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One Strange Text Message

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Never have I truly been more frightened and horrified than that night one year ago. There was absolutely no way anyone had had that sort of experience. I’ve done my absolute best to verify whether or not what had happened to me was authentic, or if it was some sort of elaborate hoax that had been going around through texts. Nothing could truly shed light on just what had happened.

It all started with one strange text message I had received on some idle night when I was engaged in my studies.

Now let me begin by saying I am not a social butterfly. I am a reclusive, studious student who spends most of their day cooped up in their room with their nose in a book or researching some occult subject or an occurrence with an unknown explanation. It had truly been a simple day, with nothing out of the ordinary going on.

Being an avid collector and reader of internet phenomena and lore, especially with those of a mysterious or unknown origin, most scary stories or objects floating around in cyberspace did not frighten me. In fact, they intrigued and entertained me, so I often found myself browsing websites pertaining to those interests of mine. Among the things I’ve come across were the poorly-written tale of Carmen Winstead and terribly cliché accounts of people who have encounters with scary beings.

These tidbits of digital folklore were utterly laughable compared to the dreadful experience I had. As said earlier, it was an ordinary day. I had come home from school, as usual, and discovered a note scribbled down on a sheet of torn notebook paper attached to my fridge by a magnet. It was from my mother, I believe.

It said:


We’re sorry that your father and I had to leave so unexpectedly without telling you, honey. We tried calling you, but I suppose you forgot to raise the volume on your phone and didn’t hear it. We had to attend a business meeting and it happened on such short notice that I didn’t have time to make any dinner for you. Your father and I left you fifty dollars on the kitchen table so that you can order anything you’d like for supper. It’s a bit of a drive, so we’ll probably be home late tonight. Call us for anything, okay? Make sure all the doors are locked and stay safe...

Love, Mom.

I crumpled up the paper and placed it down on the table, ignoring the money since I wasn’t hungry at all yet. I did my usual routine of going up into my room and spending several hours in front of my computer and with my books, doing my homework and then spending endless hours online doing whatever enticed my curiosity.

Hours went by, and I soon realized it was fairly late at night. When I had gotten home, it was around 5:00 PM. I had seemed to have lost track of the time while reading numerous articles on peculiar phenomenon, as usual. The reason why I spent so much time in this was primarily because, as I said before, I was not a sociable person. I often spent most of my days like this, lost in my own ruminations and interests and I did little other than that.

Very few people had my phone number, those people composing of my parents and a handful of relatives, so you could imagine my surprise when I heard my phone’s message notifier. At first, I had assumed it was my parents informing me that they were on their way home. Before I had reached my phone, I thought it rather uncanny that they simply didn’t call me and speak to me that way. They’ve sent me texts before, but not as often as they'd call me. Looking back, I truly wish I had simply let it be and not even dared to approach my phone.

When I picked it up, I saw I had one message received. I tapped the screen and revealed the small list of messages I’ve received from family members.

The first strange quality of this message was that instead of a telephone number informing me as to whom the caller was, there was only a string of unusual characters that I had never seen before. There were a handful of letters that appeared to be recognizable, such as “X” and “H” and “Z,” but some of the other characters were completely unusual.

The best way I can describe is that they appeared like the runes of some ancient culture, as they didn’t look like random, glitched ASCII digits or characters at all, but looked designed intentionally. Of course, not being well-read in the study of writing systems, I couldn’t properly ascertain whether these were in fact ancient hieroglyphs or numerals from some civilization lost to the sands of time, some sort of little-known ASCII trick, or perhaps a malfunction of some kind.

I felt an initial moment of hesitation before opening up the message sent from this unknown number, seeing as I’ve read a lot of scams and spam-bots go around doing this sort of thing. But for some unusual reason, there was something enticing about the strange contact that had sent the message.

Unfortunately, since it was on the spur of the moment, I didn’t remember to look up the number or contact that had sent the text. In retrospect, I honestly think doing so would have been futile anyway.

Knowing that this could have potentially been a severe mistake but driven by a desire to know just what the message said, I decided to open up the text and read it. I had expected it to be some useless doggerel or something of that nature, but instead, it seemed like a message written by a real person. It was not typed up formally, but seemed to have been rushed or written in a panic.

It said:

Whoever has gotten this I need your HELP! Something very weird and horrible is going on outside or around in my house. There is a really creepy fog beginning to build.

I found this text very odd. What fog were they talking about? I peered outside of my window, and the night was clear. I saw a handful of stars dotted on the sky and a waxing gibbous moon out, and there wasn’t a single trace of fog or mist developing anywhere. Who sent this text? Where were they? Was the unknown contact even in my city? My state? My country? I couldn’t figure this out, and I was just seconds away from responding, when another message was sent abruptly:

The fog seems to be eating my house. At first it started out as a normal fog forming outside my window but then it began to swallow up the whole neighborhood and I couldn’t see any other house or even the street or my yard.

As I read the chilling words of this next message, I began to feel a bit unnerved. I’m not exactly sure how to explain it, but I felt there was a sort of legitimacy in these words. It didn’t seem like some sort of troll attempt nor did I get the impression that this was some sort of eerie story circulating people’s emails or phones. I felt it was original, and someone truly was on the other side sending these texts, but I could only imagine who.

I simply sat there in nervous anticipation, waiting for the next text messages to arrive. I felt as if I should merely wait to see what would happen next, despite the pleading and unsettling story being told. I also still couldn't rule out the possibility that this was all scripted. The messages seemed to be sent like an automated machine, just someone typing it then immediately hitting send. Then arrived the next batch of messages, and the texts went like this:

“The fog seems to keep growing and has eaten up my entire view of the houses of my neighborhood and it is crawling up my porch. I don't even know what this is. No one is on the street from what I see but from the creepy mist there seems to be some sort of noises coming from them I don’t know how to explain what they sound like but like weird animals I have never heard and howls and screeches and high-pitched wails.”

“It looks almost as dark as night outside now but it isn't night at all! My lights keeps flickering as if they're about to go out. I am now in my room with the lights off but now I am looking outside and I see weird colored lights floating around in the weird mist. they are moving in weird circular motions and look like dragons or snakes made out of lights slithering around.”

“I can see nothing outside now except for the smoke and the weird lights and the snake shapes. I feel really scared now and I think I see the mist beginning to come into my house. It is seeping in from my windows and door and it sounds like those weird noises are getting louder and more terrible. I'm now in my hallway and looking down the stairs into my living room. OH MY GOD!”

“The mist REALLY IS seeping from underneath the door! It moves almost like it is alive because it seems to be crawling on the floor and moving in a way I don't think I’ve ever seen fog move before! It is coming up the stairs! I think I see people inside it.”

Trembling and scared nearly out of my mind as I read this hastily-typed but eerie compilation of messages, I waited for the unknown messenger to continue their haunting experience. I was so absorbed in their surprisingly chilling story that I’d completely forgotten to ask who they were or if I should do something about this. Then, without a warning, an image was attached to their incoming message, and what I saw was a horrible picture in which I still see today in my most dreadful nightmares.

I witnessed the dark hallway of a house I’d never seen before. White walls were visible along with a door slightly opened on the right side of the hall and a wooden floor. But at the end of the hallway there appeared to be some sort of mist or fog completely engulfing the corridor and everything behind it.

I do not know how to precisely put it, but I saw the outlines of ghost-like beings in the fog. If I could compare them to something, I’d say they appeared like shadow people from legends I’d read about online and psychology textbooks. Although to say that’s all they were would be an understatement.

They also appeared to be made out of the fog that was starting to invade the hallway, and they had long, gaunt arms and thin, skeletal-like fingers.

The most chilling quality of these beings was their eyes. Although they lacked a nose and a mouth, they had brilliant yellow eyes that resembled the headlights of a car. I didn’t even realize it at first, but as I stared at the terrifying picture, I was screaming. The hideous fog-figures seemed to be almost coming out of the phone and out at me. It was almost unbearable for me to keep looking at it.

Another dreadful subsequent photo was attached to another message they sent, and the ghost-like beings appeared larger, with their eyes glowing even brighter, and there were more of them in the mist. They were swallowing up the hallway and appeared to be getting closer.

Then there came a sequence of pictures that seemed to indicate that the unknown caller who was snapping them was running away. Some of the photos were shaky and grainy, appearing as if there was movement when they were captured. I conjectured that the caller then fled into a room because the scenery changed from the hallway to some other area entirely.

The last three pictures were then messaged to me, and they were the most unsettling of all. The first image showed a closed door in a very dark room, I could just scarcely see it. The next showed a sort of mist seeping in from the threshold, slowly curdling up into strange formations. And lastly, it showed those humanoid fog monsters or specters with those bone-chilling yellow eyes approaching with their arms outstretched hungrily.

Finally, a last text message was received.

“They're getting closer now I can hardly breathe and they are taking over my room! The fog is pulling me in! Please help me somehow before I die! HELP!!!”’

Bordering on horror, I left my phone on my bed and just sat back and stared at it. I imagined the unknown caller sitting there in pure horror with those hideous beings approaching and God knows what they were doing to him. I felt paranoia and nauseous fear beginning to take control of my thoughts and mind. When out of nowhere, my phone began to ring.

I stood as still as a statue, listening to my phone ringing. Quivering with terror, I approached my phone and with a trembling hand, I nervously picked it up and looked at the screen. I saw those ghastly strange characters that served as the number of the unknown caller. The only thing left was to do was answer it. Even though I was merely tapping a button, I felt like it took all of my strength to do so. I answered it and held it up to my ear.

At first, it was deathly quiet on the other end. No sounds at all, as if it had been muted. Then I heard something so faint, so distant that I almost thought I was imagining it. It sounded as if someone was groaning in pain, but I couldn’t properly hear it more carefully to make sure it was that. Then that groaning was overtaken by growing, ominous whispers. It sounded as if a large crowd were whispering in unison in no particular organized manner, just constant, sinister, garbled whispering.

It then shifted to more onerous, terrible sounds. It sounded as if there was a fierce wind on the other line, and then coupled in with shrieks that made me think of exotic animals in some remote and unexplored jungle. Then it elevated to a weird barrage of discordant sobbing, like something mourning or wailing. It didn't sound human, I can honestly say that right now. The more I heard these hellish noises, the more my hands began to tremble and my heartbeat began pounding in my chest, my mind filled with evil and terrifying thoughts as to what was making them.

This went one for about two minutes when, suddenly, the worst and final sound was that of a loud, high-pitched screech that made my blood run cold. Never had I heard anything like that in my life and I pray that I never do again.

And with that horrifying last sound, my fear took hold of me and I dropped my phone on the floor. I sprinted out of my room as fast as I could and sat in my living room, too frightened by those texts or to call someone. I was so horrified I didn't even want to go into my room, not as long as my phone was in there. I immediately switched on my TV and let it sit on any random channel, anything to kill the eerie silence. I sat on the couch and I waited for the arrival of my parents.

An hour later, maybe the longest hour I’ve ever waited in my life, they finally showed up. I was so relieved and they immediately scolded me for being up so late (it was around 1 AM. Only now I realize the time that went between the text messages and the pictures sent and that phone call). But when they saw the fear in my eyes, their anger shifted to concern, and I explained the whole story to them.

At first, they seemed to shake their heads and comment on how I spent too much time on the computer researching silly subjects that were clearly getting to me. But I insisted that what was going on was really happening, and I wanted them to come upstairs with me to check my phone to prove what I was saying.

When I went into my room with my parents, I felt the core of my being turn icy cold as I spotted my phone carelessly dropped on the floor from when I had ran out. Too afraid to see those horrible texts and images again, I insisted my father pick up the phone and look at it. When he picked up and turned it on, I told him to check the messages and I warned him at how terrifying they will be. When he looked at them, he sighed in an irritated tone.

Imagine my shock when he told me he saw nothing out of the ordinary on my phone. Without thinking, I scrambled over to it to check it myself, despite the overwhelming dread I had felt just hours earlier. And to my utter horror, it was as if I had received no messages from anyone at all. Everything was as it was prior to me getting those eerie texts.

What had happened that night was, as I’d said before, the most frightful experience of my life. To this day, I’ve never been able to uncover who had sent those texts or why they had sent them. Everything had disappeared without a trace. Was it a hoax, or was it real? I doubt I’ll ever know the real answer and something inside me hopes I never do.

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