Tuesday, June 19, 2012

White shadows.

   Terrorized, you wake up in the middle of the night only to find that you're completely paralyzed, unable even to scream or cry. Sometimes, you also have to helplessly watch as indistinguishable or utterly monstrous shapes menacingly circle around your bed. Until it all of a sudden ends and you actually wake up. Sleep paralysis. I've had those for a while now. I found out I wasn't the only one.
    No one seems to know for sure what it is, though. Some say it's the brain waking up and simply forgetting to tell the rest of the body about it, hallucinating all along. The mystical type believe it's the launching phase to an astral projection. Free from the body, the soul would then be able to roam the ether, or something. I've decided to believe that it was just a dream. A very specific, widespread kind of nightmare like falling or ending up in your underwear on the first day at school. Only much more terrifying. Now, whenever this happens I try to remember this and soothe myself until the end of the ordeal.
    I can spend whole months without having one of those dreams as well as have two in a row over the course of one night. I never now what to expect. I've tried alcohol, weed, sex, sleeping pills, exercising in the morning and before going to bed, baths. I've bought a massaging chair. I've quit smoking, drinking coffee, tea or any other stimulants. Nothing helps. I've reached a point where I am terrified of going to sleep.
    Last night, I've had the most vivid and terrifying of those dreams. I woke up paralyzed. A white shadow was standing at the end of the bed near my feet. It looked somewhat human, but as if designed by someone with only vague notions of what a human being was. A grey mess of lines and curves was flickering on my left. A distorted beeping noise was coming from somewhere in the room.-BEEP-
    The white shadow started walking towards my head, in slow motion. -BEEP- I tried to scream but I couldn't. The grey thing on my left seemed to settle into a shape of some kind. A shape vaguely familiar. The white shadow was coming closer. -BEEP- Like a mantra, I kept thinking that this was all just a dream. -BEEP- The shape mumbled something I didn't quite understand then. For some reason, it reminded me of my mother. -BEEP- Slowly, the white shadow leaned over and reached for something behind my head.-BEEP-
    I woke up. I was dripping in sweat. My breath was short. It took me a while to finally settle down. I've spent the whole day thinking about that dream. What was this all about? What is wrong with me? The worst part is that I finally understood what the shape that looked like my mother was saying. She said: "Please, my darling, wake up."

Monday, June 11, 2012

Think you're ready for it?

    Terry was no marksman but he was almost sure he had hit the thing stumbling towards him twice in the head. At least once. Left with only bullet, he waited for it to be at point blank for a spot on headshot. And he fired. Bullseye. Terry was splattered with bits of skull and brainstuff. But the thing kept walking. As his undead mother started clawing his jugular and gnawing his face, Terry, in shock, couldn't stop thinking: "Fuck horror movies!"

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Old photographs.

    It's funny how we feel about photographs. No one ever just throws them away. It's as if we all knew they were more than imprints on sheets of paper.   
    My wife had taken the kids on a walk through the park. It was an unusually sunny Sunday afternoon of early spring, of those that remind you summer is around the corner. I had finally decided to sort our rather large stack of photographs, partly as an excuse to spend some time on my own, I must confess. As always, I got lost in memories. Birthday parties, vacations, a few weddings. That summer day on a beach in Greece with my parents and my brother. That ex girlfriend who I believed had broken my heart forever. Moments that were forgotten were all of a sudden remembered as many uninvited guests.
    I had lost track of time and of course hadn't managed to get much done that day. In that photo trance of sorts, I felt something rather odd. As if I was being watched. The feeling was faint at first until I couldn't help but check if I actually was alone.
    I was holding a picture of myself on my tenth birthday. I was wearing a grey shirt with a teddy bear printed on it. I had received many gifts on that day, my favorite was a robot that transformed in a jet fighter. I remember I didn't quite get the transformation process and had my older brother do it for me for a while until he got tired of it and actually sat me down and explained me how to do it.
    Ten year old me was staring at the camera, smiling. And, as I was looking at him, I realized he was looking back at me. I felt a chill on my back. My heart was racing. I was feeling a strange unsettling familiarity, akin to looking at a character that seems human but isn't quite.   
    I put down the photograph and tried to gather my thoughts. Then I looked back at it. The sensation was still there. I was certain that the little boy I used to be was staring at me through the picture. I feverishly went through the other photos. Every time someone was looking at the camera and my eyes met with theirs, I felt the same thing. They were all looking back at me.
    I went out of the apartment to escape from hundreds of staring eyes. I breathed deeply trying to regain some composure and started thinking. We used to think that a camera could capture your soul. What if it was at least partly true? They say eyes are windows to the soul. If a camera makes a connection with them, does it take pieces of it? Those copies of yourself on the photograph, do they have feelings and emotions? Perhaps they are aware of being trapped in a moment for eternity. What about us? Can someone be over photographed until he or she is left without a soul?
    I've never told anyone about this. I know it sounds delirious. You probably think I was in a fit of paranoia. Don't worry, I've never felt like this again. I know however that I will never treat a photograph lightly, or a camera for that matter.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

A most unusual email.


Subject: Even Morgan Freeman knows about Iaor'aths.

    On April 10th, 1926, Turkish historian Aagha Utkan, age 57, died gruesomely in Istanbul on Beyazit square, near the university. According to many witnesses, he was skinned alive and then torn apart by invisible forces in a process that took several minutes. Some accounts report his dying, screaming, last words to have been: "I can feel them eating my soul away!"
    Prior to his death, according to coworkers, friends and family, Utkan had become nervous and agitated. When asked, he would refuse to give any explanation. One fellow historian, Fahri Yildirim, reported having heard Utkan mumbling to himself the words "I can't stop thinking about them." repeatedly.
    Utkan was a renown scholar who had specialized in ancient civilizations and had studied and mastered many languages, among which Sumerian and Greek. Prior to his death, he was studying a stone tablet found during diggings in Egypt covered with what appeared to be characters from an unknown dead language. He was fascinated by the myth of Atlantis and had made it a goal to uncover the truth about it.
    Utkan destroyed most of his notes before his death. No trace of the tablet was ever found. Without any clues to further their investigation, the authorities classified the case as an accident. For almost a century, Utkan's death has remained one of the strangest, best documented unknown mysteries of the twentieth century.     
    Until unfortunately I stumbled upon it. My name is John "Rotten" Taylor. You should know my name, as you're about to die horribly thanks to me. I gathered whatever was left of my sanity to write this down, so please pay attention. I make a living by spamming inboxes across the world, including yours, with anything from adds for drugs supposed to finally make you able to satisfy women, to expensive fake watches that will probably give you skin cancer. Millions of people are within my reach. I'm also an information junkie. I crave for it like a fat cop craves for donuts
    I first heard of Utkan's mysterious death a few years ago while chatting on an IRC channel. I was immediately fascinated by this story and began investigating it. Four weeks ago - twenty seven dreadful days, to be be specific -  I finally acquired the remaining pages of his notes.
    There were only a handful of pages left out of the hundreds Utkan had dedicated to his research. They were scorched and filled with hard to decipher hand writing. Almost useless. However, with some help, I managed  to collect what seemed to be the senseless ramblings of a mad man. There was mention of a breed of obscene invisible creatures occupying the same space as us but "not quite". A word in a language long forgotten kept showing through his notes. Whatever it is, a name, a verb, I still don't know to this day. But I know what it brings.
    "Iaor'aths". The moment I said that word aloud, the world around me got dimmer, as if a cloud had suddenly filled the sky. I felt my heart race. Cold sweats. Shivers. My balls retracted. The feeling that there was something else with me, hungry for me. Then I saw it. But not really. It was on the edge of my sight. Whenever I tried to focus on it, it seemed to shift away.
      At first there was only one. In time, they've become clearer, more numerous, although still barely visible.Now, whenever I think about them, I can almost see thousands of long, thin, shimmering, ever- changing strips of flesh with razor sharp teeth surrounding me, waiting for the right time to strike.  And I know that the time is near.
    But I won't go alone. I want to take along as many of you as I can. That's the point of this email. The spam to end civilization. I've got it all planed, you see. Even if you haven't read the whole email, you've probably read its subject. That's all I need. Since its mentioning a world-renowned American actor and since that last word is quite odd, you've probably said "Iaor'aths" aloud with an American English accent. I decided to transcribe it that way to maximize the impact. Soon you'll start seeing them and it will be the end for you. That's the beauty of it. The more you think about it, the more they  are aware of you. And the more you see them, the more you think about them. Until they're ready and you're dead.
    In a minute now, this email will reach hundreds of millions of accounts. You know that's what I do for a living, right? You bastards with your junkmail filters may be safe, but what about your moms? I estimate only one percent success, at first. That's already over three hundred thousands deaths within a few weeks. And probably the end of civilization. What about the news coverage? What if it goes viral?
    Sadly, I won't be here to enjoy the show. A bottle of sleeping pills I got online and some vodka are waiting for me. This Nigerian prince is taking the easy way out.
    So send this email to ten other accounts within a week or don't, I couldn't care less. You're going to die a horrible way anyhow.

    Sincerely, fuck you humanity.

    John "Rotten" Taylor.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The last train on line Z.

    I'm not sure what I saw was real. Maybe I was just dreaming or...I was hammered! Alright?! It was on a Monday, of that I am positive. Strange things do tend to happen on Monday nights, for some reason.
    Anyway, I had left the pub late and barely managed to catch the last train on line Z. Too broke to get a cab, too lazy to walk, the subway was my one chance of safely reaching home. The thing is I live at the end of the line, which leaves a lonely man, whether under the influence or not, plenty of opportunities to wander into slumberland.
    As I kept dozing off, passengers kept disappearing. Soon, I was the only one left on the train. Or so it seemed. It's a rather disturbing experience, I must say. I am not afraid of being alone, you know. I am rather good at it, actually. But there I was, half passed out, alone on a train leading me to god knows where. Was it really home or rather some special station in hell where impoverished drunks are tortured for eternity?
    Then, I noticed her. At first, she was sitting a few rows away from me and I could only really see the back of her head. Seeing a girl alone late at night on a subway is rather unusual. But it was Monday and there was no one on the train to bother her. In my state, I certainly wasn't capable of bothering anyone.
    I closed my eyes, just to rest them a bit, and when I reopened them, she was sitting right in front of me. I hadn't noticed her moving at all.
    She had a great figure. She looked like a dancer. Long, dark hair. She was wearing a dark shirt showing lots of cleavage. Short pants with tights underneath. Did I mention she was beautiful? Actually, no. She was stunning.
    One thing should have tipped me off. It was getting quite cold, I think it happened when November was in the chair. I know I had already begun to stack on layers of clothing. But she wasn't wearing much. And she didn't seem to mind either. 
    Her skin had a faint tan. Maybe she just had some make up on. Wait! I just realized now. No bag, whatsoever. Can't believe I never noticed that. Have you ever seen a girl without something to haul all her stuff with?
    But her eyes! Its hard to describe. I can't remember whether they were brown, green, or golden. They just seemed to shift in color. And as they did, I felt myself drawn in to her. Just like when you know you really are laying in bed and yet feel just as if you were falling.
    As I was falling into her, I felt a chill on my back. My heart was pounding in my chest. I remember thinking to myself that this chick was something else, something dangerous, even. Yes, I was scared. Of a girl. So?
    The train stopped. Some guy stepped in. He was wearing a three piece suit and carrying a briefcase. Tall, muscular, healthy. You know the type. Successful.
    He briefly glanced in our direction before collapsing on a sit a few rows away from us. Mr Successful must have had a long day because he fell asleep almost right away.
    She had noticed him. I wasn't falling anymore. She slowly walked towards him. I remember that the train kept rocking as it sped through the subway, however it didn't bother her. There was something odd, for lack of a better word, about the way she moved. It was very fluid. Like, I don't know, I'm sure it sounds crazy, she wasn't restricted by joints, ligaments or any of those things that make us walk the way we walk.
    She sat next to the guy who immediately woke up. She said something. He smiled. Pretty soon, they were kissing and actually making out. This went on for a while. Then, as the train stopped, they both stood up and made their exit. As they did, I remember this perfectly, she licked his cheek. Only it wasn't with a human tongue. What came out of her mouth was a fat, sluggish thing, disgustingly pulsating as it was slithering across the guys face, leaving a pus like substance in its trail. I felt like screaming but couldn't move a muscle.
    The doors to the train closed and that's the last I ever saw of them.
    Alright, I know. I was drunk. It was late. You don't believe me. Fine. One thing is for sure though. You'll never see me drunk again on the last train on line Z. At least, not on Mondays.

Sunday, December 18, 2011


     Some say the world is a ball of mud floating in space around a giant ball of fire. Other think it's the opposite and everything revolves around earth. The most sensible ones think it's flat and that it rests on an infinite pile of giant turtles. Fools! All of them. I know the truth, for sure. Its maddening, but I've seen it.
    The world, and by that I mean life itself, is held together by the thin silky thread of tiny clockwork spiders.
    Oh, I used to be just like you. I didn't know the truth. That was before...that was a long time ago. Until one night, as I had fallen asleep watching TV, I saw a spider in a corner next to me. It was...different. It looked just like any other common spider, as it was mostly black, but it had an unusual, almost copper hue. And as I was watching it, I noticed a faint clicking sound coming from it. Nevertheless, I swatted the spider with the TV guide. But instead of the smear of blood and other organic products I expected, there were many tiny gearings and cogs which spilled all over the room. I've kept everything I could find in a matchbox. I'll show you, if you want.
    Since then, I've spent hours and hours watching them thread their endless web and I've never hurt any other spider. Next time you're about to clean some cobwebs, you should think about it twice. Who knows what might happen. Now do come in, my friend. It's cold outside and there's a nice cup of tea waiting for you. And don't be afraid of the clockwork spiders. They usually don't bite.