog-shrouded darkness. Alone but for your echoing steps. You stop. The footfalls continue — one, two. Turning, you tense your legs to run. Just in case. Nothing behind but your shadow, stretched long and thin in moonlight.

The old woman who raised you had hands like talons, her nails thick as yellowed-horns. “You whistle at night and they’ll answer,” she warned. “They’ll take you.”

The memory makes you purse your lips. What harm a single note?

The note repeats as the answer comes in a rush of cold air against your neck. Whistle.

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