When I was lying in my bed one June night, I heard a little voice outside my window. “Let the sunshine in,” it sang. It sounded like a little girl. Being only nine, I was curious. I poked my head outside. Just a normal night. Nobody out there. Confused, I closed the window and lay back down.
For no reason, I looked at the clock. It read 2:37 am. I was just drifting off to sleep when I heard a car pulling into our driveway. Then I heard it again, that distinctive voice singing, “Let the sunshine in.” Now a bit worried, I wrapped my bathrobe around myself and tiptoed downstairs.
The house was silent but I noticed something on the couch. Walking toward it, I could see it was a sheet of paper. Picking it up, I realized it was blank, all except for one thing at the top of the page. It looked like a child’s drawing of a long black car. Beneath it was the word “Let” written in vibrant red ink. I picked it up and stuffed it in my pocket. I could deal with it later. Besides, it was Pajama Day tomorrow at school.
Walking toward the stairs, I suddenly remembered what I had come down to investigate. I looked out the window. No car in the driveway. Maybe I had imagined it. Yawning, I clomped back up the stairs to my room, when I heard it yet again, singing the same thing: “Let The Sunshine In,” I shrugged it off. Just a dream.
In the week following, I woke up suddenly one night having to go to the bathroom. Stretching, I pulled on my bathrobe. Then I noticed the paper was gone. What? I knew there was a paper in there. Just that night, I had looked at it before stuffing it back into my pocket. Suddenly worried, I rushed downstairs. What was happening?
When I reached the couch, I realized the paper was sitting on it. I picked it up and gasped. The car was a bit clearer, now more like a detailed drawing by a teen. And below it were two words written in red ink: “Let” and “The.” And at that moment, that little voice sang again, “Let The Sunshine In,” I ran upstairs to my room, bringing the paper.
I was very scared now. Looking behind me, I put the paper in the toy safe I had gotten two months ago at the Book Fair, then locked it. Nobody could get it now. But still, when I was falling asleep, I heard a little voice sing eerily, “Let The Sunshine In.”
Five months later, I was woken up in the night by a voice, yet again. “Let The Sunshine In,” it sang. I bolted upright and looked at my safe. Was the paper still there? I got up with shaking legs, and unlocked the safe. The moonlight bounced off the empty plastic insides. Nothing was there. I ran downstairs, skidding a little. Sure enough, there was the paper on the couch.
But this time, the car was beginning to look even more like a photograph, and it now read, “Let The Sunshine In,” still in that red color. I grabbed it and ripped it apart. Gathering the remnants, I flushed them down the toilet. As I was tiptoeing back up the stairs, that same little voice sang again, “Let The Sunshine In.”
The next night, I was afraid of falling asleep. After two hours of tossing and turning, I heard something. “Let The Sunshine In,” sang a little voice I knew all too well. I threw my bathrobe on and raced downstairs. On the couch was the paper, looking like new. With quivering hands, I picked it up. Underneath a picture of a shiny, long black car were four words written in blood-red ink: “Let The Sunshine In.” I stuck it in my pocket, getting more and more scared.
I ran up to my parents’ room, screaming and crying. My dad was away on a business trip, so I rushed to my mom’s side of the bed and shook her. She didn’t move. That’s when I noticed the sentence “Let The Sunshine In” etched into her skin with a knife, and the thin line of blood on her neck. I screamed and shook her more. She didn’t react. I flung myself, sobbing, onto her limp body. Finally, after hours of crying, I fell asleep.
I woke up wondering why my bed was so hard and uncomfortable. I glanced down, and saw my mother’s dead body. My eyes grew large and filled with tears as I remembered the events of that last night. Grabbing the phone, I called the cops. “Hello?” I sobbed. “Come quick! I think my mom’s been murdered!”
About fifteen minutes later, a police car pulled up at my house. After asking me some questions, they went upstairs and brought down the body, covered with a sheet. “The hearse will be here soon,” they told me. “Now, did you notice the marks on her face? They look like letters, and say, ‘Let The Sunshine In.’ Do you have any idea…?” I shook my head, still sobbing.
Soon, I heard a car come into the driveway. The policemen were upstairs, looking for evidence. Peeking out the window, I saw a long, shiny black car… the same one as on the sheet of paper! I dug into my pocket, but no paper was there. A little girl and a man who I guessed to be her father got out of the car and walked up to the front door. I let them in.
“Hey, it’s going to be okay,” said the man. He wrapped his arm around me gently. “Don’t worry. You still have your dad, right?” I nodded. “Would you like to hear my daughter sing?” he asked. “It make make you feel better.” I nodded miserably. And that’s when I heard it.
“Let The Sunshine In,” the little girl sang, “Let The Sunshine In…”
The little girl’s voice was identical to the one that had haunted me for all that time.