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The New Guard at San Quentin Prison Isn’t Human

Estimated reading time — 4 minutes

My eyes opened quickly as I heard the whisper.

Wanna see something, Charlie?”

It happened last night. The newest prison guard on the block opened my cell, smiled, and informed me I was to gather my things and move to the end of our oldest cell block. He looked to be in his early 20s and had dark black hair to go with a perfectly kept uniform. I checked his name tag, and then spoke.


“Look, Lou, seems you’re new around here. I been in this cell going on ten years.”

He held his grin.

“Don’t worry. You’ll like it where I’m taking you,” he said.

I checked the clock in the prison. 8:00 P.M.

It was late and I was betting this was some type of rookie mistake, but what the hell was I supposed to do? He was a guard. This was his world. I figured there wasn’t much point in arguing. The son of a bitch had a strange kind of smile and I didn’t need to make any more enemies around here.

I gathered my things and headed over to my new home – at least for tonight.


Lou closed the bars behind me.

“Sweet dreams Charlie,” he said, whistling to himself and walking out of sight.

I was alone now, and there wasn’t another inmate for six or seven spots in either direction. Though it seemed odd that I was put all my myself, I wasn’t complaining. A night of peace and quiet would be nice for once.

After I had arranged the little possessions I had around my new cell, I kissed the picture of my daughter Addison and read from the bible like I did every night. I looked down at the page.

Hebrews 8:12 – For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more.

I hoped that was true as I lay down and thought about what I had done to get in here.

I have my doubts.

The overhead lights to the cellblock turned out for the night, and I must have drifted off to sleep.

My eyes opened quickly as I heard the whisper.


At first, I thought I imagined it.

Wanna see something, Charlie?”

This time I recognized the voice as Lou the new guard.

What the hell did he want now?

I lifted my head and put my feet on the concrete floor of the prison. As I looked through the bars of my cell, I couldn’t believe what I saw. I doubt you will either.

Lou was nowhere to be seen.

Though my cell and the bars were still intact, I now stared out into the scene of what looked like a carnival from a different time.

What the fuck?

I had to be dreaming.

As I stepped closer towards the bars, I saw hundreds of people dressed in old Victorian clothing. I was even dressed like that I realized, looking down at my own arms which were now draped in some type of long, black coat with silver buttons running along the cuffs.

I watched as the people paid no attention, starting to take their seats around a circular stage. A bright red curtain could be seen swaying gently, as everyone in sight grew quiet.

The lights dimmed completely now, and I stared out of the steel bars into complete blackness.


Then, I heard the distinct thump of a spotlight as it brightened the old wooden stage. A moment or two passed while a feeling of imminent dread came over me.

Then without warning – a gloved hand popped out through the curtain and began to wave at the crowd. The children giggled and smiled as they eagerly awaited the show.

OK. Enough of this shit.

grabbed hold of the bars and started to yell as loudly as I could.

Guard! GUARD!”

My yelling stopped as I saw the crowd turn their faces towards me in unison. Their blank eyes stared at me with a deep malevolence.

I moved back in my cell until I felt the hard wall against me.

Their faces returned to normal as they looked back to the stage.

The curtain slowly opened to reveal a tall clown in old fashioned costume standing perfectly still at center stage.

His hands suddenly moved in a blur, as he pulled out a dead rabbit from his hat. Its rotting corpse sat limply in his hands. The crowd roared with laughter as the clown feigned embarrassment.

Then, another spotlight brightened a different part of the stage. A rectangular wooden box about four feet tall could now be seen. The clown began to cartwheel over, and then leaned up against it.

I watched as two children from the audience walked through the seats and made a line in front of the wooden box. The clown smiled as the two children stepped inside. Then, the curtain closed in front of them.

When he pulled it open – the two children were gone.

The audience roared now with laughter.

One by one, each child in attendance walked up onto the stage. In groups of two, they were led into the box. The curtain would close, and when it opened again the young children would be gone.


Each time this magic trick was done, I could hear the crowd roar louder. They were almost convulsing in their seats, as I watched the last child step into the box… and vanish.

The clown jokingly scanned the audience, making sure they were no children left.

Then all at once, the crowd grew silent. I watched as hundreds of parents stood together and walked wordlessly out from their seats and into the darkness without their children.

It turned back towards the curtain, began to walk – and then stopped.

My heart froze in my chest as the clown turned its head towards me. For the first time, it stared directly at me.

I recognized the grin.

And then the lights went out.

I sat in the far corner of my cell until morning, more terrified than I’ve ever been in my life.

And now you’re up to speed on what happened. This was all last night and I haven’t seen Lou again since.

Once a day, my name is called and I’m given 90 minutes to use the internet on our computers in the prison. Besides writing this, I tried to research what the hell might be going on but I haven’t been able to find out anything. I sent a letter of complaint to the warden about my being moved to the empty corner of the block, but I was informed that he is out of town and not due to return for a few more days.

I thought about telling someone about what happened, but God knows no one here would believe me.

If anyone has any ideas on what I might be up against, please let me know. I don’t know what Lou is, if that’s even his real name.

If that’s even Its real name…

All I know is I’m scared as hell of what’s going to happen tonight when the lights go out.

Credit: Stephen R. Grey (a.k.a. Lighthouse Horror) (YouTubeReddit)

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