Estimated reading time — 5 minutes
“Hun, I’m home,” Dylan said as he walked into the house, shutting the door behind him. The apartment was beautiful, for a building that was built in 1812. The old schoolhouse now was home to 4 apartments.
The apartment itself was beyond perfect for just the two of them. The ceiling was a good fifteen feet high. The giant nine foot tall windows gave the home a very ‘high class’ atmosphere, and the kitchen certainly met up with the standards.
Even though the apartment was perfect, the building itself gave off an eerie look, as expected with any building that was over two hundred years old.
“Hey hun,” his wife, Jasmine, said smiling as she walked out from the guest room.
“How was work,” she said hugging him and giving him a kiss.
Her hazel eyes looked up at him. She was just 5’2 and he was 6’3.
“It was alright, nothing to horrible today. How’s unpacking coming along,” Dylan asked looking around the house. There were a few boxes still packed, but nothing compared to just three days ago.
“That’s good, and it’s getting there. It’s almost done!”
“I see that! Oh, I forgot my bag in the car,” Dylan said kissing her again, “I love you!”
He grabbed his bag and shut the door. The three story building looked gloomy, almost haunting, in the little sun that was left.
He opened the main doors and stepped in the hallway, which was more of a large conference room with dull blue carpet plopped in the center. There were two doors side by side on the right wall. Apartments Three and Four. His was Four.
Two doors sat on the other wall as well as a staircase. One of the doors lead into an old classroom that the landlord was renovating to what Dylan assumed would be a new apartment. The staircase led to the two smaller upper apartments. The other door, led to the basement. Dylan had never had any reason to go down there. The apartment itself was plenty big enough for the little furniture and belongings him and his wife had.
Being as curious as he was, Dylan decided to open the basement door and go down. Light from the setting sun shone through the ground windows which lined the top of the walls.
The stairs were relatively new. He got to the base of the stairs and took a deep breath. It was chilly within the stone walls.
There were open rooms throughout the basement. It seemed that these were all once classrooms, now just storage rooms for the landlord and past tenants.
Walls between rooms were old and dusty, some spots even had bricks laying beside them as if they were torn or smashed out of the walls.
There was a hallway behind the first two rooms. As he got further from the stairs, he noticed there were no more windows. The only light was the small glimmer of light from the windows across the basement.
Each step kicked up a tiny cloud of dust. Clearly no one came down here recently. There was an open doorway to his right, a small light shining from it, into the hall. He went in and immediately noticed that the back of the room indeed had windows. They had just all been painted black, and the light was coming from a partially shattered window.
In the room sat several dressers, a few boxes, and a bed frame. Plenty of bugs that crawled through the window, lied dead on the floor. Dust covered the boxes and furniture. The room had a deep red haze to it from the glistening sun.
Behind one of the bed frames sat a quite large… Thing. It was about eight feet tall, leaning along the wall. Several blankets were wrapped around it and taped, protecting whatever was within the bundles.
Dylan got closer and was puzzled at the fact that if something was so special to wrap up in several blankets, why would someone leave it here?
Nothing else was wrapped up. In the first rooms there were plenty of lamps, mirrors, and other breakable items just laying around. Why was this item so special?
Dylan’s curiosity got ahold of him. He moved the bed frame and began carefully taking off the tape. One by one he unraveled the blankets, revealing a very old wooden framed mirror. The frame was stained a dark brown, giving the mirror a very nice aurora.
He wiped the dust off the frame, running his fingers slowly along engravings in the wood. It was one line of symbols, which looked foreign, that wrapped completely around the mirror.
Even behind the layer of dust, the mirror gave off a slight glimmer. Dylan wiped it off with his hand. One single stroke, enough to reveal his face in the glass.
His brown eyes stared back at him. There was something in which intrigued him about his own reflection. Something didn’t seem right, but at the same time it looked like every other reflection he had seen.
He placed his hand on the glass and looked closer. Maybe his eyes were irritated or he had bags under his eyes, it was a longer work day than usually. No. No bags under his eyes, and his eyes were fine.
“You shouldn’t be down here,” James said, causing Dylan to jump.
“You scared the hell out of me man.”
James stayed silent. He lived upstairs in one of the apartments with his wife and daughter.
“You shouldn’t be down here,” he said again.
“Just looking around, Is it yours,” Dylan asked pointing to the mirror.
“Not mine, it’s theirs,” James replied as he stepped closer into the light, revealing an old hatchet.
“James? Are you okay?”
“I haven’t been okay for a long, long time,” he replied walking closer.
With no expression James raised the hatchet and struck Dylan’s head. The blade jamming five inches right in his forehead killing him instantly.
James ripped out the hatchet and turned to the mirror, a soft grin spreading across his face. He dragged Dylan’s body and propped it against the mirror and stepped back.
A few minutes past, and a long thin hand slowly came out of the mirror’s glass, grasping Dylan’s head and pulling his corpse slowly into the mirror.
Several minutes past, with nothing in the mirror except what should be. James impatiently began tapping his foot. The air grew cold and, somehow, felt as if the oxygen was gradually being drained from the room.
One foot emerged from the glass. Then a leg. Until an entire being stood before James. It looked like Dylan. Same clothes and even the same hair style Dylan had just moments before.
But, it was not Dylan. Whatever it was stood there, it’s legs twisted and bent backwards. His arms and hands twisted in positions that should be impossible.
The sounds of cracking pierced the air as the, thing, began twisting it’s body. Within a minute there it stood, perfectly upright. Now in every aspect, it looked like Dylan.
The creature gave a sinister grin as the last bit of light faded from the room.
The creature opened the door to Apartment 4 and stepped inside.
It sounded just like Dylan as it said, “Hun, I’m back.”
Credit: Dylan Broussard