How to Fight The Monsters Under Your Bed (In 100 Simple Steps)

Submitted into Contest #41 in response to: Write about an animal who changes a person's life (for better or worse).... view prompt



"You are chosen to battle the monsters under your bed. At the end of this adventure, you will have defeated the creatures under your bed, and you will awaken in one piece in the actual world.

Should you accept this challenge, you must follow all the instructions this letter will show you. Failure to follow any of the directions will cause immediate failure.

Should you decline this challenge, return this letter to where you found it. Close your eyes. You will awaken once again in the actual world. But the monsters under this bed will not stop haunting you.

Once you accept the challenge, you cannot turn back."


1. Open your eyes. Everything is covered in fog. You're in a dream. Everything is not what it seems. Remember that.

2. Look around. Hold up your hand and touch the fog. The fog will disappear instantly.

3. You'll see a bed from where the fog was.

4. Check under your bed. There's a letter folded neatly. Don't be fooled. The ink is a metallic red. Blood. Your blood. Read the letter. Should you accept this challenge, hide the letter in your pocket. You will need it later. Proceed to step five.

5. Beside the pillow is a bag with your name. Grab it.

6. Open your bag. You'll see a bottle of water. Drink it. Calm yourself. Check for any place where you could have been harmed.

7. Get a band-aid. Don't punish yourself. These things happen. The monsters are more powerful than you think. But so are you.

8. Close your eyes. Imagine you're in a pet shop.

9. You will feel the wind rushing you. Do not get pulled by the wind. Do not open your eyes. If you do, you will be tortured by the monsters.

10. Once the wind has stopped, open your eyes. In front of you is the pet shop. Knock three times, with a three-second interval for each knock. If you knock in any other manner, the animals inside will chase you.

11. A man with neon pink hair will greet you. He will ask you what you think of his hairstyle as he welcomes you inside. Be honest. If he notices a shred of lie, he will lock you inside, and you will be tormented with the lies everyone has hidden from you.

12. The man will thank you for your honesty and offer you a pet for this adventure. Choose any animal you want. The only condition is you have to name your pet, "Neelie." Changing his name will make you lose the battle.

13. The man will give you a leash and a name tag. Put the name tag around Neelie's neck and connect the leash with her name tag to your hand. If you lose the leash, you lose the pet.

14. Once you have chosen your pet, close your eyes, and let the wind take you to your bed once more. Your pet should be right beside you.

15. Your obligation to the pet is to take care of it. Treat it as your own. Any harm done to her will also be done to you. Neelie will be there in all of your battles, and it is your duty to keep her safe and alive. If you love her, she will love you even more. If you distrust the pet, worse will happen to you. Your relationship with your pet will cause a shift to your advantage or disadvantage. Remember. Everything is not what it seems.


16. On your bed are different items. You can choose a wand, a flute, or a sword. You are allowed to choose one for each battle. You may change weapons after you have defeated a monster, but you cannot change it while in battle.

17. You have chosen the flute. Play it. Music will come out. You may have never played this instrument before, but the flute knows you. It knows your music. Your music will bring the first monster under your bed.

18. As you continue to play, remember your pet. Remember Neelie. Keep her alive.

19. The monster crawls out of your bed, and your heart quickens. Do not push the emotion down. Acknowledge the fear. It has done much damage to your life; you have every reason to be afraid. Do not stop playing.

20. As the creature crawls out of the bed, it will take shape into a human. And it is a person you recognize. Remind yourself. This is all a dream. Everything is not what it seems.

21. Your former lover appears in front of you. He looks disheveled, his clothes stained, like the worst argument you had with him. This is the look you memorized as your last meeting with him.

22. He walks to you, his hand reaching out. Do not look at his eyes. Remember, he is a monster you have kept under your bed, and it is time you get rid of him.

23. Look at his hand, but do not stop playing the flute. A mist will swirl on top of his hand, a bubble of the last memory you had with him. Remember, you are not alone. Neelie will be right beside you.

24. Allow your emotions to surge and let each beat of your broken heart play a song. Neelie growls at the memories you have. Let his growl course through your anger. You are not at fault.

25. Once you have played out your anger, you will see before you the man you first fell in love with, not the man who has hurt you.

26. Play your song to him. Love, you are hurt. Allow yourself to feel angry. But learn to forgive. He is no longer a part of your life, stop letting him haunt you.

27. Your former lover will turn into ashes. Let yourself mourn for what could have been, but embrace what could be. His inability to love the way you deserve does not reflect your worth. You were worthy of love before you met him, and you are still enough long after he left.

28. The monster has disappeared. All you see is your bed. Look at your weapons. Choose what to use next. You can change your weapon, or you can continue with this one.


29. Should you change your weapon, play first a song to your pet. She has fought alongside you. Play the song you would listen to when mending your broken heart. Look and remember, you are not alone in this fight.

30. When finished, put the flute in your bag. Remember, you cannot bring it out during the battle should you choose not to use this weapon.

31. Pick up the sword. Get ready.

32. Admire the sword. Notice the words carved, "retro in proditione amici necor." Read them out loud. The moment you do, Neelie will stand behind you.

33. Lightning strikes the foot of the bed, yet leaving it unharmed. Shield yourself from the blinding sight.

34. Read the saying eleven more times. For each time you say it out loud, lightning will strike the same spot. Do not stop until you have repeated the saying twelve times.

35. The twelfth strike will appear to be the strongest. The white light will blind you. Close your eyes. Breathe in and out for twelve times. And then, open your eyes slowly.

36. Standing in front is a monster you know all too well. Lightning still cracks at the tip of its fingers, but you know enough to point your sword at it. Neelie cowers behind you.

37. Standing before you is a person who has been with you most of your life, seemingly by your side, but has been stabbing you in the back.

38. Your friend smiles, but you are not fooled. Your gaze at her remains cold and lifeless.

39. You lift your sword, and her smile falters. She thinks your problems are worth gossiping. Her hand crackles with lightning. She points at you, and you quickly deflect it with your sword. A loud clash appears the moment you crash your sword with the lightning.

40. Your anger surges as you recall what she said. Spilled secrets and mocked laughter fuel your rage. Breathe deep. Control your anger. Raise your sword. Get ready for the next lightning strike.

41. Defend yourself against the twelve lightning strikes. Each time you defend yourself, take one step forward. She will not notice the advances you make.

42. Each clash of the lightning and sword will open your wounds. Do not run. You will stumble, and she will hit you with lightning. Do not step back. She will see it as a sign of your weakness.

43. Once the twelve lightning strikes are done, she will be shocked to see you close to her. You will then have the chance to say everything you wanted to say to her. The lightning on her fingers will dissolve.

44. She will beg for your apology. Should you forgive, or hold your rage, it is up to you. Only do one thing. Raise your sword and plunge it to her chest. The betrayal of a friend might stab you in the back. Some friendships require bandages to heal. But some are not worth keeping.

45. As she turns to mist, you will hear the beating her heart. Her blood is on your hands. Get a towel from your bag and wipe it away. 

46. Lightning will strike, bringing the bed to its place. Clean your sword.

47. Neelie will be right beside you. Let her choose this weapon for you.

48. Cuddle with her as she chooses the next weapon. She will grab the wand and drop it on your feet. Pick up the wand.


49. Shouting appears in the room. Get ready.

50. Neelie hides under the bed. Tell her to get out of there. Remember, do not harm Neelie. What you do to her will reflect on your advantage.

51. As you convince Neelie to stand beside you, a loud slam makes you stand straight. A door has appeared out of nowhere. What is standing in front of you makes you falter.

52. Two people who have loved you the most stand in front of you. They have also caused you the worst pain. Your hand trembles as they go near you, their eyes filled with rage.

53. Imagine a white force field surrounding you, and it appears from your wand, only surrounding you and Neelie. You cry as your parents say things you have longed to forget. You put your hands on your ears, begging to let this moment pass. Neelie appears out of the bed.

54. Hug Neelie and let her warmth envelope you. 

55. Neelie licks your tears away. Gather the courage to face what's in front of you.

56. Notice their chains. The chains on their feet are connected to the door.

57. The secret is simple: for every insecurity they have given you, force out a memory where people destroy that insecurity. Each memory will shorten their chains, forcing them to step back. Should you fail to deflect and absorb their attacks, their chains will appear looser, giving them the chance to catch you until they have chained you.

58. The man points at you first, shouting, "You have been a disappointment to everyone!" Quickly deflect his sentiment by conjuring a memory where people have been proud of you. Your memory etches back to when you presented your final paper. The panelists give you a congratulatory shake as your friends cheer you on. No, you are not a disappointment.

59. The lady then shrieks an accusatory tone, "Why are you fat? No one could love you." Raise your wand to conjure another memory. A silly dare to go skinny dipping, only for people to compliment on your body. Darling, what people say doesn't determine your worth.

60. The chains on their feet have gotten tighter. With one last attempt, they scream, "You do nothing right!"

61. You conjure another memory, your workmates after a hard day's work, getting a drink. They laugh at your spill-up at the meeting, but they still praised you for your presentation. So what if you didn't get everything right? People will love you for who you are. Your imperfections are not an excuse to hate you.

62. You gain more confidence as you see your parents stepping and hitting the edge of the door. Before they can strike another attack, quickly counter-step them. Point your wand and conjure a memory that gives you power. You remember hugging your parents before moving into the big city. They think it is a part of growing up. But for you, it was a fresh start.

63. As your parents watch the memory with you, the bright light leaves them blind. Open the door and force them out. Close the door, lock it. Bring another memory as you destroy the door once and for all. One simple memory, one phone call that ended it all. "You cannot control me anymore."

64. The door breaks. And for the first time, you finally feel free.

65. Relieved, go to your bed, put the wand in your bag, and crash on your bed. Pull Neelie in your arms, pet her before the lull of sleep finally begs you to lose consciousness.

66. White walls. You open your eyes and that's the first thing you see. Sit up straight. Look at the vanity mirror in your bedroom. Breathe deep. You’re relieved that the dream finally ended.

67. You stand up and go straight to your vanity mirror, only to see a letter similar to your dream. Your heart quickens, but you shake your head. Remind yourself, it's just a dream. 

68. You open the letter and read the words out loud, "Mirror mirror on the wall, who is the monster that is yet to fall?"

69. The reflection in the mirror doesn't move as you put down the letter. Your face drains of color as you realize what has happened. It's not over yet.


70. "No!" You whisper under your breath, "It's supposed to be over."

71. "Honey, you forgot one small rule." The reflection sneers as your hand grips the letter in fear, "Everything is not what it seems."

72. Your bag and weapons have disappeared. The reflection laughs and mocks you. You look at her and to see her eyes slightly wide, "You seem to have forgotten your precious little pet."

73. Neelie. Where is Neelie? You shout as you look under your bed. Not there. You raise your hand to see if the leash is still connected. The leash leads to the mirror. You can't see if it's in the reflection. You continue to act frantic.

74. Rush to the door as your reflection continues to mock you. "How are you going to get out?" Her voice drips with sarcasm as you turn the knob. Nothing.

75. With resignation, sit back and look at your vanity mirror. The monster looks at you, folding her arms. "No weapons. No bag. No Neelie. Looks like you lost the battle."

76. Breathe in and out. Remember the letters you have read. 

"You have been chosen to battle the monsters under your bed. At the end of this adventure, you will have defeated the creatures under your bed, and you will awaken in one piece in the real world."

"If you lose the leash, you lose the pet."

77. "You-" Realization hits you. "You're not under the bed."

78. Her smile falters as you discover the flaw. "But, I'm still a monster, am I not?"

79. Fear fading and giving way to curiosity, you touch the mirror. "Yes, but, the leash is still with me, leading to you."

80. She flinches. Notice her hand is also connected to the leash. You continue to look at her. And then, the necklace.

81. Look at your own reflection. You wear the same clothes. The only thing different is the unruly look she has. That and a necklace.

82. Touch your chest. You're not wearing any necklace.

83. She follows your movement. The moment you make eye contact, it finally clicks.

84. "Neelie, what does your name mean?" You ask.

85. She scoffs. "What? Neelie is your pet, silly! Do you think of me as some kind of anima-"

86. "Neelie, answer my question."

87. Your reflection lowers her head, "it means overcomer."

88. You stare at your reflection. No, you stare at Neelie for a long time, and you pull the leash to bring her out of the mirror.

89. When she finally comes out, she appeared as an animal. You stand again to see your reflection imitating you. You look at Neelie as if meaning to scold her, but remember.

"If you love her, she will love you even more. If you distrust the pet, worse will be said of you. Your relationship with your pet will cause a shift to your advantage or disadvantage. Remember. Everything is not what it seems."

90. Look at Neelie. Tell her what's on your mind.

91. "I'm my own monster, aren't I?" She barks to confirm what you said.

92. "And I have to love myself to let this monster disappear?" Another bark.

93. Breathe deep and look at Neelie.

94. Say these words, "I am loved. I have my imperfections. I am not perfect. But I am me."

95. Neelie changes. She's turning into something bigger, but you are not afraid.

96. "I'm sorry for trying to love myself by how people see me. They cannot define me. They do not own my worth. I am loved. I am worthy." You continue to speak as Neelie transforms.

97. She holds your shoulder to affirm what you have said about yourself.

98. But then, she also speaks. "You can love yourself. You are allowed to grieve for the people you lost. You are allowed to mourn for the future that could have been."

99. She pulls you to stand up. "You have beaten your monsters. The ones in your bed, and the ones you face in the mirror." She helps you as you lie on your bed.

100. "You'll wake up in the actual world. There will be monsters there. But now, you know you can defeat them. You're a conqueror, dear. Get some sleep."

You believe her. And, you do.

May 15, 2020 18:01

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A. Y. R
08:11 May 18, 2020

I love this story! Made me really miss those 'choose your own adventure' stories! You addressed the reader very well and kept it very engaging!


Faith Chrayon
00:03 May 19, 2020

Wow! Thank you so much! 😊


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