Down the Line

April 1, 2016 at 12:00 PM

Down the line we went, shuffling timidly as the guards watched like hawks through mirrored sunglasses. Step by step, we moved along. Slowly, desperately trying to delay the inevitable or at least prepare ourselves mentally for what was to come. Each one looking down, avoiding eye contact with the prison guards, keeping their gazes firmly glued to the man in front of them.

“They can’t keep doing this to us! This is a free country!” whispered the man behind me. I didn’t bother respond. It wouldn’t do any good to discuss the situation. Probably just make it worse.

He continued, “This has to be cruel and unusual punishment or somethin’ right? Maybe we should get a lawyer, see if we can do anything about it.”

The thought stirred a slight bit of hope inside me, but something still told me that it would only worsen the already awful dilemma we faced. Slowly we marched on, further and further down the line. The smell thickened, almost making me nauseous. I looked up at the balcony overlooking the large room. Several guards stood together, rifles in hand, smirking down at us. They must enjoy seeing us do this every week.
The line stopped. Hope! I could see at the front of the line a man had halted. He couldn’t bring himself to move any further. Whether it was fear, hatred, or defiance, it was only a futile attempt to resist the inevitable. A guard quickly shoved him along with the butt of his rifle and the line moved on.

We were so close. Oh god the smell. It was awful. I picked up the cold metal tray on the counter next to me and moved forward, tears slowly welling in my eyes. How I’ve made it this far, survived this many times, I will never know. There were only three men in front of me now. I would soon have to face this evil once again. Two men ahead of me. I thought about running, I began scanning the environment around me, looking for a way out or a path through the guards. My grip on the tray tightened. Only one man ahead now. I forgot about any hope of escape and took a deep breath. I slowly looked up at the sign posted on the wall ahead of me. Even though I look at it every week, I still felt the urge to drop to my knees once I read it…


It was my turn. I held up my tray and let the burly man pour the sickeningly brown concoction into my bowl. I fought back tears as I walked over to the table with the other men and sat down.
I looked down at it. It was an abomination. A crime against humanity. I couldn’t even understand how it was considered food. This dish brought murderers and bank robbers to tears.

How…how could any man serve this to another human being. I lifted my spoon and closed my eyes as I brought it to my lips.

I will not describe my experience of eating it. I just can’t. What I will say is that tears were shed, blood was spilled, and men were broken.

Some inmates argue that the aftermath is the worst part. I could agree. This chili had the power to clean out your colon in under two hours. And you felt it every step of the way. Slithering through your intestines like a plumbing snake.

My cellmate and I continuously fought over the small metal toilet in the corner of our cell. We ended up taking shifts. One of us got it for 3 minutes, while other stood back desperately clutching his rear end, trying to contain the beast that was awakened inside of our digestive tract. Our cell block was filled with screams of agony. They say chili night is the best time to escape, because no guard dares enter the prison blocks due to the permeating stench that could strip paint from a wall and bend a steel beam.

After three hours, the block became quiet.

“Is…is it over?” I heard a voice ask from down the hall.

Yes. It’s over.

Credit To – H.P. Hatecraft


April 1, 2016 at 9:00 AM

It was happening tonight at 6:30.
I checked the watch on my wrist.


I was beginning to get antsy. It has been a long long time since something of this magnitude occurred. I watched and waited as the second hand moved little by little. Inch by inch. Time had never seemed to move so slowly. Suddenly, I began sweating profusely. Reaching for a nearby cloth I wiped the beads of moisture from my forehead.


Maybe I should call it off. Maybe I should run. Maybe I made a mistake. No. I had to. Had to stick to the plan. Did I? It wasn’t too late. Yes. Yes it was. I can’t go back. There was no other option.


Crunch time. I stood up. There was no way I could keep still any longer. I started pacing. Thoughts zooming through my mind left and right. Was I sure? Is this really what it has come to? I was positive. Yes, I was positive. There was no going back. There was no doubt now, only determination. I was ready.


Here we go. Just a few seconds away. My heart was pounding like a drum in my chest. I tried to relax, but with no avail. I felt prepared but weak and powerless at the same time. There was nothing else I could do to ease the tension. Nothing. I had to power through. I’ve been waiting for this moment for too long to let it slip away.


Finally. It was finally time.

Nothing happened. I didn’t understand. How could nothing happen? 6:30 was the time. 6:30 was the time. Am I insane? No I’m not insane. 6:30 was the time. I know it. I’m not insane.

Am I?

I glanced at my watch.


Why. Just WHY.

I remain motionless. I didn’t know what to do. I thought that maybe… I thought… I couldn’t think. All of a sudden I couldn’t think, because of a ringing. I hear a ringing, quiet at first, growing in volume. The sound, all of a sudden very loud, was penetrating my ears, to the point where I thought my eardrums would surely bust. It wouldn’t stop. The constant ringing in my head followed me down as I clawed at my ears and crumpled to the floor. The ringing continued. It continued for what seemed like an infinite eternity of pain. Pain in which was impossible for me to endure any longer. I started to lose consciousness. I felt myself slipping from the real world, and strangely, I was ok with it.

Everything was dark.
My mind and body numb.
I heard nothing.


I didn’t hear anything. There was no ringing.
My eyes opened. I heard pure silence. Pure, beautiful silence. Slowly I rose to my feet. Brushing myself off, I reached forward and grabbed the handle.

I turned it.

The door flew open and a bright light flooded my vision, then a voice spoke…

“That’ll be $12.75”

The pizza had arrived.

I paid the man and closed the door. Smiling to myself, I walked to my seat. Pan pizza with thick cheesy crust and extra pepperoni in hand I collapsed into the recliner.

I was at peace.

Credit To – Cole Christian

Jeff The Killer Goes To Sleep

April 1, 2016 at 6:00 AM

Jeff crawled silently through the bedroom window of his latest victim and gradually crept over the the foot of his bed. His last encounter hadn’t gone so well; the kid’s father had intervened and Jeff had lost one of his favorite knives when he threw it at the old man whom had startled Jeff when he brandished his shotgun at him (so it was his fault, really).The knife had missed its intended target and embedded itself into the David Bowie poster that hung on the boy’s bedroom wall. Just one of life’s little ironies Jeff thought, chuckling to himself.

Luckily, he had remembered to bring a spare with him this night and, hiding behind a bush, he applied his hourly eye-drops, which were the only way for him to keep his eyes moist since that night when he had removed the lids with a craving knife (it seemed like a good idea at the time). He applied a few extra drops this time as the last struggle, followed by the long hard run that it took to flee the scene had dried up his eyes significantly, to the point where he had almost gone blind.

“I’ll get them latter.” He muttered to himself shortly after the escape. After all, his father had always told him to finish what he had started; then again, ol’ dad gotten himself carved into coleslaw, so how smart could he have been?

Jeff was feeling hopeful about this next venture though and he raised the knife high above his head, taking a moment to savor the murder he was about to commit as he liked to treat every slaying like a Thanksgiving dinner, but as he was about to plunge the knife into his helpless victim, revel in the sensation of his hands submerging themselves in a freshly opened stomach and giggle at the pitiful gasps of shock and pain that usually followed, he heard a voice that made him stop in his tracks, “Hi there, Smiley,” the voice said, “It sure took you long enough to get here.”

It was the voice of the man in the bed. It spook in a soft but level tone, without a hint of fear. “Go to sleep!” Jeff demand, in his own grainy and intimidating voice; the voice that stuck helpless terror into the hearts of victims all over town, but this man just chuckled casually. “I’m afraid you’re in no position to give orders, son.” He said, reveling a very subtle southern draw that Jeff had not noticed a moment ago.

Jeff remained frozen. Now he wanted more then anything to kill this man and get it over with, but he could not move; for the first time since acquiring his deformity and finding employment as the local homicidal maniac, Jeff had felt the icy grip of fear clutch at his spine.

“I-I said, go to sleep!” He bellowed. His voice was shaking as was his entire body. He was shaking so violently that he couldn’t hold onto the knife and it dropped from his hand.

Suddenly, the man sat up. The movement was so sudden that it startled Jeff and he stumbled back a couple paces. Jeff still could not make out any of the man’s features, only a vague outline of his upper body. It was as if the man was deliberately shrouding himself in darkness. The figure turned to face Jeff and, although he could not see them, he could feel the man’s eyes staring directly at him, penetrating into the deepest regions of his being. “You may not know who I am, but I’ve been waiting for you for quite sometime.” The figure said, “You see, I’ve known about your little reign of terror for quite a while now and I intend to put a stop to it tonight, but before you die, perhaps I should take a moment to introduce myself. My name is…” A cold shiver ran through Jeff’s entire body upon hearing the man’s name; a name consisting of what Jeff immediately recognized as the last two words he would ever hear, “…Chuck Norris.”

Credit To – Matthew Thompson Dalldorf

The Expedition

April 1, 2016 at 3:00 AM

Andrew Sullivan was a wealthy man with his wife and his son before he made his billions from founding internet companies. His companies survived the crash that took out his inexperienced competitors and thrived in the vacuum they created. Time passed and Andrew and his family were happy. His son was growing up into a responsible, mature man. Andrew had seen what wealth had done to people, and he kept himself and his family humble. He taught his son that money was not the most important thing in the world, and led by example. Andrew would donate his money, most of the time anonymously, to various causes and didn’t spend his money on frivolous things like cars, planes, and boats. They lived in a house that was large but not larger than it needed to be. They had house staff, but they were treated more as family. Andrew never wondered how long their happiness would last; he didn’t want to tempt fate, but unfortunately it was never his decision to make.

It was around 9pm on a winter night; Andrew’s wife was driving home from a charity dinner. She was always cautious when driving on these roads especially at this time of night when ice could easily form on them. That night, no amount of caution would help her as her car slid off the road and into the rocky valley below. Andrew was assured that his wife’s death was quick; the impact would have killed her instantaneously, but her death was hard to take. He thought it would be easier for his son to handle since he had grown up, and at first he was right. There was an emptiness in their lives now and Andrew and his son tried to move on, even together, but the emptiness was still there.

Several months passed and the pain faded slowly only to be replaced by a pain felt nationwide; that day the twin towers fell.

Andrew’s son answered the call like many during that time and joined the Marines like his father. From then on, Iraq was more than a place on a map in the news. Andrew prayed daily for his son, but the news reports were not helping; more soldiers were killed by an IED almost on a daily basis. He received letters from Matt describing his life as an infantryman in Iraq. Andrew cherished those letters and kept them in a special wooden box.


It was late in the summer when Andrew watched a black car with government plates pull up his driveway. An officer in dress uniform stepped out of the car and walked to the front door with an envelope in his hand. Andrew’s heart sank and when he answered the door he was almost in a trance as the officer spoke apologizing for the bad news he was delivering and offered condolences for his loss. Andrew took the envelope but never opened it. He left it on the kitchen table and it sat there for days, even after his son’s funeral.

Andrew came back from the funeral service in silence. The envelope seemed to stare at Andrew from the table and it filled him with dread knowing he couldn’t had been there to comfort his son in his final moment.

Weeks passed. The funeral service was long over, the condolence cards stopped coming. Andrew was alone in his house surrounded by wreaths and flowers from friends and family. He collapsed and tears streamed down his face. Eventually, the tears dried, but the grief remained not just for Matt, but returned for Andrew’s wife. The pain and anger grew and overwhelmed him. Andrew began to drown his memories with liquor and questioned the point of his existence. After months of binge drinking Andrew sobered up enough to have an epiphany. Sorrow and self-pity were getting him nowhere; it was time to move on. Not just move on, but be a better person because of it. He decided to abandon his sheltered life and began to explore the world, not just for pleasure, but for knowledge; and the more exotic, the better.


Andrew took the time to better himself. He learned multiple languages in his travels the not only benefited him but his companies as well. He still did not buy lavish things but he enjoyed his money. Every trip he took was a chance to learn. Andrew would avoid going to where the tourists stayed and sought a “real” experience to learn the natives’ customs and more. This took him to places where few dared to travel, but the risk was well worth the reward. He would hear stories and legends of people, creatures, and places some too incredible to believe but seemed to be based on some truth. Andrew became a collector of these stories and often the relics they were about. From them he found that there was truth to myths and legends, and he was slowly becoming obsessed with one in particular.

There was a temple that had many names; it depended on where you heard or read the tale. No matter where you saw or heard it, the tale was always set in the mountains, the Himalayas seemed the most logical location. In the tale, the temple contained the ultimate knowledge and if it was true, knowledge that would give him absolute power. Andrew focused all of his energy to make this tale a reality. He poured funds into all avenues of research from scientific to paranormal. Within a few years, he was ready for his journey.


The expedition to the Himalayas consisted from everything low tech like the native Sherpa to the high tech like up-to-the-minute satellite mapping and tracking. Andrew had hired the best of the best in mountain climbing, survival, guides, medical staff, and security. They had helicopters and every state of the art vehicle designed to conquer the snow and ice, but they would learn that nature conquered all.

For the first few days, smiles were wide on everyone’s face, but they faded as the terrain became more difficult. The Sherpa laughed to themselves as the monstrosities their employers’ promised would make their journey easier were frequently becoming stuck in the ice. Several hours were spent digging out these vehicles so they could progress a few yards before getting stuck again. The days they spent digging out their machines dug into their supplies as well, and the valley they entered made the turbulence too dangerous for the helicopters to fly through and they were forced to send them back to base camp. The glacier the expedition was traveling on was a mixed terrain of hardened ice thousands of years old and fresh soft snow that had been falling since the morning. The combination caused their vehicles to sink in the soft patches of snow as they drove and be shredded by the ice. Within a few days, the expedition was down to just one of their vehicles which was now barely limping along.

The expedition had replaced the vehicles they lost with pack animals but they couldn’t carry as much as the machines so they had to decide what of their equipment to leave behind and the loss of their vehicles also meant the expedition was exposed to the cold, harsh winds. The cold weather didn’t just bite, it gnawed at the expedition as they walked, as they set up camp, and as they slept.

After a week and a half of travel, they were greeted by a calm day that morning. It was still cold enough to give anyone second thoughts but not enough to deter Andrew Sullivan. When the last of their vehicles broke down, Andrew climbed out and continued on foot without a word of complaint.
The expedition stopped to rest despite Andrew’s protest when they found themselves surrounded by masked men in furs aiming rifles at them. One of the Sherpa explained that they were bandits and the expedition had entered their territory. Andrew spoke to them in their own language and explained to them his journey. They laughed at him for believing in legends. The bandits suggested that he turn around but not until after they gave them all of their supplies and clothes. Andrew tried to reason with them but was given an ultimatum by the bandit chief: give them what they asked for, or they would take what they wanted from their corpses. Andrew pleaded with the bandits and approached their chief with promises of cash that would be theirs if they would just let them leave. Their eyes lit up once they heard money was involved and the bandit chief demanded to see the money, and Andrew agreed. Instead of cash, Andrew pulled a pistol from his pocket and fired two rounds into the bandit chief and quickly fired into the other bandits that were closest to him. The mercenaries Andrew hired immediately opened fire and killed the rest of the bandits. As the life faded out of the bandit chief, Andrew explained to him that he had come too far to turn around now. Andrew called for his physician.

The physician thought Andrew was injured when he called for him, but it was just time for his medication. The truth was that it would soon be Andrew’s time to go. Several years ago, he was diagnosed with lung cancer, but kept it to himself so it wouldn’t affect his companies. He secretly moved funds to research a cure but that eventually became research for a means to hold the cancer at bay so he could take this journey. Andrew only had enough medication to last him a few more days. If he failed, he had no intention of returning home and running out of medication made no difference but he was relieved to know that all of his affairs were in order.

Andrew took care of everything a year before this journey. He made sure he appointed a new CEO for his companies under the guise of taking his long deserved retirement. He even made sure that the families of the expedition were taken care of if any of them even if they made it back. But if he succeeded, he wouldn’t have to worry about the medication anymore or anything else for that matter. They were so close now and Andrew could recognize the landmarks described in the tale about the path to the temple. It would be over soon, and when they reached the last of the landmarks, a cave to the temple, they made camp for the night.

The next morning, there was some anxiety from the Sherpa. None of them had ever been this far and warned that they were entering an area that even the legendary Yeti would not enter. Andrew decided that he would take in a small team that included himself, two of the Sherpa that were willing to go, a couple of pack animals, his physician and a handful of his security detail.

The team cautiously entered the cave and Andrew found himself admiring the drawings that depicted the temple in question. Slowly and carefully the team walked through part of the cave that was a passage through a glacier. They noticed as some of the path crumbled away and fell as they walked over it. It was difficult to gauge the depth of the drop as visibility was only a few feet from their lights. The silence was suddenly broken by a loud cracking sound that was growing louder by the second. Andrew and his team moved as quickly as they could, but it wasn’t fast enough. Both pack animals, one of the Sherpa and two of the security detail tumbled off the path and into the darkness. It fell silent again before Andrew gathered what was left of his team and moved on.

The path led them back outside and in the distance was a wooden temple. As they walked closer, they could see that the temple was untouched by the ice. There were flowers blooming at the entrance. It looked like someone had been looking after the temple; there was no dirt and the flowers and plants around the entrance appeared to have been trimmed. Andrew led his team inside the temple.

The temple appeared to have been built over the face of the mountain as the mountain provided the back wall of the temple. In the center of that wall was a portal with a glossy surface like an oil slick. Andrew set down his pack and walked towards the portal despite his physician begging him to do the opposite.

Andrew could hear a voice address him.
“Welcome,” it said. “You have traveled far and you have a question that burns inside you. There is no need for you to speak; I already know your question, but are you ready to know the answer?”

The physician watched Andrew as he stood there, almost frozen, staring into the portal muttering to himself. A moment later, Andrew began to laugh, and laugh loudly and deeply. The physician cautiously walked up to Andrew and asked him what was so funny.

Andrew was still laughing when he turned to the physician and said, “Don’t you see? We are all Phone.”


Credit To – Papacat


April 1, 2016 at 12:00 AM

It was one of those times when you start awake suddenly with the feeling of being watched. You know – you might be in an uncomfortable position, the covers may have slipped to the side leaving part of your back exposed, but you refrain from shifting position so as to not provoke your dark, intangible observer. For several minutes, your hairs may prickle, you may take to breathing in quick, shallow puffs, and you keep your eyes squeezed safely shut for fear that they may seek a grotesque figure in the shadows.

However, this time, it didn’t go away after a few minutes. I had dreamt of sinking rapidly in a river – faster than natural, faster than falling even. The water seared past my face and my eyes, and I frantically twisted and strained my wrists against the knotted rope that bound them. The light above was tinted a deep green and faded far too fast, a grim omen of despair. I closed my eyes and tried to scream; my mouth filled with water. It tasted like blood. As the river tore at my skin and burned my lungs, I opened my eyes to a grinning skull not four inches away, and shuddered to consciousness.

My left arm was bent awkwardly under my stomach and beginning to fall asleep. My right foot stuck slightly out from the protection of my blanket. But, my primal instinct led me to freeze, and listen, and await.

The dream had made me uneasy, perhaps, but I have never been an overly nervous person. Sure, after watching a creepy movie, I’ll check the shadows, and turn on the lights, and shut the curtains for fear of being met with another set of eyes upon looking out. But these notions passed, and I recovered, and I breathed easily. There is another degree of fear that is not so easily shaken; that which forewarns imminent and real danger. Young deer, and similar animals, will naturally tense up in the presence of a predator, hoping to rely on the camouflage of a shrub or bush to compensate for what they lack in physical vigor. As soon as they detect a nearby threat, they freeze, and remain rigid, hoping desperately for the danger to overlook them and press onward. The eerie thing is, however, that they will do this even when they don’t perceive the threat; young gazelle will exhibit this behavior even when a lion is behind a one-way mirror, with no way to be seen, or heard, or smelt. They can tell when they are being watched, even when no biological means of sensing it is present. They just know; they just fear.

And I felt as though I was being watched that night. As much as I willed myself to shift, to adjust, I could not bring myself to do so. My skin crawled with anticipation. My ears perked to alertness. My heart raced in my chest.

I thought about the skull in my dream. Dared I risk open my eyes? What if the apparition were to be there, hovering over my bed, waiting for that moment? I took a deep breath. And I slowly forced my eyes open.

There was no skull floating before my eyes, although I could not see much of anything. Across the room, on my desk, my alarm clock flashed 2:13 in blocky red digits. The rest of my room remained submerged in darkness. I shut my eyes in relief.

A creak. Was I sure I heard it? It came from the floor just outside my closet. I held my breath, but the sound did not come again. My house wasn’t old, but it did settle like any large wooden structure. I exhaled. My arm was still awkwardly bent under me. I tensed my muscles nervously. I still felt so much like an infant gazelle, frozen in a bush to avoid the lion behind the glass. Except I knew that I had no such protection.
The floorboard creaked again, bolder. This time I was less willing to blame it on the settling of a house, it was too heavy, too deliberate. My heart fluttered; my eyes raced behind closed lids. It was at this point that I first thought that it was more than misguided instinct that left me so alert. I opened my eyes.

The room was still dark. The alarm clock flashed 2:21 in blocky red digits. My eyes searched the shadows near where I knew my closet was located. They found only darkness. For all I knew, there could be someone standing there, with a knife or a gun, but I had no means of perception. I shut my eyes and shuddered.

The third time, I was certain that I had heard a person, for not only did I hear a creak, but a footfall. My eyes shot open. I broke my bounds of motionlessness and jolted upright. My heart frantically beat the inside of my ribcage, and my breath caught in the back of my throat. I looked across the room.

All I saw was darkness.

I could not see the clock.


I half-gasped, and tried to scream, but it stuck in my throat like a hiccup, or like in a dream. I convulsed, threw my bedsheets aside, scrambled backward on my hands, tried to back away, when a dark figure lunged forward from the sea of darkness…


Trumpets blared. The floodlights switched on. And before I knew it, I was being pummeled by a 251-pound ex-military pro wrestler. He threw a right hook. It landed true. My face cried, but my heart knew only raw delight. He lifted me above his head, and threw me onto the ground at full force. The trumpets blared. I smiled as I bled. John Cena stood above me with a confident smile.

“Don’t forget to brush your teeth, kids,” he said with his rich, deep, Cena voice.

Of course, I thought.

He punted me from the ring.

I laughed.

Thank you, John Cena.


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