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Flesh-noun 1. the soft substance of a human or other animal body, consisting of muscle and fat.

It advanced toward me. I couldn’t see it, but I heard it. The wet dragging getting closer and closer. I screamed, but nothing came out. The world I was in was a world of darkness and silence. Then something lunged toward me. Before I could react, I woke up. The alarm went off at 7:30, but I woke up at 7:00. I guessed it must have been the train running by my apartment, that was the most logical approach. I decided to get ready for work. I had already been late to my cramped cubicle three times this week and I didn’t need to get fired anytime soon. I got dressed in my usual button up plaid shirt and a pair of khakis.

I headed out and locked my apartment door. The day was a very foggy Tuesday, although it usually wasn’t as gloomy of a sight. I got into my car and headed off for another day of saying, “No ma’am, you can not get a claim for your car if it was on purpose,” to insurance scammers. I despised them. They were a waste of time and are honestly just evil. I had to work six hours from 8:00 AM to 2:00 PM. Those hours I would usually waste by either pretending to work and actually watching YouTube, or I would do the cliché standing around the water cooler.

Luckily, this day was different. Everybody seemed to be in a really good mood. Even my friend Russell was in a good mood even though his mother had died the day before. I was very tired, but that wasn’t out of the ordinary since I was an extreme night owl. Since my apartment bathroom didn’t have the “luxury” of a mirror I had to get my short, black hair from a crow's nest to something even remotely appealing using the bathroom mirror at my work.When I looked at myself in the mirror, I noticed something I had never seen before. It wasn’t something with my tall, lean figure or anything with myself, but it was a black mark on the mirror.

I ignored that and went to my cubicle. My monitor booted up and I signed into my email. I had gotten in trouble for not using my name for my work email, so I changed it to my name, Clyde Fingman. After a day of procrastination, I went home. The old subway was repulsive, but I had to use it to get home. As I entered my apartment, I heard the neighbors downstairs arguing. I had to eavesdrop since their argument was extremely heated. I heard them arguing about some sort of thing named “die Kreatur der Greuel”. Then I heard footsteps get closer and I bolted upstairs to not get caught.

After I was sure that they had left, I went on my computer to watch some stupid internet memes. I felt uneasy that night. I was sure I heard something behind me, but I just shrugged that off as the old plumbing in the apartment. I didn’t sleep that night. I heard shuffling around my room and a strange clicking sound. Right before I got to my sweet release of sleep, it pounced. It emitted a loud shriek and I passed out from its horrifying appearance. I remember the most defining part. The mask of a warped face writhing in pain.

Then, I woke up. I was in the plain of existence I was in before. Now, there was a light above my head. Then, I realized the strange pulsating tentacle at my feet. It looked almost like a human intestine. The most horrifying thing happened to me, and the most disturbing thing I have ever seen, happened, and to this day, I wish I could have gone back and stopped myself from seeing it. The light turned on.

What I saw was a horror. A mass of body parts was conjoined with fused skin, tendons, bone, and muscle. It had one large eye in the center that scanned frantically around, and about eight exposed teeth in a certain section made mainly of muscle. As it twitched, pulsated, and breathed, it spotted me and started to move forward. The wet dragging had been coming from it. FWOMP! SLISH. FWOMP! SLISH. I was paralyzed by fear as the humongous behemoth of flesh advanced toward me.

Then, a humanoid creature crawled out of the mass along with a bunch of orangish fluid. It got up and it started shakingly approaching me. It was a frail, gray humanoid creature that had some sort of tube leading from it’s back into the mass. As it approached me, it started to speak in a raspy, weak voice. “ I am the messenger. I am the one that speaks for the true savior. You have been selected to join the mass and become one of us. Now, will you join us or not?” Then, a tendril came out of the humanoids mouth. Obviously, I said no.

I don’t remember much after that other than waking up while being chased by that creature. After that, I have been attacked by those pale figures multiple times. I call them “drones”. I once was attacked by them at work. Everyone was stunned by this and just stared.

That abomination wasn't the only thing to worry about. There’s a van with HANNON MENTAL HOSPITAL on the side of the van that has some people with cattle prods coming near my apartment. I locked my door, grabbed as many supplies as possible, and ran. The water splashed from my feet as I ran over the puddles, the leaves crunching, and the rain splattering. I heard barks and yells as I ran, but my eyes never saw what was behind me.

I was stunned as an arm pulled me into an alley. My eyes needed a moment to adjust, but then I realized the neighbors were there too.

“What is going on?!” I yelled as my mind filled with questions. “Don’t worry, we have seen it too. That creature is why we are here. I called the mental hospital to get you here,” a low voice explained. I looked back and saw who said that. It was a bearded man who looked more like a bear than a human. His face was gruff and his eyes shone with a rhinestone green glow. The neighbors were a short, hispanic couple who had always been wearing hoodies and never left each other. "What do you want me for?” I asked." We are heading for a temple in the north, where the mountains are. The temple has answers, lots of them. The people there also want to stop this ‘Savior’ the messenger keeps talking about,” the gruff man answered. “My names Shaun, Shaun Fidress. I know extensively about this creature, now come on, we have a monster to stop.”

We started walking, not saying a word to each other. It took us about 3 hours of walking and taking the subway to get to this temple. Those pail figures attacked me twice on the way, but Shaun helped. Finally, someone else could see them. The temple was a big building built like a buddhist temple, but with different decorations. Most notably, the amount of stones and pebbles arranged in statues around it.

Shaun knocked in a pattern on the door, and then it opened. Gold statues and herbs lined the entire temple. There were about 15 people in the main room, all bowed to a stone carving. There were other stone carvings that lined the walls, but this one had a symbol on it. A Y with a closed top in the middle of a circle with tendrils. An old man wearing a robe and carrying a lantern came near us. Shaun and him nodded and the old man spoke.

“Greetings. My name is Mann von vielen Jahren, but you can call me Jahren. I know you are confused. Come, I will explain everything,” the old man ordered in a raspy voice. We followed him into a giant room with one big mural of monsters fighting humans. Jahren then spoke again, “ Many years ago, monsters were a big threat to humans. They were stronger and much more lethal than humans. We had a big war with them that lasted 1,000 years. A man named Schopfer made a monster that would end the war with humans as the victors. The creature was a pink blob that absorbed the monster D.N.A. and then gained their attributes, but there was a betrayer in the war. Verrater was an evil general who was bribed to release the monster behind human lines, killing millions. The creature then absorbed a mind warper monster, allowing it to go into different realities than ours. In desperation, Schopfer made a magical sword that prohibited the absorbing creature from healing, allowing it to die. The creature saw this and started absorbing people to gain their life and to brainwash them into mindless husks of their former selves, using them to hunt down more people to steal. This temple is a safeground against the creature, our symbol representing the magical sword and the creature. We need you help fighting this creature. We are almost ready. We need your youth and your strong will.”

We prepared for the fight for two months, Jahren teaching me how to wield the magical sword and testing my agility. Finally, I gained a suit of armor that was designed with pictures of suns and moons all over it. Then, the ritual started. Everyone was ready and had different weapons ranging from spears to maces. A black hole into an abyss appeared and I went through it. There was the messenger, the mass of flesh that had one eye. We rushed it and swarms of those drones came out of it. We fought bravely hacking and slashing as I climbed on the mass. The mass was strangely warm and had the most horrendous smell imaginable. I hacked at it to clear my way, each time blood spewed out with a strong, metallic scent. Then, I finally got on top of it, the world it lived in seeming tiny below. I aimed to stab the eye, but I missed, getting it in the mouth instead

That thing let out a giant screech that had every single drone come rushing toward it. I panicked as I stabbed blindly, hoping it would poke out that things eye! I eventually got it, as it screeched with agony of course, but something didn’t feel right. The drones didn’t run away, they ran past the corpse of the creature into the darkness. That’s when the “Savior” came.

It was disgusting. A horrible, living mass of black tendrils, a tall stance, wide feet, and giant, sickle sized claws. It let out a mighty roar as it pulsated with orange light. The light was only blocked by the twisted faces inside of it. It mowed down soldiers like a weedwacker. It hacked and slashed its way through our forces, leaving a gruesome trail of organs, blood, and unrecognizable faces.

I was petrified. Frozen in time, my feet stayed planted in the ground. It came towards me, my eyes locked on its face. All that was there was a mass of eyes, looking in all directions, teeth exposed with strange growths bulging out. My consciousness was regained when I saw a claw swipe towards me. Then, I ran.

I ran as fast as I could to that beast. My sword would have to get it open, freeing the people from their living tomb of leeching. I dodged its massive claws, making sure not to touch it. Its tendrils came and they seized me. Stuck and panicking, I cleared my mind. Its face opened to reveal a giant mouth with exposed human teeth. Then I remembered the sword was near me.

I reached so far that my arm felt dislocated. A huge gash then was enforced on the beast’s chest and hundreds of bodies came gushing out of the beast. The bodies wriggled on the ground while the beast grew frail and lanky, eventually falling to its knees. My sword then decapitated it with a quick slash. It was dead.

However, the realm started crumbling and it was clear, we needed to escape. The portal was still open, and everyone rushed into it. It got clogged, and I became basically a bouncer to the portal, making things somewhat organized. Luckily, everyone got out. After that battle, everyone went their separate ways and I share this story to warn people and to give the future a chance.