- Note: This is a sequel to Abstract Reality
“I know it hurts, Davon, but… I would like for you to tell me the story. Just one last time.”
I had just gotten home. I walked through the door, the house keys jingling like chimes in the wind as I slid them into my right pocket. I walked into the living room. It has been so long that I can hardy remember what it looked like. I remember the television being on. She must have left it on and forgotten about it. She always watched the Channel Seven News. I was tired from being outside, as my social anxiety had struck me harder than it usually does. My head ached and throbbed as blood rushed through my veins. I sat down on our father’s leather couch and turned the Television off so I could rest in the company of silence; the absence of human beings.
My hand still shook. My hand would always shake as I walked around in public, my head rushing with the noise around me. And then I got the call. My cell phone rang. I tried to ignore it but the irritating tune of the ring-tone made me pick it up. It was her. I answered the phone and told my dear sister that I was busy. She told me her car got a flat tire. She was never any good with cars. She always phoned me for help. She told me to go to the gas station from which she would always get the liquorice sticks. If I did not hurry, she would be late. For what, I did not ask. I told here I would head out the door.
I didn’t go right away. I needed time. It always took me a while before I could go outside again after previous public encounters. If I didn’t, I would become far too stressed. I have had few mental breakdowns, but when one occurred, it would take hours for me to become calm. My head would burn with the fire of hell and the noise would become so loud that I couldn’t hear my own thoughts. Granted, I was younger when these occurred, but I still fear that the anxiety will send my head into oblivion yet again. So I waited. For almost twenty minutes I sat on our father’s couch, the brown leather sighing with my every movement. I shouldn’t have waited. The mental disorientation I was attempting to save myself from was horse-shit compared to the knife that would run through my skull.
I remember walking up to the gas station, its flickering blue-tinted lights attracting friendly moths. I remember seeing her there, on the ground. At first, I didn’t realize what had happened. I stood, deaf and dumb, staring at her as she lay in her own puddle of crimson. After what seemed like millennia, I walked over to her and kneeled down. The knife was lodged in her side. Its handle was red like the blood it had spilled. My arms wrapped around her rag doll body. Still not comprehending the situation I was in, I just held her, sweet red blood running through my fingers and onto the cold stony ground. And then the knife ran through my skull, with its blade forged from pain.
That is all I remembered of that moment.
The man who had…
He was just some thug off the street. They found him, locked him away. It didn’t seem like enough. They said that if I had been there a few minutes earlier, I would have been there to protect her. But instead, I had lounged in my own selfish, petty problems on a leather couch. Thinking that I needed a break from life, I had rested. It was my fault. It was my fault that my sister…
There is no describing that feeling. The person who I had grown and spent my life with had just vanished in a split second… And it was my own fault.
I remember her funeral. It was quiet. There was so much darkness, from the misery of the people surrounding me, their clothes as black as night, to the feeling she left me behind with.
~ Its Ancient Seams ~
Davon drove up to the house. It was a secluded property. Vines of greenery had gradually slithered their way up the house over the years, like large snakes that slid over the house’s white skin. Despite the age of the house, it was well preserved. Davon got out of the car and walked towards it. He had bought it a couple months ago. He couldn’t stay at the house he used to live in.
The house welcomed him with its embrace of emptiness as he opened the door. There was nothing inside the house; no furniture, no pictures on the walls. The wooden floor groaned as he walked in and walls screamed at his fingertips as he ran them across the smooth surface of the wallpaper. Most of the walls were painted white, but the entrance room had floral wallpaper (god knows why). The kitchen to his left, living room to his right, and ahead was a doorway near a staircase. The doorway lead to the dining room (which he thought was an odd distance from the kitchen). All the doors creaked as if a thousand years of stress was weighing upon them, as if opening them stretched their wood and metal muscles after a long rest.
The stairs were dusty and he left footprints as he ascended, which disturbed years of peace. His hands ran across the smooth wooden surface of the railings. As he was on the final step to the top, he was greeted with a hallway. There was one door on the left side of the wall and three on the right.
Davon peeked through the first door on the right. It was a large room, with wooden planked walls and red wallpaper with more floral designs. The floor was a rich dark wood paneling. Along the sides were shelves filled with books of ancient knowledge, their red and green (with the occasional blue) spines alternated across the old shelves. Story books, encyclopaedias and novels. The library was a beautiful room, and in the middle was a large black piano.
His sister had taught him how to play. Ever since he was her kid brother she took lessons and Davon learned what he could from her. He wasn’t very good, but he enjoyed the time spent with her.
He hadn’t played.
Not since it happened. For three years, he hasn’t played.
Davon sat down on the black bench in front of the piano, his hand ran through his messy brown hair. He lowered his arms, fingers set on the ivory of the keys, and his white sleeves were rolled up to his elbows. He attempted to play one of the songs his sister had taught him, but with every other note, he would make errors. For every other god damned note, he fucked up. In anger, he slammed his fists on the ivory, and the sound of a thousand notes rang through the house’s empty walls. His teeth clenched and his blood boiled in his veins as he became stressed. He sat there like so, and after a minute, he gently rested his shoulders, made himself become calm. He sat up and walked out of the room, his jeans rustling
He silently closed the library door as he entered the hall again. He still had a few more rooms to explore. He had already seen the house before buying it; however it was a while back. He wanted to look at things in depth; he wanted to refresh his memory. He checked the second door on the right. It was the bedroom. It was smaller than the library, but still pleasantly large. It had wallpaper with a pattern not unlike the library’s, but it was a sea-foam green in this room. The bed had matching covers, and beside it was a small table with a drawer. On the other side was a closet with wooden doors. Davon walked towards the bed and sat down on its edge. It seems that the sheets were recently cleaned; they were immaculate. The pillows were white with frilled edges. This room was nice. He felt at home in here. He lay down on the bed and looked at the ceiling. A small light bulb hung from the middle of the textured ceiling.
He didn’t search the last room on the right side of the hall very thoroughly. It was only the laundry room. There were two machines in front of a white wall and a wooden cupboard above them.
The room on the left side of the hall… It was all that was left.
It was a bathroom: white walls, a shower with glass panes around it (a sliding door in the front), a porcelain toilet, and a sink with a… mirror.
Davon looked into the mirror. It was cracked, as if a thousand years of faces were stored in its ancient memory, tearing its old seams. As Davon stared into it, he felt lost, and the man in the mirror was not the same as the one outside.
… This man was happy…
… Preserved in the mirrors ancient frame and spider-web fractures on its silver face.
~ Welcome Home ~
Davon stood in the parking lot of the Save-Mart shopping centre. He had packed all of his possessions from his old home, but he didn’t have much to begin with. He needed food for the most part. But he couldn’t go any closer to the doors of the large store. He tried to make himself, but his nerves buzzed and his legs stood still. The parking lot was an okay place (at least compared to the inside of the Save-Mart), and he didn’t want to leave it, but not only was it good for him to at least try to enter social situations, but he needed groceries.
As he walked through the doors of the store, he began to feel light-headed, sick, and his hand began to shake. There were so many people, crowded, shoving, pushing, screaming… The noise was so loud that Davon nearly keeled over in mental (and seemingly physical) pain. Slowly, he shuffled on. Then it hit him; he didn’t know where anything was. Where was the food, where were the home supplies, how would he find the things he needed? Then, through the noisy crowd of screaming people, he spotted people wearing green Save-Mart jackets, which speckled parts of the crowd. He kept his head down and his hands over his ears as he made his way toward an employee.
The man in the green jacket spotted him. He had a red beard, neatly trimmed, with somewhat long, scraggly hair. He was heavily built, and a nametag on his chest read “Crosby”.
“Welcome to Save-Mart, all your shopping needs in one place with unbeatable prices, how can I help you today?” the man said, blandly, with an artificial smile.
Davon just stood in one spot, head spinning, not able to speak.
“Yo, dude, y’okay?” asked the employee.
At that, Davon dashed into a nearby isle, avoiding conversations. He spotted a row of Mac&Cheese boxes on the isle he was next to. He grabbed an armful and went to the till.
Davon paid for the food, rushed out the doors and towards his car, its blue roof raised high above the others. He shoved the boxes of Mac&Cheese in the passenger seat and shut the door. Quiet. His hand was still shaking, his head was still spinning.
Davon stood in the kitchen, head resting on the marble counter. The surface felt cool against his throbbing head. One by one, he grabbed the Mac&Cheese boxes and neatly placed them in the cupboard above his head, his hand steady (or at least more so).
That night was the first night he’d spend in the house. Before he got some sleep, he thought he’d wash the sheets on his bed. They looked like they had been taken care of, but he just thought it would be better for his peace of mind.
As he had no basket, he carried the sheets into the laundry room. In the cupboard, there was washing machine soap. He shoved the sheets in, dumped in the soap, and turned it on. The machine came to life and it shook violently, its white frame rattled. He closed the door and the noise of the machine died a little. Across the hall, he opened the door to the bathroom and washed his hands. The mirror caught his glance.
The man in the fractured mirror stared back at Davon, the old frame holding him in place. Davon wondered what this man was thinking. Was there really a version of him that could be happy? He raised his hand and rested it on the cool, spider-webbed reflection, the man in the frame following his gestures. His fingers touched the surface, sending a chilling feeling up his arm and deep into his soul.
Pain rippled through his body as he screamed, his teeth flashed in the light, roars bounced off the walls. His body was torn apart; skin ripped from his body and his heart beat impossibly fast as it burned a hole through his chest. And then everything shattered. The world, the universe, fell apart.
Davon opened his eyes.
The room was different. It was colder. The entire surface of the mirror had been smashed, somehow holding itself together. He walked out of the bathroom. The window that was once at the end of the hall had been placed on the floor, which granted access to a view of the house below. The walls of the house hummed and hairline fractures ran across them like veins on a living creature. All the doors along the hall were unevenly shaped. The door knob on one was at the top of the door. This world… It was far more abstract than the one Davon had come to know. The second door on the left was painted black. Second door… This was new. He reached for the handle and the door began to violently shake, chips of wood fell from the doorframe as it nearly tore away from its hinges. He opened it.
The entire house began to scream as larger cracks slithered their way up the walls. The noise pieced Davon’s skull. A dark, sick feeling formed in his stomach. Dread. He slammed the door shut and there was silence. The room was freezing cold and pitch black. He couldn’t see a thing. Davon was scared to move. He was surrounded by nothingness. He outstretched his shaking hand and it brushed against something hanging from the ceiling (making him flinch as horrifying thoughts ran through his head for a split second). It took a second for him to realize what it was. He pulled it.
The room became dimly lit as a flickery light bulb hung from the ceiling, emanating heat and welcomed light. He could barely see the walls, black veins pulsed through the dirtied white paint. Mould was spattered across the floor. Then, as if it was an afterthought, he saw it; a tall dark figure, skin blacker than the mould running across the room. Its emaciated figure rose and fell as its broken, misshapen ribcage sucked in the stale air. Its twisted neck balanced an eyeless, toothy head. Davon became weak as fear drove itself into his heart. The emaciated figure opened its enormous mouth, long yellow teeth ready to tear flesh from bone. Dark red fluid poured from its mouth, pooling on the floor. The light hanging from the ceiling flickered and went out. It was only out for a second. As it relit the room, the creature was smiling, face to face with Davon; its throaty gurgling breath clung to Davon’s face as he screamed for all he was worth. He shut his eyes tight and reached for the doorknob.
~ What Once Was ~
Henry stumbled over bottles as he emptily shuffled towards the couch. His heart no longer knew how to beat. His blood, for all he cared, had stopped running through his veins. He dropped his frail, broken body onto the couch. Its frame squeaked and cracked as he did so, dust flying softly into the air and a small ray of sunlight illuminated them through a small crack in the curtains of the apartment. As he sat still on the couch, he stared at the wall. Its paint was peeled and stained. His eyes no longer knew how to cry. They just stared into whatever was as empty as them. This was Henry’s “life”. For the last two decades, he sat, drank, and stared.
“One more drink won’t kill me,” he thought, as he reached for a half empty bottle of something on the arm of his couch. Its dark brown glass shone in the sliver of light. He gulped down the last of its stale contents, despite the fact that his taste buds have long since ceased to function. He continued to stare at the peeled paint. A small insect crawled across the dilapidated wall. It stopped in the middle and changed direction. Before it reached the ceiling, Henry threw the brown bottle at it, covering the wall with the tasteless liquid it held, along with the remains of the insect.
He ran a hand from the side of his face, through his greasy beard, and across his uncut hair. He was filled with depression. Not the feeling of sadness, not anger, not fear, not happiness, but the feeling of nothing. He had lost the ability to feel emotion. He reached for another half empty bottle and finished it off. He then pulled his fragile carcass off the couch, dropping the bottle, which painted the floor with small brown pieces of glass and whatever was inside. Henry began to walk towards the closet near the front door of his apartment room. His feet pressed against small pieces of broken glass, red liquids flowing from the open wound. He merely glanced down and ignored the blood pooling at his filthy, bare feet. From out of the closet he pulled a box. The cardboard box held the last of his personal belongings. Inside was a beer stained shirt, an old, torn picture of Jacob, and an orange extension cord. He reached in and plucked the image from atop the shirt. In the picture, Jacob was wearing a yellow rain jacket that was two sizes too big. Under the hood, he wore a stupid, childish grin that was full of childhood feeling. Henry stuffed the picture into his pocket and reached for the extension cord.
After close to fifty years, it was time to rid the world of whatever was inside of his skin. The leftovers of a man who had once lived have long since vacated, leaving no reason to let a hollow shell take up space in a world that knew not of his existence.
~ Still Here ~
Hysteria creeps slowly into its host and spreads like a disease until it consumes all other thoughts in the mind it will soon occupy.
Davon woke with a start, his heart pounded out of his ribcage. That… Was not a dream. The image of the figure was burned into his mind. Its pitch black skin hung from its body. He tried to shove it out of his mind, but it was still there in the corner of his every thought. He rolled himself out of the bed and found himself in the nude. He walked towards the closet and found a white button-up and jeans to put on; his usual. He walked out the bedroom door. On the left side of the room was a single door. Not two. Just a door and some empty wall-space. He pressed his hand against the wall where the door once was. It was just a wall. Its white paint was smooth and undisturbed. This fact began to overwrite the idea that what happened was real. Maybe it was a dream. As if on command, this thought triggered a feeling of being watched. Davon turned around, met with nothing but an empty hall. The feeling of eyes still pierced his body. Davon shuddered and walked (or, more accurately, ran) down the stairs and into the kitchen. He reached into the cupboard above his head and grabbed one of the neatly organized boxes of Mac&Cheese. And then realized that he had no… Frickin’… Pots.
Henry stood on the stool and fastened the extension cord onto the fan on the ceiling. He had no idea how to tie a noose. He just made crude knots until it looked decent enough. He could feel the death that clung to the orange plastic of the cord. He stood on the tip of his toes so he was able to get the cord around his neck. He stood there, fan above his head (it had stopped working about ten years ago), orange loop around his neck (it's orange plastic covered with a layer of mould pressed against his unbathed skin, facial hair scraggier than ever), stool at his feet (wobbling on uneven legs). He let out a lungful of air and prepared himself for the end to hug him closely to its morose, beatless heart.
With his feet, Henry shoved the stool away. Pain ran through his neck as he dangled from the ceiling. He ignored the pain, as the silence would be worth the wait. But then he needed air. He knew it would be painful, but his lungs screamed and his arms began to thrash, his legs kicked the air. He wanted this. He wanted it to end, but the pain was unbearable. For almost a minute, he flung his arms and legs violently in the air, his mouth gurgled and drooled with spit that ran down his face and onto his shirt. The floor seemed to be a million kilometres away. And then he began to get weak. His thrashing began to subside. He felt peaceful, he knew it was coming. The room around him darkened. He was almost gone. He felt rubble land on his face (which he ignored), but then there was more, along with a cracking sound.
“No,” he thought. “I only need a little more time.” And then loud noises came from above him and the ceiling fan came crashing down on top of him. The extension cord around his neck loosened and he felt oxygen rushing into his lungs, blood and brain. He was on his hands and knees on the floor, ceiling fan beside him, broken and mangled. “FUCK!” he screamed, pounding the ground with his fists. He stood up, extension cord still around his neck (however, it was now detached from the fan) and threw himself against the wall. “Fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck, fucking fuck!” He screamed at the top of his lungs, and with every profane word he bellowed, his fist created a new holes in the wall. “Fuck you!” he screamed, to nobody. He kept wailing and pounding until his nose began to pour blood, his veins throbbed in his neck and face, and tears rained from his eyes, down his untrimmed beard and onto his shirt, in which they soaked.
After a trip to the near empty building of Save-Mart (not many people go shopping at three o’clock in the morning), Davon managed to get the supplies he needed; more food, cooking utensils, cook-books and other assorted useful items. As he pulled up in his driveway yet again, he felt himself become cold. The feeling of being watched had returned (or more accurately, he returned to it). He attempted to shrug it off and carried the paper bags into the house and sat them on the kitchen table. He set one of the pots onto the top of the stove and set the temperature on high as he filled it with water. After he stared at the water for a minute, it bubbled over the top. He tore the top off of the Mac&Cheese box and spilled its contents into the ferocious water, steam rose from the top. He waited and stared at the water until he decided it was done well enough, emptied the water into the sink and stirred in the milk, butter and powdered cheese.
He sat at the kitchen table, feeding himself the artificially flavoured pasta in bland spoonfuls of the undercooked noodles.
~ Mistakes ~
Davon awoke with a start. He was being watched. It wasn’t a feeling. He began to shake under his now cold bed sheets. It wasn’t a feeling this time, he knew it was there. He reached to the bedside table and switched on the light. He saw it. Not IT. He knew it was there, he could see where it was, but he couldn’t see it. In the far corner of his room, the corner which the light could not reach, it was there, trembling in the darkness as it stared at him. The darkness seemed to cling to the walls around it. He could hear its irregular breathing. He could hear blood bubbling in the back of its throat as air escaped its maw.
Davon’s hand shook violently and his tiny voice squeaked. The thing wouldn’t move. It was hiding in the darkness. Tension rose higher with every second it was there. Then… Its hand. From out of the corner of the darkness, he could see its mangled hand and long bony claws covered in skin darker than night. Its fingers gently moved and its knuckles cracked. He began to see its torso. He could see its chest rise. Its face was invisible in the darkness of the room’s corner. He could only make out part of its emaciated corpse of a body. Why wouldn’t it move?! He wanted it to move, but it was just there, staring at him. Fuzzy noises filled Davon’s head and he began to feel dizzy.
“No!” he yelled. He didn’t know why. “Go away!” The words lingered on his tongue as his throat rumbled. The words that came out of his chest were louder than he expected and he nearly scared himself. And then it was done. It was gone. Its hand had pulled back into the shadows and the corner of the room slowly lit up from the lamp on his desk as the thing disappeared.
Davon rushed himself out of his bed and flicked on the light of the bedroom, lighting up more than a bedside lamp did. His forehead beaded with sweat and he found it hard to catch his breath, so he went downstairs to try to do something to keep his mind off of what he had experienced. Hysteria was beginning to feed off of his mind and sanity. He knew these things could not logically exist… But it was there. He pulled his phone from his pocket and turned it on.
“Internet connection Failed. Please check you connection and try again.”
He got in his car, the engine revved to life, and he drove out (he ignored any laws of the road that he would normally obey). He reached a MackDonaldz Fast-Food restaurant. A “Free Wi-Fi” sticker was plastered in the corner of the door window. He parked his car, turned on his phone and tapped the internet browser icon. He filled the search bar with a jumble of words that he thought were somehow relevant. Then he began finding things…
Eight Year Old Boy Abducted
On August 12th, 1995, eight year old Jacob Lenning was abducted, presumably during a home invasion. Twenty-nine year old Father “Henry Lenning” was questioned but did not comment and has been placed under psychological analysis due to signs of hysteria and mental disorder. Sixty year old Barbara Hammock came forth with supposed evidence; she claimed that she witnessed “An elongated, dark creature carrying an unconscious child” But when tested for drug use, the results were positive and she later confirmed that she had recently taken hallucinogenic drugs before the incident occurred. As of now, there is no sign of the missing child, but law enforcements will continue studying the case and search parties have been gathered.
It was an old newspaper article… And there were more:
In 1997, a young man named Ellis moved into a new apartment, hoping that moving into a new place with more people would help rid himself of depression, disappeared a month after the move, with no body ever found and no witnesses to see any inhumanly demons, however they confirmed that Ellis had taken a downward spiral in his mental condition and his apartment was covered in veins of mould, specifically in the bathroom (where a mirror had been smashed). The two children in the Hadword family disappeared in 2008 after moving into a new house, and the mother claimed to see a tall figure seemingly disappear in the night’s veil. The most bizarre (although unofficial) story was about how an entire house had disappeared in 1979. Nearby residents claimed that the old woman who lived in the house was mentally unstable, but there was no denying that an entire building had seemingly disappeared off the face of the planet.
Davon felt like he had lost the last of his sanity. This thing (or these things) took time. They never took anybody at first. They took their time to explore the lives of these people, to find their weakness. Davon sure had his own issues. He didn’t know how long he had.
He turned the engine of his car back on and began to drive. He did not know where to, but he drove until he found himself in the parking lot of his therapist. Maybe the man could still help him. He had stopped seeing his therapist a while ago. He felt that he had a handle on the goings on, but he clearly had not because this creature cannot be real. It was illogical. It was his imagination. He took a deep breath and stepped out of the car. It was raining (heavily). By the time he reached the front doors, his shirt was drenched.
“Linda, where’s mister Gallord?” he asked the receptionist as he entered.
“He’s in his office, Davon, and welcome back! Long time, no see!” she chirped. He ignored her comments and strutted towards his old therapist’s office. He threw the doors opened and entered. The room was dark, a light on his desk illuminated what it could. Gallord sat in a leather chair, barely visible in the light.
“Davon. Sit,” said the man in his recognizable rough voice.
“Sir?” Davon peeped.
“I was expecting you. Now sit,” said the old man. Davon took the offer and sat down in a wicker chair. “Do you blame yourself, Davon?”
“Mister Gallord, I think I’m going insane…” David stammered, and a lump in his throat formed. “I think I’m breaking down.”
“Do you blame yourself for what happened to your sister?”
Davon paused. The word yes rolled out of his mouth, independent of his thoughts.
“Good,” said the old man. He leaned forward, the light made his old wrinkled face and silver hair visible. “It was your fault. You might as well have killed her yourself.”
Davon only managed a half-assed: “Wha-?”
The old man leaned in even closer and grinned. “You killed your sister, Davon. You killed her.”
Davon lunged at the man in a flail of fists. He bashed his fists at the old man’s face, teeth flew, and blood poured. Davon screamed unrecognizable words as he beat the man on the ground.
He stopped. The old man didn’t move. Davon looked at his hands which were covered in blood. He could see the bones on his knuckles; pain throbbed through his hands. The old man’s eyes were rolled back into his bruised, bloody head and the floor was stained with pooled blood.
Davon ran. He ran out the front doors, ignoring whatever the receptionist said as he broke through the doors and into the rain. He got in his car and slammed on the wheel.
“God damn it!” he screamed, the car’s horn echoed in the empty parking lot. He put his hands on the wheel, which was now covered in slippery red blood, and turned the key in the side. The wheels of his car screamed as he spun out of the parking lot. His head pounded as he sped home. What did he just do? He… He just killed somebody. Shit. He heard a siren behind him. Red and blue flashed behind him. He slowly pulled over and frantically began to erase any evidence he could. He wiped the blood off his hands with the bottom of his jeans and covered his knuckles with his sleeves.
“License and registration, please,” said a woman in a blue jacket. Davon scrambled for the glove compartment and gave a handful of things to the police officer. He kept quiet and didn’t say a word. The woman turned on her flashlight and stood still for a minute as she shone her light on the handful of papers and junk
“Sir, you were speeding quite a bit, is everything okay?” said the officer, monotonously. Davon tried harder to cover his knuckles and managed to stammer out the word yeah.
She wrote something down on a piece of paper and handed it to Davon. It was a speeding ticket. He heard the officer’s car door shut and he rested his head on the steering wheel and exhaled loudly. The police car passed him and drove off into the distance.
Davon slept in his car that night.
When he awoke, he slowly drove home, hardly awake.
He rolled into his driveway and welcomed the feeling of being in his house.
He made his way upstairs and into the bathroom. He ran his hands under the warm water of the sink and washed away the blood. He looked up into the mirror…
~ An Old Friend ~
Davon pulled himself out of bed as his body trembled. He felt its presence. It was not in the room, but it was there. He got dressed. Set the sheets on his bed.
He sat at the table. He didn’t eat. The boxes of Mac&Cheese were still lined up on his cupboard. He didn’t have anybody to see, to talk to. Was he going to die here? Alone?
But then he got an idea… The man named “Henry Lenning”. The man had survived an encounter with the creature. He could research where Lenning lived and meet him. Davon pulled out his phone and was yet again met with an error message.
He rushed outside and into the car so he could go back to the MackDonaldz building. This time, he obeyed the laws of the road. He couldn’t risk being caught. What if the police had found the body of his therapist? The first people they would suspect were his patients.
He pulled into the parking lot of the building and searched for the article about the Lennings. After about ten minutes of searching, he found a version of the article that gave an address. It was only two hours away.
Two-seven-eight, Ashton Drive. Davon repeated these words in his head as he drove through a road surrounded by trees. Soon enough, he found a driveway with a mailbox that had the address two-seven-eight on it. As he pulled up, he saw an old, run down house. There were cardboard boxes abandoned on the front lawn (which was covered in grey and yellow dead grass). He stepped out of the car and onto the gravel. The gravel rustled under his feet as he walked towards the old house and opened the door in the middle of the once pink exterior. The house was very small and dust swirled in the air like silvery glitter. The house was empty. The kitchen, the living room and the bedroom have all been abandoned for years. And then he reached the bathroom. Above the sink was a stain in a rectangular shape. There was once a mirror there.
Davon didn’t want to spend any more time in this place. He walked back into his car and opened his phone. The Lenning man must have moved to another place. He searched for the number of the mental institution in his area. When he dialled the number, the ring was ended as a woman answered (who politely gave him Lenning’s new address when he asked). Another two hours drive.
It was an apartment building. It looked as if it shouldn’t be standing and Davon wondered how this man could live in such conditions. This apartment was more run down than the pink house.
The building seemed empty. He didn’t trust the elevator, so he took the stair to the third floor. Room three-zero-four. As he opened the door, he was met with a horrendous stench. Flies escaped the crack of the door. He walked in, stumbling over endless empty bottles of booze. Then he saw Henry Lenning. The man’s colourless body lay in the middle of the floor, cloudy eyes gazing into emptiness and mouth covered in saliva. Lenning’s wrists were torn open (presumably by the beer bottle shard in his dead clutched hand), and an unbelievable amount of blood was surrounding him. Davon was half way through dialling the authorities when he realized that this would be the second body the authorities would tie to him. He slowly slipped the phone back into his pocket.
He felt hopeless. Is this where he would end up? Like Henry Lenning? Is this what happens what that sick, tall fuck steels your sanity?
Davon stormed into his house, left the door open and ran up the stairs, each step echoed through the house. He crashed through the bathroom door and faced the mirror. He took a deep breath and held it…
~ You and I ~
Davon’s fingers were torn from his hand, his skin was ripped to bits and his had was crushed into pulp as the world around him yet again crumbled. And then he was there. He couldn’t resist. He had to put his hand on the mirror.
“Just one last time.” he had thought.
It was dark. As if the house itself had consumed the light and left Davon in blackness, the likes of which he had not experienced before. He felt them, more than one.
They were all there, watching him. He felt their eyes on his every inch of skin. They stood in the shadows of the darkness, they’re anti-rhythmic breathing filled the air with stench. As Davon continued into the hall, there were only more of them. He could sense movement. As he stumbled his way through the hall, he could hear the piano softly playing from the library. Davon’s skin crawled like spiders and his spine tingled. He could see the library door in front of him, but only because his nose was nearly touching its soft wooden face. The door knob felt cold in his hand and it whispered to his fingertips, telling him no. He did not listen, and as he turned the squeaky metal, the door swung open and the sound of fists hitting the keys of the piano emanated through the darkness and Davon was pulled (or pushed) into the stale room of the library.
With a gasp, he fell onto his back and looked around, frantically. It was dark, but he could make out the shelves around the room, their books scattered across the floor. The piano gently continued, as if the player had just been distracted momentarily, but Davon felt no presence in this room. It was empty, his only companions were the books strewn across the floor, their pages torn and crumpled. Davon, not able to resist the urge, called out for another presence, and the only thing worse that having no response was the one he got.
“Hello.” Davon could feel the throaty words on the back of his neck. He could feel a breath cling to his skin. Its voice was old, deep and filled with thousands of years of pent up malice. Its long bony hands emerged from behind Davon’s head and they slowly wrapped themselves around Davon’s face. The slender, crackling bones felt cold on his soft white skin and his entire body stopped. His heart no longer beat, his lungs no longer stirred. Inside his head, he prayed for god to find him.
“Davon… There is no god. There is only you and I.”
~ Alone ~
Davon rose from his bed, the sheets clung to his skin. It had been three weeks since he last left his house. He felt alone, except for the presence of the thing with black skin. His mind was in slow motion. He feared that if he went outside people might know what he had done to Gallord, but Davon was becoming weak. That is what it wants. He had to go outside or else… something. He didn’t know (didn’t want to know).
After getting dressed in the usual, Davon headed downstairs. He grabbed his phone and his keys off the kitchen table and put them in his pocket and headed out the door and towards the car.
He sat in his car and debated whether or not to get out. He was at a coffee shop. It was small and had few costumers. If Davon didn’t go in, that would mean he had lost, right? So he had no choice. He got out of the car and locked the door.
An electronic bell sounded as he opened the door to the coffee shop. It smelled of coffee and chocolate. There were four empty tables and two more with others using them. A couple sat on one and chatted about their day. The other one was being used by a group of teenagers (who looked particularly bored). He walked towards the front and a man with an overly stylish haircut asked him what he would like to order. Davon stalled. He didn’t know what he wanted and he began to get nervous. His fingers fidgeted and his hand shook. At this point, he realized there was an old lady behind him, looking rather impatient. She gave him a mean look.
“Umm, I… will just get a coffee… or something. Surprise me… with a coffee.” Davon stammered, as the old lady looked at him funny. When the man handed him the paper coffee cup, Davon swiped it out of the man’s hand as fast as he could and dropped some money on the counter (without knowing the exact amount). He quickly made his way to an empty table in the corner of the shop, with his head lowered.
As he sipped his coffee, he imagined a SWAT team pinning him to the ground as they executed him on the spot, a bullet (or two) to the head, and sent brain matter into the coffee cups of the nearby costumers. He wondered if people had found the body yet. What would happen when they did? His hand still shook, and it was getting worse. There were not many people in the little building. This small number of people would not normally bother him, but now he could hear his heartbeat. He could feel his heartbeat.
Suddenly, the old lady who was behind him in the line, now sitting at her own little table, thrashed in her seat. Davon stood up, spilled his coffee, and tried to figure out what to do. What could he do? The old woman bled out of her mouth.
“Somebody help her!” He said, at last. All the people looked at Davon as if he was crazy and went back to their conversations. Could they not see the old lady? Her arms thrashed and dangled at her sides and her mouth opened wide, jaw cracking. Why could nobody see this? Davon’s heart pounded in his chest. The woman’s mouth was still opening, her jaw became wider and wider.
“What is wrong with you people?! Can’t you see her?” Davon yelled, which got him no more attention than his previous attempt. The woman’s mouth overflowed with dark red blood, and the liquid drooled down her side and onto the floor. Fingers began to emerge from the liquid inside the woman’s mouth, which pushed more blood onto her once blue shirt. The fingers slowly rose out of her gaping jaw, followed by a hand.
‘No, this can’t be happening. It is my own imagination!’ Davon told himself. He ran to the bathroom doors (and accidentally knocked his table over).
Davon slammed the bathroom door behind him and screamed. His mind was slowly overrun by hysteria. He threw his fist into the mirror above the sink and shattered it, small pieces sticking out from his flesh. He turned on the water in the sink and began washing the blood off his hand as he gently plucked out small shards from his skin. His head spun and his hand shook violently, making it near impossible to separate the pieces of mirror from his hand.
“Hey, are you okay in there?” came a voice from the other side of the door. When the voice received no answer, it knocked at the door. “Hey, are you in there?” it said. Davon leapt over and swung open the door. He kept his head down as he ran through the man at the door (who was the same man who served him his coffee). He kept his head down until he reached his car. He left blood along the side of the door as he scrambled for the handle as he realized that he had locked it. His hand burned as he shoved it into his pocket and searched for his keys.
“I am losing… I am losing my sanity. I am losing whatever game that things is playing with me. I am seeing things and hearing things. What happens if I get weaker? What happens if that thing takes me?”
~ End ~
(During animation, Davon is shown using the mirror.) Davon stood in the abstract reality he had visited. The walls still hummed and rumbled. He walked out of the bathroom. The door was there. As he walked towards it, it was still and silent. He gripped the handle and tore it open. The room was empty. Its flickery light dangled from the ceiling, but there was nothing else. He went down the stairs and into the house’s entrance. He wondered what would happen if he went outside…
He put his hand on the doorknob. Its metal surface whispered to his fingertips. It told him to go back, that he shouldn’t be here.
The moon was high. There were no stars. He walked down his driveway and onto the road; large cracks ran across the surface. He could see another house, so he began to walk towards it. In its front yard was an upside down tree, surrounded by an upside down picket fence (painted white). The house was old and broken, its roof was caved in and its front door was torn from its hinges.
Suddenly, the street was filled with people. People, noise, movement. Davon screamed as the noise of people pierced his ears. The crowd shoved into him on all sides, pushing and shoving. Davon’s hand shook and his knees buckled. His head hit the pavement with a soft crack and he curled up into a ball, clutching his ears and rocking back and forth. A woman reached out to him and Davon screamed. The woman stumbled back and everything stopped.
Davon peeked his head out, his face covered in tears. They all looked at him. The figure stood among them; its black flesh sagged from its bones. Davon could barely see it through the people. It slowly walked towards Davon, its bones clicking with every movement. Every person it touched was swept away in a pile of ashes. Davon ran, pushing through the crowd, covering his head. He reached his house and stumbled up the stairs. He could feel the creature close by. He slammed the front door behind him and ran into the kitchen. He stood in the corner waiting for…
The door opened. He could see it. It grinned, flashing its large yellow teeth as blood dripped from its jaws (its smile was far too big for its head, and its eyeless face stared at him). Davon reached for a kitchen knife and the creature slid towards him on all fours at an inhumanly speed. As it stood up, Davon shoved the knife it its side. He shut his eyes tight, squeezing salty water from his eyes.
When he opened them, he saw his sister. The knife was plunged deep into her side. She was looking at it; her dark hair fell over her face. She looked up and her face was one of pain.
“Davon? Why… Why did…” Said his sister and fell to the ground, blood spraying across the walls, windows and Davon’s face.
He fell to his knees. His emotions ceased. His rand rested on the ground, lying still. He hung his head. He was done. He just couldn’t do anything. From behind him, long thin arms with black skin began to wrap themselves around his body, gripping him with its icy bones. Its long fingers wrapped around his shoulders. He could see its head beside his. It was grinning as it opened its maw and a long tongue slid out. It poured out like a long fleshy tail and ran along the side of Davon’s face. Its arms squeezed his body, crushing his spine in the chilly embrace, every bone in his body shattered.
October 19th, 2014
A young man named Davon Ivory, age 24, disappeared after buying a house in rural B.C. The house was purchased after the tragic death of his sister, Abigail Ivory. The man had seen a therapist to cope with the loss of his sister, and when authorities went to question the therapist, Arthur Gallord (See obituary on page 12), they found the man dead in his office. He appeared to be brutally beaten to death and it is speculated that Davon Ivory was the assailant. Authorities still have no sign of the man and are urging the public to be weary, as the man is considered armed and dangerous.
Credited to Raine Menzies
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