12 MONTHS OF HELL & HORROR! – Derek Barton – 2020

A CHRISTMAS SURPRISE FOR ALL OF YOU!!

I have just created and submitted a new one-of-a-kind 2021 Calendar/Day Planner & Horror Story Collection — It’s called 12 Months of Hell & Horror!

Yeah, I was inspired by the twelve months of hell & horror we went through this year!

Inside you’ll find 6 short stories with original illustrations by my father, T.D. Barton. You will also have 365-day journal pages as well as 12 calendar pages with an Important Day Notes section.

It will be available within a day or two on Amazon for only $11.99!! It will make a great gift for you or any reader you know. BUY NOW to keep organized and thrilled for the entire coming year!!

Got A New Smile — Derek Barton – 2020

I wanted to check in with everyone and advise you of my current projects I’m working on.

NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) Challenge was a big help and success for me this year! I used it to help me get Evade Part III written, edited, and soon to be published by the end of the year!!

Evade Part II has been produced and sent in to Audible.com for their final approve to sell the audiobook probably by the end of December.

I am also working on a secret side project — hope to have more news on that before the end of the year. Check back here for more information!

I’m back to reworking the outline for the third Wyvernshield Series book. Been a very rough year for everyone and I certainly have felt it — the first time in six years that I had a serious snag in my motivation as well as production. Anyway, it appears that this has eased up and I’m ready to create once again.

I have decided to have one new goal: for a whole year, I want to write 400 words every day. Now, I won’t say this will be in stone or that I can reach the small goal every day, but it does give me a minimum to obtain. In other words, it will be easier to say to myself, “C’mon…It’s only 400 words. Stop being lazy, you can do this easy!”

By the end of one year, it totals to over 124,000 words (I am basing this on six out of seven days reaching 400 words). So for a nice kickstart to this, I wrote tonight 1,108.

Thank you all for your support and your fantastic energy which helps fuel my work! Got a lot more horror to share…

Writing Prompt #7 — It Growls From the Corner — Derek Barton – 2020

My eyes open instantly to pitch darkness. My heart races, pumped with an instinctual fear. I clutch the sheets of the bed, my breath caught tight in my throat.

I wait. Listening. There was something. A sound. A noise.

Nothing.

It takes me a moment to even realize where I am. Then it comes back slowly in bits. I was in my late cousin Richard’s farm house. He left it to me and several days before, I had moved in, with hopes of renovating the small ranch house.

Two days in to the renovations.

The lights were off, the windows shuttered. The dead farmland blanketed with its night shawl. The only light source came from a light pole next to the battered barn in back of the house. A ring of ash trees encirled most of the property.

Air stale and still filled the room. Soft light rays filtered down from one partially open window in the living room and dust floated aimlessly in its illumination.

“Hello?” I whisper, my lips dry, my cotton tongue sticking to the roof of my mouth.

“Hello?” I venture once more, praying I don’t get a response.

Seconds bleed into minutes, minutes grow into moments. Nothing responds. Time lapses.

One bizarre note catches my attention. I don’t hear anything. No crickets, no late night song birds, no distant cars on the I-77 highway. Even the wind is holding its breath. What the hell?

However, I do ease my grip on the sheets and sigh in relief. Maybe it was a nightmare with the last fragments waking me. I can’t quite yet laugh at myself and the fear that seized me.

New place, new sounds. Just a case of heebie-jeebies.

I raise onto my elbows.

Hissssss.

The sound pierces me. It came straight out of the corner, draped in deep shadows. A low rumbling growl follows the hiss. A distinct scrape of claws on the wood floor boards makes the hair on the back of my neck raise.

I freeze up all over again, my breath locked in my chest.

My eyes strain to make out a form in the dark. Nothing. It’s like a gaping hole torn into the bedroom space, swallowing up the entire corner.

It’s close. I should be able to see whatever the thing is! Dammit, why can’t I see it? I can’t run. The corner is near the doorway.

What is it? A mountain lion? A rabid wolf? A feral stray dog? What is in my house?

No more noises, no more clues to what it is.

I don’t try to speak again to it. It’s obvious it isn’t human so there’s no real point. My mind floods with bad ideas, desperate ploys, nothing that will get me away.

Moments again drag out. I pull my legs slowly up, curling my form into a better shielded form. Another growl, deep in its chest protests my movement.

Eyes, silvery and large open up. The space between the eyes at least five inches apart. Then heat and a bitter stench of foul breath wafts over me. Whatever is staring at me, just opened its jaws. I think I can hear the bare sounds of panting.

I brace my hands at my sides against the bed and raise with my back pressed to the wall. Standing seems like my only viable option. It gives me a half a chance if this thing rushes me.

Again from inside the shadows, the unseen beast doesn’t like my movement and it hisses violently, pawing aggressively at the floor. I hear its claws, I see it’s eyes, smell it’s breath, but yet there’s no form, nothing in the corner!

At the end of the bed, I left another window open for the summer breezes. A thin metal screen is the only thing on the window. Do I dare plunge through it before this thing is upon me?

It somehow senses my thoughts and it shifts subtly, the shadows moving with it. Now a couple feet closer to the end of the bed, it sits midway between the door, the end of the bed and the window.

This tells me one thing. It’s intelligent, but it is also waiting on me to make my move. Yet I feel I have already lost this game of strategy before I even woke up.

I try to summon my dwindling courage. Sweat streams down my neck and chest. I bend slightly, coiling my leg muscles.

The beast stands! I still can’t make out any form, but the shadow grows taller and towers over me, the “head” touching the dusty ceiling. Oh god!

It makes no other move. The ball has come back into my court. My plan for the open window has been shattered.

“Wh- What are you? What do you want?” My voice shakes as violent as my body.

s h e l t e r

The voice carries across to me but speeds through me like a gun shot. It gores my senses and I reel in sudden dizziness and nausea. My legs give out and I collaplse in a heap by the pillows.

Shelter? What does that mean?

“I don’t understand.” I moan. “You want to stay in the house?”

It’s useless to try and escape. My fate is in this things claws. There’s no choice but to listen to it’s demands.

I watch in pure terror as it slowly strides across the room, the floorboards creaking under its weight. Shadows stretching and wrapping around my neck and over my screaming mouth.

Lifted in the air as a smothering sensation wracks me, a burning agony doubles me over in its grasp, a lightning icy claw rakes across my back.

Tumbling from its hold, I hit the bed, then tumble to the floor with the words,

w e s h e l t e r h e r e

searing into my brain.

Hours later, as sunlight drifts in and warms my exposed legs and feet. My eyes open and stare up at the room’s dust-covered ceiling fan. A hunger, a need, a blood-thirsty craving growls inside me. My head raises and stares at the far wall.

s e r v e

Etched into the faded green wallpaper are symbols, plans and demands. None that I understand or want to comprehend.

Inside, it reads the words. It knows its purpose.

s h e l t e r a n d s e r v e

It growls again from the dark corners of my tattered soul.

Preview Rough Draft Chapter for Evade Part III — Derek Barton – 2020

Craving to see what’s in-store for you (and Lindsey and the others from Evade Part Three)?

Here you go… Enjoy!!

Twin embers opened before us, hunting in the pitch dark. The glowing orbs were frenzied but not yet looking in our direction.

Another four sets of eyes appeared, joining the others. The Seekers were about thirty yards ahead, at the intersection of a fork of subway tunnels. They had their backs to Sasha and I, crouching and peering down the length of the tunnels. Our escape was to the left but obviously blocked.

Behind us, we escorted a young tween, Bethany Phelps, her elderly guardian, Kenneth Gerard, and a fellow detective, Detective Josh Matthews. They hadn’t seen any of the Seekers as of yet.

Or experienced the supernatural taint the Seekers carried about them.

We ordered them to crouch and stay hidden under a rickety set of steps leading up to a catwalk storage built along the tunnel’s ceiling while Sasha and I scouted ahead.

My watch showed it was 6:25 PM. Only twenty minutes had passed since Commander Hoyt Leoi shouted through his radio at them when they were behind their makeshift barricade. “Detective Korrey. Come in.” His voice was a much calmer and steady tone than when I spoke to him after the earlier explosion. It seemed he regained some of his composure.

“Commander Leoi, I’m here,” I replied to him, trying to match his even cadence.

“A beige and metallic gold Chevrolet is coming south, down York Avenue. Its pace has slowed — they may be looking for the gate entrance to the property. Do any of the 27th Crew own or drive a gold Chevy Caprice that you know of?”

I remembered this was Detective Matthews’ personal car. He must’ve taken it to avoid any suspicion when he drove Bethany and Kenneth to our location.

“They are with us. I instructed Detective Matthews to come here as he has vital information I need. Pass this along — he is not to be fired upon!” 

“Am I to understand he has information that cannot be told over the cell phone or even the classified radio lines?” Leoi’s attitude and condescending tones had also returned.

“Commander Leoi, do you have anything further to report or do you remain in Green Status?” 

A bit of a pause — maybe to do some meditation or breathing exercises? Finally, he replied, “No changes to report. I will let you know when the car is at your tunnel entrance. Over.”

Three minutes later, he called back and said Detective Matthews was parked near our tunnel. Sasha and I raced out in the dark to escort Matthews and the civilians back to our makeshift barricade. 

We hadn’t anticipated the Seekers would find a way to get behind us without being detected.

Sasha, a slim black woman with her hair pulled tightly back, leaned in close to my face and whispered, “There’s another one, hiding by the pile over there. Do you see him?” She pointed.

The tall stature of a man stood motionless apart from the others, but his eyes were partially concealed by his coat hood.

“He makes six then,” I answered. “Officially, we’re out numbered.”

“I’ve got maybe seven or eight rounds.”

“No. We don’t need to shoot them.” I was put off by her quick response to kill. “We don’t have any idea how many are around – it will only alert them to our position. I think we can do this a better way. Go back, tell them what we are seeing, and keep them quiet where they are. I’ll distract and lead—”

“I’m faster. I should lead those damn things away.”

“You are faster. That’s why I want you to take the group to safety. They haven’t even seen anything like these Seekers before. They’ll need your prodding for sure. Your speed and actions could be critical if you’re needed immediately.”

I kept an anxious eye on the affected humans. They were restless and seemed to sense our presence somewhere near them. From what I detected, the search party of Seekers were led by the tall man, joined by two adult women and three teenagers of close age. I worried about the speed of those teens.

I continued to spell out my plan. “I’m going to run past your position, back down the tunnel. Remember the stack of oil barrels? I’ll hide behind them and loop back. But, once we clear the area, take everyone as fast as possible to the barricade. Understood?”

She shrugged but not overly enthusiastic. 

“I’ll give you time to get back to them now.” I stopped and gripped her shoulder. “Do not kill anyone, okay?” I left her with that and inched forward, using the darker shadows of the wall for cover.

Now, as the prospect of facing the six supernatural Seekers alone hit me, the moldy walls closed in on me. The idea was beyond daunting and my legs trembled as my plan grew weaker in my mind.

It was time, stalling and worrying now was pointless and even dangerous. I jumpstarted my efforts by kicking over a rotting wooden crate in front of me. With amazing agility, they spun and charged all together toward the sudden noise. I bolted down the tunnel with a paranoid certainty the Seekers were right on my heels. They barely huffed with their exertion.

The stack of oil barrels I mentioned before were barely visible and highlighted only by a dirty skylight ahead. I zipped in around the barrels and stood silently with my back to the cold metal containers. This section of the tunnel had been a small hub and a single-track platform. The Seekers came in mere seconds after me.

They gathered in the center of the intersection and hesitated, listening for which direction I went in.

I heard a soft hiss through clenched teeth. The Tall Man started to lead the group down the single-track. As the last of them climbed off the platform, a crash of metal and curses echoed along the tunnels. I recognized Detective Matthews’ voice. He must’ve tripped over something.

It was enough…

I leaned over, spying into the dark subway. The gang of Seekers were once more huddled together.

Shit!! Sasha’s group was definitely heard, soon to be hunted for again.

Tall Man pointed and three of the Seekers went back to the platform ladder. He split the group as he vanished with the others into the shadows still pursuing my presumed trail.

I shot out and took a winding tunnel left of the oil barrels. The three hissed and howled at my fleeing image.

This unknown passage grew suddenly dark as we ran further away from the skylights. Growing blind with each stride, I dug into my pocket, scrambling to pull out my cell phone. I managed to punch the flashlight symbol on the phone and its brilliance lit up the way. The light bounced, shadows leaped and danced as I thrust the cell out before me.

Our training in the police academy as rookies and other courses we took along the way for field experience ingrained in us a strict discipline to focus only on the path ahead and keep your emotions buried. It applied to either case of when you were the hunter or the prey being chased. However, fear and panic coursed through me. My thoughts lost in a jumble of chaos. I had no idea what they would do with me if I were caught.

Their footfalls and the scrapes of their shoes or boots clearly informed me of their hot pursuit. And they were gaining…

My own footsteps were louder now as I splashed through large puddles of water, recent storm runoff. Slick mud at the edges of the water nearly took my feet out from under me and I slid with my momentum into a bank of slimy walls. I bounced and continued to look for other doorways, tunnels openings or even catwalk stairs to find a place to hide. Anything.

My flight ended abruptly as the tunnel curved to the far left and narrowed considerably.  A set of wire fences were erected and chained shut to prevent further trespass. Beyond the fence was a large chamber used to hold piles of garbage and storage for what look like torn-out subway chairs. I shoved my phone back into my jeans and launched myself high onto the fence. Climbing toward a narrow opening at the top, I wanted to get over it and lose the Seekers among the piles.

As I hefted my right leg over the top, my jeans suddenly snagged and tore at the cuff as it caught the edge of the fencing. A woman in her early twenties, skinny and with pale blonde hair leaped up and clasped a pair of ashy hands on my left leg. The heat from her hands baked through my clothing as her eyes blazed bright staring at me. A need or deep craving floated in that penetrating stare as she leaned back, using her weight to haul me back over to their side. The other two joined her on the fence and climbed toward me.

Desperately I leaned with my own weight the other way, my body precariously hanging in balance at the top.

Riiiipppppp! The cheap jean’s material gave way, releasing my right leg and sending me diving toward the ground on the other side of the fence.

I screamed in sheer surprise, braced for the impact only to have the wind blasted from me as my shoulder hit the ground. I exploded through the rotted floorboards and fell another fifteen feet or so to the subway level beneath. I saw a brief flash of light from a hanging lightbulb. My plunge continued as my weight crashed through another level of ancient wood flooring. I was diving headlong into the depths of the subway system!

I never saw the next floor as my vision and the world around me were eclipsed and swallowed in total darkness.

On a positive, I didn’t feel the impact either.

Steps Taken Upon A New “Path”… — Derek Barton – 2017

Wolf Eyes #1In the mid 90s, my father, Ted Barton wrote an original new take on the classic werewolf story.  It was called The Path.   He ran through the typical gauntlet of publisher inquiries and got the typical rejections.   Just like today, literary agents and publishers are looking primarily for already established writers — this cuts down on their marketing costs and the gambling risks of taking on new talent.

Unfortunately, the age of self-publication had not taken shape yet.  So The Path has remained locked away in a box ever since, gathering dust.

But now…  

My father and I are teaming up, revamping the work and will be publishing it by the end of the year!  (Insert trumpet blaring and confetti parades here!)

We will be amending the title, but for now here is the first sampling of our book.  Hope you enjoy it!



 

CHAPTER ONE – DZHANKAH:

 

The Prey was running!

Dzhankah liked it when they ran because it was… entertaining. He had no sense of humor, but it did appeal to his sense of cruelty. It was as close to playing a game as a creature devoid of normal human disposition could approach. Watching his prey stumble clumsily before him, squeaking and mewling in terror gave him immense pleasure.

Sometimes upon first sight of him the timid animals would lock up. Their eyes would roll up white in their sockets and their bladders would let go, leaving dark puddles in the powdery earth at their feet. He would make a big show of his attack, snarling viciously and frothing at the mouth as he reared up and advanced upon them. If he were in a benevolent mood, he would end it quickly by severing their head or ripping out a vital organ.  This was not as enjoyable as playing it out, nip by slash, until life ebbed from the quivering remains.

Best of all was when his victims ran.

And this one ran well – almost fast enough to get away.

But not quite…

When Dzhankah first revealed himself, the Meat froze and stared with little apparent fear. This one was either too stupid or too drunk to believe his eyes. Or perhaps he’d seen things before – events or atrocities that had hardened him to the world. After all, the few kills of these two-legged Meats that Dzhankah had experienced had all been of the local, domestic variety.

This, however, was a wild one.

Dzhankah guessed this as evidenced by the Prey’s appearance and from the fact that he had camped in the clearing next to the field rather than in one of their smelly, wooden caves.

If only I had been on the Hunt last night, I would have slept with a full belly.

This Prey still would be easy to kill, but deserved a little more respect. Dzhankah would chase him down and dispatch him immediately.

When the Meat bolted at last, he fled quickly and with purpose. He didn’t look back, kept his head down and concentrated every effort into making his legs carry him as fast as possible toward the clearing where he had camped.

Dzhankah was curious. What did the Meat expect to profit by gaining the clearing? Could he want more room to defend himself? Perhaps he has hidden some sort of weapon back at his campsite?

Never before had one tried to defend himself!  Dzhankah found the prospect enticing and brought a surge of excitement to his heart.

The Beast then decided to leap over a few rows and sprint ahead to check out the clearing. There he would either wait for the Meat to come blundering into him or he would come back to the chase within the corn.

Bursting into the clearing, he cast his eyes over the campsite, searching for anything that might be used against him. He thrust his muzzle to the ground, sniffing everything in sight – the bed of embers in the campfire, the bundle of rags the Meat carried with him, the nest of cornstalks piled near the base of the tree…

The tree!

The wild one wasn’t running for a weapon, but fleeing towards the only possible avenue of escape.

Clever, clever! He thought to himself, slightly disappointed over the missed opportunity for a fight.

Oh yes, the Meat has been around all right. Had seen things… and somehow knows I can’t climb trees!

On cue, his quarry exploded from the cornfield and without breaking stride, leaped over Dzhankah’s head and grasped a low-hanging branch. With a grunt, the Prey began pulling himself up into the tree, his legs pinwheeling in the air.

Before he swung his upper torso into the crotch of a branch, Dzhankah lunged and clamped his teeth down hard upon his left foot. A shriek of agony sliced through the air as the ankle bones crunched into a bloody pulp within his powerful jaws.

The Meat kicked and stomped frantically at his tormentor’s face, but Dzhankah, ignored the blows, closed his eyes… and slowly pulled.



More of the novel will be forthcoming.  Please let us know what you think so far. Reviews, suggestions or comments are always welcome!

 

 

 

Seyde In Blood – NOW ON SALE ON KINDLE!!

seyde-in-blood-v5

 

A Messenger has come with the night’s maelstrom. He has a story to show Taliah, The Blind Seeress. Through her witness, the secrets of the Artadeus Family and the infamous Cros’seau Coup Attempt are laid bare for all!

It is a great addition and further insight to the dark past and bloody, revenge story that unfolds in Consequences Within Chaos.

Click here for more details!  Seyde In Blood

 

In Four Days…(part 4)

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DAY FOUR…

I woke up late this afternoon; of course from a nightmare.  Or am I still in the nightmare?  Things are blurring together now and I don’t know if I can tell what’s real any more.

When I popped open my laptop, this message nearly stopped my heart:

 

blog-pic-14First of the Year’s Snowstorms Expected to Cripple Philadelpha

A massive snowstorm that has devastated the city of Halifax, Nova Scotia and most of the state of Maine is now heading for the Northeast U.S. Coast.  This storm is expected to break all-time snowfall records for Pennsylvania – Philadelphia (14.8 inches), Pittsburg (13.1 inches) and Scranton (13.8 inches).  Many residents have been advised of an emergency curfew and restricted to their homes and off of roads.  Officials fear for extensive power outages up and down the coastlines. 

 

Every light and lamp I own has been plugged in and turned on in my tiny bedroom.  My four somewhat used and somewhat sharp kitchen knives are laid out on my bed.  The .380 pistol my brother in New Jersey bought me lays in my lap like a pet, a twisted replacement for Rayray.

The coffee table gave up its life to be nailed into the wall and placed across the window.  The doors are all locked.

My thoughts race around the last line of the article.  Officials fear for extensive power outages…

Deep down, I don’t believe any of this will be enough to stop him.  He’s coming.  I don’t know why or what he wants.  But… this is the fourth day!

It has snowed all night so far.   Worst case scenario would be if the pow


Taken and reposted from Amara Rico’s Facebook Page – January 29th, 2016

The above posts from Rosalina Rico were the last entries on my sister’s laptop.  A welfare check made on January 25th by the local authorities found her apartment door open; snow and mud covered a lot of the living room.  It seems that the door had been open during most of the three-day storm.

One officer at the scene relayed to me that they did find three bullet holes in one of her bedroom walls.

Her family prays for her safety and requests any help or information you can give.

Please call 1-888-772-6600 — 24 hour hotline.

In Four Days…(part 3)

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DAY THREE…

 

I SAW HIS FACE!!

Last night, my nerves got the best of me so I took Rayray out of the apartment and we rode into town.  I wanted to be with people and in the public view.  

I had been wracking my head trying to figure out what was happening.  Was this just some creep with a flair for theatrics?  Was this something worse?  Or could I be having a breakdown of sorts?  

I needed to know and I had this sinking feeling that time was running out for me. Nothing on the internet had given me any clue of what I am dealing with.  

On the freeway we encountered a huge traffic jam.  While it delayed us for about an hour, being surrounded by a dozen or so cars crammed with people helped and I felt the most secure that I have been since my world unfolded.

It was the weekend and on Friday nights they always have a large live music gathering inside the pavilion at East Fairmont Park.  My ex-boyfriend Tad used to take me there, mainly to score a bag of weed while I listened to the music.  It should be overcrowded and well lit.  Perfect and just what I want.

On Cranston Heights Boulevard, I pulled into the B*** of A******’s parking lot to get cash.  The park’s ticket booths weren’t set up for cards and I always liked tipping some of the street performers as well.  At its east corner was an ATM in a small glass enclosure attached to the main building.  The enclosure was nothing more than a carpeted rectangle with the ATM in its back wall, a small trashcan and plant.  Next to the machine, a single door marked STAIRS.

Two street lamps bookend the ATM and blanketed the lot with bright light.  I had become very sensitive to knowing where all the lights were, scanning the surroundings and took nothing for granted.  I was taking note of everything.

Rayray whined as he sensed my apprehension and he stayed obediently at my heels as we crossed the lot and entered the small room.  

Inside, the air was warm and stale – a heating vent blew directly overhead in between two sets of track lights.  

“Oh.. oh.. shit, no!” I muttered as I rummaged through my cluttered purse – my debit card was not in its slot in my wallet.  I finally found it buried in a side pocket and I slid it into the machine with a heavy sigh.  

The ATM chimed loudly as it accepted the card.  The screen suddenly blinked at me and then turned off.

The machine chimed again.

My heart began to pound. I glanced over my shoulder to see the empty lot behind me.

EMPTY.  

I couldn’t believe I left myself alone and open once again!

Another chime from the machine behind me.

That’s three chimes… my brain screamed at me.

I backed up against it just as the street lamp on the right of the ATM enclosure burst into a shower of sparks, followed up by the lamp on the left. The lot fell under a cloak of absolute darkness.  Death was surely perched to pounce upon me if I left the enclosure.

“Oh my god, Rayray, what is he?”  I moaned. “What am I going to do?”

The room grew colder, the air itself denser.  The track lighting sets flickered and then died too.

One more chime signaled his presence.

Rayray growled and his fur bristled as he stepped in front of me.

On pure instinct, I bolted for the door marked as STAIRS.  He was not getting next to me ever again!  

A sudden blast of icy wind came from the open door behind me as he broke into the enclosure.

“Rayray come!”  I screeched as I lunged through the STAIRS door and descended the steps.  

Behind me,  the STAIRS door slammed shut.  I had no idea where this stairwell was leading me to, but I couldn’t think straight at this point.  

Parallel lines of fluorescents on the walls began to explode as I approached them.  The blackness followed at my heels like a stalking wolf.    

But even blind I ran or stumbled on – I think I traveled down almost five flights to the bottom.  There I found only a chained door with a tiny window looking out at an abandoned underground parking lot.  I waited helpless and shivering against it.  Sitting in the cold, trapped in a pit while the abomination hunted above for me.

What would come next?  I realized that I could hear absolutely nothing.  No wind, no breathing, no sounds of traffic.  Not even the ATM chimes.

He isn’t gone.  I knew this deep in the core of my being.  He wasn’t done with me.  

Or did he already kill me and this is death? Laying blind in the cold?  The thought raced through my mind before I could contain it.  Perhaps I am already lying in my coffin and I don’t even know it?

I stared up into the black maw of the stairwell.  

Then a brief hope flickered in my head.  I began to rummage through my purse again, feeling around.

My fingers finally curled around my prize just as a sound echoed down to me.

Drip…. Drippp…. Dripppp….

I wondered if the ceiling maybe had sprung a leak, but that just seemed unlikely.

And it wasn’t raining when we came into the bank!  My brain screamed at me once again.

Drip…. Drippp…. Dripppp….

The steady patter of drops grew stronger and splashed loudly on the cement floor in front of my legs.  A stream of drops formed into a puddle.

Then just behind the sounds of the drops, I heard his heavy, dragging footsteps.

Squellccchhh…. Sqquueeelllccchhhhh

His muck-covered boots stuck to the metal stairs.  Was he pouring something over the steps?

When he got to the landing just above mine, the drops finally faltered and came to a stop. Something heavy was then dropped at his feet.  

I held my breath; my heart nearly bursting from the confines of my chest and waited for the words I knew were coming.

“Two days… I will hav–”

I was better prepped this time – I raised a pen flashlight I had carried in the purse and clicked the flashlight on.  The small beam of light cut through the gloom and illuminated the landing – a towering, shadowy figure stood there in a hooded, black rain slicker, mud-caked jeans tucked into mucked over boots.   He roared and his shape swirled away from the beam and his features bled into the dark shadows of the stairwell.

But as I said before – I SAW THE BASTARD’S FACE!

The skin of his cheeks were leathery and drawn, pulled down tight toward his chest. His chin covered in coarse grey and brown hair.  His bluish lips were thin and his mouth pressed tight into a single line.  The nose was very thin, beak-like and cleft at the end.  

But the eyes, the eyes… were missing.  There were three, empty black hollow sockets; one sitting on two in some skeletal-like pyramid.  

I think I fainted.  I don’t remember even how I got back to my apartment.  

I don’t even know where Rayray is.  I am all alone…

In Four Days…(part 2)

Dark Elevator

DAY TWO…

I am not sure how long I laid on the floor of that bathroom.  Maybe it was shock, maybe it was disbelief that had just happened or maybe it was just embarrassment – Either way, I didn’t report it or call the police.  I didn’t want to believe it myself, let alone trying to convince anyone else.

Rayray, my rottweiler, must’ve thought it was his lucky night as I had him sleep in my bed.

That next morning, I considered calling in as I hid under the comforter.  It felt unnaturally cold in the bedroom.

“You know! You know it was just security, right Rayray? Just another asshole guard trying to be big and bad.  Prove he’s got the balls and the badge.”  The dog only whined and pawed at my foot.

“Yeah, I know. Get up and get to work.”

 …ØØØ

I yawned and drank from another hot coffee as I waited for the elevator to come.  Yeah, another!  Don’t judge. 

A rusting sedan went by slowly and worked its way down the row of parked cars.  The parking garage was windy; my breath plumed in the brisk morning air.  I was a bit early – it was 7:22 am.

Again, I chided myself for living yet another winter in Pennsylvania.  My mother and brother lived just outside Miami.  That’s where I should be – not standing here in this refrigerator!

The bell signaled the elevator car arrived and the doors slid open.  I walked in and flicked the dead cigarette from my hand behind me.

As the doors closed behind me, I wondered aloud, “Did I leave the reports on the printer or did I even get those to my desk before…”  I didn’t finish the sentence.  Finishing meant completing the thought and the thought scared the living shit out of me.  LAST NIGHT NEVER HAPPENED!

Instead of talking more to myself which is a bad habit of mine, I pushed for floor 8.

At floor 4 the overhead lights bloomed brighter and buzzed like a beehive.

At floor 5 the elevator jerked once.

NO!  SHIT, NO!

Floor 6 dead stop.  The elevator brakes screeched angry.

Like anyone else would in that situation, I banged repeatedly at the buttons.  Hammering the open door button.  Nothing worked.

“REALLY?” I shouted.  “After last night, now I am about to get stuck in an elevator?”

I hit the intercom button next.  “Hello? Can you help me?”

No response.

Suddenly the elevator belled chimed, but the car didn’t move.  It was still on floor 6.

“Hey out there!  Can you get me out?  Get help!” I started slapping my hands on the metal doors.

Normally, I don’t get claustrophobic or even nervous inside elevators.  But I was still a ball of nerves from the encounter the night before and this just didn’t feel right.

The elevator bell chimed again.

I shivered as it was somehow getting colder in the tiny elevator.

Hitting the intercom again, I screamed, “WAKE THE FUCK UP!! GET ME OUT OF HERE!!”

Another bell chime and then the lights cut out.  Once more I was standing in complete darkness, scared witless.

Then the elevator doors opened slowly.  The lobby on the 6th floor was also pitch black.  Nothing could still be seen, only heard.

Do I run?  What’s happening?  I began to hyperventilate.  Where are all the lights?

A fourth bell chime.

The elevator floor shifted with new weight – someone had stepped inside next to me!  They never said a word.

I held my breath for what seemed hours, tears streamed down my face.

He was back.  And deep down, I knew he would be.  I could hear his wispy breathing, smell the grey-green muck from his boots and feel his eyes crawl all over me!

I was completely frozen in place.

Right by my left ear, “Three days… I will have you in three days.”

Screaming like I was on fire, I bolted out of the elevator and down the hallway of floor 6.

 

 

…ØØØ

Two hours later, security (my “heroes”) found me balled up under a desk in the Payroll Department.  I had bitten each of my fingernails off and somehow tore the skin off three toes when I lost my shoes.

Work has imposed a “vacation” for my own good, however, they did admit to me that they found mud tracks in the hall and elevator.

Today is January 22nd — the third day since this started.  I won’t let Rayray leave my side in the apartment and I keep my cell phone charging.

I am not insane (I wish I was. Then there was a chance for a cure or some wonder drugs to put me into a stupor!).  Nothing like his has ever happened to me and no one in my family has ever had issues with mental health.  I don’t do drugs or drink much and live a pretty normal, healthy life.  I am so lost!

It never occurred to me how many times a day that I am alone.  We all are alone at least six to a dozen different times during the day.  Car rides, bathroom breaks, eating in the breakroom, working late at your job, shopping through the clothes rack in the store, reading in your bed at night, alone in the grocery aisle… elevator rides.  We all take it in stride.

 

But what if something really is hunting me when I am all alone??

Four days… I will have you in four days.

Four days… I will have you in four days.

Four days… I will have you in four days.

Four days… I will have you in four days.