It has always been an auspicious prospect for most children. A new house means new neighbors, a new yard, new friends, and a new school. A new house, for a boy of nine, means a new adventure. Well, at least until one has settled in.
My parents and I decided to move due to a few contentious issues that had arisen in our previous town. More precisely, I had begun to fight with the other children.
Each time I would be sent to detention, my parents then called, and I would give a disingenuous excuse as to why I had started it in the first place. Every time was akin to acting out a scene from a script. Each line would be repeated on cue, and each time I’d be grounded accordingly. I must concede that at the time I had no real reason for my behavior. At least, nothing beyond acting out for attention. Back then I was merely a child yearning for more attention from my overworked parents. I knew no better.
Unfortunately for me the doctor my parents took me to believed he had an answer to my disparate behavior.
“A.D.H.D. Or better known as Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder.” Or so the man explained.…
When you are admitted to a hospital, they place on your wrist a white wristband with your name on it. But there are other different colored wristbands which symbolize other things. The red wristbands are placed on dead people.
There was one surgeon who worked on night shift in a school hospital. He had just finished an operation and was on his way down to the basement. He entered the elevator and there was just one other person there. He casually chatted with the woman while the elevator descended. When the elevator door opened, another woman was about to enter when the doctor slammed the close button and punched the button to the highest floor. Surprised, the woman reprimanded the doctor for being rude and asked why he did not let the other woman in.
The doctor said, “That was the woman I just operated on. She died while I was doing the operation. Didn’t you see the red wristband she was wearing?”
The woman smiled, raised her arm, and said, “Something like this?”…
It was late, right around 8:00 P.M. For November this meant that the shadows of the night were already engulfing the world. It wasn’t cold out though. The wind was gentle and carried with it the smells of foliage thanks to the various gardens that littered the campus grounds.
I sauntered along the sidewalks while admiring the weather. I loved the night, especially when the stars were out. Unfortunately they couldn’t be seen from here even on the clearest of nights since the college was located just outside the city.
A friendly squirrel suddenly crossed my path, coming mere inches to my feet before looking up at me and chattering as though I had done it a misdeed. It didn’t appear frightened at all so in a sudden motion I stomped at it. The creature, rather than skittering off, lay flat on the ground. I felt that I could possibly kneel down and pick up the creature had I wanted to. However I had been attending this campus for months and knew from experience that the little thing would run off just sort of contact.
So instead I continued on my way. I had a destination in mind and could not be delayed any longer.…
“Leave the light on.” she said quietly, barely above a whisper.
I withdrew my hand from the light switch, and shuffled over toward where she lay, a single bed sheet covering her. Stifling a yawn with my hand, I lifted the sheet and snuggled in beside her. I didn’t know which was colder, the bed itself or the lack of response from her. Sure, I’d been in the doghouse before (what married man hasn’t?), but this was something different. I trailed a single finger down her bare back, moving slowly over those points years of experience had identified as those guaranteed to slowly awaken her, or earn a swift rebuke if sleep was all she had planned for the evening. She barely moved. I rolled onto my back next to her and sighed:
“Okay, what have I done now?”
“You know full well what you’ve done.” came the cold, emotionless response.
“So, I stopped off for a few drinks with Gary. I’m not that drunk, and I’m not that late either. I called from the office and left a message. It’s not as if I didn’t tell you!”
I gritted my teeth, resisting the urge to shout, to head down that path that would lead to further recrimination and the standard sullen silence.…
“Don’t worry! It’s just a scary story!”, “Yeah! What are you a pussy?” the two 13 year old boys said taunting Charlie, the latest transplant from San Antonio. Charlie was scared but didn’t want to look like a “Pussy” in front of the neighborhood kids. These were the kids who would decide if he was ok or not… they would tell other kids if he was cool…. or a big pussy. He just wanted to make new friends in this new place. He knew well enough that if he didn’t go in, and shout “Ole’ Broken bones Pete, I have a bone for you to break!” he would live the rest of his time there as such, and God knows how long that might be, being he was only in 8th grade.
“Hell no! I’m not scared!” growled Charlie, who was standing in front of an old abandoned shack on a dirt lot. Its white paint had mostly chipped away, and the wood was old and ragged and hung from its original places here and there. There was no skirting at the base as it was built on stilts. It was black as pitch underneath, and at the top the roof was made of rusted old tin and the windows were all knocked out.…
Late one night about ten months ago, I found myself rushing my daughter to the hospital.
I remember the morning. What time I woke up, the food I ate, and the sound of my girl’s voice yelling “See ya, daddy!” as she ran out the door to catch her school bus.
Everything was normal…average. But were there signs? Could I have expected to bring her home from school at twelve that afternoon? Could I have guessed the cause to be chest pains, or predicted that those pains would return again eleven hours later, causing her to cry out in pain and fear? Could I have been better prepared for the race to the ER that ensued just before her heart gave out?
I don’t know.
I remember that night: the heavy rain pounding against my car, creating a slick sheen on the streets that made driving over forty impossible, the images of streetlamps and traffic lights bleeding into one another on my windshield. I remember that franticness I felt as I gripped the steering wheel, swerving and slamming on the horn to warn the blurry shapes of pedestrians to “get off the fucking road!” before they ended up getting personal with the front of my car.…
((The following passage was found on an abandoned jump-drive two miles outside of Philadelphia. Though a somewhat longer passage, it has been passed on to, edited, and submitted by K.B. Miller. Original sources refused to disclose the exact location where such jump-drive was found. Therefore, certain names and events have been changed or redacted.))
I can’t believe I’m doing this.
Let me begin by saying I don’t have much time. It could be minutes, hours, days, weeks, months, years. I DON’T KNOW. I’ll try keep it short, to be as detailed as possible. The cowardice inside screams for me to get away, to not just sit here. But the author… she wants this written down, almost like a final verse in this sick play. All I just know is that the world needs to understand. They need to know the secret behind Spring Grove. I’m not good at writing this kind of thing. The more I speak of it, the more ridiculous it’s going to seem. But please. Just listen to me…
… I guess I should start where it counts: are you a fan of children? I was. I was never really fond of newborns, but any child beyond the state of toddler held a certain weakness of mine.…
Identifying Exploding Head Syndrome (EHS)
An uncommon phenomenon that causes a person–usually female–to suffer from sudden, loud, and unexplainable noises right on the verge of sleep.
Noises which are jarring and can sound like the popping of fireworks, gunshots, the bang of slamming doors, and even loud explosions. In some cases, violent screaming or sobbing is heard.
The most exceptional thing to note about the sleep disorder that is EHS, is that noises do not occur within the head. Sounds are out of body and can be heard anywhere up to a block away by both ears.
Although very little is known, psychiatrists speculate that EHS occurs when certain synapses in the brain fire off rather than settle down.
What synapses and why, however, is still unknown.
No one has proven this theory to be true however, and doctors aren’t even sure where to begin looking–let alone find an actual cure or remedy.
Many subjects have claimed that a little rest and relaxation can help, but EHS never truly leaves those afflicted–and those with insomnia experience it much worse. Some claiming to see flashes of light, even short bursts of unexplainable pain along with the noises.
In extreme cases, EHS can develop into a more serious mental illness.…
Sam loved owning pets for as long as he could remember. After his son and wife were killed by a drunk driver, he was left emotionally and mentally scarred. He tried seeing psychologists, but the medicine they prescribed did nothing to ease his pain. All the pills managed to do was make him nauseous and cloud his memory. However, Sam discovered that pets have helped fill the void that the tragic accident left in his heart. Sam had failed to protect his family, so the idea of caring for and protecting a pet gave Sam a second chance. Sadly his newest pet, April, had disappeared last week. Sam looked everywhere, taking off days at work in an effort to find her, but to no avail. Much to his chagrin and sadness, he decided that perhaps he wasn’t fit to be a pet owner if he couldn’t even keep track of one. April was his responsibility after all.
“She’s probably all alone, lost, hungry, or dead; and it’s all my fault” Sam thought to himself.
He decided not to get any more pets until he could prove to himself he wasn’t so irresponsible. However, he soon received a knock at the door.…
My basement has never exactly been a welcoming place. It’s unfurnished; there’s no carpet and the walls consist of boring, exposed bricks. There’s a set of old wooden stairs on one end that creaks whenever anyone uses them. Behind the stairs is a storage area that begins about four or five feet off the ground and goes maybe fifteen feet further back underneath the garage. The place is a dump, as my brother NEVER cleans it, and toys and tools and random things are sprawled out across the entire basement floor—and that’s an accomplishment considering how huge it is. It’s not very wide but from one end to the other it’s at least eighty feet in length, including the storage space. However it is not easy to see from one end to the other since the water heater, furnace, and other appliances sit conveniently at the bottom of the stairs to make it impossible to carry large objects like the Christmas tree up and down stairs.
Anyways, one night we had some friends over. By “we,” I mean me and my parents. They had a little girl with them, maybe four or five years old, and since my brother was elsewhere—as usual—I wound up sort of babysitting this girl while the parents chatted over desserts or something.…