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February 2015 Discussion Post: Favorite Creepypasta Genres & Topics

February 1, 2015 at 12:00 AM

In the past, I’ve asked for a lot of information about the community’s creepypasta preferences. We’ve discussed our least favorite creepypasta tropes, ranked the best and worst pasta categories, and talked about which pastas we believe are overrated and/or underrated. This month’s topic is a logical progression for that line of questioning:

Which topics and genres of creepypasta are your favorites?

For example, we’ve had a minor uptick in sci-fi submissions (this would be the genre) as of late, and I’ve seen a few people mentioning that they’re specifically enjoying the alien stories (and ‘aliens’ would be the topic). That would be the sort of information that I’m looking for with this question. Do you prefer reading about zombies? Or do you prefer post-apocalyptic fare without the z-word included? Do you always hope to see more pastas with a mythological bent? Or perhaps you’re more into the occult tales? I hope that you get the idea!

This is your chance to let both the aspiring writers that generate our content and myself know which genres and subjects you’d like to see appear more frequently on the site. So let us hear it!

As always: have fun, express yourself, but please keep it polite. Thanks!

Lure

February 28, 2015 at 12:00 AM
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It was almost three o’clock in the morning when something woke Leah up. She stayed in bed for a few groggy minutes, warm beneath the familiar blankets. For the last three days, an enormous rain storm had been falling on the island of Kauai, bringing an unusual chill along with it. The rain smacked against the windowpanes relentlessly. Leah had grown used to its noise. So it was something else that had disturbed her, and she knew she’d never get back to sleep until she figured out exactly what it was. With a reluctant sigh, she sat up in bed and looked around.

The light.

Her bedroom was filled with strange shadows and a stark light she hadn’t recognized right away. The new security light Aidan, her brother-in-law, had put in for her just before the storm. Nobody had come by, and Leah had done a thorough job of making sure she had enough supplies to last out the bad weather. She’d never seen it switch on at night before. It was probably the wind pushing something into the garden that had triggered it. The system was supposed to shut itself off after three minutes. She wondered how long she’d been awake, and watched the clock tick one minute after another.

Four, then five.

The light stayed on.

Aidan wasn’t known for his amazing skills at electrical installation. Under normal circumstances, Leah would have insisted on hiring a professional, but she didn’t really see the point of having the security to begin with. She’d only agreed to it to make her sister happy. There weren’t many dangers in rural parts of the island, unless you were afraid of having to listen to hippies talk about carving gourds. Leah’s nearest neighbours were a fifteen minute drive away, and that’s how she liked it. She didn’t even have a paved driveway. Who, she wondered, would bother to go all the way out to her place to commit a crime? It was smarter to head to the coast and wreck up the big town.

She cursed and grumbled as she got out of bed, shivering in her shorts and long-sleeved tee. It was even colder than she thought it would be. The floor was like ice beneath her bare feet. She stepped quick and lightly to the window, hugging herself for warmth, and tried to crane her head to see where the security light was mounted. The rain was making a mess of her view, coming down in thick streaks that made the outside world look like it was twisting around in a crystal decanter.

A shape moved at the corner of her eye. Her heart pounded for a second or two, then calmed as she looked into her driveway. Standing a little ways to the side of her car was a figure. It looked like a girl with bright red hair, pinned up in the style of a surf bunny from the days of Frankie and Annette. She was wearing a long, floral print dress and standing right in the middle of the pouring rain. She was too far away and the weather was too bad for Leah to make out her features. As she watched, the girl in the driveway looked right up at the bedroom window and waved. A slow, robotic hello.

The tiny hairs on Leah’s arms stood up, and she ducked away from the window.
She took a few deep breaths.

Fine. The girl was there because her car had broken down, or she had some other kind of trouble. And she knew that somebody was home because Leah’s car was right there beside her, or maybe she assumed that somebody had manually turned the outside light on. But how could she have known exactly where Leah was? The room was dark, the security light was too bright and distracting, and there were other windows on the second floor. How had she known exactly which one Leah was standing at?

Calming herself, telling herself there was probably an innocent explanation for it all, Leah glanced out the window again. The girl was still there. Waiting. She looked young and delicate, like a teenager. There were all kinds of warnings and emergency procedures being declared because of the storm, and two of the nearby roads were flooded. Leah knew she’d never forgive herself if that girl was in need of help and she left her stranded. Shaking the doubts from her mind, Leah decided to make her way downstairs.

She tried not to think of the girl’s eerie wave. She tried to rationalize the strangeness of the shadows. Both the car and the small palm tree had cast long, deep shadows from the stark white light on top of the lanai. The girl didn’t have any shadow at all. But that could have been something to do with the angle, or a trick of the rain. The weather had blurred so many details, it was hard for Leah to be sure of anything she saw.

Just as her foot touched the bottom stair, the sound of the knock filled the house. A rhythmic slamming against the front door, in no way gentle or persuasive. It was loud, startlingly so, and strangely hollow. An angry demand very unlike the way Leah would have expected the girl she saw to knock. She tried to tell herself that her nerves were skewing things, making her edgy when there was no need to be. Maybe it had been a loud knock because the girl was feeling desperate, wanted to be sure that the people inside heard her. But then, why hadn’t she used the doorbell instead? Maybe there was someone else with her, and Leah simply hadn’t been able to see them from the window.

That changed things. That was a rational concern. What if there was a boyfriend? Someone big, strong and threatening.

Leah hurried into the kitchen and got herself a knife. Nothing big or menacing like one of the butcher’s knives on the posters for horror movies, just a small paring knife. Very sharp. The kind of thing that was guaranteed to hurt a man if you wanted him hurt, or stop him if he needed stopping. For the first time since moving out of the city, she regretted the seclusion she’d chosen. She’d take all the airplane flyovers, traffic noise and petty crime in the world to feel less vulnerable. The knock sounded again, with such urgency that Leah could feel the vibrations of it inside her bones.

She made herself think of flooded roads, stranded people, medical emergencies. With the knife at her side, she went to her front door and stood with her hand resting on the knob. Part of her was screaming to forget it, to go back upstairs and lock herself in her room until morning, but she couldn’t. In a quick, defiant motion, she swung the front door open and looked out into the pouring rain.
No one was there.

“Hello?” Leah called, stepping carefully onto the lanai. “Is somebody out here? Do you need help?”

She made her way forward very carefully, adjusting her grip on the knife handle. The rain was fierce and deafening, cold splashes of it coiling around her naked ankles like ocean spray. Everything smelled drowned and muddy. There was no sign of anyone, not even a set of footprints in the softened earth of the driveway. Leah stepped to the very edge of the outside steps and took one last look around.

“I’m going back inside.” She called, her voice quivering more than she would have liked.

As she turned, the front door slammed shut and shook the floor of the lanai. The security light snapped off so quickly, it was as if the bulb had suddenly burnt out. Leah sprang towards the closed door and twisted frantically at the knob, but it wouldn’t turn. Impossible. The only way to lock the door was from the outside. She hadn’t even had a deadbolt put in.

Finally, the door relented and swung open as though there hadn’t been any resistance at all. Leah dashed inside and slammed it shut behind her.

The house felt empty and full at the same time. The greyness of the rainy night settled on the familiar rooms in front of her like a layer of dust. She knew that the house had to be searched. Somebody could have been hiding close to the wall and ducked in when she was looking at the driveway. It took her a few moments, standing in the empty front room with the soft drumbeat of the rain mingling with the pounding of her heart, before she felt bold enough to do it.

When she found no one, she began to relax. She ended the search in the kitchen, and decided to pour herself a glass of water and check her phone. Just to be safe, she’d send a message to her sister. Nothing to worry her, just something to let her know about the girl in the driveway. She put the paring knife down on the counter and picked up her phone. No bars and no wifi. The storm had been upsetting service on and off for the last few days. Leah tried not think of it as isolation. It was just a nuisance. Her imagination was playing tricks on her. When morning came, she would laugh at herself and spend another cozy day curled up and watching whatever was saved on the DVR.

A razor-thin breeze whistled by her ear when she went to get a glass from the cupboard. There was a sound like nothing she’d heard before. A sharp, reverberating thud. Something had hit the cupboard door while she held it open. Slowly, nervously, she closed it to see what it had been. The paring knife was sticking out of the door, as though it had been thrown.

Leah turned. The kitchen was bright, well-lit, and empty.
She grabbed the phone off the counter, and hurried upstairs to the bedroom. She would throw on some flip-flops and proper clothes, grab her keys, and get the hell out. The goat ranch up the road was owned by two very friendly retirees, she was certain that they would help her. There was no guarantee that the roads would be clear, probably covered in water and debris, maybe even a fallen tree, some parts too muddy to drive on, but she had to try.

Her feet almost slipped on the hardwood stairs as she hurried to change. Nothing dramatic, just enough to feel like she wasn’t driving through a rain storm in her underwear. She grabbed a pair of jeans off the closet floor and pulled them on, her back to the window. As she did, the room filled with the pale white light that had woken her up less than an hour before. The security light, coming to life once more. She didn’t want to turn around and look out the window, but she made her body move to where she could look out and see.

There was no redheaded girl, but the light stayed on.

Calmly, Leah slipped on her flip-flops and headed into the hall. She breathed steadily, stepped carefully. The house was colder than it should have been at the top of the stairs. The smell of rain and boggy, wet earth was pungent and overwhelming. Leah swallowed hard, steadied herself. It would be a difficult drive to the neighbour’s – she wouldn’t make it if she was in a panic. But when she got to the middle of the staircase, she couldn’t control the surge of dread that overtook her.
The front door was wide open.

The security light caught the falling rain, casting patterned shadows on the floor. Leah braced herself and headed straight for the door. She would run right for the car and jump in, without any kind of hesitation. She made for the lanai, but something at the corner of her eye, in the dust grey shadows of the living room, moved.
Leah froze. She couldn’t help herself. She turned to look.

The redheaded girl was standing there, her head tilted to one side. This close, Leah could notice things she hadn’t been able to see from the upstairs window. Like the black dirt under the girl’s fingernails, the disarray of the orderly hairstyle, the rips and stains on the long floral dress.

“I’m sorry,” The girl looked over her shoulder, as though she were expecting someone else to step out of the shadows behind her.

The security light switched off.

Credit To – Susan Eckland

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Bound

February 27, 2015 at 12:00 AM
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Paul pulled the envelope out of his leather attaché case and settled into an uncomfortable chair behind a large writing desk. Late afternoon sun filtered in through the bay window but couldn’t defeat the dankness of the old house, nor the dreariness of his mood. Luckily, he had had the mind to pack a few battery powered lanterns, and one of them now provided enough illumination to examine his mother’s ornate handwriting on the back of the envelope.

“For Paul” it read. He traced the letters with his fingers, each one written with care and love. Pensively, he squeezed the bridge of his nose and released an exhausted breath. He had admittedly taken the loss of his mother very hard, as she was a kind, bright, thoughtful woman taken way before her time – but he was a lucky man, and had married a woman who exuded those same qualities and had been blessed with a daughter whose genes seemingly came from the women in his family.

He had received the envelope several weeks before at the allocation of mother’s will. Its content undoubtedly was a letter, most likely full of sage advice and love. He had agonized over opening it, though, as he was unable to come to terms with reading his mother’s final words, but his wife, Lauren, had finally convinced him that they might provide comfort rather than sadness.

With final resolve, he retrieved a dusty letter opener from the desk and began to read the handwritten letter.
__________________________

To my dearest Paul,

There are not enough words in the dictionary to express my love for you, Lauren, and your sweet baby Emily. I only hope that I have shown you that love over your twenty five years of life. My health may be fading, but know that I will always be with you, and that I’m sorry for what I’m about to reveal to you. I fear though that there isn’t enough forgiveness on God’s green Earth for what I’ve done.
If you are reading this, that means that my final will and testament have been executed and you are probably surprised to find that you are now the owner of a small farm house in Creekside, Pennsylvania. It is the house that I grew up in. Heed my words, Paul – Do not go to that house. Put the deed in the back of your safe, claim it as an asset, but otherwise forget that it exists. You may be curious to see the childhood home of your mother, but please – Do not go to that house.
I’m going to tell you why, Paul, and you may not have the same respect for me afterwards, but it is imperative that you understand the gravity of the situation.
My parents and I had moved from that house when I was around fifteen to live with Aunt June. However, when I was a few years younger than you are now, fresh out of college, I was offered a teaching position at a school a few towns over from that childhood home. You know my parents both passed away shortly after we had moved to California, and now I’m telling you that they too had left me that house in their will – but they never provided me with the knowledge I’m about to bestow upon you, my poor, sweet Paul.
Out of convenience, I moved into the house several weeks before summer ended. The town hadn’t changed much; it was still secluded, surrounded by forest, and its residents were still fairly strange and private. They did remember who I was, though, and they definitely remembered the accident that caused my family to leave.
As I was buying some groceries, the woman behind the counter recognized me and told me that I shouldn’t have come back and strongly suggested that I should turn around and leave right then and there. She grabbed me by the hand forcefully to express her urgency. There was a scar on her arm, just like the one I bear – the one I told you I got from falling off of my bike as a little girl. I was admittedly a little freaked out, but not enough to take her advice. That whole town is a little kooky, and at the time I thought I was being shunned for what happened when I was a teenager, but there was a fearfulness in her tone that has sat with me all these years.
The house had remained untouched for 8 years, and I spent that first day cleaning a thin film of dust off of everything. I was exhausted by nightfall, and, feeling that it was awkward to sleep in my parents’ old bedroom, I opted for my old one on the first floor. Because my room was small, my bed was flush against the wall, partially covering the only window in its length. A dresser and vanity were against the parallel wall. I remember collapsing into that bed that night, my body aching from moving boxes and cleaning.
I’m not sure what initially woke me up that night, Paul. I don’t recall a noise that pulled me from slumber, but I was overwhelmed by a feeling that I was not alone. Moonlight through the window cast shadows, but after a quick scan I knew the room was devoid of life save for me.
And then I saw it. In the vanity mirror. A reflection of the window. And looking in through the window was a creature that should not exist. That cannot be from this world. Too horrible for words. Just know, Paul, that this thing was evil. Even in the pale light you could see the vile intentions in its inky eyes and snarling, fanged mouth. It looked excited. And hungry. Its grey hands pressed against the glass, each elongated, alien finger leaving a filmy residue behind as it dragged its claw-like nails down the window.
My back was turned to it, my feet only a few inches away from its face – separated by a thin plane of glass. I watched it feverishly watch me through the mirror. Unable to tell if it was aware that I knew it was there, I nonetheless felt like it was waiting for me to move. I, however, was frozen with fear. Honestly, if something by the grace of God hadn’t stirred me from my sleep, the sound of its screeching nails would have woken me. I was able to quell a surprised reaction and remained still.
Maybe it was minutes, maybe it was hours, but the thing finally left.
I’d be lying to you if I told you that was the first time I ever saw it, though. I’m so sorry, Paul.
There are 3 creeks that run parallel in the woods that surround the town, a few miles apart from one another. Of all the rules given to us children of Creekside, the most important one was that we were not allowed to pass the second creek and we were strongly urged not to venture too far past the first one. My parents told me there were old foundations and wells that made it dangerous for us kids to play there and that several children had gone missing in the woods, but it was apparent that the adults of town never crossed the second creek either. A few people who had risked getting close to the second creek claimed they had seen ghosts amongst the trees, and that lore alone was enough to convince us kids to stay close to town.
My best friends growing up were Jimmy and Andy. Jimmy, you know, would later become your father, but Andy was always a bit of daredevil and troublemaker, and I was an impressionable young girl. One day, Andy has stolen a few of his dad’s cigarettes and the three of us went into the woods like a bunch of stupid hardasses to smoke them. Andy got the crazy idea that we needed to rebel even more and explore the woods past the second creek. Jimmy and I were scared, for it had been so engrained in us to never do it, but Andy was persuasive.
Andy crossed the ancient looking bridge over the second creek first, cigarette in mouth. Jimmy and I delayed across from him. It became clear that Jimmy wasn’t going to do it. He threw a rock at Andy, called him an idiot and started walking up the path towards town.
I begged Andy to come back with us, and I must have thrown my head back in frustration when he teased me. That’s when I saw it. The grey, gargoyle-like creature. It was perched in a tree, not too far away from where Andy was standing. It looked like a vulture eyeing its prey. I had barely started to scream when it leapt from the tree and tackled Andy to the ground.
Jimmy ran back to my side, but neither of us had any idea what to do, let alone how to comprehend the fear. I could hear Andy screaming and fighting, and I swear, Paul, that sound has never left my ears. I grabbed a rock and ran across the bridge. I hit the thing over the head, but it swiftly knocked me back into the water. I struggled but Jimmy pulled me out on the other side just in time to see the creature make off with Andy’s limp body through the trees.
I don’t know how long Jimmy and I sat there in shock, but the stars were out when we reached my house. We told our worried parents and the other adults who had gathered there our story. All of them seemed more shocked that Andy and I had crossed the creek than by descriptions of the creature. Jimmy’s mom let out a cry of relief when she realized her boy had not crossed – but my parents – my parents started packing up loose belongings and clothing hastily. We left town that night, and drove the whole way Aunt June’s, only stopping once, outside of Chicago. My parents died only sixth months later from a disease that doctors couldn’t identify.
I was young, and didn’t understand. Everything was a blur and I couldn’t discern one emotion and memory from another. At some point, I started believing that Andy had fallen in the creek and hit his head on a rock, and that my parents’ passing was an awful coincidence. It was easier to cope that way.
And then I saw that hideous face in the window like it had claimed me nearly a decade before and had been waiting for me ever since. I was relieved when it left, but fearful for I did not know where it had gone. I remained frozen the rest of the night.
Early the next morning, a knock came from the front door. I hesitated, gripped again by fear, but it was Jimmy. A nostalgic reunion was halted by his urgency to discuss something with me. I knew what it was before he even sat at the kitchen table. I wasn’t prepared for what he was about to tell me, though, Paul. I’ll spare you the details, and tell you only what you need to know.
This thing that lives in the woods has been there for a really long time, Jimmy says, far before the original settlement of Creekside. Nobody knows exactly where it came from, or much else about it, only that it was responsible for the vicious deaths of many of the town’s children. It likes young blood, Jimmy told me. Nobody could figure out a way to kill it either.
But the thing was conniving, and sentient, and realized that if the people left, its food would too. On the other hand, the townspeople feared that wherever they went, the creature would follow. So a deal had been made in blood. Anything that moved between the oval the second and third creek created belonged to the creature, and in turn, the creature would never harm anything that didn’t cross that boundary.
Jimmy told me I belonged to the creature because I had crossed the bridge, and my parents had been killed because they betrayed the pact. You see, Paul, it’s a curse. I know it’s hard to believe.
It didn’t take me long to make the decision to leave Creekside again. Jimmy didn’t know definitively what geographically bound the creature, but had done enough research to estimate that it only travelled within the confines of Creekside and nearby townships. He had also discovered similar tales of creatures around the world. These things are all over the place, and – I’m sorry, Paul. This is not important now. Check the files within your father’s study, they’ll tell you more than you need to know. Don’t delve too deep, though. It was his obsession with it that cost him his life – not the car accident I lied to you about. I’m so, so sorry.
Jimmy helped me throw a few boxes into my car, and promised to meet me again soon. I turned around a last time to share a moment of silent solitude with him before I got in my car. As I turned back, I could see terror transform his face. He called my name, but I didn’t have appropriate time to react. The creature bounded from the woods and leapt to the roof of my car.
It crouched, dropping its face to be even with mine. Sneering, its rancid breath smelled of dried blood. My knees weakened and buckled as Jimmy swooped in to tackle the thing off of the roof. Jimmy fought with all his might, but wasn’t a match and ended up crumpled a few feet away from me. In hysterics, I tried to flee but quickly found I had nowhere to run. The thing caught me promptly and dragged me into the woods with little effort. Jimmy composed himself enough to start running after us, screaming for me to make a deal. I lost consciousness before I could make sense of what Jimmy was telling me, a fleeting memory of Andy whispering in my mind.
Paul, please remember how much I love you as you struggle to manage the final parts of my story.
A small fire blinded me as I awoke on cold, damp ground, surrounded by trinkets of times gone by. An old wind up children’s toy. A few dog collars. Andy’s engraved lighter. Bones were littered everywhere.
The creature sat squat across from me, watching me zealously. It was muttering anxiously and rocking on its wolfish feet. I was surprised, as ancient as Jimmy told me this thing was, to find that it spoke English. “Spoiled,” it said, gravelly. “You spoiled.” I remember its coal eyes following me as I nervously brought myself to a sitting position. “I knew it was you. Too old now. Spoiled.”
I seemed to be in a cavern of some sort with two tunnels that faded to blackness, neither discernable as the exit. I haven’t forgotten its words, nor the look in its eyes when it stopped rocking. “You can’t leave. You are mine. You belong to me. You crossed the water. But you are too old to eat. You spoiled.”
Realizing the thing was contemplating over whether to kill me or not, Jimmy’s screams strained through my head, and I understand that he had meant for me to make a deal with the creature for my life. The creature liked to bargain. So I asked it, Paul, what it wanted in exchange for letting me go.
It thought awhile, before it smiled maliciously. It wanted one of my children, and one of my children’s children. I wondered if this thing had been around long enough to inspire Rumpelstiltskin. I don’t know, Paul, but I took that deal. I nodded my head, and agreed that when I had children, I would bring one of them to the creature, and if I had grandchildren – I would sacrifice one of them as well. It might seem like a rough bargain, but it would get two for letting one go.
You might be sickened now, Paul, but realize that after considering the offer thoughtfully, I simply intended to just never have children. I resolved to give up becoming a mother. I thought I had tricked it.
The creature took my hand, cutting its claw deep into my forearm creating a brand that would bond me for life. Then, it simply let me go. Jimmy, and several others he had gathered, waited at the bridge. None of them asked me how I survived, for they all knew by the scarlet letter on my arm.
As you know, Jimmy would leave Creekside and settle with me near Aunt June in California. On good conscience, I couldn’t sell the house and put another family in the vicinity of that evil thing. I had become resigned to the fact that I had to abandon the opportunity of motherhood, but could never bring myself to permanently and medically destroy the chance of pregnancy. I just couldn’t do it, Paul.
And Jimmy and I were careful, even after we married. But, several years later, I became pregnant with you. And your twin brother, Andrew.
I know that’s a shock. I’m not proud of what I did, Paul, and I regret never telling you about your brother. I knew, though, that the creature would take me, as it did my parents, if I betrayed our deal. The scar on my arm burned long before I gave birth to you. I took that baby, Paul, that infant, only a few days old. I took him back to Creekside and left him on the other side of the bridge on the second creek. I am unworthy of forgiveness, and to this day, the memory induces nausea and unbearable heartbreak. It was an evil thing for me to do, but it let me watch you grow up into the man you are. I’ve given you every ounce of goodness I could.
And that’s why I’m dying, Paul. I knew Lauren was with child a month before you announced it because the scar on my arm was on fire – reminding me of my dues. I can’t pay them this time. I can’t do that to you, or sweet Emily. I have lived my life, and only hope that I can be reunited with your father and Andrew on the other side. I fear that my actions have provided for more insidious consequences, however.
I will repeat my initial warning, Paul. Do not go to that house in Creekside. Only evil waits there. I can’t bear to imagine if the creature is able to reach Emily. Our sweet, sweet Emily.
I love you, Paul, with my whole heart.
I am so sorry, but do not deserve your forgiveness.
– Mom
_____________________

Paul put the letter down on the writing desk. He could distinguish disturbed and disgusted emotions amongst a primal fear and sadness. He couldn’t categorize and understand his thoughts.

He was unable to tell if these emotions were targeted towards his mother or himself.

His mother had made some awful and anguishing decisions, sure, but he probably should have read the letter before he brought his wife and daughter to this place.

Suddenly, his mother’s childhood house seemed a little darker. Dazed, he tried desperately to grasp the connotations of his mother’s letter.

The sound of glass smashing broke his stupor – The sound of glass shattering, the ferocity of his wife’s screams, and the fading wail of his daughter’s cries.

Credit To – Bnlala

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Incorporeal

February 26, 2015 at 12:00 AM
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Recognition without context.

A wall. A painting. A fireplace. A lamp.

I see these things and I know them, but I do not know why. Who once told me what a fireplace is and what it is for? How do I recognize it without memory, and yet have visions in my mind’s eye of it crackling with light and warmth?

I fear the lighting of it for I have been nothing but a coldness. I feel as though I am made of drifts of snow dyed black by shadow and can feel my mind only in the darkness. That is why I sweep through the hallways at night and break the bulbs in the low lights. I cannot think while they are lit, and I must think. I must find an answer.

Something stirs.

It is a doll with black hair, dressed in pyjamas. I have seen the dolls before. This one is the smallest. It goes into the kitchen and I follow, keeping a reasonable distance. I am intrigued by the dolls and their clockwork movements – in and out of their beds, to and from the doors, sitting at the dining room table with their plates and cups. Their forms give them advantages I do not have, and I watch them often.

The doll goes to the kitchen while I follow behind. Its tiny body is radiant with sleep, and its shoeless feet make almost no noise as it goes to the refrigerator door and opens it. Light spills out onto the doll and onto me. I cannot have that, my mind has been so focused tonight. Anger and desperation surge within me, bracing me forward as I wrench the door handle from the little doll and slam the refrigerator shut.

This is when the doll falls into me. The force of the blow knocking it backwards, into the center of me. I feel its pulse, the rhythm of its heart, the soothing draw of its breath. My memory mingles with something inside of the little head, and I can see new green grass, streams full of fish, muddy rubber boots, a sky and a world beyond the upstairs, downstairs and basement of this place.

How desperate I am to see more! To take all of the memories inside of this doll and make them my own, expanding my knowledge and answering the secrets of this existence. But it is only seconds between the push that closes the door and the doll landing harshly on the stone floor.

It begins to wail, to sob, to mewl like an injured kitten.

I can hear the rest of them, marching down the stairs and leaving a trail of light behind them. There is little time to flee, so I open all of the cupboards at once, searching desperately for a corner of darkness to hide in before…

The electric light of the kitchen is switched on.

Credit To – Susan Eckland

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Building 497

February 25, 2015 at 12:00 AM
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I

As I lay here in the darkness, I wonder how much time left do I have.

It all started a couple of weeks ago. Right after graduation, everyone started talking about their plans and how they were going to make it in the industry. I majored in journalism, so I was supposed to move to a big city and write about trending topics or whatever celebrities were up to. In order to gain recognition or to have the chance to meet someone that could place me on the map. Later on, I would move to more interesting things, but somehow that never appealed to me.

I always wanted to write about creepy things, you know, things that almost no one wants to talk about. I remember when I was in high school, because that’s when I did it all. I went to ghost towns, secluded forests and even spent a couple of nights in various haunted houses. I saw some things, I won’t lie, but everything was under control. I just kept my cool and let my pen and paper do the talking.

That’s how I got the scholarship that led me to go to college in the first place.

After graduation, I eventually got a job in a place that was on the outskirts of New York City. It was called Creak Town. I had never heard of it, but after doing some research I found out that even though the population was smaller than 1,000 people, there were stories upon stories of weird sightings, missing people and even one or two tales of weird creatures that quite often terrorised the town people.

Once I found that out, I decided that I had to go there. And I did.

I arrived in my old Chevy at around 2 AM on a Thursday. I parked my car a couple of blocks away from the flat that I would be renting. I put on my coat, my suitcase in one hand and my camera on the other. I was eager to see something incredibly terrifying in the depths of the night. So I walked throughout this quiet town. I looked everywhere. I tried to find even the slightest thing that could give me the creeps, but there just wasn’t any that night. So I put my camera down, and with a frown on my face I made my way to my department.

The map stated that I was one street away from my new place, but in the distance I did not really see anything that seemed even remotely similar to the image I had pictured in my head of what a five story building would look like. And that’s because there just wasn’t any in sight.

I started walking on the street that was marked in the map searching for number 497. 452, 459, 478, 497; there it was. But this was no five story building, it looked more like a medium-sized one-floor house. From the outside, I could see a light and the slight noise of some chattering, so I knocked on the door with a confused face.

I was greeted by a short, old lady. She wore her hair in a bun and wore glasses larger than her face. She was smiling though, and after trying to focus her vision, her eyes suddenly landed on me. She called my name and in a very cheerful scream she quickly moved to give me an enormous hug, that felt as if my lungs would burst, and say that she was waiting for me. They were waiting for me.

In my mind, most of this didn’t make any sense at all but she was a sweat old lady so I just couldn’t find the strength to get away from her embrace.

II

Later on, I discovered that she had lied, though it was not her intention. She claimed that the form she had to fill when I asked her about the place had a pretty small font so she confused a couple of details. That explained why my medium-sized flat with hard rock finishes, full kitchen, two bathrooms and view of the town was nothing more than two rooms in which you could find a mattress, half a kitchen, and concrete walls. Though there was in fact a window, almost on the ceiling, that did show you a view of the town when you stepped on a chair to look through it.

I was a bit bothered at the beginning, but also a bit tired, so I just smiled and nodded until the old lady went to her room. I figured that I would look for some place else in the morning.

The lady said the other rooms were already occupied, so without making too much noise, I walked to the door she pointed would me mine. I entered the room and locked the door behind me.

III

I opened my eyes when I first heard it. Someone was screaming. At first it was a long lament and with my mind just starting to slowly wake up from a dream, I immediately assumed that it was my imagination. Until it was there, again. It was the voice of a woman screaming for help. I felt a cold breeze fill the room followed by the sensation of chills creeping up all over my body. Scary images started to come to mind after hearing that, but then I also thought it could be that old lady. Perhaps she had fallen and she couldn’t move, perhaps she needed urgent assistance to move something that had fallen on top of her. That image seemed to be even more scary, so with nothing but my boxers and t-shirt I ran to the door following the screams.

Outside my door, I could see the hallway that I had crossed just hours before, but now the lights were off and in the shadows I could only see the edge of five doors, which stood next to mine. My room was the one at the end of the hallway, and the screaming was coming from the other corner, so without thinking about it too much I started running in the dark, looking for the old lady that in my mind was crying for help. As I was doing this, a thought came to my mind, it was more of a question, that started to take form in my head, and as my hand touched the doorknob it came to full form “why wasn’t anybody else coming out of the other doors to help the poor screaming lady?”.

My entire body was filled with adrenaline that had gathered inside of me as I was about to open the door from where the screaming was coming. In my mind, I would just throw the door out of its place and find out why the hell she was screaming, but once I was there, the screaming had stopped and now I was quite unsure as to what I should do next. I was still thinking that perhaps it was my imagination. Perhaps I was just so tired that my mind started to play tricks on me. But then I heard something else. Somebody was whispering something. Interrupting the silence, a voice crept upon me until everything was quiet except for that. “Help me” was what the voice was saying. In that second, I burst through the open door and saw the old lady standing in the middle of the room, facing the window. She was now wearing a black piece of fabric on her head and seemed to be a little bit taller than I remembered. Her back was just slightly bigger. In just a split second, the old lady turned to look at me and I was left speechless. There were no eyes in her face, and her mouth was larger than anything I have ever seen.

I froze for a second and my body stopped responding to my commands. But my mind was screaming for me to move, to run the hell away from that room. After trying for what seemed like forever, my hand reacted and shut the door, creating a barrier between this monster and me.

There was nothing but darkness in the hallway. I tried for a second to go back to my room, but later reminded myself of that thing that I had seen and I opted to run to the other side. I went running towards the exit. There was no plan in my mind, I just wanted to get the hell out of there. I did not know why I was running, but I was hoping it wasn’t for my life. And as I was sprinting trying to reach that red EXIT sign, I heard the door behind me almost being broken out of its place, and then heavy footsteps started to follow me. I was going out of my mind. Every step I took seemed to get me closer to the exit, but somehow I just didn’t reach the door. Almost like if it was double the distance, every time I came closer to touch it. When I finally touched the doorknob, I turned around to take one last look and see if that thing was behind me, and I lamented my decision. There was nothing in the floor, no sighting of an old lady or of that thing that I had just seen. Just as I was beginning to regain my composure, I felt something on my nose, a drop of something had fallen from the ceiling. And when I looked up, there it was, like a huge spider, that thing was looking at me with no eyes, and with a huge grind in its face. I pushed the door open, and it didn’t work. I felt like I was going to have a heart attack and in the next second, everything was black.

IV

I opened my eyes when I first heard it. Someone was screaming. At first it was a long lament and with my mind just starting to wake up from a dream, I immediately assumed that it was my imagination. Until it was there, again. Somebody was screaming for help. I got up in front of my bed almost immediately and I was about to go out and help whoever was screaming, but as I touched the doorknob I remembered this had already happened. Panic started filling my whole body and as I lay there with my back to the door, I realised that I had to get out of there.

I took a deep breath, held my own and unlocked the door. At the count of three, I would sprint all the way to the entrance, and get the hell away from this sordid place. 1, 2… And there I was. I opened the door and ran, with my eyes almost close, to the start of the hallway to the left, and I hit myself in the head so bad that I fell to the floor. Where the hallway was, there was a wall now. With my hands in my face, I noticed that I had broken something. There was blood all over my eyes. I almost couldn’t breath. I forgot about the world for one moment, and just as I was about to get on my feet again, I noticed there was nothing but silence. The screaming had stopped. And just as I was laying on the floor, I felt a cold breeze surround me. When I looked behind me, there it was once again, in the middle of the hallway, with a black dress and a veil over its face. A little taller than before, that thing that used to be the old lady was just standing there with its hands together, watching me.

Once again, I blacked out.

V

I have lost count of how many times I had woken up to that sound. The screams. And every time I would try to run away from this place, something was different, something changes, and when I try to escape, she finds me. Every time. But I discovered, that if I kept my door closed, she can’t enter. So I just sat here with my pen and paper, and I wrote everything I have tried, in the hopes that someone can someday avoid doing the same thing I did.

As I was about to finish writing this, I heard noise outside. I stepped on the chair and took a look through the town window. There was a girl, with a suitcase, and she was heading directly to this place. I started screaming at the top of my lungs until she was out of my vision sight. Could she hear me?

VI

The lady says there are people on all the other rooms, so I walk silently to the door she points as mine. I enter the room and put the lock on it. I see a beautiful bed and I get incredibly tired, so much that I just fall to sleep right in that second.

I open my eyes when I first hear it. Outside, someone is screaming. At first it was a long cry, but now I hear nothing. I blame my mind for giving me another one of those stupid nightmares.

However, I slowly go to the door of my room, I open it and take a look at what is out there. Outside my door, I see the hallway that I had crossed just moments before, but now the lights are off and in the shadows I can only see the edge of the six doors that are standing next to mine.

And there it is, again. It is the voice of a man, screaming for help. I have to go and take a look.

Credit To – Arturo Hernandez

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The Pond

February 24, 2015 at 12:00 AM
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As I walked, the snow crunched beneath my rubber boots. Every so often I would step on a twig, sending a cracking sound into the air as it snapped in half. There was no wind, and almost no noise besides my footsteps, and the birds calling.

Hunting was a big pastime of mine. I would spend hours walking through the large forest, tracking down animals. I would venture out into any weather, it didn’t matter if it was raining, freezing, or blistering hot. It had been snowing a lot lately, which was good news to me, as I loved snow.

I was making my way over to a favorite spot of mine, a large pond in the middle of these woods. As I trodded along, I took in the scenery. It was beautiful, like a winter wonderland. Despite my happy thoughts, I couldn’t help but think of an awful incident that happened ten or so years back. A young man, around the age of twenty, went out hiking in this forest. When he never came home, the authorities were called, and they went out to find him. Sadly, what they found was his lifeless body, sunken to the bottom of the pond. The poor boy had drowned, and every time I went to that pond, I thought about how it was his grave. Since the accident, the children of the town would tell ghost stories about the forest, and would dare each other to see how far they could go out into it.

I reached the pond, frozen and glistening. It was so cold, I knew that I shouldn’t stay out to long. I started to make my way over to a large boulder. I liked to sit on it, and watch for wildlife. As I came to it, however, my foot got caught on a root jutting up from the ground. My body twisted, and I fell over. I fell flat on my stomach, and my rifle flew from my grasp. It landed on the ice of the frozen pond, and slid a little ways out.

I cursed to myself quietly, and stood up. I had to get it back, but I had to be careful not to slip and fall again. I carefully placed my foot on the ice. Then the other one. I started to walk across. I got to my rifle, and bent down slowly to pick it up. At that moment, I heard a loud crack.
Suddenly, the ice beneath me fell into the frigid water, and I fell along with it.

The water felt like fangs bitting into my skin, and my muscles tensed up and became stiff. I thrashed and gasped for air, trying to pull myself out of the hole in the ice, but it was so cold, and it hurt. Water began to fill my boots, making them like heavy weights. I started to sink downwards. I continued to thrash, only wearing myself out. I couldn’t see in the dark, murky water, and I feared trying to open my eyes, as the water was so cold. I couldn’t let myself hit the pond’s bottom, I knew I wouldn’t be able to find the hole I fell through, and I would be trapped. I fought for my life, I didn’t want to die, I didn’t want to end up like the poor boy from years ago.

I became light headed, and knew that it was over. However, just when I thought I was a dead man, I could make out something reaching into the water. It was a hand. I saw it moving, and reaching down within arms reach of me. I shot my own hands out, and grabbed onto it. It pulled me up, and my head emerged from the water. I kept my eyes closed and my head down, and with the person’s help I was pulled completly out of the pond.

“Oh….God…thank you, thank God you were here……” I said in a quiet, raspy voice. I opened my eyes to see my savior, but to my great surprise, there was no one there. I looked around, glancing everywhere, but there was no one anywhere.

I never went back to that pond. Whenever the children would tell ghost stories about the drowned boy in the woods, I would listen, because I was sure that I owed him my life.

Credit To – Mara

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My Grandfather Suffered from Dementia

February 23, 2015 at 12:00 AM
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Grandpa was 97 years old when he passed away.

He lived far from where his three children had settled. Grandma died when I was a small child, and he ended up remarrying another woman a few years later who demanded that he move out west so that she could be nearer to her sons. She was a piece of work, was Grandma Hester. We all wondered how Grandpa could stand her. It turns out that perhaps he could not.

We’re not precisely sure when he developed dementia, but it was probably years before we noticed it. He’d tell us about people he was speaking to, or visiting with, or a trip he took. Years later, after we learned he was suffering from dementia, we’d learn that conversation, that visit or that trip never actually happened. For all we really know, any story he told us from the last decade and a half leading up to his coming back east could be a false memory. We would have no way of knowing. Hester rarely communicated with us herself.

Probably our first clue that Grandpa wasn’t himself anymore happened a few weeks after he came back east to live with my parents. Most of the family had settled in one area; my wife and I lived in the south end of our city, as did one set of cousins, but my father and his two sisters all lived in the north, within driving distance of each other. A few of my aunts’ children had moved out of town, and my brother had as well, but there were still enough of us around that Grandpa could visit with. We would often have gatherings at my parents’ house where Grandpa would either hold court with some story or would go to sleep.

One afternoon, my daughter Breanne, who was in her late teens at the time, came in from playing with my cousin’s kids and sat down at the table, where Grandpa had been napping. He suddenly woke and smiled at her.

“Well, hello, Claudia!” he said, brightly. Claudia was my aunt; Dad’s youngest sister.

“I’m Breanne, Grandpa,” said my daughter.

“No,” said Grandpa, almost sounding offended. “You’re my daughter, Claudia.”

Later that same month, he told my aunts and uncles the story of how he came out east after living with Hester got to be too much. “I prayed to the Lord,” said Grandpa. “And the next thing I knew, Martin was there.” Martin was my father. I remembered him driving out to the tiny, cold house on a hill in Colorado to get Grandpa. He had not come due to any divine intervention. He had come because Grandpa called him in the night and pleaded with him to come get him.

We all loved Grandpa, but caring for him was not easy. For one thing, Grandpa had gotten it into his head that he was a young, single man with many years ahead of him, and the only thing missing was a young woman at his side. If he spoke for any length of time with a younger woman, he became convinced that she was in love with him, and that perhaps she should be his new bride. Hester was even still alive at this point. He had forgotten her utterly.

The women he made advances on included my mother, two of my cousins and my own wife. Thankfully, he couldn’t do much more than talk, so it was just a matter of politely changing the subject whenever he would start with that, but it got worse when he decided he could do things like take walks on his own or try to drive my father’s car.

Dad and Mom didn’t let him go on walks by himself, but that didn’t mean he didn’t sneak away sometimes when Dad was away and Mom was in the basement. He had to use a walker to get around, and simply couldn’t do stairs, but refused to admit this to anyone, including himself, leading to a lot of falls. He would also get confused as to where he was, or where he lived. At times, during his walks, he would attempt to find the old family home that he raised my father and aunts in, despite it having been long gone since before I was born. Dad picked him up from a police station, where he had been taken after some patrol officers saw him wandering around, clearly lost.

The time he tried to drive Dad’s car was after that. He decided that the reason he got lost is because he had to walk. He managed to get the E-break off and rolled right down the fairly steep incline outside my parents’ house, crashing into a fence. The damage was minimal, but after that incident, my parents realized he needed to be in a full time care facility.

He got worse after that.

My father visited him three times a week. I have no idea how often my aunts went, or if they even did. I tended to only go when there was a family gathering, and increasingly I began to realize that he had no clue who I was. He’d smile and greet me as though I was someone he had just met. He’d tell me about his children, describing them as “little kids”, and even going as far as to invent a friend who was looking after them while he was in this home with “all these old people.” Grandpa was 93 at the time. He was much older than many of the others who lived there. But somehow, they were the “old people”, while he was not.

But when I say he got worse, I mean he changed. The false memories, the refusal to acknowledge that he was elderly, the attempts to chat up ladies and inability to remember that his children were grown and that he had grandchildren and great-grandchildren had been a part of who he was for years, ever since his early 80’s.

But he had never been violent before. That changed one night when Dad was called to come to the facility quickly. Grandpa had wandered into the wrong room, and had come out screaming, raising his walker up in the air and slamming it into the ground, taking a few swings at people who tried to calm him down. He began accusing the staff of stealing his things. He was bellowing as loud as he could: “Give them back! Give them back!”

I wasn’t there for it, and I still have a hard time picturing it. Grandpa barely raised his voice above normal volume during the last decade of his life, except to laugh.

When Dad got there, they had gotten him into his room, and he was somewhat appeased. Somewhat. He had a can of Ensure in a tube sock, and almost hit my father in the head with it when he came in. He apologized (Dad was one of the few people he always recognized), and said he had been waiting for “the thief” to come back. “A man who’d steal from me’d just as soon kill me,” he explained. The Ensure-in-a-sock was his weapon to fend off the thief. He told Dad about the men who had come to give him all his things back. “They put it all back, just like it was,” he said. “Didn’t take ‘em long.”

Later that night, he told Dad about how much it had scared Florence. He hated that she’d had to go through that. Florence was my grandmother; the one who died when I was six.

He finished by saying that Florence had gone somewhere, and when he went looking for her: “They told me she was dead. One day, they’re gonna come looking for me, and they’re gonna find me dead.” That was a jolt to my father. Grandpa had never, at any point before that, acknowledged his mortality, his advanced age, or the fact that he had probably no more than a handful of years left at best. Aging, and death, was something that happened to other people. But here he was, accepting that death was near.

That wasn’t the last night he mentioned the thief. He even gave the thief a name; Charlie Rosen. It was strange that he would invent a whole person, name included. He didn’t even name the friend who was looking after his kids. In fact, that person ceased to exist; Charlie Rosen had stolen his kids. Had killed Florence. Had come to his home in Colorado and routinely taunted him, beat him, and he even declared that Hester had been sleeping with him. He remembered her now, and was certain that she and Charlie were ganging up on him to make his life a living hell.

In the last six months of his life, he would become increasingly agitated. Dad could not have a single visit wherein Grandpa would not mention Charlie. And then the violence started up again.

In one visit, Grandpa accused Dad of being Charlie, and attacked him. After that, Dad’s visits dropped to once a week, and he didn’t stay long. Once, I went with him. It was the last time I saw my grandfather alive, and I will never forget it.

“Charlie was here again today,” Grandpa told us as soon as we arrived. “He told me I couldn’t leave this room anymore. He’s trapped me here.”

“Dad, this is where you live,” my father tried to explain. “See, here’s a picture of Mother. Why would Charlie let you keep that?”

“He killed your mother, you know,” said Grandpa. “Murdered her in her sleep.”

“Mother had an aneurysm,” said Dad. “You and I decided together to unplug the machine. She died in her sleep, but no one killed her.”

“No, no, it was Charlie.” Grandpa’s voice was not agitated. It was solid, like he knew for a fact what he was saying. “He poisoned her. Made something go wrong in her head. I didn’t know it then, but I realized it later, after he introduced me to Hester. Conned me into marrying her. He’s my personal demon, that Charlie.”

Dad finally had had enough. “There is no Charlie!” he said, nearly shouting. You aren’t supposed to correct people who have dementia; it just confuses them more and makes them upset. But my father forgot this in that moment. “Charlie is someone you made up! Mother died naturally, you met Hester at a coffee shop years after Mother died, and while she was not a nice woman, she was not unfaithful to you! Please, stop talking about Charlie!”

“Dear Lord in Heaven,” said Grandpa. “He got to you. He told you to say these things. You’re part of it too!”

“Uh, Grandpa,” I said. “Why don’t we start a game of checkers?” Usually he loved checkers.

“I don’t want to play any fucking checkers!” screamed Grandpa. I couldn’t have been more surprised if he’d hit me. Grandpa had never used profanity in his life. “By-words”, as he called them, were only used by bad men, as far as he was concerned. “Not with you! Not with him! Charlie Rosen’s pet demons! He comes to me every day. He talks to me about Florence. He taunts me. He reads my mind and he takes thoughts away and puts in new ones, worse ones. He tells me about how he rapes my little ones. How he and Hester keep them half-starved and chained in their basement. I can’t stop him! He can go inside my mind! He’s controlling me!”

We left after that, without saying goodbye.

Driving home, I almost wanted to cry. This kind, loving man was ending his days as a raving, violent lunatic. It wasn’t right. It wasn’t fair. What kind of monster was this Charlie?

That thought stopped me cold. For an instant, I had accepted that Charlie was real. Giving my head a shake, I resolved to think about something else. But an image of Charlie had been forming in my mind, beginning a few months back, when Grandpa had first started talking about him. I only now realized that when Grandpa spoke of this demonic man, I was picturing him in my mind, and I could see him as clearly as I could memories of real people.

I thought of the last time I had visited Grandpa in that tiny house in the mountains of Colorado, when I was a teenager, sitting at that little round table while Hester served us some of her inedible glop, and I would see a man standing in the corner of the kitchen, watching us eat. A tall, gangly man with leathery skin stretched over sharp-looking bone and corded muscle. Shaggy grey hair hanging down, obscuring the upper part of his face, his smile stretching like a knife-slash across his jaw.

I thought of the wedding. I was twelve years old. I met Hester for the first time. And standing a ways behind her was that same man. I remember a family gathering at the facility Grandpa was concurrently staying at. Didn’t we pass that man in the hall once?

No, of course not. These were just images my mind had cooked up the more Grandpa talked about this shady character that never existed. The brain can do that; insert false people in your memory just because you decide, subconsciously, to remember them. It doesn’t mean you’re insane; it’s just another way for your brain to play tricks on you. Grandpa had invented a person who he talked about with such conviction, as though Charlie was real. So my mind had conjured up a Charlie Rosen. But there was no Charlie Rosen.

Grandpa died two months later. I remember the funeral like it was yesterday. I still wake up at night in a cold sweat, remembering.

Everything was normal at the start. My parents, my aunts and uncles, my wife and I, and our children, my brother and his wife, and their son, my cousins, their spouses and their children, we all gathered under the same roof for the first time in years. No one was missing. No one was out of town and couldn’t make it. Two of my cousins I hadn’t seen since they were children. It was nice to catch up with them.

The service was nice, as well. The pastor who served the spiritual needs at Grandpa’s facility was the officiator. Grandpa looked calm and peaceful, whole, so unlike what he had been in the last few months of life. I started to feel calm myself; Grandpa was where he belonged now, where the devils of his own fevered, decaying brain couldn’t get to him anymore.

And then we drove to the cemetery. The coffin was lowered. We all sprinkled a handful of dirt on the coffin and began our walk back to the cars. And then the gravedigger came out of the shadows to start shoveling the rest of the dirt. I could barely read the embroidered name tag on his coveralls. It looked like “C. Rose” or “C. Risen”. Or…no. It couldn’t be.

He was tall, gangly, with leathery skin, sharp-looking bones, corded muscle, long grey hair. And that smile. That smile that haunts my nightmares to this day.

I watched as this phantom dumped shovel-full after shovel-full of dirt on my grandfather’s coffin. He was laughing, softly, under his breath, but I have never heard such cruel laughter.

Today, I felt like I had to write all this down. To make sure I remember it all, before things get worse. Because today, my father called me to complain that Charlie was driving past his house and staring in his windows.

Credit To – WriterJosh

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