I can't seem to wrap my head around things. I don't know whether I'm going mad or someone actually was at the house the past few nights.

The week started as it was like any other. I get up, get ready for school, get bored out of my mind and then go to church. Don't get me wrong, I like school, but without the right people, things could get boring real fast. I know I hang out with the wrong crowd but I had to be part of something. Heck, even that kid Joseph was part of something.  We would tease him from time to time when his sister, Julie was still around and when he was a huge loser. Now he's gone all "bible preacher," and wears that stupid cross he always carries around with him. Then again, I can't blame him. With his sister missing and his dad in jail, it must be tough for the guy. I did give my condolences, but all he did was smile at me, said "thanks," and walked off. Religious people always give me the creeps. Actually, this whole city gives me the creeps.

After the Bishop got murdered and the two girls gone missing, people have been pretty freaked out and they're right to be.

The other night, I knew something was off. After diner with my parents, it was tradition that the youngest of the family cleans the dishes. I had that tradition, unfortunately, passed down to me from my brother. That night I was in the kitchen, when I saw a dark figure on the other side of the window. I wasn't sure what it was. At first, I shrugged it off since it just looked like shrub, but when I squinted my eyes, I saw a glow, like the lights from the house reflected against it. They looked like eyes. I stood there, heart pulsating and sweat seeping out of my pores. I called out to my mom...but the figure disappeared.

I told them about it, but they probably didn't believe me. Typical.

I made sure to lock all doors and windows, but it obviously didn't stop what entered the house that night.

My paranoia by then was, let's say, out of control. I never quite felt that way, ever. Every tick of the clock, every creak and scuffle of the wind that blew through the trees would send shivers down my spine and cause me to bury myself beneath the sheets. I, however, did manage to fall asleep... for a while. A large "thump" woke me up at the middle of the night. I was honestly too scared that I actually tried to convince myself that I was dreaming it. Only I wasn't. The squeaks of the wooden floors were slow but consistent. So I jumped out of bed, grabbed the closest item I could use as a weapon, and stood behind my door. By this point, I was scared shitless. My palms were sweaty and my grip grew tighter and tighter with every passing minute, not really knowing what to expect. But... nothing. I didn't dare to go back to sleep, nevertheless open my door. Several thoughts rushed to my mind that morning. Whether my parents are dead, if my paranoia made me overthink things, or even if the intruder was still in the house waiting for me behind my door. I jolted when I heard steps getting louder and louder and watched the locked door knob twist. At that point, the adrenaline was starting to rush in and I felt like my heart was going to burst out of my chest. My mom then shouted my name and... I got yelled at for most of the morning for locking my door. I didn't want to tell her about what happened. I figured it would be easier that way. If she didn't believe me earlier, why should she believe me now, right?

I'm pretty sure that fear wreaked all over me. Everyone looked at me at school as if I watched someone get murdered right before my eyes. My best friend, Chris, was worried for me during baseball practice. I told him everything that happened that night. For a while, he stood silent but then asked if I thought if it was the killer who murdered the bishop. I didn’t want to, but the thought of him came to mind several times. Either way, I knew Chris was as scared as I was. He hasn't been the same since Julie went missing. He did seem to like her quite a lot even though I personally think she holds him back, but still, I don't think she deserved what happened her. All I do know is that she always had this vendetta against her brother, Joseph. I wasn't really sure why. I didn't dare ask.

Practice for us would usually end by the time it started getting dark, which never really bothered me before. That is till I saw... him. It was like an image burned into my mind. An image I so desperately want to forget.

I was walking home since my house was only a block away when I saw him: a man standing on the other side of the road, under a street lamp . He had saggy, dried up skin, and his hair looked like it hadn’t been washed in days, and his face...his face was all torn up and formed  wide sinister smile.

My body froze. I wanted to run but I was too scared he'd run after me. At that point every part of my body was trembling. I felt sick to my stomach. I just wanted to disappear. I slowly crept past him, never letting my eyes off of him, even though I hated every second of it. Little by little, I was getting closer to my house, so I decided to run. When I reached the front porch, I took one last look behind me. He was gone. I called the cops and they arrived immediately. They asked me several questions like what did he look like, or if he looked familiar to me. You know, the usual questions. That night the cops started a thorough search of the town but at the end they found nothing. I did feel safer with them around but just the thought that I'm being stalked is making me crazy.

A couple of days pass and everything cooled down a bit... at least for my family. If they were feeling what I was feeling, they wouldn't be going on some stupid trip out of the city. I guess I'll be fine if I lock the doors, barricade the windows and deprive myself from sleep for a week. It's like God truly wants me dead.

Joseph approached me after baseball training. He knew what happened the past few nights and without hesitation he offered me a room at his place to stay for the week. I just feel like... I regret doing what I did to him years ago.

I knew the guy was rich but I didn't expect him to be this rich. Joseph’s house was surrounded by priceless antiques and expensive furniture. The whole place was made up of wide, open spaced rooms with huge windows that illuminated the house. Joseph showed me to my room. It was obvious that it hadn't been used for a while, not that I mind, of course. We talked awhile... about what happened to his sister. He genuinely seemed sad that she was gone. I asked him about his dad, but all he did was change the subject. I guess I could understand. I always did have the habit of prying into people's business.

Later that night, I decided to take a shower. It was kind of late, but Joseph insisted he didn't mind. For the first time in what felt like forever, I was able to relax, but that only lasted for a moment because I started to hear the strangest noise from outside the bathroom. I turned off the shower, and cautiously got out. I investigated the sounds, following them until I got to a vent where the sound seemed to come from. I wasn't sure what it was. I asked Joseph about it, but he just told me they'd been having problems with their vents for a while. I probably shouldn't have asked him about it in the first place, but the noises were persistent and very constant.

They continued throughout the night, non-stop. When I couldn’t take it anymore, I got out of bed and made my way to the kitchen. While passing through the dark corridors, a static could be heard echoing around it. As I walked even further, the sound got louder and louder. Apparently, the sound came from the living room tv. That's where I “met” Joseph's mom. I wasn't sure whether she was sleeping or in a trance. She just sat there slouching on her chair on the corner of the room watching static. Her eyes suddenly met mine. I felt my heart drop in an instant. I wasn't sure what to do or say. I slowly continued my way towards the kitchen and as I did so, words resonated through my ears, “Leave. Now.” I stopped for a second, but eventually made my way to the kitchen to drink a glass of water. I've heard rumors that, after the incident, his mom went kind of crazy, but I didn't think that it was this bad. As I went ahead to grab a glass from one of the cupboards, I started hearing the same noise that came from the vents but this time it was... clearer. It sounded like gurgling, then right after, a long wheeze would follow. I later found out the the noises were coming from the basement. I slowly opened the door to not create any noise, but nonetheless, it still made a loud creak.

The stairs were narrow and weathered and when I reached the bottom and turned the light switch on, the whole room was littered with boxes. But only one rusty metal chair stood in the middle of the room. It was strangely covered in plastic. I tried to get closer to it to get a better look, but I finally found out were the sounds were coming from. Adjacent to the chair was a tall metal locker. An odd smell grew more and more pungent as I got closer to it. I didn't know what to expect behind it. I felt my whole body shake. My eyes started watering, and I felt my heart racing as I gripped the handle. When I opened the locker, I shouted out of fear of what was inside it. A girl... without a face. She looked at me with her bloodshot eyes begging for help. I took a quick step back, knocking one of the boxes down. What fell out of it were numerous dried up faces of different people. I ran as fast as I could towards the stairs,  but I stopped dead in my tracks when a figure at the top of the stairs appeared. It was that same disfigured man I saw by the road, holding a bat. I tried to plead with him, but I was so stricken with fear that only unintelligible sounds escaped my mouth. He closed the basement door and while locking it, he looked at me tantalizingly.  I ran to the other side of the basement looking for anything I could use to defend myself, but the only thing I could grab was the chair, so I swung it against him. He was much stronger so he was able to grab it from away from me. I was cornered against the hard cement walls. The only thing I could do was cry and ask myself...why me...


When I hit him with my bat, blood and broken teeth splattered against the walls. He was knocked out, so I dragged his body to the chair and tied him up. I never really liked him. All he ever was to me was a waste of space. Calling me names; telling me I'm useless, a loser and that I should go kill myself. Strange enough, I thought the same way about him. But I guess he just needed a bit of help for the last one. Don't get me wrong, I'm pretty sure I'm not the only person who wants him dead. Some young girls in my school who only wanted to have fun with their friends in house parties had the unlucky pleasure to meet a guy like him. He destroyed them, their beauty, their happiness, their lives.

He started to wake up, mumbling words like an idiot. I was pretty sure he wanted to say something. Unless, of course, he actually wanted me to not understand him. His mouth swelled up from all the teeth he had lost and his eyes started to water like he knew what was coming. His mumbling started to annoy me so I told him to shut up, but he didn't listen. I rummaged around the basement for the dirtiest rag I could find, and shoved it in his noisy trap. I explained to him why he was there and why he needed to be punished. He started to defecate himself by the mere thought of death.

I grabbed the closest pliers I could find from the basement, and started pulling his nails one by one. He shouted like a little girl on every pluck I would make. I started laughing at how pathetic he looked.

Out of respect for all the girls he had harmed, I decided to do something rather... crude. I pulled his feces soaked pants down and mocked the only thing he held proud. I personally thought it wasn't something to be proud of since... well... it wasn't anything substantial. I grabbed two of his prized possessions and sliced them off with my scalpel. I decided to place them in his mouth in place of the rag. His screams sounded like music to my ears and his face looked like a ripe tomato about to burst. I've never seen anything so captivating. He fell into a shock and fainted right before I could get to the best part, but I guess that just made my job a lot easier. I grabbed my scalpel and placed it right on top of his collarbone, slowly cutting around it. Lifting the skin ever so delicately and slowly peeling it off from his skull. It was perfect. I especially loved the way blood would seep out of his face, slowly changing it’s color. He started waking up moments later, well, I at least thought he was. The lack of eyelids made it hard to tell. To much of my surprise, he was a lot stronger than he looked.


The pain was unbearable but I couldn't die this way. Not here, not now. I moved as roughly as I can to break free but every movement I made felt like fire on my skin. I could see him backing away as if he didn't know what to do. “Stop, stop, stop,” he yelled with every word getting louder and louder. He started squeezing his head out of frustration, rocking his body back and forth. “Why won't you just stop?” he yelled, placed his hands on my neck and started shaking me till I stopped.

My eyes shifted towards the now empty locker the woman was in. I saw her slowly creeping away towards the door. But to her realization that the door was locked, she started banging the door and screamed for help. Joseph quickly composed himself and stormed up the stairs, grabbing her by the shoulder, pushing her down the stairs. I felt my heart sink when he stomped on her face till her skull fractured. I didn't know what to do nor say but stare at the lifeless body that lay in front of me. At that point several thoughts rushed through my mind. Like whether I’ll see my family again or if I should continue being hopeful or just accept my inevitable fate. I just wish I could have one last chance.

He took his mask off and just stared at me from head to toe and cracked a smile. His smile slowly turned into a frown and started to slowly approach me. I wasn't sure what he was going to do. To be honest, I didn’t really care anymore. I was expecting the worst but all he did was kneel down in front of me and removed my binds. His piercing eyes just stared at me for what felt like hours. I don't know what was going through his mind that whole time. He grabbed me from my shirt with a lot of force and shoved me into the metal locker.

That was the last time I saw the light of day.