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Emails from Scotland

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A friend of mine went up to Scotland recently, and got back a few days ago. I forget the exact reason he went. These are the e-mails he's been sending me. The e-mails get really strange as they go on, so I thought I'd share them with you, to see if you guys would have any theories on what the hell's going on. I'm omitting some stuff about our personal lives and general stuff which nobody would be interested in.

Received Thursday, 2:32am

I'm home, and glad about it. Scotland itself was kind of dull, but the trip down was messed up. I'm alright
Images (39)
now, but I was pretty freaked out at the time.

I guess I'll start at the very beginning. The drive up there and the trip itself were predictably awful, despite the wonder that is my DS. I remain emotionally detached from my family, but on the plus side, I've got a level 70 Dragonite. So I can't complain.

It was on the trip back it happened. There was a lot of traffic, and so we hadn't even made it halfway home before it was late at night. My parents' business had taken longer than they'd expected, so we'd only been able to set off home mid-afternoon, but my dad decided he hadn't wanted to spend another day in Scotland, so we were just going to drive home in the middle of the night. Didn't make much sense to me either.

We were driving along some road an hour or so north of the border (based on the fact that we passed the border an hour later), I don't know the exact area. It had gotten pretty dark, and at this time of day the roads were quiet. We still saw the occasional car every so often, but it was something like one or two every quarter of an hour.

My dad had the radio on at this point, listening to a random station. It had been on for quite a while, but it was just typical pop-music, that kind of thing. We hadn't seen a car in at least half an hour, and aside from the noises of traveling and dark empty fields all around, there were no real signs of life anywhere. A bit dramatic, I know. I suppose I'm giving justification for what, in hindsight, might have been a bit of an overreaction.

Anyway, this song starts playing on the radio, a slow folklike kind of ballad. I don't know what it was called, but a deep-voiced male singer sang

It's all right to cry

Crying gets the sad out of you

It's all right to cry

It might make you feel better

It stuck in my head because it seemed really inappropriate for the station that we were playing, nothing like the songs that had already been on. It seemed really odd. I can't explain it, but listening to it made me feel a little strange. I really felt like I was being watched, which is kind of stupid, given that I was in a moving car with my family, but halfway through the song, it cut out. At first there were just general static sounds, but then a god-awful screeching sound came in, and then a kind of wet clicking noise. It was like nothing I'd ever heard before, and it filled the car, it was that loud. It got louder as it went on, and it became more like rumbling, with breathy noises, the best way I could describe it would be like a dog hacking up a lung, but it was worse than that. There were big 'chunk' noises interspersed in there with sounds like people throwing up, or screaming, or mixtures of the two. It was pretty fucking trippy.

It lasted for all of five seconds, but I shit you not when I say those five seconds will stay with me for the rest of my life.

The sound faded out and that song from before (I looked it up upon getting home, it's apparently called "It's Alright to Cry") started playing again. Nobody said anything until it finished, and even then I was the first one to speak.

"That was pretty messed up."

"What, the song? Kind of unusual for this station, I thought so too," my Dad answered me.

"No, what happened in the middle! What was that?"

"The signal probably just got cut out by one of those hills around here."

I was getting a bit impatient here. "Yeah, but what was the noise? I've never heard anything like that."

Chris, my friend's brother, looked at me in a really odd way, and said "It's static."

Static? You know I'm used to my brother messing me around, but there's no way anyone would believe for a second that this noise had been static.

I ignored him. "Dad, what do you think it was?"

And without missing a goddamn beat, he answered, "Just static."

He even sounded puzzled.

Meanwhile, another song had started. I forget what it was exactly, but it was typical pop crap that had been playing before.

I asked each of my family, and they all swear to me they heard nothing close to what I described to them. Just regular static. Even my mother, and I can't believe she'd lie to me.

The rest of the drive home was pretty quiet. I think my family thought I'd gone a bit odd, and I wasn't in much mood to talk myself, as I half-suspected they were playing a 'hilarious' joke on me.

I don't know, in retrospect, maybe it was just some funny effect of sound waves bouncing, nodes and such, but Christ, it really felt wrong at the time. Even now I feel a little unsettled.

[General chat follows]

I replied late on Friday night with some usual stuff, telling him about what I'd been up to, how my girlfriend had gotten a new job, that kind of thing. I said the thing he'd heard was probably just some weird distortion, and to pay it no mind. The next correspondence I got was this.

Saturday, 12:21pm

Hey, man.

Thanks for getting back to me. Tell Lisa I said congrats on the job.

You're probably right about that noise. To be honest, I think I'm having a bit of a funny week. I keep seeing dark things in the corner of my eye, or getting a feeling like something's behind me, then turning 'round and nothing's there. I sound like a paranoid pothead, I know, but I've been clean for months now. It's probably stress, my dad says. Hence the thing in the car.


[General chat follows]

Kind of concerned, I replied straight away. I'd been online at the time, asking him if he was sure he was okay, and that we could talk if he was stressed, etc. He replied...

Saturday, 12:50pm

Nah, don't worry about it. It's nothing serious. Like I said, flashes of an image or something (which is probably just floaters in the eye) or thinking I hear some sound for a moment that disappears. No doubt someone will let me know if I start going fully mental.

There was only one that really shook me. It was late last night, and I was just checking out the web listening to some of that Jeff Magnum stuff you sent me [He means Mangum] on my headphones when the sound started to get a little funny, like there were extra notes and beats that hadn't been there before. At first I thought it was just lag or something, so I paused and started again, but it actually got worse. I moved to the next song on the playlist, still kept doing it. After a few seconds it sounded like two entirely different songs were playing on top of each other. I start trying to pick out what the other thing is, when guess what the hell I start hearing.

'It's all right to cry Crying gets the sad out of you'

It sounded weird now, kind of distorted, or changed in pitch, but I was sure I heard that song playing in the background.

It was late, and I was the only one here (parents and Chris have gone out for the evening), so I was pretty freaked out. I sat there listening for a few seconds as the 'other' song became more and more prominent. Suddenly I thought, or I convinced myself or something, that I heard a "chunk", and the hoarse exhaling noise began. It was the noise I'd heard in the car, I was sure.

I'll admit it, I was terrified. All the disgust I'd experienced while I sat in the car hearing that noise for the first time returned, but with it a sense of immediacy, of presence. It felt like it was right here with me. Like it was touching me. I felt a chill and the hairs on my arm stood up.

Instantly my hand flew up to the speaker to the left of my computer, hitting the power button. But the sound didn't disappear straight away. It carried on for a couple of seconds something that usually doesn't happen with these speakers and I swear, just before it died away, it sounded almost like talking.

Messed up, huh?

Like I say. Stress or something. I had a talk with my dad, and he listened to the whole story. When I'd finished, he didn't say anything for a while, and just looked at me quietly, with kind of a strange expression. Eventually he said I shouldn't worry, it was probably just stress from A-levels combined with too many horror movies, and to try take it easy.

Thanks for asking, anyway. You take care.

I didn't really know what to make of this. Truth be told, I was busy with my own life. The next I heard was this.

Sunday, 7:40pm

Can you call me? I know it's out of the blue, and a bit weird, but I really need to talk to someone, and heh, knowing your lack of a life, you'll probably be on when I send this. Seriously though, it's kind of important. Here's the number [removed]. It's my house number. I can't find my mobile.

I was online, so I tried calling him, but it wouldn't go through. I replied as much in the e-mail and told him to call me, giving him my number and suggesting that one of us try his mobile, to help him find it. I got this back.

Sunday, 7:45pm

Doesn't work for me either. Something's wrong. I don't have time now, but I'll e-mail again later. Try to call me again if you can, later. Keep trying.

Wednesday, 9:50pm

It's not going away. God, I feel like a total nutcase as I tell you this, but I hear the noise again. When I, when I wait to go to sleep, in my room, when it's all quiet. It's like something just on the edge of hearing, but it's THERE. And no one believes me.

I'm the only one here tonight. They've all gone. But I feel something watching me. Like something in the house. Crazy things are happening.

I hear the shower turn on in the middle of the night, just for a few seconds, then stop. When I eventually persuade myself to go take a look, nothing's there. The mailbox flaps. Probably street kids you say.

I went to the bathroom an hour ago. While I was sat on the toilet I heard a noise outside. I immediately stop dead, and hold my breath. I swear to god, I heard footsteps out in the hall. And that's not all. The bathroom door's quite high off the ground, letting light in. But something steps in front of the door. It blocks that light. And it just waits there. Like it's stood, facing the door. Looking at me through it. Eventually, after I'd sat there for five heart-pounding minutes, breathing the shortest quietest breaths I could, they moved. I heard the footsteps padding away.

It was half an hour before I dared leave that bathroom.

I'm the only one in the house. I've checked every room.

Am I losing my mind?

I still hadn't replied (didn't know what to say, really) when I got this.

Wednesday, 10:41pm

I can't even use the computer. It's gone funny. Audio corrupted. Speakers hissing, just messed up.

Shit. Wait.

I put the TV on downstairs, to keep me company. I can kind of hear it from up here.

For a second I was sure it was playing that song.

I'm going mad. I went downstairs to grab some crisps, just something I could grab quickly to keep me going, I don't like being downstairs alone right now, and as I stepped in the kitchen I smelled...why do I want to say death? Bins. Must have been the bins, realistically, yeah? They smell like rotting things because they rot.

I went to look out the window earlier, when the letterbox was going, to see if I could see anyone. I couldn't see anything out there. It was completely black. I couldn't see a foot in front of my face.

Why are all the streetlamps out?

I've replied and suggested he call someone to come over and spend time with him, or call his parents and chat to them. Best I could come up with.

Wednesday, 11:03pm

I can't, no one's around, it's just me. It's come just for me.

I keep hearing it. That song, it's playing downstairs somewhere. And there are other noises too. I hear them, the noise from before. I recognize the clicking. The breathing.

I'm scared. I'm really scared. I don't know what to do. I don't believe in ghosts or monsters, but there's something here. I can feel it.

Wednesday, 11:10pm

I hear those words again. Clearer now.

Wednesday, 11:18pm

There's something in the house. I can hear it moving downstairs. Trying to call the police online. Where the fuck is my phone. Call police send them to this address.

There's no address there. I even highlighted the space, to see if he'd written it in white. It's just blank. I don't get it. This isn't funny. I replied saying there was no address, he seemed not to get it. There was no acknowledgement of it in the following reply.

Wednesday, 11:25pm

Ffs hurry up get someone here at least talk to me I'm not fucking kidding I hear someone something in the house.

Wednesday, 11:37pm

Ihear itcoming chrisdt help

Monday, 11:38pm


He sent me that last message four times, one after another. I've been trying to call him for the last hour pretty much. No reply.

I have no idea what the hell to do.

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