I’m trying not to breathe too loudly right now. my asthma is acting up and I’m bunched up in a locker in the basement of an unused school building for deaf children, never really thought I would find myself in a situation like this, but I guess that's just one of life's many surprises.
I’ll start from the beginning, I’m a bit for an urban explorer, I like to find old, derelict buildings and investigate them, just a little hobby of mine. I came across the one I’m currently stuck in a few weeks ago during a jog around a place in Maine called Mackworth Island. I packed my things, which weren't more than a flashlight, into a small backpack and headed out. The place itself was a storage building set roughly in the center of the island with a sticker on the door that read B6. I arrived at about 6:30, making sure to come on a day when the kids would be away on vacation.
It wasn’t particularly hard to enter the building, all that I needed to get in was a medium sized rock and a thin window. I trudged my way up a slightly rusted staircase and suddenly it felt like I had stepped out of a time machine that had preserved everything exactly as it had been in the 1990’s. I found an old computer room with dusty Apple 2s, and all the classrooms had posture charts that showed a silhouette of a child with a perfectly straight back. Everything seemed exactly like the children had gotten all ready to head home after a long day and had just never returned.
I had been walking around these hallways for about half an hour before I began to realize a strange odor coming from a part of the building I hadn't been to yet. I know what it was now of course, but then I couldn’t identify it. I suspected something had just gotten stuck in the wall and died there. I was half right. As I came to the room where I had pinpointed the odor I saw not another classroom, but a simple, small white space with a staircase in the center, no doubt leading down to a basement. Reflecting back on my decision to head down these stairs it now seems like something you would yell at a horror movie character not to do, but as usual my curiosity got the better of me.
Traveling down the metal steps was like descending into the ocean. Everything was coated in a layer of rust akin to the thick red metal skin of the years submerged Titanic. The basement was made up of two rooms separated by a wall that went about five sixths across one large room, making two smaller ones. I peered around the room I was in, making sure to shine my flashlight in the nooks and crannies, and saw nothing much, a few janitorial buckets and mops, some tools. I should probably now mention that the stench had grown to an extremely uncomfortable level. I had the front of my shirt collar pulled over my nose in a makeshift gas mask.
Seeing nothing of real interest in the first section of the basement I showed the beam of my flashlight into the dark expanse of the other half. Finding a light switch I flicked it on, and instantly began gagging. On a workbench in the far side of the room there was what looked like a human body, almost unrecognizable in the condition it was in. It looked like a high school dissection of a frog, its midsection was sliced open and pried apart so that one could inspect every organ, like an autopsy. A few of the innards, which I could not identify, were placed in plastic tupperware containers and placed on a small table beside the bench where the body was laying. The legs of what I now identified as a man of about nineteen had the skin very precisely removed and hanging off the table from the feet of the body, they looked exactly like a chart one would show in school to teach kids about muscular formation.
I pried my eyes off this gruesome image and began dry heaving, when my body was good and done a sense of dread filled me. I began to heard slow, irregular footsteps coming from the stairs leading down to the basement. My adrenalin kicked in and I threw open the door to a locker that was leaning against the far side of the room and locked the door. This brings me to where I am now. It’s becoming extremely hard not to let out a harsh breath, or any noise at all. My asthma is kicking in, and it's burning my throat trying not to cough, I can hardly breathe, my inhaler is in my backpack. I can’t reach for it lest I might alert the creature. I can hear it shuffling about in the other room. It knows something’s here, I left the light on. He’s walking onto my side of the room now. All I can really do now is stay absolutely silent.
Oh my god, It's shambling into the room on all fours, it's human, at least I think it is. It just seems like the barebones of a man, it hasn't got any hair, or ears. Its skin is stretched across its bones to tightly that I looks like it could pop off at any moment. It's crawling across the concrete floor like a four legged spider with only stumps where its hands should be. I’m trying as hard as I can not to look at it. Keep telling myself that I’m safe behind the locked door. It can’t get through the lock, it’s just some skin and bones, nothing to go insane about. I know from my school years that only the Janitor has keys to all the lockers, no way this thing can get in, I’ll just keep silent and wait it out. It’ll have to leave sometime.
The thing is going up to the table with the body now. It just picked up one of the lumps of flesh out of the tupperware containers and starting taking bites out of it. I'm trying my hardest so keep silent through the gruesome scene but against all my efforts I gag a little and the thing freezes. I hold my breath for what seems like years before it slowly starts to turn around. I can see the creature's face now. The sides of its mouth hang down in an almost cartoonish frown and its eyes dart around the lockers before settling themselves on me, peering through the slits in the door. It won’t be able to get in. The door’s locked. No way it can get past that, no way, it's safe here. But as I’m looking behind him on the table I begin to realize
It’s got the janitor’s keychain.