As I finish up my project homework and go downstairs for a drink, my little brother comes barging through his bedroom door, closely followed by two of his friends. It’s obvious from their excited faces that they’d been patienty waiting for me to come out of my room.

“Isaac! Isaac! Someone in my class saw Bonehilda!”, he pants excitedly as he catches his breath. “It’s true!” confirms Saya. “Timothy really saw her! In the coffee shop!”

“Come on, guys. You realise it’s just an urban legend, right?” says Tasha. She’s always the voice of reason and logic. Out of all the kids Arches has befriended, I like her the most. “Right?!” she insists, looking at me nervously, impatiently even, as if to say, come on, help me out here, they’ve been going on about it all day.

“Well, I don’t know if your friend really saw Bonehilda, Arches. I mean, he might as well be making it up, considering she lives all the way out in the Forgotten Hollow.” I dismissively utter, keeping my eyes on Tasha. And she delivers.

“See? He can’t have s- wait, what?!

“You mean she is real, Isaac? Really?!” My little brother is getting excited. More than usually, I mean. Of course I play along. “I haven’t seen her for myself, dude, so I can’t say for sure. But I have heard the stories…”

“Can you tell us?” Saya asks. I look around at the other two. They are staring at me expectantly. How can I say no to their little faces of curiosity?

“Hmm, I don’t know if I should… it is a scary story…”

“Aww, come on! You’d be the very bestest big brother in the whole world!””

“You think so?” I rub my chin and feign contemplation. Of course I will tell them the story. “Please!!!” they’re begging in unison now, and I have them exactly where I want them. “Alright, alright, sit down and get ready for… the story of Bonehilda.”