Once she was safely inside, Victoria became ravenous. She screamed at the top of her lungs whenever someone approached her, kicking wildly.
Eventually the police had no choice and sent her to the hospital.
Once her arm was set and she was safe inside a private hospital room, the door opened and in walked a psychologist, closing the door behind him.
“Hello, Victoria,” he greeted as he took a seat at the foot of her bed. “My name is Dr. Andrew Mann. I am a psychologist. Do you know what that is?”
Victoria shook her head.
Dr. Mann smiled. “It means I'm someone you can talk to about what you've been through. I am a good listener and I don't judge people. You can tell me anything.”
“A-a-a-anything?” Victoria stammered.
Dr. Mann nodded, clasping his hands together, his dark eyes searching hers.
Victoria nodded, her eyes drifting down to the quilted bedspread. She picked at it, not wanting to look up.
Dr. Mann watched her. “Tell me how you came to be at the police station,” he said, tilting his head slightly as he spoke softly.
“How did you break your arm?”
“He broke it,” Victoria said softly, not looking up.
Dr. Mann lent forward. “I'm sorry, Victoria,” he said. “I didn't quite hear that. Could you repeat that for me?”
“I said, he broke it,” Victoria repeated a little louder.
“Who broke it, Victoria?”
“The Slim Man.”
Dr. Mann sat back, looking as though someone had slapped him.
“The Slim Man?” he asked, pushing his glasses up on his nose.
Victoria nodded, lowering her gaze. “He likes children. Especially little girls,” she told him, still continuing to pick at the blanket.
“What does he look like?”
Victoria pouted. “He's tall. Very thin. Adults can't see him. He only appears to children. He has these long arms and legs. And there's these tentacle things that shoot out from his back, trapping anyone who tries to escape.”
“But you escaped.”
She looked up at him, her dark eyes shining in defiance. “Others weren't as lucky,” she said.
“Why don't you tell me about The Slim Man. What does he do?”
“He kills children.”
The room fell silent. Dr. Mann stared at Victoria, trying to come to terms with what she just said.
“What do you mean?”
Victoria sighed. “He kills children. He kidnaps them, tortures them and kills them.”
She wiggled about on the bed, trying to get comfortable.
“He goes to playgrounds to look for children. When he finds the ones he wants, then then tricks them into following him. He leads them to the woodlands that surround the playground and into a tiny shack. Then he tortures them, pulling out their teeth with pliers, ripping off fingernails and stabbing them until they're bleeding and begging for their lives. Then he sucks their energy right out of them.”
“Their life force. As he does, their bodies turn to dust.”
“How did you escape, Victoria?”
“I was near the window of the shack. As he took my sister, I made a run for it. I got lost. Then I found the police station.”
Dr. Mann leaned back in the chair, his hands behind his head.
“If you didn't know who he was, why did you go with him in the first place?” he asked.
Victoria sobbed. “We didn't want to go with him. But his outstretched arms horrified us. He had us in some kind of trance.”
Dr. Mann looked down his nose at her in disbelief.
Victoria became angry. “I knew no one would believe me,” she shouted, her hands balling into fists.
Dr. Mann clucked his tongue. “Victoria,” he started. The story she was telling him was absurd to begin with. “I do believe you.”
Victoria looked up him, hope springing to her eyes. “You do?” she asked softly.
Dr. Mann nodded. “Yes. I too have heard a tale of a man with impossibly long limbs that entrances children before sucking the life right out of them. No one has ever gotten away from him.”
For the first time since her ordeal, Victoria smiled. “Except me.”
Dr. Mann smiled, taking off his glasses to clean them. He stood up, holding the lower part of his back as though it were sore.
Victoria's smile was short lived as she watched with horror as Dr. Mann's arms grew and his back spurted tentacles. He turned to face her, suddenly taller than he was only moments before.
“As I said, Victoria. No one has ever gotten away from him,” he said, his face breaking into an eerie grin.
Victoria opened her mouth and screamed.
* * * * *
The police Sargent that had found Victoria walked down the hall of the hospital, his footsteps echoing in the hallway.
He pushed open the door to her room to find her bed empty, the covers askew, her heart monitor unplugged.
He grabbed the closest nurse.
“Where is she?” he demanded.
The nurse surveyed the empty room. “I-I-I don't know,” she stammered. “She was right here.”
“Did she have any visitors?”
The nurse shook her head. “No. No one has entered her room since she was seen to by the doctor.”
As the door closed and the Sargent walked off scratching his head, the shadows that lined the wall in Victoria's room came to life.
If you were looking in the window to that little girls room at that time, you would have seen the shadow form a horrid smile etched on the face of a man with extraordinary long limbs.