It all began when our grandfather died.
He had been a solemn man; stoic, dour, he never placed a smile on his face for us, even when we were children. But he had not been mean and he would always bring us candy when he visited. He had dark, piercing eyes, hollowed in a grave, sunken face. We knew he had had a brother but that his brother had mysteriously died when they were both boys. Our mother claimed she didn’t know how he died and told us not to ask our grandfather. My younger brother and I used to tease that he was secretly a monster that devoured his brother and stray children. “He only brings us sweets,” we laughed, “so as to fatten us up and make us taste good!” Mother didn’t like this talk and said that he was simply a lonely man. She had not been close to him.
When he passed, my brother Arthur and I, now young adults, concluded that we wished we had gotten to know him better while he was still alive. We hastily decided to find out more about him or at least pay tribute to him by visiting his old cottage for a weekend, deep within the woods of Pennsylvania.…
As a professional nature photographer traveling to exotic and isolated regions was not uncommon. In fact, I often spent weeks alone in the wilderness camping out; just me and my camera.
While spending a weekend in a small forest, one known for its abundance in wildlife and untouched landscape, I set up my tent and spent all three days wandering trails snapping photographs as I walked. I never saw another person in those three days I was in the forest. I saw only deer, birds, raccoons and other indigenous animals roaming through the trees.
It was only after I returned home that I finally looked at the hundreds of photos that had been taken. One by one I uploaded each image into my laptop. One by one the beautiful natural scenery dazzled my eyes, with the exception of expected few blurry photos that were on the memory cards. Everything was normal, or so it seemed.
As the last image was uploaded into the laptop a chill ran down my spine. It was impossible. This photo shouldn’t exist, and yet there is was plain as day.
The photo wasn’t of the forest, or the animals, or the landscape… It was a photo of me.…
The picture you’re staring at was taken sometime in the 70’s. It’s the only remaining image I have left of my son, and the artificial being known as “ANTRAN”, whom we adopted into our family at the time.
It was a warm summer back in the mid seventies. I was driving home from my logging company after a long shift, when I had to make a stop at the local garbage tip to drop off some old desks my mother had given us. Something caught the corner of my eye as I bent down, and, upon closer inspection was shocked to see what I originally thought was a doll. A plastic outer shell with metal limbs. And more shockingly a humanoid face, with cold, dark eyes. I’ll be honest to say I was curious at the time and incredibly impressed with the workmanship, so I didn’t think twice before placing it carefully along the back seat of my car, and took it home.
My son’s interest was almost as intense as mine, and we bonded over the course of a few days opening it up, looking at its circuitry and seeing if anything had been misplaced or broken. Eventually, to our surprise, the being, or android, seemed to come to life.…
I have nightmares where I’m trapped in a shower. The drain is plugged, and the the water won’t stop pouring down on me. Water rises to my ankles, to my waist, and then over my head. The shower curtain turns to glass, and my screams turn to gargles. A dark figure presses its face against the glass on the other side, and it watches me. I plead, but it won’t let me out. I swallow water and flail helplessly in my glass coffin.
I wake up gagging.
I know where the nightmare came from – I never have to dig deep. The incident is never far from my subconscious. Finding it is easy.
Getting over it is not.
It was the summer of my 12th birthday when the Hudsons moved in across the street. Three people, one of them a really old woman. She was tiny, frail, skeletal almost. Thin white hair, faded, blue flowery dress – her head hung from her neck and it wobbled as the man pushed her up a makeshift wheelchair ramp into the house. At the time I couldn’t figure out if she was alive or dead.
A few minutes later she appeared in an upstairs window, sitting in her wheelchair.…
There had been many rumors of a shooting that was supposed to take place today. All these rumors had me on edge all day and I was still fidgeting in my seat even though I knew it would be fine and nothing would happen. It was lunch time when the school shooting was supposed to happen and that’s where I find myself right now. All I can think is that a school shooting would be such a terrible thing…
I see a kid open his backpack and maybe it’s him. Maybe it’s the kid standing in the lunch line right now. Or the shady kids hanging out at the back of the cafeteria. I’m just sitting there zoning out and thinking about all the possible things that could happen. Then somebody yells, “HE HAS A GUN!” There’s silence… And then panicked screams fill the air as bullets shred through the air. It’s such a terrible thing…
The principal is shot and bleeding out, the school police officer has had his knee caps blown out. The multiple other administrators are laying dying on the ground along with many students. There are screams and gunshots filling the air along with the scent of blood.…
“Relax, son. Close one eye and keep focused on your target.” My father spoke calmly from behind me. I tried to do as he said, letting my muscles relax. One eye closed, ending the double vision I had from having the rifle’s sight so close to my gaze.
“That’s good.” He continued. “Now, when you’re ready, hold your breath. Don’t hold it for too long or you’re gonna start shaking. Just enough. Then, slowly squeeze the trigger down. Like you’re milking a cow.”
I had to chuckle at that.
“Dad, I’ve never milked a cow before,” I spoke as I glanced up to him. He furrowed a brow and adjusted the baseball cap on his head.
“Well, that’s how my dad described it to me. You know what I mean.”
I smiled a bit and shook my head. It wasn’t the first time my dad described how to shoot to me. Or the second. Or even the third. He tended to repeat himself sometimes. I didn’t mind though. I looked back to the target through the sight and concentrated. I still took everything he said in. I relaxed, letting muscles loosen enough. I shut one eye, focusing on that bull’s-eye down at the end of the barrel.…
It was five years ago, during the hot summer months in Texas. We were visiting my aunt in a rural area of the state maybe a couple hours to the northeast of Houston. I had lived in Houston most of my life, roughly fifteen years at that time, so the change in environment from large crowded city to a less densely populated wooded area was something I wasn’t used to. As much as I didn’t want to be there, I had to. This would have been the last time my family would get see her as she had grown gravely ill and there didn’t seem to be any chance of recovery. Though how she left this world is something that I will never forget.
The first Tuesday after school ended was when my mom received the call from my grandfather. Very soon after, it seemed like we were packed for a year-long expedition despite us only planning to stay a week. It was my parents, my younger brother Brandon, our overly-energetic Chihuahua, and me. My dad had to drive the entire way there as my mom was in no state to as she was beyond worried of losing her only sister.…
I’m Nina Rodriguez, i’m a police officer, have been for a good seven years. In my time in the force I have seen some pretty… pretty fucked up shit to say the least: crazed druggies, abusive parents, and even a few calls for help from the suicides. But, none of those could ever hope to compare to an emergency call I’d taken last month.
I now abhor taking emergency calls, not because of the over worried people calling about every little squeak in their house, the noise complaints, or even the occasional prank call, though those could get pretty annoying. No, the worst thing about taking an emergency call is knowing that I had to sit on the other side of a phone and, no matter how much I hoped or how fast a squad car could get there, had absolutely no power over the situation. The following is, unfortunately, this situation:
The day was like any other, monotonous in its predictability. It was a Wednesday night and the end of my shift was still a ways off. Don’t get me wrong, I love being a police officer, but I didn’t sign up to be a secretary. I sighed and flipped through the files on my desk, absentmindedly scanning through the different reports from earlier that day.The was nothing of dire importance, no hit-and-runs, robberies, or violence.…
It all started after moving into my new house. Yeah, that’s pretty cliché. Believe me, I know, but it’s what happened. I never experienced anything supernatural before and, though interested, I never really expected anything to happen to me.
I was able to rent the house for pretty cheap. I didn’t think anything of it because it was old and not in the best of neighborhoods so I guessed I just got a good deal. After moving everything in, things were fine for a while.
I don’t remember exactly when it started because it seemed so minor at the time. I’d leave a light on in the kitchen or the bathroom and come back to find it off. Honestly, I thought I was just forgetting that I turned them off already when I came back. After a while, I began to wonder and started leaving a couple lights on purpose. Sometimes, nothing would happen. Sometimes, I’d come back to find the lights turned off.
By now, I figured out that something was off. I wasn’t really scared, but just confused. I thought maybe something was wrong with the electronics. I started leaving lights on a bit more often, because I thought I might be able to get some sign of why they would randomly shut off.…
My husband and I loved each other very much, but just as most couples we would get into arguments. Out biggest argument always revolved around a single disagreement: children.
I wanted children, he did not.
As the years passed I had hoped he would eventually come around and warm up to the idea of having children, but he remained stubborn and wouldn’t change his mind. I reminded him that if we waited too much longer we’d never be able to conceive a child of our own, but he didn’t seem to care. I even suggested adoption and fostering children but he wouldn’t hear it. “You’re not fit to be a mother!”
His cruel words burned into my memory. I loved him. Why would he say such a thing?
I wanted to carry a baby. I wanted to have a life inside of me, a little piece of him inside of me. I love my husband but he doesn’t have the right to keep me from doing this. No one can stop me.
I threw our my birth control pills and I sabotaged his condoms as I prepared to seduce my husband into a frenzy and lovemaking and passion. My husband, who knew I was desperate for the chance to have a life inside of me, discovered my plan and rejected my advances.…