Late Night Diary – October 2018

Day 1

I am feeling run down but I’m not sure why.  Hopefully I’ll get past this soon.  I have a busy month ahead of me.

Day 3

I can’t figure it out.  Every morning I wake up more exhausted than the last.  On top of that, breathing is a hassle, like it seems strained and I can’t get a full breath.

Day 6

I am so tired.  The only thing keeping me up is coffee and it’s definitely taking a toll on me.  I woke up and every inch of my body aches.  I know there is a storm front blowing in, but the body aches have never been like this before.

Day 8

Every morning is worse than the last, every breath feels more labored.  Worst of all, I have a giant bruise that runs from my left shoulder down to my left knee and I don’t know where it came from!  I haven’t left the house in the past two days and I don’t remember falling down.

Day 10

I think I almost died last night.

I don’t really know what happened but I woke up gasping for breath.  As hard as I tried, I couldn’t get any air in.  I struggled to get to the bathroom to at least see if there was something physically wrong with me to explain it.

But there was nothing wrong that I could see except for the strain of choking e on my reddened face and the tears that streaked down relentlessly.  I ended up falling on the floor and prayed that I wouldn’t die.

With the last shuddering stretch, a tiny sip of air made its way in.  I gurgled as I tried to repeat this.  Eventually, I could breathe again.  The rest of the night was spent cleaning up the spittle that had dribbled out of me and showering the fear sweat off.

Day 11

I was hoping it might be a one-time thing, but it happened again!  I am going to the doctor to see what can be done about this.  I don’t want to die on the bathroom floor!

Day 12

Another evening of almost dying while gasping for air.  I seriously feel like a fish out of water.  I did make my appointment but the Doctor wasn’t much help.  She said I might have a cold and I’ll just have to wait it out.  If this keeps happening, I don’t know if I can live long enough to wait it out.

The whiskey is helping me relax.

Day 17

How many nights has it been now?  I feel so run down, like my soul is being slowly drained from me.  Strangely, it only seems to happen at night, so I’ve taken to trying to sleep in the daytime.  This too is taking its toll on me as I still have to go to work.

Day 20

I did make it through the night without almost dying, so there is some light at the end of the tunnel.  And I am beginning to feel better, not so run down.  But I keep catching myself falling asleep in the most inopportune places.  Hopefully I won’t have to keep this up for much longer.

Day 21

Damn it, I failed.  I couldn’t make it through the early morning and woke up strangling on my own saliva.  But I saw something odd right as I woke up.  I swear I saw what looked like the shadow of a man dart into the wall mirror.  But since I haven’t been sleeping well, I’ll chalk it up to sleep deprivation.  There isn’t a realistic answer for it besides that, right?

Day 23

Good God, do I feel terrible this morning.

I saw the shadow man again.

Weird side thought, I’ve learned that if I don’t panic while I can’t breathe that the throat muscles relax I can eventually get a breath in.

Back to whatever the hell it was; it resembled a full sized, man-shaped shadow and it ran directly into the big mirror.  I don’t think I would’ve seen him if I hadn’t stopped panicking.

Day 24

Another night and it was there.  It was right against my face when I woke up choking on something cold.  I tried telling my family what I saw, but no one believes me.  Even my job told me to take the week off involuntarily.

To be honest, I didn’t react well to this and I’ve taken to drinking more.  I’ll need to curb this before it becomes a problem.

Day 25

I tried to stay up all night in the bedroom so I could see where it came from and I almost missed it.  Some sixth sense stirred me and I was able to catch sight of the shadow come out of the small mirror on the wall and move to the edge of the bed.

Its eyes!  Frosty, sparkling pits that stared hatefully at me while a sense of urgent hunger permeated the room.  It flitted past and strode through the larger mirror against the far wall.  Even though I have never been so scared in my life, I kept my eyes on it the entire time.

Day 26

I came up with a plan but it didn’t work.  I flipped the small mirror toward the wall and threw a sheet over the big one.  I figured if it couldn’t see in, it wouldn’t come in.  But I was wrong, so wrong.

Because it came anyway.  Its cold, clammy hands gripped my cheeks while its icy lips pressed against mine.  I could feel myself growing weaker as this… this demon sucked the life out of me.  I could sense its mockery as it released my face and left me fighting for breath.

I had to think of something to survive this.

Day 28

I rented a motel room across town but it still found me.  I don’t know how much more I can take of this.

Day 29

I received a notification that my job had let me go; too many sick days.  As if I missed work for something fun.  Bastards.  I got so mad I ended up shattering the bathroom mirror with an empty bottle.

Maybe this was the way to deal with it?  Smash all the mirrors so it can’t get to me?  I won’t know until the morning.

Day 30

BLANK ENTRY

Day 31

BLANK ENTRY

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Bad Opening Moves

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(image courtesy of Ryan McGuire of http://www.gratisography.com/)

Once the lecture was over, he caught sight of her leaving through the double doors that led out to the hallway.  His books jostled as he ran to catch up to her.  Out of breath he sputtered out, “Uh, excuse me?”

The young woman stopped and turned slowly, confusion evident in her eyes, “Yes?”

A light smile danced gracefully across his lips before he shifted the pile of books in his arms.  It took a moment for him to catch his breath, “Thanks for slowing down.  I… I really need to talk to you.”

Becky slid the moderately chewed pen out of her jeans pocket and twirled it slowly between her fingers, “Okay?”

He just stared at her for a split second before a pulled a folded sheet of paper free from the top book.  She watched blankly as he mouthed the words silently he read to commit them to memory.

Becky spied her friend, Amanda, coming down the hall and threw a quick wave to her.

She jerked in surprise as he suddenly began speaking in a loudly hushed tone, “I just wanted you to know that you make me feel… a certain way.  Now, I don’t know much about love.  It wasn’t something that I was brought up with.  Sadness and anger?  Sure.  Fear and doubt?  Of course.  And weirdly, duty.  But love?  No, not really.”

He was quiet as he gave that some serious thought, “And this is why I needed to talk to you.  You make me feel… odd and I find it uncomfortable.  Frankly, it’s off-putting.”

“That’s why I have resolved that I can’t see you anymore and I needed to let you know that it’s not you, it’s me.”  The young man held up his left hand like a blinder and quickly turned aside.  Then he crab-stepped away from her before disappearing down a side hallway.

“What was that about?” Amanda asked as she sidled up next to her.

Becky shrugged in response, “Got me.”

“Do you know that guy?”

She nibbled absentmindedly on the end of her pen, “Not sure.  I think we’re in the same physics class?”

Amanda smirked, “Huh.  With those moves, I would’ve figured it for biology.”

The Mysteries of Waking

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The dry rasp of his eyes opening dispelled the dust that had accumulated in the grooves of his skin.  His sudden indrawn breath created motes in the dim light of the early dawn.

His body jerked violently upward and a wretched cry burst from his lips as gravity pulled him to the dry, rotted floorboards.  Thin slivers of wood punctured his skin while he lay there panting.

It was a matter of moments before he pieced together that the slick wetness his hands and head lay in glittered with a crimson sheen.  The surface of the pool was broken as he struggled to push himself away from it.

Wildness radiated from his large eyes as his hands searched his body for the source of the blood.  Streaks of it ran up the walls and glistened against the filthy popcorn ceiling.  Horror ruled the curves of his face as he spied the body draped unceremoniously over the small chest in the corner.

Tears cut runnels through the scarlet splashed across his face as his body shook, “How long have I been here?  How many days?  How many months?  Each morning it’s the same.  More blood on my hands and a new body somewhere in here.”

His eyes lit upon the long piece of cool metal that rested forlornly under the saggy and broken bed frame.  Greedily, his fingers reached for it.  It was cold to the touch, much colder than the room would allow.

“Why is this happening?” he cursed against the four walls of his prison.  “How many times have I tried to leave and yet I always find myself here,” his eyes lit upon the form on the chest, “with only the company of a corpse.”

The slide of the M1911 pulled back to frame an empty chamber before it slipped back with a violent click.  The magazine clattered against the floor, but he could tell from the sound that it was empty.

The pistol fell loosely from his grip before he looked skyward, “Why is it always a different body?  Where do they come from?  Where do they go?”  His bloodied hands clutched at the skin stretched over his skull, “Am I going mad?”

A woman watched as he pulled himself under the bed from the tiny monitor bolted to the desk.  Her lips curled of their own accord as she grabbed the handset of the old rotary phone and her long, painted nail dialed 0, 1, and 0.

The buzz and click sounded loud in the confines of the security station, but she remained languid until the voice came through.  “Yes sir, I believe this one is almost ready.  Only another day or two.  Thank you, sir.”

The phone clacked against the ancient plastic of its body.  Her fingers steepled as she continued to watch him through the monitor, “Only another day or two…”

Lost on the Dark Streets

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I was alone in the alley and it was dingy.  Pools of gray water were trapped in pits by the edges of the buildings.  Pieces of garbage floated by in some while in others they had sunken beneath their miniscule waves.  There was a smell to the place that could be said to be indescribable only in the sense that a person wouldn’t want to bother with the time and research it would take to find out to do so.

Shadows were everywhere; some layered deeply enough to become impenetrable by any light.  Others were just on the edge of the cone of brightness from the bulb above.  There was little of interest here, so why had I agreed to meet here?

In a fit of boredom and the need for a sense of control, I opened the case and pulled out the six string.  Two string sets in double octaves that created a richer tone.  The wood of the instrument fairly glowed under the poor street lamp.

Warily, I placed my hand against the strings and felt the roughness of the bound wire.  My fingers curled into position and I strummed the strings ever so lightly.  Melancholy filled the air and burgeoning light began to filter through one of the walls that enclosed the alley.  An ancient song came to mind and the words fluttered to my lips.  I played alone in that place for what felt like eternity yet must have only been a fleeting moment.

A voice spoke quietly from the edge of darkness, “Yes, my friend, I was right.  This is a place for magic, where the walls between the universes are so very thin.”

His pointed teeth glittered like starlight from the blackest of the shadows as the strings under my fingers continued to vibrate their tones in this shabby space between buildings… between worlds.

(Photo by Kaique Rocha from Pexels https://www.pexels.com/photo/street-urban-japan-brasil-50859/)

Parasite in the Brain

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(image courtesy of https://morguefile.com/creative/clarita)

Lack of sleep allows a person to see the truth

For every mistake, every error, every failure

Is a cut to the soul

Once it is all bled away, this shell will die

Suffering from the parasite in the brain

 

The voices whisper their way to the back of the mind

No one speaks them better than you

Words that pierce the soul

There is no way out, no escape to be found

Suffering from the parasite in the brain

 

Anger keeps the demons at bay but how long can this last

Molded from clay but lessons learned quickly

Resolve is shaken, value is lost

Perseverance the only thing to keep you standing

Suffering from the parasite in the brain

Bridge over the River

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It had a taken a week but the body of the missing young woman had been found.  Her arms and legs had kept her lodged between the railings of the bridge.  But finding her corpse only led to more questions.

The locals had spoken about a young couple who had been seen camping out in the nearby forest but neither of them had set foot in town in the past couple weeks.  The search for the lady had begun once the police had fished her husband’s body out of the river.  The need to find her had grown once the black and white photos sealed in plastic bags were discovered in his coat pockets.

The pictures told a story of a young couple on vacation.  They ranged from candid shots at a gas station, to posing in front of a ball of twine and a monument or two.  The photos slowly degraded into a gruesome end for the woman.

The husband’s body showed no physical forms of trauma.  It simply looked like he had drowned.  She had rope burns around her ankles and wrists.  The photos unfolded the horror that she had suffered through on her last days.

While still alive, she had been stretched taut between two trees until her husband had cut her arteries and she bled out.  The last of the pictures showed her husband as he worked diligently to cut the organs out of her body before he cleaned them carefully.  Each of her organs were then carefully sealed in plastic bags and then placed back into the open cavity in their proper place.

The most troubling part was that cases like his had been appearing all across the country in the past couple months.  Each one had the old black and white photos of the organs being removed and cleansed.  Nothing linked the victims together, nothing at all.

The detectives were left with two main questions, who had taken the pictures and where had they been developed?  Was this a single person or was there more than one photographer?

(image courtesy of Ryan McGuire of https://www.tinyrobotcreative.com/)

Circles within Circles

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He awoke as if from a dream.  He pirouetted before he slid across the floor to his next partner.  Her mask was a creature of nightmare and it startled him.

“How long have I been here?” he wondered.  “How long have I been dancing?”

But he continued to glide his way along the dance floor from one freakishly masked partner to the next.  Confusion took him and his movements began to slow.  His steps began to falter as he realized, “Why can’t I stop?”

His vision swam and distorted laughter rang in his ears but still he continued to move.  His last dance partner threw him into a dip before spinning him like a top.  Around and around he went as he careened along the dance floor until he slipped and fell onto the tiles and found himself resting against the fireplace.

It felt like he was laying on a bed of moss and the ballroom smelled of the forest.  He giggled haphazardly as he tried to stand but he tripped on a pile of long hair.  His bushy brows obscured his sight but he realized that he had slipped on his snowy white beard.

But he could only remember being clean shaven and it had been black as the darkest of nights.  “My hair?  It is so pale!  Why is it so long?”  He wondered as the ballroom faded away.   He found himself with his back against the trunk of a tree in a vast forest.  A lonely ring of mushrooms encircled him.

“Why do I feel so old?  Am I so tired from dancing?”

A voice whispered in his ear, “Good night sweet prince.”

The lids of his eyes closed of their own volition as snow began to fall upon his body from the branches above.

He didn’t wake that night or ever again.  His bones still grace that fairy circle and they do not rest alone.