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Humans of Oxford: Will Geers: The curious incident of the boy in the nighttime

Quiet hours have long since fallen upon Emerson Hall. The door to room 53 swings open slowly and out walks freshman Will Geers.

He walks down the dimly lit hallway, wearing only his pajamas. He makes a right.

"Hey, Will," a fellow resident greets him as he passes by.

No answer. Will keeps walking. He opens the door to the rec room. He slumps down in a chair without a word. Two boys playing pool exchange confused looks.

"Will?" one of them asks. No answer.

Will had his first sleepwalking episode four years ago. They vary in frequency, sometimes happening several times in one week, then ceasing for a month. It's unpredictable.

He doesn't know what causes it. He doesn't know how to control it.

Sometimes he wanders into the kitchenette or the study room.

One night, his roommates woke up to find him sitting up in his bed, eyes set forward.

Another time, he climbed the stairs to the second floor from his room in the basement.

Matej Turk, one of Will's roommates, will often find him slumped in a chair in the rec room.

Or pacing aimlessly around the study room.

Or wandering down a corridor that doesn't belong to him.

Matej gives Will a shake. According to what he read online, that's what you're supposed to do. It won't hurt or harm him.

Will jolts back to consciousness but is still only partially aware of his surroundings. He walks back to room 53 without a word.

Will wakes up the next morning, and his friends fill him in on last night's events -- where he was, what he did.

Will listens with a bit of skepticism.

Sometimes he remembers dreaming the night before. Sometimes he remembers waking up in a different place than where he fell asleep.

But for the most part, Will remembers nothing.