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Locations and Sites

Floor Zero

You’d finally done it. After weeks of digging around and bugging the lady at the front desk, you’d found it: the elevator code for floor zero. You make your way to the nearest elevator, trying your hardest to contain your excitement. You’ve been told so many rumors about the place that you weren’t sure if they were even fiction. Some said it was a dark room full of spiderwebs, some said it was full of old mannequins, and some said it was just a storage floor with nothing interesting to see.

The Likho

I was always close to my uncle, even if I was too young to truly know or understand him. He was a military man for the whole time I knew him and usually told the most batshit crazy stories you could imagine, but they were never exaggerated or made up. He was in Desert Storm and came back telling us about all the things that were over there. We were positive he was making up the part about the camel spiders, but the Brittanica set my grandparents had proved it to be true! He talked about how big they were, how fast, and skin-crawlingly ugly and nightmarish they appeared. He also made sure to mention he’d only really seen them twice.

Between Ice and Stars

The hull of the ship moaned and groaned under the strain of its frozen enclave. HMS Stargazer and its crew had initially set out into the deep unknown to map uncharted territories, but winter descended quickly upon them and they found themselves trapped between stars and ice for months. Supplies were running thin and the captain of the ship, a tall and clean shaven gentleman by the name of Gerald Northington, had assembled groups of hunters to venture out in search of seal meat. The most recent hunting expedition had yet to return and Northington was pacing anxiously up and down his quarters.

Whistling

When people whistle, it kind of irritates me. Not like Axl Rose from “Patience” whistles, but just does so to pass the time. When people whistle or hum to themselves it’s always just kind of grated on me, but only when it’s been tuneless. When there’s a tune to it, a melody, it doesn’t get on my nerves, it just makes me… unsettled.

Ooze

In the heart of a second-growth piney-woods jungle of southern Alabama, a region sparsely settled by backwoods blacks and Cajuns—that queer, half-wild people descended from Acadian exiles of the middle eighteenth century—stands a strange, enormous ruin.

Laughing in the Dark

Bill Tanner, a retired USPS mail carrier, ran a local haunted house that had become quite well known in the city where he lived. Established as a terrifying and fun way to unleash people’s greatest fears upon them, it was aptly named “Tanner’s House of Horrors.” People came from miles away to spend a little …

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Mommy Dearest

As Julie began to regain consciousness, she knew something wasn’t right. She started to panic as she realized she was strapped to a table. A big bright light beamed down onto her face, blinding her, as silhouettes moved silently around her. The silhouettes began to whisper. “She’s perfect, daddy, thank you.” Julie tried to scream …

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The Last Body I Ever Cut Open

Craig Brockwell was found by his wife, dead on their living room floor, a plastic garbage bag tied off around his neck, and an empty bottle of Xanax on the kitchen counter, next to a suicide note. My initial external examination of the body revealed no indications of a physical altercation with another person. Skin …

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The Roots of Wewoka Cemetery

After a short time of exploring the Oklahoma territory where they were forced to go, a group of Native Americans stumbled upon a mysterious plant while hunting. This plant looked like a gnarled tree root, with so many twists and turns within its seemingly fragile length that one could barely tell it was not one …

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The Living History Project

One of my least favorite parts about being a middle school history teacher is the bullshit “Living History” assignments we give at the end of every school year. Kids are supposed to sit with their grandparents and video tape, voice record, or transcribe their oldest memories for posterity (and for an easy way to bring …

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The Convention

We got to the hotel late. The kiddo was a mess, and so was I. I’d let Sally sleep through the flight while I tried to keep our two-year-old girl from having a total meltdown. As the plane started its final descent, my relief was punctured by an absolute nightmare of a stabbing sinus headache… …

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Werewolf Ears

“Did you hear about Sal?” Jimmy lifted his eyes from his work, looked at George’s reflection and replied, “Sal, no, what’s up with him?” He probably spent more time hovering over people, talking to their reflections in the large mirror on the wall than he did conversing with them face to face. This unique perspective …

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The Strigil Institute

In central Vermont you have to drive to get just about anywhere. In high school, once I had my own car, I built up a mental map of roads good and bad, this giant web linking my house, my school, my friends’ houses, my mom’s work, my dad’s house, my dad’s work. There was this …

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The Disneyland Suicide Pact

I’m writing this down to A) help me process what happened and B) create some sort of written record. I’m a Disneyland employee—have been for 5 years. I started running a concession stand, moved to ride operator, then into resort operations. All the while, I was a pursuing a degree in psychology with intentions to …

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The Valentine House

“Damn, Valentine shit already?” I asked my friend Gabriel as we were walking inside a Wal-Mart post Christmas. “Yeah, bro, and it’s still December. It’s like they’re completely ignoring the months in between the other months that have major holidays.” “True, true, annoys the shit out of me though, you know?” My friend nodded and …

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Box Fort

Alright, we all remember those cardboard castles of our youth, the ones that were better than any Fisher-Price playhouse precisely because they had been painstakingly cut out, taped together, and decorated with our own hands. And unlike the fancy plastic cottages your parents spent a fortune on, these ones could be altered and added on …

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I Hunt Down the Government’s Mistakes

Part 1 If you are one of those people who think the government is hiding countless secrets from you, and constantly covering things up, then you would be absolutely right. I’m one of the many people they hire to clean up their mistakes. I’m not entirely sure why they chose me, there really isn’t much …

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My Students Are Disappearing

My name is Oliver Stricc. I’m a 52-year-old biology teacher from a small town in northeastern Nebraska, and I have been for almost 14 years. I’ll be the first to admit that lecturing to a bunch of uninterested high school students wasn’t what I had planned to do after getting my master’s degree in medical …

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