Lucy had been given a small doll as a gift from her parents. The doll was to them by an ancient great aunt who had now passed away. Lucy was secretly unnerved by the doll which had nasty little black eyes that seemed to follow her around the room and a cross expression on its face. Nevertheless, Lucy had to accept the doll, as she was well brought up and didn’t want to upset her parents by informing them of how uneasy it made her feel. The note that came with the doll said it’s name was Annabella, which seemed to suit her. Now Lucy was even more afraid now the doll had a name. It seemed to make it more human, and if it was even a little human then what might it be capable of?
Lucy didn’t believe that the doll could do anything to her. It was just a doll after all and only reached up to just above her knee. To put her mind at rest she stuffed Annabella into the little cupboard under the stairs where she wouldn’t have to see her. It was not until a few nights later when Lucy was lying in bed that she heard a noise, a shuffling sound, which went on for about five minutes. Then she heard a brief dragging noise and finally, a scuttling like light footsteps walking very fast. By now Lucy was pinned to the bed with fear, then she heard a voice say "Lucy, I’m on the first step" She then loud scrabbling again as whatever was speaking apparently turned tail and returned to its place of hiding.
Lucy was so scared that she didn’t sleep a wink that night but laid awake in bed until the break of dawn, when her mother got her up for school. Lucy tried to explain to her mother what had happened the night before but she was just so tired. Her mother passed it off as "just a dream" and Lucy began to believe she might be right.
Lucy begged her parents that they might get rid of the doll, but they insisted that it had been the great aunt’s wish that it would be left to Lucy. She reluctantly went to bed that night repeating to herself that it had only been a dream. She checked the cupboard under the stairs, but Annabella was exactly where Lucy had left her.
That night Lucy fought sleep but she eventually drifted off. She woke up when she heard the voice again. "Luuuuucccccccyyyyy….I’m on the fifth step." it said. Then came to scuffling noise and silence. Lucy cried all night and again, she didn’t sleep. The next day Lucy told her friends at school about the doll and they laughed at her. Lucy could only think that if Annabella was climbing four steps at a time then there was only one more night until she reached the top.
That night Lucy decided to shut her bedroom door. Her mother noticed because Lucy usually kept her door open slightly so that she could see the light from the hall. Lucy had always been afraid of the dark. Lucy asked if she could keep her bedroom light on, but her mother thought that light was far too bright and would keep her awake. Because Lucy was more afraid of the doll than of the dark, she insisted on closing her door and promised to sleep without a light.
Just as she began to doze, Lucy heard a noise coming from outside her bedroom door. "Luuucyy. I’m on the top step…" Lucy was terribly afraid. Her heart pounding, she knew if she stayed in bed she wouldn’t be safe so she got up to investigate. She got out of the bed and with a tiny, shaking hand, she opened her door and stepped out into the hall.
Her parents found her body at the bottom of the stairs. They guessed she had tried to go to the bathroom in the night without switching on the light, had lost her balance and slipped, breaking her neck. Annabella was laying beside her, cuddled underneath one arm. In her parents grief, they thought she must have loved the doll very much and since she had it with her when she perished. They decided to bury the doll with Lucy. Everyone said what a tragedy it was. Her parents wondered why the little cupboard door under the stairs was open when they had found their daughter dead. At least Annabella was now buried and would never be able to strike again.
It was Jane’s birthday this coming Saturday so her parents brought her into town to find something that would interest her. She saw a doll in a shop that she really liked and her parents thought the doll was alright, but suggested she look for another toy because this one seemed to be broken. The doll only had 9 fingers. Jane insisted that she wanted it, so her parents bought it for her. Later that night when she went to bed, she was woken up a by a sound.
“I am Marian and I am at the bottom of the stairs”
“I am marian and I am half way up the stairs”
“I am marian and I am at the top of the stairs”
“I am marian and I am outside your bedroom”
“I am marian and I am and im right here!!”
The next morning her parents found her daughter in the bed mutilated, and the doll right next her. They were astounded to see that the doll now only had 8 fingers.
Jason Qualls from Elkart, IN
Sam from Christchurch