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What I Forgot


Estimated reading time — 6 minutes

I awoke to the sound of thunder rumbling in the distance. I smiled to myself, relishing the quasi-rational excuse to sleep in. I could see light through my closed eyelids, and hear the seagulls squawking nearby. If it wasn’t about to rain, I would probably encourage myself to get up and outside to do some yard work. Spring was finally managing to punctuate a particularly long and snowy Maine winter. I had things to sweep and rake and plant outside, but it would have to wait for another Saturday. I stretched my legs out while cozily snuggling further under the blanket. I swept my feet across the foot of the bed but was impeded by a firm object blocking my path. Slightly annoyed but not at all surprised, I pushed my cat over with my foot so my tall frame could take advantage of the full length of the bed. She reacted to this rude awakening by standing up, stretching her muscles and settling back down for more sleep.

I should probably mention that sleep doesn’t come easily to me, and when it’s disturbed I can be pretty unpleasant. I’ve had a problem with insomnia for as long as I can remember, and take medicine to help me sleep. It works pretty well, and I always try to get enough sleep at night so I don’t fall asleep driving and hurt someone. These current pills seem to make me more forgetful than I used to be, but I can live with that. Not being able to sleep is worse.

As I was drifting back towards unconsciousness, my ears suddenly registered a muffled noise coming from somewhere. It was a monotonous beeping, like that of an alarm clock. Knowing it wasn’t mine, I lay still trying to ignore it, patiently waiting for its owner to wake up and turn it off. After about 10 minutes, I rolled over on my back and groaned, accepting the fact that I wasn’t going back to sleep. So much for cozily napping with my cat during the thunderstorm.

The sound was, as I was now clearly aware, coming from my neighbor’s apartment above me. I lay staring at the ceiling for several more minutes, silently hating him, and finally decided to get up. I sleepily walked into the kitchen to start a pot of coffee, my bare feet quietly padding on the old wood floor. I took a shower and sat down at my kitchen table with a steaming cup of coffee, carefully sipping it. As I quietly sat trying to finish waking up, I realized I could still hear the alarm from upstairs. I looked at the clock. 10:11. The alarm had started at nine-thirty. Jesus, that guy must be capable of sleeping through anything. If the alarm is loud enough for me to hear it, it must be blasting in his ears up there.

Maybe he died, I thought with a wicked smile. Or, as I continued to postulate, he’s a jerk who went out of town without turning his alarm off. Probably that one.

I finished my cup of coffee and stepped out my front door, fully intending to yell at this guy if he was home. I clomped angrily up the wooden stairs leading to his front porch. When I reached the top, I could see through the window in his door that his apartment was dark inside. I peered in the window and examined the lifeless interior. I knocked and waited. No answer. I knocked again twice, both times receiving no indication that anyone was home. I walked over to his window and, upon trying to open it, found that it slid up easily.

I leaned down and called in, “Hello?” No answer. I called once more, louder. I listened for any sound coming from inside, but there was nothing apart from the beeps of his alarm. From my position at the window I could see into his bedroom and that his bed was unoccupied. I debated for a moment and decided I might as well pop in and turn the alarm off. I’d come this far and the damnable thing was sitting roughly 20 unimpeded steps from me. He’ll never have to know his privacy was violated, I reasoned.

I opened the window as far as it would go and climbed through. I stopped and listened to make sure I wasn’t about to be chased out by a frightened guy with a bat. Nope, still nobody home. I went into his bedroom where the alarm was blaring and saw clothes scattered on the floor. Dude’s kinda messy, but that’s not that unusual I suppose. I walked over and turned the alarm off. Ahhh, silence. My ears rang as they adjusted to the newly silent apartment, the peaceful sound of ocean waves caressing my ears from the open window. I took a curious look in his bathroom and saw more mess, bottles and things lying around on the counter and floor. Kinda looks like someone was looking for something, or packing in a hurry.

As my eyes finished scanning the room, I suddenly felt something soft touch my leg. I jumped back with a frightened shriek, only to find a cat looking up at me inquisitively. Sheesh. Thing just took ten years off my life.

Given the rushed state of affairs in the apartment, I wondered if the guy remembered to feed the cat before leaving. I went back to the kitchen and found the cat’s food bowl overflowing under a pile of food. The bag of food was sitting overturned next to the bowl.

Something in the back of my mind gnawed at me making me increasingly uncomfortable. The longer I stayed in here, the more I risked being caught in my breaking-and-entering foray. My curiosities and samaritan duties now satisfied, I climbed back through the window, closing it behind me. I leaned against the balcony rail, enjoying the satisfaction of having successfully completed my stealth mission.

Man, this bastard is lucky, I thought. His balcony has a nice view of the ocean over the neighboring houses and treetops. I surveyed the dark clouds looming in the distance, now noticeably closer than before. I’d almost forgotten the encroaching storm. As if on cue to remind me, a crack of thunder echoed across the sky, interrupting the quiet. As I listened to the rumble get quieter and quieter, the same sense of unease I felt before came creeping back, although this time I couldn’t pin it on a fear of being caught. It was quiet. Too quiet. I kept listening for several seconds, fully expecting to hear some kind of noise. Given that I’m in the middle of the city, I should be hearing all manner of sounds right now. I strained to hear a car, a dog barking, music playing, people talking, anything. But there was none. Not even birds, which I found disturbing. Just the roar of the ocean. And the thunder. How long had it been this quiet? I didn’t notice it before.

I’m pretty introverted and also work from home, so I can go days without talking to another human being, and when I do it’s usually the cashier at the grocery store. But this was unnerving. Right now all I wanted was to hear someone’s voice.

I called out to no one in particular, “he-Hello? HELLO?” My shaky voice echoed through the trees and nearby houses. There was no response. The only contact with life I’d had since waking up was with two cats. Loneliness was beginning to soak into me like cold water, and a sound like static on an old television invaded my ears as the panic rose in my throat.

And that’s when I heard it.

Or rather, stopped hearing it. You know how sometimes when you hear a noise go on long enough, it seems to fade away into the background of your subconscious even though it’s still there? Like a loud smoke detector chirping, or locusts in a forest, or the noise of an electric fan? Only when the noise stops do you become aware of it. Maybe that’s what happened. Or maybe my mind blocked it out to protect me from the dread I’m feeling. It doesn’t matter now anyway.

I slowly began backing away from the balcony rail, my mind reeling, until I bumped into the damp vinyl lounge chair behind me. I didn’t hear the sound of the chair’s legs scraping against the wood as I collapsed into it, my legs finally giving way beneath me. My stunned mind desperately tried to explain the noise away as something else, replaying it again and again from where it still lingered in my cloudy memory, burning like ash, making my eyes water. But the sound was undeniable.

It was the city’s emergency alarm. The one they use to alert you of some impending disaster. When I finally accepted that, my memory made a connection. The emergency weather bulletin that came on as I was drifting to sleep last night. Something about a major storm and massive ocean swells.

As the sobering reality washed over me, the static in my ears was reaching deafening levels. But it wasn’t my panic. It was the ocean.

My memory quite often fails me, but usually not quite so colossally. Not with such… finality. A sick feeling of regret tore at me, leaving me in my final moments with only my eternal yet fleeting remorse, and the shame at being the cause of my own demise.

I slowly got up and walked over to the edge of the balcony to look in the direction of the ocean. A monstrous, unforgiving wave was colliding with my abandoned neighborhood.

My heart sank. I was alone.

Credit To – herbalcell

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48 thoughts on “What I Forgot”

  1. Thanks to those who liked it! I figured it was a little “experimental” for my first pasta, but I’m not really one to aim for convention. It made my day reading all the funny comments about the ill-fated cat.

  2. I liked this story, nice just wasn’t my fav. Oh and just to be positive, cats CAN swim they just dont WANT to swim.

  3. Fantastic story. It was a refreshing read. 10/10.
    But just for the sake of nitpicking: You say that someone lives above the main character implying they live in an apartment complex, yet they have yard work to do. Don’t apartments usually hire services to take care of the yard work?

  4. I have to say, this pasta was amazing. Nothing is more terrifying than the inevitable, especially after sealing your own doom. Oh, and cats can swim just fine.

  5. He shoulda taken his cat. Either way, if there was nothing, nobody, he would’ve realized it sooner. He has legs and a car… GET OUT OF THERE!!! I don’t think this was very creepy, but really good.

  6. That was very clever, the only thing is why does he have yard work at an apartment? Otherwise, keep on writing!

  7. I LOVED This pasta! Vary tasty…

    But what pissed me off was that the guy left his cat to die. What IF the shelter accepted the kitty! D: But anyway it was great! 10/10

  8. To-kill-or-not-to-kill

    My theory is a bit different than all of yours.I think the annoying neighbor is himself/herself. Remember when she says she forgets a lot of stuff when she takes her sleeping pills? Or the fact she had a cat in the beginning? JUst like Melissia said:

    ”When the alarm stopped (at the end of the story) he hears silence and realizes that noise had been in the background the entire time.”

    I think the alarm-clock was a clue that she left for herself due to her forgetfulness. So yay or nay?

  9. What an asshole! What makes a person think “Oh no! tsunami! I’ll give my cat lots of food and leave it to die horribly smashed by the tsunami.”

    very tasty pasta, especially good that it wasn’t a cliche supernatural pasta :D.

    You had me thinking the guy had forgotten he had killed his neighbor for a minuet there!

    1. Well, as someone else mentioned above, lots of emergency shelters for people displaced by disasters won’t take pets. I suppose the guy upstairs decided to leave plenty of food for his cat and just hoped the storm wasn’t as bad as projected and the cat would be okay.

  10. it sets in and scare the hell out of you. An impending doom that you can’t even run from or trick into not finding you or hide from it…a colossal wave of water, crushing you. Damn Nature, you scary!

  11. while i did enjoy the style change compared to other pastas..i just didnt enjoy it as much as i have others, it wasnt bad, just not my fav. i found it rather hilarious that due to medication he forgot that there was a warning, like it was messed up but i thought it was funny

  12. That was wonderful! Excellent writing and unique story for creepy pasta, I was kept in suspense the entire time! 10/10

  13. So, I know this is kind of petty…….but I am beyond pissed the upstairs neighbor left his cat to die!

    On another note, as someone that lives in a beach town, this is a fear of mine people often don’t write pastas about. Good job.

  14. I really liked reading this one, it was a unique CreepyPasta.

    I don’t think that it was very creepy, terrifying, or horrifying, but it was a very subtle and relaxing CreepyPasta, like one you would read with a cup of tea.

    I say well done and I rate this 6/10.

    Grim Gamer

  15. I give you a 9.5.
    Minus .50 for leaving me with the thoughts of those two kitties drowning in a collapsed building after the huge wave ._.

  16. Excellent pasta, very refreshing to have a pasta that doesn’t rely on a big bad monster. Excellent writing!

  17. No offense to any animal rights protectors, but why would his neighbor feed the cat, if he knew the city was going to be destroyed? And why did nobody warn the guy of the impending disaster? Lots of questions unanswered, but that just goes to show how cruel mother nature can truely be.

  18. Wow, this story was pretty ominous. Im going to have to give this one a 10/10 not only because the story was great but because this was the first pasta i have ever read with no spelling or punctuation errors. Big ups to the writer!

  19. Yeah, it’s hard to believe how much bad dna is out there running around.I had a neighbor who moved out and left his puppy in a small dog crate in 90 degree one even knew he left.

  20. This is my first comment, this was a brilliant read, refreshing actually. It’s the first Creepy Pasta I’ve read that didn’t involve something fictional like a monster with “deep black eyes and an inhumanly long tongue” – clichéd stuff, this was just…Really good

  21. Yeah, how in the hell could someone leave their cat ( or ANY pet) behind? That being said, good story. I had no idea it would end that way! I kept expecting a scary monster in the neighbors apartment!

  22. Unrealistic, I’ve read that most animals, cats included can sense incoming natural disasters such as earthquakes so your cat and your neighbour’s should be freaking out, not sleeping. Suspending that though it was a good read, i expected a standard supernatural story when he climbed into his neighbour’s house

    1. Please shut up, anon. You really believe the stuff people say on the internet? Plus the cat was locked in with no means of escape. Might as well take a nap before his impending demise

      1. Please shut up, other anon. It’s been proven time and time again that animals, including cats, freak the fuck out when a natural disaster is about to happen.

    2. Yes, its true but cats stay lazy and sleepy when rains and storms. Thats how I know if is gonna rain a lot or not.

      I have 6 cats, so I know what I’m saying

      Btw, GREAT Pasta, very nice to read. 10/10!

      1. Our cat, I kid you not, weighs 32lbs. When it gets ready to storm, he manages to flatten himself out, and crawls under this tiny gap between the couch and the floor lol probably the funniest thing I have ever watched. It’s pretty great, the things that animals do.

  23. I would think that the town would have the warning klaxon blaring long before the wave was right on top of them! I like the author’s writing style and descriptions. What a jerk the neighbor was to evacuate and leave his cat… punk!

    1. If you read correctly you’ll see that the alarm WAS blasting the whole time. He explained that he had drowned it out and when he STOPPED hearing it (it turned off before the wave hit) then he realized it was on the whole time.

        1. No, the author explains it quite clearly. He was hearing it the ENTIRE story. It wasnt until the noise stopped that he noticed it had been there all along. They must have sounded the alarm in the middle of the night and he slept through it. When he woke it was still going but his brain had drowned the sound out.

          We tend to “drown out” certain familiar sounds, such as the AC system, lawn mowers around ect. Its not until the airconditioning stops that we realize how loud it had been. Do you understand now?

          When the alarm stopped (at the end of the story) he hears silence and realizes that noise had been in the background the entire time.

          Great idea for a story, actually.

    2. The poor cat! And I just finished reading Warriors by Erin hunter, just to make it worse! I hope the kitty is ok:.o

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