Estimated reading time — 5 minutes
I know scary stories are fun to read, but they can also be a warning. I’m writing and posting this only because I know the people that come here will actually read the whole thing, maybe even with interest. I want to tell my story so that no one is stupid enough to make the same mistakes that I have. I’ll make it quick. Do not take this lightly.
I, for one, do not like talking on the phone. I don’t know why. I’ve become more and more anti-social over the years and I only make an effort to hang out with a select group of people. Even with my best friend, Katie, our conversations are almost always through text. It’s sad, but it’s the reality of the times. Everyone wants what they want fast and with minimal effort. There are a million reasons why our technology addiction is harmful to us as a society, but I’m not talking about any of that right now. I’m talking about a real, immediate danger.
When you text, just like when you talk to someone online, you have no way of knowing who is on the other end seeing what you’re writing. Yes, it says your friend’s name or your mom’s name because that’s how you saved it into your smart phone, but what if that precious device ends up in the hands of a predator?
When you speak to someone face to face, or god, even over the phone, you can hear their voice. You can tell that you are speaking to the person you intended to speak to and you can hear things like sadness, distress, or joy in the tone of their voice. Through text, you don’t know. You just don’t know. You may think you know, and that something weird like this won’t happen to you, but you’re wrong. That’s what I thought too. Keep reading. Please.
A few weeks ago, my boyfriend was out of town visiting his family so I had the apartment to myself. I was excited to get some alone time, but I also offered my couch to my friend Katie who was in between apartments at the time and had nowhere to stay. I told her to stay anytime, but that she should definitely stay that weekend because it would be just us and she wouldn’t have to feel weird staying over when my boyfriend was there. Plus, we could have a girls’ night like we used to when we lived together.
It was a Friday night and I was tired from a long day at work but I told her to come over whenever. She said she would be out late with her friend John and would probably just stay at his place. I said OK and went to bed early.
I’ve lived with my boyfriend for about a year now and I’ve definitely gotten used to having someone here at night. I’ve always been a little scared of the dark, and I’ll admit that while he was gone, I left on all the lights in the apartment and I double bolted the front door and my bedroom door AND left the T.V. on. I’m a wimp, I know.
That night I fell asleep around 11pm and woke up around 1am to a text from Katie saying she really needed to come over. It said;
“Please can I come over? I have nowhere else to go.”
I told her to go ahead but to call me when she got here and knock because I would probably fall asleep again. She said to just leave the door unlocked and she would be quiet coming in and lock it behind her. I felt a little weird about it because it was late at night and I was being a little paranoid, but in the end I figured it was a safe neighborhood and I would just lock my bedroom door for good measure. I told her I would leave it unlocked.
“Thank you. I’ll see you soon,” she wrote.
“No problem. The address is 1422 Mt. Vernon. Apt. 3 in case you didn’t save it from last time,” I wrote.
Katie had only been over once and I didn’t want her to call me and wake me up again when she realized she couldn’t remember which building it was. I fell asleep with my phone in my hand and the lights on, with the bedroom door locked just in case.
I woke up the next morning around 7am and needed to go to the bathroom. I checked my phone and saw that Katie had gotten in around 1:30am.
“I’m here,” she said.
I opened my door and looked around. She was gone. The blankets on the couch were moved so she must have slept over and left early for work. I made some coffee and when I walked back into the living room I noticed muddy shoe prints all over the living room rug.
“God damn it, Katie.”
I went to get a paper towel and saw that the tracks were leading over to my bedroom. There were muddy handprints on the door from the ground to the top and most of it was on the doorknob. I immediately ran to the front door and locked it. Something was wrong. I knew something bad had happened but I couldn’t wrap my head around it.
I called Katie’s phone but she didn’t answer. Maybe something had happened to her or she was just really drunk that night, but I needed to speak to her and see if she was alright. I called three times and she didn’t answer.
The mud was making my apartment smell bad. It smelled like rotten vegetables. I remember crying then, and I called Katie’s Mom. I didn’t want to worry her but I just had a terrible feeling. She answered and told me that she was with Katie and she was alright.
I was so relieved, but before I could fully take a deep breath, her mom told me that Katie had been mugged when she was out in Hollywood the night before and that they were both at the hospital.
“What happened? When did this happen? How did she get from my place to the hospital? I would have taken her,” I said, feeling guilty for sleeping through it.
“Last night? No. She came right to the hospital last night. John was with her and said that a man hit her on the head with something when she was leaving the comedy club and tried to drag her to his car, but John intervened when he caught up with her and the man got in his car and drove away with Katie’s purse. He took her phone and wallet and I.D. and everything. Thank God John was there. He brought her straight here.”
I could hear my heart beating in my ears.
“When did this happen? What time last night?” I said.
Her mom asked something I couldn’t hear, presumably to John or the nurse.
“They say around 12pm last night.”
I think I started crying again at that point. That was way before Katie texted me last night. Then my phone buzzed in my hand and I looked down. A text from Katie.
“I’m here. I’m outside the door. Why did you lock me out. I just had to get something from my car. Let me in,” it said.
I could hear Katie’s mom still talking. She was saying Katie wanted to talk to me and that she would hand over her phone since Katie’s was taken.
I looked at the front door and started backing away into my bedroom. Katie’s phone started calling me and texting me to let whoever it was in. I finally screamed;
“YOU”RE NOT KATIE! YOU’RE NOT KATIE!”
I called the police and locked myself in my bedroom until they got there. They couldn’t find anyone, and Katie’s mom shut off the cell phone immediately because we kept getting strange calls and text messages asking us where we were and:
“Can I come over?”