Spectrophobia

December 23, 2012 at 12:00 PM
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Mirrors surround us, human beings, through all our history. Even before the first mirror was invented, one could see his reflection in some body of water. Whatever happened in the world, the mirrors would reflect everything and everyone. They have retained the millions of faces including the ones that belonged to madmen, miscreants and murderers.

In the middle of the night, I woke up in cold sweat – for the third time in a week. I couldn’t sleep anymore thinking about the creature who wanted to hurt me and my children. I lived in a constant fear, and noone could help me, neither police, nor a psychoanalist. The most terrible thing was that I couldn’t tell anyone the whole truth, and if I did, I would end up in a lunatic asylum. They would take away my kids and find them another family, which would be obviously better than living with a schizophreniac mother.

It started about a year ago when my husband was found dead in a hotel where he stayed while going on a business trip to another town. He would go in such journeys quite often, and I never thought that something terrible could happen. I still remember that morning when I got a phone call, and that voice told me that gruesome news. They found him before a broken mirror with a shard of glass in his hand. His throat was slit, and there were some other cuts on his body. The police thought that he did it himself because the door was closed from inside. However, I knew he would never do this, would never leave us alone, and even if he wanted to commit suicide, why would he choose such a horrible way?

First months after his death I didn’t imagine that someone could threaten me. Of course, I was depressed, and my life turned much harder, but it was not untill that night when an unspeakable fear took over my mind. I woke up and went to the bathroom when I saw something strange while passing by a mirror in the hallway. There was something wrong with my reflection. It could be just some kind of optical illusion what is not unusual when you look at things in the dark. However, when I went closer to the mirror, I saw something that made me jump in my skin.

It was not me in the mirror – in fact, it looked like some grotesque version of me. The back was crooked a bit, and the neck was unnaturally elongated. Its ashen face looked like a mask copying some of my features, but distorting them in some eerie way. The thing in the mirror moved, and its movements didn’t seem human. Scared out of my wits, I still tried to think rationally, and I turned on the light.

The thing disappeared. In the mirror, I could see only my usual doppelganger, although it looked really frightened. I told myself that it had been an illusion, a weird play of light and darkness. But in the morning I remembered that I had seen, and I could no more approach any mirror. At least, I’d never allow myself to get in a dark room where would be anything where you can see your reflection.

Now imagine yourself having a job where you have to meet a lot of people, where you have to worry about the way you look, and the sheer idea of looking into a mirror makes hair on your neck stand up. The worst thing was that I was afraid not only for myself, but for my children too. I told them not to look in the mirror when nobody’s around. Of course, they laughed at me telling that I was crazy. What could I do? I didn’t know anything about that creature, and I wasn’t even sure that it was real. My rational self tried to persuade that it didn’t exist, that it couldn’t exist from any reasonable point of view. But I still couldn’t chase away an idea that behind this cold glass surface hid someone or something that expected me to make some fatal mistake.

One night my daughter went to her friend for a slumber party. There, they played some stupid old game, summoning Bloody Mary or some other boogeyman. My daughter had to go in a dark room and stand before a mirror. She remembered that I had forbidden this, and although she had never believed me, that time she hesitated for some reason. The other kids laughed at her saying that her mother was away, and she could do whatever she wanted. She agreed.

I still don’t know the exact details of what happened. Different people would tell me different things. At some point, they had heard her scream, so they came in and found her on the floor with several burns on her arms and shoulders. She was taken to a hospital where she would recover her consciousness only in the morning. Medics couldn’t give me any answers, just like the cops who investigated my husband’s death. With tears in my eyes, I took her home with no idea what had happened to her. All I knew, was that my daughter had changed. First, I thought that it was a consequence of a shock that she had survived, and her doctors told me the same. Then I started to understand that something indeed was wrong.

My daughter had never been too talkative, but after that accident she completely retired into herself. I would try to talk to her, but I would hear only insults. Later, I learned that she started to skip her classes, and at some point, one of our neighbors spotted her torturing animals. I didn’t understand what was going on with her. Some people proposed me to get her to a doctor, the others, probably inseriously, advised to call a priest who would exorcise an evil spirit from her. But I already suspected that this thing had nothing to do with an illness or religion. I started to think that something had killed my daughter, taken her form and replaced her.

This idea was absurd, and I knew that. At the same time, my fear kept growing worse. One night I caught her near my son’s room with a pair of scissors. I asked her what she wanted to do, but she only laughed. I took the scissors away and told her to go to sleep, but she attacked me and hit me. Her punch was strong and painful, especially for a girl of her age. Then, I left all my doubts, and a single thought started gnawing my mind.

My son was three years younger than her, and I was afraid for him. I decided that if this thing had taked one of my kids, I couldn’t allow it to hurt the other one. Only a terrible mother would leave her daughter alone, and only an even more terrible mother would let her son live under the same roof with a bloodthirsty creature. So, one day I took my son, and we drove to my mother. I’ve told him that we were only going to visit her for some days, and that his sister couldn’t join us only because she had to prepare for her exams. I shamelessly lied, but it was a white lie. So I thought.

We’ve spent some days in safety. I still couldn’t overcome my fear who got himself a new powerful ally – the guilt. Again and again, I would think that my daughter needed my help. That I was wrong, and there was no monster in the mirror, and that leaving my daughter was an unexcusable mistake. I needed to be sure that all that I had done was right.

One day, I walked to a mirror in the living room and looked at it. I’ve seen myself, yes, I’ve seen myself. I didn’t do it for nearly a year. My skin was creeping, and my hands were shaking – I felt something strange, something unusual. “I have nothing to fear, I have nothing to fear”, I whispered to myself.

I was about to be moved in tears. My daughter could be a victim of some nervous breakdown, maybe, it was my fault, as I didn’t pay enough attention to her. She was in such a difficult age! I hated that stupid irrational fear, and I hated myself for giving up to it. All I wanted was to go back, to find her wherever she was, and whatever she had gone through because of me, just to give her a hug, to tell her that no word can make her forgive me.

Suddenly, I remembered that the creature could appear only in the dark. This thought struck me. I needed to be sure. I needed to see myself in the night.

At night, I took a candle and lit it before the same mirror. I made sure that nobody could hear me and looked into the mirror. I looked myself into the eyes. My face was covered by shadows, my eyes were pitch black, but it was me. Always me. I stared upon my double, and I didn’t notice myself that I couldn’t move my sight away. I seemed to be hypnotized.

My reflection started to get more and more disfigured. Its neck stretched out, its back bent, and its teeth grew up so much that hey were sticking out of its mouth. I wanted to run, but I felt like I was paralyzed. I wanted to scream, but only a yelp could break out of my throat. The creature stretched out its arms, and I saw that the candle’s flame swayed.

Its fingers touched my arms, and a burn brought me back from that mezmerized state. I screamed and waved my arms, but its grip was too tight. Something pulled me forward, and I felt myself sinking in some large and empty space. I had no power over my body being carried into some distant light which I first took for my candle’s reflection. I faced the light, and it consumed me whole.

I was no more. Nothing was left of me. Now I can only think. Think about my destroyed life. Think about the horrible things that this creature wearing my face and speaking with my voice can do to my boy. But I have a hope, a hope that one day you’ll enter a dark room and look yourself into the eyes.

And then you’ll look into my eyes.

Credit To – CandleClock

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Miracle City II: Another Perspective

December 23, 2012 at 12:00 AM
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This is Private Blake Aaron of the U.S. Special Forces, I’m stationed outside the city of Los Angeles with what is left of my original squad and I am recording the events that I have just witnessed in the hopes that someone finds this report if we don’t make it out of here. This report itself will be dedicated to my fallen comrades and my big brother Dan Aaron, who I suspect is dead. Dan was a news reporter doing a story on the very event I’m going to talk about before he was attacked. We are dealing with dangerous beings that possess powers no military force could have prepared for because they’re not of this world. The information on these attackers is said to be classified, but let’s face it, no one knows what the fuck they are.

My experience started after my team was scrambled at sundown and sent to L.A. after a supposed riot broke out, and we were to take control. A large S.W.A.T. team had been sent in before us, and these “rioters” had overwhelmed them, and it was our job to save the day. We expected to get the situation under control in no time, but when we arrived at the scene by nightfall, the whole place had already been transformed into a chaotic battleground after only a few hours. Buildings and cars were on fire, there was barely anything left of the S.W.A.T. team, and there were tons of citizens out on the street yelling and screaming. Our first instincts told us to get those people to safety, so we tried to establish order, but we soon found out that the people on the streets were actually our enemies.

My squad and I all of a sudden started to hear shouting from people who had barricaded themselves into the nearby buildings, and we realized they were warnings, saying that the seemingly ordinary people outside were evil, and that we should engage them. As you can imagine, this caused a lot of confusion, but that’s when we looked around and noticed the remains of the squad that went in before us. It had been a riot-control team, and riot-shields, helmets and pieces of body armor littered the streets. Some massive force had to have done this, and the only suspects around were harmless-looking citizens.

We all thought we’d show up on the scene guns blazing, but we just stood there with no plan. Suddenly, shots were fired into the crowd from three surviving squad members that had been hiding behind an over-turned van. Since they were on riot-control, the bullets in their guns were rubber, so the crowd wasn’t too affected. Then I saw a frail, old woman walk up to the three troopers, open her mouth and let out the worst noise I’ve ever heard, followed by a blast of energy that shot out of her body and reduced them to ash. Our team leader, Frank Hobsen, then gave the command to open-fire before he too was vaporized by another member of the crowd.

I held down the trigger on my machine-gun and instinctively grabbed a riot-shield as I ran for cover while more blasts of energy came my way. Four more members of my squad were gone in seconds, and the rest of us took cover behind wrecked vehicles of all kinds. Tobey Gearhart, my squad’s second-in-command, immediately radioed for back-up, and emphasized that tanks and helicopters were needed. The rest of us took shots at the crowd, and although some of them were going down, it didn’t seem to do much good because more of them were coming from a portal that had opened up far off in the distance. To make matters worse, the ones that had been shot started to get back up, and although it was hard to see through all the smoke from the nearby fires, they didn’t seem to have any bullet-wounds.

You read correctly, these living weapons came from a portal that just opened up without warning, that’s the only way I can describe the phenomenon. The eerie light that shoots out of their eyes and mouth would be astonishing if it wasn’t so terrifying, it’s a very interesting method of attack that simply should not be possible. What’s even more interesting is their appearance as human beings, and they must have been studying us for a very long time to mimic us so well. There’s another thing about their appearance that’s even harder to believe.

I was blindly shooting at these things, pointing my gun through the car window that I was hiding behind, but then I decided to look up over the car, and that’s when I saw the face… of my wife. Alisa Aaron, the woman I’ve been married to for six years, was standing amongst the crowd of invaders, screaming my name and crying with joy. I released the trigger, and so did two others when they also saw people they recognized in the crowd. Her presence in the battle-zone was impossible, but for some reason my mind didn’t even question it. The urge to drop my gun and run over to her was almost too much to resist.

I would have given in to this urge if I hadn’t noticed that the faces of the other people were constantly changing depending on who they were looking at. It then became all too clear that their plan was to beat us by getting into our minds and playing with our emotions through shape-shifting. I remember calling out, “It’s a trick, they’re not our loved ones!” to my comrades before putting a hole in my wife’s head, who just returned fire in my direction moments later. Despite this, some of my comrades still refused to fight, one of them being none other than Tobey himself, the toughest bastard I’d ever known who surpassed me in every military training session I could think of. The guy literally stood up, dropped his gun, and abandoned us because his emotions would no longer allow him to shoot at people that looked like those he cared about.

With two of our leaders gone, I volunteered to become the new team leader, even though I knew we would be fighting a losing battle. I ordered my men to fall back, and by doing so I could not only get them to a safer place, but I was also expecting the evil crowd to follow us so all the people hiding in the buildings could sneak out and possibly escape the city. My plan seemed to work, but that also meant we had to run like hell as energy blasts were fired at us. Those things began to chase us down the street, and they made horrible screeching noises as they did so, which were unbearable to listen to. One team member couldn’t stand the noise any longer, and he covered his ears and fell onto his knees, making him an easy target who was killed quickly.

I believe the man’s name was Jerald, the youngest of the group who was very recently added to my squad, and seeing his skin burn away and bones disintegrate made me think just how hopeless our struggle was. All I could do then was continue to flee for my life, not knowing how many of my teammates were still with me. We briefly hid behind a diner to return fire, and as I shot at the killers some more, I gazed further back past the crowd to see a group of survivors leaving their building and running to safety. A couple of them, however, were not so lucky, as they fell for the same trick I almost did. Several beams of the eerie light shot the diner, setting it ablaze, so I gave the orders to keep moving as the armies of the strange beings hunted us.

We ran down the doomed streets as fast as our legs could carry us, and nearly got ran over by some vehicles heading far away from Los Angeles. It was around that time that we heard the buzzing of helicopters, and the rumbling of several tanks that were headed our way. Once the tanks became more visible, we ran into the nearest alleyway out of their line of fire. One chopper flew over our heads, shined a light down on us, then landed away from where the invaders were. There was nothing more we could do, we had to board the helicopter and leave.

As we ran for the chopper, we heard loud booms behind us that shook the ground hard. Once we were in the air, I caught a glimpse of the battle scene that I’ll never forget. Dozens of invaders blasted a tank all at once, causing it to melt. The other tanks fired many shots that sent the enemies flying back, and bullets rained down upon them from the other helicopters. I never got to see if those that were hit stood back up, but I’m sure at least some of them are finally dead, assuming they’re able to die at all.

The view from the chopper of the dark city below was haunting, to say the least. Nearly all the lights were out in every building, with only the glowing of the fires to illuminate it. An evacuation was underway, and all exits leading away from the city were clogged with cars. Our pilot reported back to base that he could spot more armies of the invaders marching towards the nearby neighborhood. There were other teams standing by to help with the evacuation, and we would need all the help available to us to get citizens far away from the extermination squads that were in full force.

We were flown to a camp that had recently been set up in an area overlooking the city, with plenty of vantage points in case our enemies tried a sneak attack. This camp is where I’ll be sleeping tonight, and I’ve been told to stay put and wait for further instructions from the people now in charge. The boys and I only have one TV set up, and I’ve been watching reports from newscasters on this disaster from literally all over the world, I shit you not. It’s on one of these reports that I heard my brother’s last words. One of those things got into the building where he was hiding, and from experience I know that you can’t survive if they get too close.

There’s something I’ve been trying to talk to people about, but they won’t listen to me, so I’ll just put it down right now: I know what these beings really look like. When one of them invades your mind and tries to make you lower your defenses, you get brief flashes of their true face. It must be like your minds are becoming one. Their skin has a metallic silver shine, their eyes are large and diamond-shaped, and they have razor-sharp teeth and no noses. The weirdest part of them is their eyes because they’re vertical, and that image will never leave my memory.

I must say that there’s something very strange about the people we’re now taking orders from, the first thing being that they don’t seem to be with the military. There are troops marching around with black armor like Darth Vader, and they won’t even make eye-contact with me. Someone keeps radioing in about what sounded like an unsuccessful attempt at capturing one of the invaders. So far, I’ve at least been able to talk to Agent Matthews, the person who seems to be running this operation. He informed me that my men and I were relieved of our duties for the time being, but to stand by anyway.

Agent Matthews is a shady character, and I get the feeling he knows something the rest of us don’t. There’s an odd calmness about him, even though we’re at the brink of an apocalypse. He and his men were quick to respond, almost as if they knew these invaders were coming, and that makes me want to ask more questions, but I know that will be frowned upon. I’m not here to have questions answered, I’m here to fight when told to because I’m just a grunt… although because of my recent actions, there’s talk that my status as a Special Forces operative might change soon. That doesn’t matter much, however, not after the mass-exterminations of humans everywhere.

One more thing I’ll mention about Matthews is that he’s constantly on his cell-phone with someone he keeps referring to as “Master”. I’ve been in the military for a long time, and I haven’t heard the word “master” uttered as a military term. Obviously there’s someone far up the chain who put this operation in Matthews’ hands, and to fuck it up would lead to a harsh punishment. The only time the guy ever seems to get anxious is when he’s on the phone receiving orders. Maybe someday I’ll get to actually meet this mysterious person, because I’d sure like to know who I’ll be fighting for.

You can bet I’ll be sleeping with my machine-gun tonight, even though I have the feeling that I’ll wake up dead. Whatever traveled to our planet is here to stay, and it won’t be easy to stop them when they already know all of our weaknesses. If I don’t make it through this nightmare, and someone happens to stumble upon this report, please find a way to let my wife Alisa and my son Colton know that I fought my damn hardest to save what’s left of this world.

Credit To – J. Stan Shocker

Note: If you liked this, please read the original story – Miracle City

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