Today was like most days, I woke up around two in the afternoon and got on my computer. I was abnormally happy today as everything seemed to be perfect. Oddly enough, I didn’t remember waking up this morning, but I didn’t care. I didn’t have anything that had to be done, didn’t have any chores, nothing. It was paradise. I could have sworn it was a dream. I occasionally pinched myself thinking that I would wake up, but I didn’t, so I continued on with my day.
I felt great. There was nothing to do. I decided to roam my house for a while to see if there was anything to keep me occupied, but there was something throwing me off.
I lived in my house my whole life, but only today did I actually take notice in a room that I couldn’t really remember being in my house. It was in my basement and I wanted to go explore it, but the room had a force that would repel me if I got too close. I got as close as it would allow me to get, to get a better look through the glass door that separated that room from this one. It was too dark to see anything as the only light in the room was a small lamp hanging from the ceiling. I could only get quick glances because the lamp was swinging in a perpetual motion taking the light with it until it swung back to the middle of the room. I considered an open window was allowing a breeze from outside push the lamp, but it was four in the afternoon. If there was a window in the room, there would be enough sunlight to make the room brighter than it was. After dismissing the idea of a window, I thought it could be a vent but I wasn’t sure. The only thing I could make out of the darkness was a chest. It was a small wooden chest that looked like it belonged to a pirate from the sixteen hundreds. It had a dulled appearance as though it hadn’t been well preserved and left down here for years. As the light swayed, I could see what looked like weird ancient symbols carved into its sides. It didn’t appear to be any language I know or one I could even begin to comprehend. I stared into the room for what seemed like hours and my body started to become restless. My eyes had started to feel strained, so I had to look away. I had to go do something else. The room was giving me an unnerving feeling that something was wrong with it.
I decided to go rest upstairs. I made it to the living room and fell into the couch. My living room looked like any of the other rooms in my house; it has bright white walls, tan furniture, a large but old TV, and porcelain figurines scattered about the various shelves. My thoughts kept drifting back to the basement, I needed something to take my mind off of it.
I decided to get on my computer to waste some time. When I wasn’t hanging around with my best friend John, I could be found on my computer playing minecraft or sometimes just browsing the web for something interesting. When I played minecraft, I always made large elaborate houses with secret passages so I rarely got griefed or attacked. With nobody chasing me or taking my items, I always found it easy to succeed without really trying. With no real challenges or enemies, I got bored of the game and decided to stop playing for now.
I started to wander throughout my house for something else to entertain me. I walked down the hallway and passed the room where John and I always played in. We shared many happy times there, with our weird sense of humor that others may have found strange or odd.
I continued down the hallway to the bathroom. The small room held a dingy look with its red and gray checkerboard tiled floor. The varying ivory colored tiles that lined the walls, today, seemed to form what resembled pyramids that I hadn’t noticed before. I don’t know why I was now seeing the smallest details of my house. I guess my mind was just looking for something to occupy itself. I left the bathroom and saw my bedroom which was still a mess as it always was. Nothing was where it was supposed to be. I started to make my way back to the computer when I saw that the door to my parent’s room was slightly open, which was odd because they always had it shut when they slept or weren’t in their room. I walked up to the door and slowly nudged it open. My parent’s room was by far the cleanest room in the house with nothing more than a slight hint of dust.
Everything seemed fine except that it felt colder than the rest of the house as if nobody had used that particular room for weeks. It was only now that I realized that I was alone. I became aware of the eerie silence that hung in the air of the entire house.
I thought it was odd that my parents weren’t home. I tried to think where they could have gone, but I didn’t have a clue. I shrugged it off, thinking that they must have told me the day before and I had just forgotten. I got back on my computer to play around on minecraft for a while. While waiting ten minutes for it to load, which is the longest it has ever taken, I sat back in my couch and waited patiently yet still rather annoyed at how long it took. Once my game finally loaded I could see one of my buildings were “glowing” in the distance. I started to run towards it to see if my stuff was okay. It was when I got next to it that I saw that someone had griefed me, by filling my building with lava. Out of pure anger, I quit the game and just sat there in silence.
After a while I heard a knock at my front door. It made me jump out of the chair as it was more of a bang then a knock, but I got up to answer it anyway. To my surprise it was John. He was standing there in grey sweatpants and sweatshirt smelling of pure sewage. His teeth were yellow. His hair was in knots with clumps of mud tangled in between. He smelled and looked like he hadn’t showered, or slept, in days. I invited him in and made him sit down on the couch.
Out of curiosity, I decided to look out the window, to keep myself distracted. Everything looked as it should be; the only thing that seemed off was the storm clouds that were brewing in the distance.
Down the street, I saw these houses that seemed to be almost black with the dirt that coated them. I walked away from the window and let it go. I guess I never paid as much attention as I thought I did to my surroundings.
Then, I remembered John was still sitting on my couch, still filthy. I went to go look for a towel for him to clean himself up with. I walked upstairs and froze. The rooms had changed; my parents’ room looked old and decayed, as if it had been abandoned for years, the floor was littered with trash and old food remains, and the floorboards were warped and had severe water damage. The bathroom had changed too; the tiles had gotten darker. the red tiles had darkened to a blood red hue and the grey had been shaded to a black so dark that it seemed almost no light could penetrate it. I grabbed a towel that was hanging on the back of the door and bolted back downstairs.
I tossed John the towel just as thunder exploded through the sky, shaking the walls of the house slightly. The storm had gotten much closer. I stood at the window and watched as lightning spread across the sky. All noise seemed to dim as the sky grew brighter. Lightning struck the ground no more than 12 feet from where I was standing. I jumped back and hit the end table. It wobbled before falling towards the floor. I guess another lightning bolt hit when the table hit the floor because we lost power as soon as the crash of wood on wood sounded throughout the room.
I walked downstairs in the dark to search for the breaker. I flipped the switch and saw something move in my peripheral vision. I turned and watched as the light swung further away, swung faster, from the middle of the room. It swung back in and I saw it, this… creature, so vile that, at the time, I got only a glimpse of it before running upstairs. I panicked and ran, not caring enough to stop to figure out what that thing was.
I was so scared of what I saw I ran to John’s house. I rang the bell multiple times and banged on his door loud enough for the neighbor’s neighbors to hear me. That’s when I realized I left John in my house, with that thing. I ran back, through my door, grabbed John’s arm and dragged him through the front door and practically carried him to his house.
He looked at me like I was crazy, so obviously he was feeling a little bit better because he actually showed a type of emotion instead of a blank stare. He unlocked the door when we got there, almost immediately, as if he knew I was in a panicked state of mind. I went to go grab John’s house phone, but realized that the power was dead when I didn’t even get a dial tone. I dropped the phone back on the hook and silently cursed myself when I remembered John didn’t have a cell phone and I left mine back at my house. I had to go get it, but I had a feeling that wouldn’t have been a good thing to do.
I grabbed a flashlight and baseball bat from the shed in John’s backyard and walked back in the house. I felt bad for leaving him alone in his house, but he assured me that he was feeling better and told me to go get my phone.
Before I left, I sat next to John to try to explain to him what I saw. As I’ve said before, I didn’t get that long of a look, but just a glance is enough to implant this creature’s image on anybody’s mind forever.
It’s face was a dark, cloudy, dead looking grey. There were horns, but they were flattened, almost like little nubs on it’s head. It practically had no lips, just little shreds of skin, because it had what looked like serrated teeth. And those eyes… those god damned eyes. They looked like big black marbles, just sitting in its eye sockets, but I couldn’t tell if they were actually eyes, or just large black voids of nothingness. That was all I saw before I bolted.
I would’ve asked John to come with me, but I couldn’t bring myself to ask him as I had just left him in my house with that… that thing in the basement. Before I left, I told him that if I wasn’t back in thirty minutes, just forget about me, lock down the house, wait for the power to come back on, and call the police.
I pulled his front door shut behind me and started walking back towards my house. I slowly noticed that the sky was now completely coated with thick, gray, depressing clouds; the houses along the street were falling apart and unkempt; the trees were leafless and dying, all life in them previously, including animals, were gone; the lawns, that used to be luscious and green, were a yellowish brown, and patches of dirt were everywhere; and the road itself was cracked and covered in potholes, which was confusing because john and I never passed them on the way to his house, at least not that I remember.
I don’t know if these changes were there when John and I left, or if they happened while we were in the house, but I had a sick feeling the creature was behind it. It didn’t like me seeing it, It didn’t like me knowing what it looked like, but I don’t think it cared about that at that time. In fact, I think it was enjoying the spreading stench of fear that I had when I first saw it. I felt like it was happy that it didn’t have to hide itself, or its world, from me anymore.
I forced thoughts of the creature away, trying to get its face out of my mind. Then, it hit me. In John’s house, it was completely silent; there was no one in his house, and that never happens. That would mean that John’s mom, dad, and sister were all away. Now, I could understand John’s mom and dad being gone; they went out all the time, but they never took his sister with them. They always left her for us to watch.
I ran towards my house; I needed to get my phone and get back to John as soon as possible. After what seemed like a mile of a walk, I arrived at my house. I pulled open the door to see that it hadn’t changed. I nervously walked towards the stairs that led to the basement. I started down the stairs and, halfway to the basement, when I heard a ear piercing scream that practically made my ears bleed. I dropped both the bat and the flashlight, grabbing my head in agony.
My muscles gave way and my foot slipped out from under me, sending me tumbling down the stairs and towards the concrete floor. I didn’t even have the time to comprehend what was happening before my head slammed into the floor and I blacked out.
I came back to consciousness in what seemed like a few seconds, but could’ve been hours later, and found myself sprawled on the floor, looking at where the flashlight’s beam hit the glass door that haunted my thoughts for the past day.
I laid on the ground, trying to search out my phone and the bat without drawing much attention to myself; I didn’t want it to realize I was no longer unconscious. I could see my phone on the table, but I couldn’t find the bat. After a few minutes, I knew it was time to move. I grabbed the flashlight and stood up, deciding to find out if the thing was part of my imagination or not.
I pointed the flashlight at the door, just to have the light die as soon as I tried to aim it there. The lamp was still swinging inside the room so I approached it to try the get a better look; the force that had once stopped me from getting close, now seemed to be pulling me in.
As I neared the door, I could see something in the back corner of the room, but I couldn’t tell what I was looking at. Only when I got close enough to press my face against the glass could I see what it actually was.
The thing was hunched over in the corner of the room; it seemed human enough, but it had abnormalities that made it obvious that it was anything but. It stood and it made its way towards the door; its claws dragging across the floor, creating a nails-on-a-chalkboard sound.
It got closer and closer; just as it was in jumping distance of the door, the flashlight jumped back to life and illuminated the creature. It let out a screech that scared me out of my state of paralysis. I turned and ran, grabbing my phone and dashing out of my house with the shrill noises still ringing through my ears.
I ran towards John’s house faster than I’ve ever ran before, making it there in under, what i assume was, two minutes. I ran through the door and slammed it shut behind me, locking every door and window in the house before going to find John.
He was in his room, staring blankly at the wall. I went to ask him if he was okay, but a noise stopped me short. It was John, he was mumbling to himself and really starting to freak me out. I walked up to him and placed my hand on his shoulder, knocking him out of his state of shock. I asked him what happened at the same time he asked how we got to his room. The last thing he remembered was sitting on the couch downstairs.
Although John was in a state of confusion and panic, I managed to calm him down enough to try to explain what happened. When I finished, he sagged back onto his bed and commented on how he wanted to get actual sleep. We set up blankets and pillows on the floor for me. We both laid down; John fell asleep immediately but it took me a few hours before I managed to get there; with image of the creature attacking my thoughts.
When I woke up, John was no longer in his bed. I got up and went to go search for him. When I made it to his living room, I found him on my phone, talking to someone. Only after he hung up did he confirm that he had called the police and they told him that they would search the house.
A few hours later, a cop car pulled up, out front of John’s house, a cop got out and approached the door. I pulled open the door, with John standing behind me, and stared at the cop in disbelief as the he told us that he didn’t find anything, then proceeded to scold us for making prank calls. Not only did he treat us like imbeciles, he made me get in the car and forced me to go home to wait for my parents; alone.
When I got home, the first thing I did was grab my phone and call John. He didn’t even give me a chance to say anything before he started yelling at me for lying to him about something being in the basement and for getting him in trouble for calling the police over nothing. I stood there, attempting to get John to understand that there was something down there and that it must have hidden itself from the police. “Do you think something like that wants to be found?” I couldn’t convince him that there was something in my basement, but I did convince him to come over to see for himself.
After a few minutes, John showed up with an angry look on his face. I told him that I never meant to get him in trouble, but I was freaking out just as much as he had. John didn’t care. I gave up and we went downstairs so John could prove me wrong and the cop right.
We started walking towards the door. Because I knew what was in the room, I hid behind John as he carelessly approached the glass and tried to turn the handle. It was locked and John pressed his face against the glass to get a better look, as I stayed back and watched.
He turned around to face me, saying that he saw nothing. Knowing that was impossible, I went up to the glass and looked for myself. I searched the room as best as I could and the only thing I could see was the chest. I faced John, about to apologize to him. Then, I saw his face. It was frozen in a twisted state of horror. When I asked him what was wrong, he couldn’t even speak, he just pointed behind me at the glass door. I didn’t want to, but I knew I had to turn around and when I did, I was face to face with the thing.
Its face was pressed against the top of the glass door, so it had to be really tall. Its torso looked like it was just skin and bones, like all the blood, muscle, and fat were sucked from the inside of it. Its hands were large, with claws growing out of where the fingers should be. It was hunched over and I could see the spikes driving out of each vertebrae on the top of its back; I guessed the pattern followed down the rest of its spine.
Both John and I started running for the stairs when the thing dragged its claws down the glass making the screeching sound I heard before, but louder. It was so intensely high, it made John and I hit the floor, grabbing our ears and praying it’d stop. It must have been five minutes before that awful sound ended, but either way John and I didn’t get up right away. We laid there, giving each other looks. After a few minutes, we stood up and John bolted up the stairs.
I caught up to him in the front yard. He started yelling at me to call the cops and tell them exactly what the hell that creature was. I reasoned with him, reminding him that we already tried that and telling him that I didn’t know what it was. We walked back inside and sat in silence in the living room for a while. I broke that silence by bringing up the fact that we’d have to deal with the thing by ourselves.
He rejected the idea over and over again until my reasoning got to him. We didn’t want to go about this unprepared, so I thought back to what I altogether know about that creature. The second time I saw the creature, it reacted to my flashlight by screaming and backing away. The fact that it lived in a dark room with only one light told me that it had a weakness to it.
I ran to my hall closet and grabbed two flashlights as I explained my theory to John. When I finished, John seemed to agree with me. Before we went downstairs, John said he’d be right back and left through the back door. He returned with a shovel in hand, asking me if I had a weapon to use. I told him I’d grab the bat when we got down there. We gave each other a look that told the other that if anything happened, we were to forget about the other person and run. Then, we continued down the stairs.
When John and I got to the door to the basement, we got in battle-ready position to strike at the thing if it decided to come up the stairs. but it didn’t appear. We started down the stairs with me leading the way. We weren’t even halfway down the stairs when we heard that horrid screeching sound again. It made our ears ache and ring but we pushed forward getting closer and closer to the creature’s home.
When John and I finally made it to the bottom of the stairs, the screeching stopped. I looked at John, he was staring at me with a look of pure fright, but we both knew this had to be stopped now and forever. As I turned back around, I saw the bat lying in the corner of the room and ran to grab it before returning to John.
John hid behind me as we approached the door. I grabbed the icy cold handle and turned it; but instead of opening the door slowly, I slammed the door open as hard as I could to get rid of the suspense. I stood there, staring into the dark room in complete silence.
Metal crashing to the floor made me jump and I realized it was John. He had dropped both the shovel, and flashlight, and was just standing there lifelessly looking into the room. I started to ask him what had happened and if he was okay when he suddenly grabbed the shoulders of my shirt and tossed me into the dark room.
I hit the floor with a hard thud that sent me into a daze before I stumble to my feet, just in time to see John closing the door behind me. I knew I wasn’t going to make it before John shut the door, so instead, I started looking around for the bat or flashlight. I could see the flashlight on the floor next to me, but the bat was across the room on the floor next to the chest.
I bent down and grabbed the flashlight. When I stood up, I saw that the lamp was swinging faster than normal. I knew it was coming for me. I thought about making a run for the bat, but quickly forgot about it as I backed into the nearest corner. I watched as the lamp swung faster and faster.
In mid swing of the lamp, I froze as the scene before me seem to go by in slow motion. It was the creature, standing in the middle of the room, just smiling at me. That was enough to send me over the edge of sanity as I charged at the thing. It moved to the side as I tripped and fell to the floor, next to the chest. When I rolled over onto my back, it was standing on the other side of the room, dragging its claws to make that horrible noise and causing me to grab my ears in pain.
I started to scoot back to the wall as it approached me. It was when I hit the wall that I realized that the bat was in reach and I still had the flashlight. I waited until the thing was right in front of me, then I blasted the full beam of light into its face. It stumbled back and screamed.
I got up and ran to the bat as fast as I could. The creature saw me making my move and came after me. I got to the bat and wrapped my fingers around the handle. I steadied myself and swung the bat in full circle to meet the creature. I came in contact with its chest, but not before its claws ripped a gash through my arm.
I was badly hurt, but the adrenaline pumping through my veins forced the pain back of my mind. The creature had fallen to the ground. I took my chance and unleashed a full powered swing onto its back. It screeched louder than ever had before, because one of the spikes on it’s back snapped off and fell to the floor, but I didn’t even care anymore. I wanted this to end. I kept swinging my bat into it until its screams of pain stopped and I still swung a little after that. When I was sure that thing would never move again, I regained my sanity and looked around the room, spotting the chest.
My mind kept telling me that there was something in it, that the creature was protecting. I walked over to it, bat in hand, and opened it. There was a black moving mass inside. I took it out and after feeling the slime that covered it I dropped it to the floor. I got a long enough look to see that was what seemed like a heart, but it didn’t look like that for long as I brought the bat down upon it. When it burst, I felt as if something has been freed, released of its bonds.
I ignored the feeling and looked up when I heard the door open. It was John, standing in the doorway. I made my way over to the door as John told me that the creature had made him do it, but I told john it was okay because it was finally over.
We went upstairs and decided to get some sleep. I set John up on the couch in the living room while I slept in my room. A few hours later, I woke up for no reason and laid there doing nothing when I heard a noise coming from inside the house. My mind automatically went to the creature until I remembered that I finished that thing off, so my mind went to John, thinking that he had made the noise.
After suppressing the idea of the creature, I got up to check on John. I got to living room only to see that he was not on the couch. In fact, he wasn’t in the room anymore. I started the think that he got up before me and decided that to go home, but I quickly dismissed that idea when I heard the noise again. This time I could tell where was coming from; it was coming from the basement.
Now, my mind was fighting to keep the idea of the creature from coming back. I forced myself to think John was down there making the noise, but I couldn’t think of why he would be down there in the first place, let alone what he could be doing that was making that much noise.
I didn’t want to go down there. I didn’t want to go anywhere near that room ever again, but after I left John alone at my house, and then again at his house, I knew I’d have to go check. My conscience would never forgive me if I left him alone this time, so I grabbed the flashlight and started down stairs. As I got closer I could hear the sound more clearly now; it was a group of sickening thuds, as if someone was taking a newborn baby and smashing it against the wall and the floor. Each time I heard it, I cringed but continued down anyway. When I got to the last step, the sound finally stopped.
I turned on my flashlight to scan the room for John. I went around the room looking for him until I saw something. The door to the creature’s room with open, just a crack. Every urge in my body was telling me to run, forget about John and save myself. To be honest, I wasn’t thinking about John anymore, my mind was thinking that I had to check the room to be sure the creature was dead. I walked, slowly, toward the door and opened it.
At first, I didn’t see anything odd. All I could see was the chest from before. I started to search the room with the light when I saw what made the noise. As my mind realized what it was, my entire body went stiff. It was John, dead, on the floor and stuffed in the corner. His body had bruises that looked like he had bashed his chest and head against the walls. He had long thick gashes across himself. My mind was rejecting what I was seeing; his body twisted and contorted in the corner of this room.
As I finally got control of myself, after what seemed like an hour of staring at John’s mangled body while fighting the urge to puke, I searched for what had done this to John. My eyes followed a trail of blood leading upwards on the wall. As I went to continue its path, my flashlight died. The lamp swinging in the room made it possible for me to generally see where the trail was leading. I followed the blood stains until they stopped.
There was something written on the wall in what could only be John’s blood. I stepped back to get a view of the entire thing; I stood there squinting my eyes as the light swung back and forth. At first, I could only make out tiny parts of the message, but after the light passed over it a few times, I finally got the whole message. My heart sank and I lost all hope that the creature was dead as the message clearly pointed it out for me. I heard a frightening noise from behind me as I read the message in my head for the last time.
“Thank you, for finally setting me free.”