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Madness, Paranoia, and Mental Illness

It Came From Above

It Came From Above

He could feel his stomach almost twist as the aircraft started its long ascent into the sky. He was already holding onto his seat, yet now he couldn’t help but tighten his grip even more. How long had it been since he’d last been on a plane? A good fifteen …

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Self-Portrait of the Dead

  My mom hates her father. Grandfather Jack’s name might as well have been a swear word when I was growing up. Dad told me the story once, on the condition that I never tell mom I knew. Jack was married to my Grandmother Kathy for 22 years before he …

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Let Me Take Your Picture

Guys, I need help. I’m posting this from my car parked at a truck stop just outside Keiser, Arkansas. My parents own a cabin in rural Tennessee. Since they’re getting older, we’ve been splitting the responsibility of caring for the property. I go down there by myself a few times …

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The Tree From Which Dead Things Grow

I had nightmares about the place for weeks. Every time, it was exactly the same. I stood before a large oak tree, alone, in a vast field of dead grass. Roots from the tree wove in and out of the dirt, far from their source, twisting in unnatural ways. Its …

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If Glass Could Scream

“Purgatory on Earth” read the flyer as it flapped unevenly in the wind, poorly stapled against the wooden post of a power line. It was an interesting title, not exactly the alluring intro phrase most religious recruitment ads used. For what I knew of Purgatory, it wasn’t exactly a place …

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What Lies Within the Hollow Tree

    I recently inherited my grandfather’s rural home. A log cabin buried deep within 100 acres of woodland— a picturesque scene untouched for decades and a perfect dwelling that I am now proud to call my own. I would spend the weekends here as a child. The wooded paths, …

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Of Beauties and Beasts

    Kenneth Mathers loved Beauty. He adored the very aspects that Beauty presented. Beauty was loved by all. Beauty was welcomed in every gathering, celebrated by the people and requested in all circles. Beauty was perfection, something that Kenneth valued and swore to protect with his life. Beauty was …

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How To Exit Your Body

The sleeping mind fascinates me; namely the nighttime hallucinations we call ‘dreams.’ Because of this, I keep a journal to record every thought that passes through my brain at night. I set at least one alarm each day so that I’m able to wake up during my REM cycles and …

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Roommates

The second Darryl’s keys were rattling in the lock Katie was off the couch and racing to the front door. “Did you do it?  Did you do it?”  She was practically bouncing up and down with giddy anticipation and unwilling to give him a second to even breathe.  “Did you kill her?  Is it done?”  Darryl couldn’t help but to smile and shake his head.  She was such a bad influence on him.  He tried to remember the first time they had met but for some reason was unable to.  It just kind of seemed like she had always been there.  Tim and Jerry had been his roommates for close to eight years and somewhere along the way she just kind of fell in with the twin brothers.  Before Darryl knew what happened she was living in the little, two-bedroom house as well.

Old Hag Madness

When the leaves began to fall that first week in October so many years ago, I could not have been less prepared for what would ultimately alter the course of my life and any foreseeable future linked to it. Autumn was the time of year that I would spring to …

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Sisters

My name is Julien Serrault. It is the 7th of January, 1882. I am an innkeeper outside the mountain town of Briancon, at the base of the French Alps. The inn does not do much trade, and in the winter months I am sometimes alone for days at a time. …

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Something’s Wrong with Madeline

“No, Mama! Mama, no! Please, Mama, don’t let them take me! I’ll be good, I swear!” the girl screamed. Tears flowed from her eyes as she thrashed against the two-adult woman dressed in black. They held her arms firm and pulled her deliberately up a small set of stairs. “Now, …

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Pass It On

It’s quite an interesting concept: those little “pass it on” messages, I mean. Chain letters and people telling you, “post this in five different comments or else you’ll die tonight.” Interesting indeed, but the idea lacks originality. It’s the same story with each one. “Pass it on or die.” People …

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Colwin’s Corner

I usually like to watch TV with my little sister, Kimberly. She was only five, so of course, she watched all the cutesy kids’ shows. I didn’t really mind, though. They made her happy and I liked spending time with her. She watched shows like Dora, Blue’s Clues, and Arthur. …

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If You’re Armed and at the Glenmont Metro, Please Shoot Me

If you’re armed and at the Glenmont metro, please shoot me. Make it a headshot. Shoot me in the temple, aiming slightly downwards. I need the bullet to travel the shortest possible distance through my brain before it hits my hippocampus. If I’m lucky, the sensation of the gunshot ripping …

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A Germaphobe’s First Love

Erica hated the lack of hygiene. Erica absolutely despised unhygienic people. Just thinking about the slightest chance of her physically touching a “dirty” person chilled her spine. She refused to drink from another person’s cup. She avoided sharing food with others. She would be utterly disgusted by people who talk …

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The Two-Headed Boy

Watching TV has always been one of our favorite things to do. In the early years, this proved difficult. Remus, being the stronger of our halves, would pull me until the remote was always within reach of his arm and out of that of mine. I didn’t usually mind, though, …

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