This story contains sensitive content

Warning: Contains mention of mental illness, gaslighting, and abuse. Potentially suicidal thoughts are hinted at. Also contains violence, gore, profanity, and pseudo-religious imagery.

You’re lying. It didn’t start with decrepit hands tapping on door frames and slithering away at my glance. Or the bloody handprints that only I can see. It started with that terrifying ten-foot-tall demon-thing that appeared in my bedroom that night when I was eleven. I looked up from my book and bam! A demon looming over me like an angry cloud. Sooty coat with eyes glowing red and bloodied ram’s horns. Slobbery fangs gaped open in a giant predator’s maw and the neck and body were covered in oozing cuts and the most terrible burns. I closed my eyes and I screamed, and cried, and screamed some more.

The light went on and I opened my eyes to see my parents looking down at me with such disappointment. Even though I only saw the demon for a split second, every detail of that beast is burnt into my brain. I remember that one scar beneath the larynx that was shaped a bit like a cross. Kinda like that one you got there. Or are you going to try and tell me you nicked yourself shaving? Don’t bother, you aren’t pulling off the human look that well anyway.

Yeah, okay, I did scream when I saw you. I admit it, you terrify me. This whole thing terrifies me. That doesn’t make you any less a liar. You aren’t punishing me for a life of sin. I didn’t do anything to deserve the last five months of torment. Those vaguely humanoid shadowy figures that stand in the doorway aren’t lost souls standing there judging me. They were a threat. A clever one too; I would have had them dart away as soon as they were spotted, but the way they just amble away once spotted like they don’t care if I see them. Like it doesn’t matter if I spot them because well… well I just felt like there was nothing I could do. Why would they bother hiding when I’m so powerless? You’re so clever. HeheheHAHAHAHA!

Okay, yeah, I’m done. I’m … back up. Get your damn fangs away from me. Yeah, I’m cracking; I know that. That’s the whole point of this, right? There are disgusting and impossible things here that only I can see. There’s been a burning corpse floating over this lounge for a month! I can’t not see it when I’m watching TV. Then you come here asking if I’m ready to surrender. Telling me you’re taking me to the Lake of Fire? And I still don’t really know if any of this is even real. Maybe I’ve finally – get that brimstone breath away from me Satan!

No, of course you’re not the ‘real Satan’. I looked up the origin of that word and know it just means ‘adversary’. And I’m not calling you Ha-Satan either; you ain’t even the toughest satan I’ve delt with this week. I’m just picking a name that seems to fit this cliched fire and demon theme you have going.

Yes, I am talking back to you. Get away or take this!

Ha, what? Scared of a little talisman? Or are the threads in that witch bottle in our little balcony pot plant finally getting to you? Yeeeeah… I don’t know what you actually are, but I’m not that helpless little girl you picked out all those years ago. I didn’t just cower in fear believing everything I was seeing was fake for five weeks. That’s what you were expecting right? Well, you picked wrong. I have learnt to trust my own judgement, and all this creepy hand and phantom stuff did was give me time to prepare.

Yeah… I prepared. I went online, dived deep into all the occult stuff I could find. Met up with this self-proclaimed sorcerer to discuss ways to repel evil entities. See, look, I even got an eye symbol tattooed on my palm. A bit of a built in hamsa, though I doubt anyone actually into that stuff would like me calling it that. The sorcerer got some of my girlfriend’s blood in the ink, since she’s been my protector in the past. So, what do you say? Want a pat?

No, you’re right, I don’t really want to touch you. I bet you have some sort of dark magic on you that can hurt me if I do that. And yes, of course my hand is shaking, I can see the talisman rocking. I never claimed I wasn’t afraid of you. I’m just saying I’m going to fight you regardless. So why don’t you just go away and take that freaky burning body with you.

Yes, I know there’s risks in dealing with this stuff. I had a friend cut me off because they thought I was making up all the phantoms and going down some dark path. But you know what else can be a dark path? Just going along with what polite society says is good and proper. I’ve seen where that can lead. I figured I’d rather trust that what I was seeing was real and plan accordingly. Good thing I did right? I mean it looks like there’s this whole Lake of Fire whoa shit!

NO, get OFF!

Yes! Salt lamps do make good demon-bludgeoning weapons. My girlfriend is a genius. Okay, no more talking; get out of my apartment now. I’ll fight you if you don’t leave.

Oh shit shit shit you’re not going to leave are you? Alexa; play Dancing Lasha Tumbai. Oh, I know that song can’t hurt you, it’s for me. To calm the nerves. Now bye.

Oh damnit run run run nooo he is fast. Why didn’t I keep that rope in my handbag? Why didn’t, oh there’s one. Ha, eat my holy water spray you little mini satan! Oh shit that just pissed him off. Where was, right bedroom. Run run, made it! Damnit, I hope those ruins we carved in the door worked. Oh shit, I dropped the talisman. Oh shit, he’s going to break the door. Damnit which pillow did we hide, got it. Okay, he’ll be in in a sec. I got this. I can do it. We got it we got it.



Okay I got you! I got you! Haha, it actually works. I didn’t think simple red and white rope could work but the sorcerer was right. Hahaha, you really don’t like that do you? Haha, well, probably a good thing we threaded the silver chains and little iron danglies through it just to be safe. Haha, damnit I can’t believe I’m still alive. Whoa, put that tongue back. Look buddy, I still have my squirt bottle. Put it argh! No! no! Oh did that taste bad? Oh, okay less dumb talking. I can see the smoke coming off the rope. Come on Kinda-Satan, let me drag you to hell for a change.

Oh come on. Sieben, sieben, eins, zwei… stop it. Come on, down the hall. Oi, that clock has been in my girlfriend’s family for five generations. Oh no, no… squirt. Okay… you are strong. I shouldn’t have goaded you into letting the human form slip. I need something more. Damnit, all those salt lamps we got and none in the hall? Ah-ah, I see one. Come on come on, just a little further… got it. Whoa! No…. eat this!

Whoa, I guess holy water, salt, and demon slobber is a pretty corrosive combo. Okay, head up Kinda-Satan, we’re going to the kitchen. Urgh, you being deadweight is almost as bad as you trying to rip me to pieces. Whoa no, that wasn’t an invite to start fighting again. Just come, let go… I hope the neighbours don’t call the police over all this screaming. I really hope you’re as unreal to them as the hands and stuff.

Okay, made it. Let’s get this table out of here… oops, sorry downstairs neighbours. Now voila; a magic circle. Oh stop crying, I gave you a chance to leave. Now in we go… Alligari! Now hopefully you stay there as I get my rope back. Wow, you nearly destroyed it. That was… that was terribly close. This circle better work now. Alexa, stop the music. Okay, okay, time to finish it. Looking pathetic won’t save you.

Why? I’m doing this because otherwise you’ll throw me in a Lake of Fire. Why wouldn’t I fight back? Now where are those candles?

Oh, you mean how? Okay, found candles and yup, the lighter works. So, you want to know how dare I resist you? I’m sure you’ve had people fight back before; I’m not that special. Now red candle here, white over there.

Look Buddy, I don’t know why I didn’t break down at the thought of hell like others did. If I had to guess, I’d say it’s because I’ve already been in hell. I’ve carried another hell around in my head for a decade since then. And I’ve survived all that, so I guess once all the freaky evil stuff started appearing in the doorways I figured I could survive that too.

You weren’t keeping tabs on me between that first appearance and all the recent haunting shenanigans, were you? Hmpf, no, the gold candle goes here. Let me tell you a little story.

When I saw you in huge demon form in my room, every detail was burned into my brain. But do you know what stayed with me the most from that night? The disappointment on my parents’ faces when they saw me that scared.

They had a certain idea of what they wanted me to grow up into, and when I failed to be that they turned on me. The kids at school turned on me when they realized I was different. The teachers never protected me, and the pastor hated me. I grew up in a small town with pristine walls, manicured hedges and orderly little fences. The people were all so neat and sweet, full of smiles and hugs. Except when I became the town pariah. It was like all these regular people turned into monsters that only I could see. I couldn’t understand how I was the only one seeing the rot; I thought I was crazy. Terrible things were done to me, and I couldn’t even get angry or sad about it or it’d get worse. At least you’re allowed to scream if fire burns you.

Not that I’d ever want to burn in a Lake of Fire of course, but don’t dismiss trying to live knowing that monsters could hurt you at any time and get away with it. Or escaping that evil town with a brain that was certain that there were no monsters, just good people who were right to hate me. But I’m a survivor. I made it through all that stuff. Partly because I found people who cared about me. Who believed me; both about Hell Town and about the monsters I started seeing in doorways.

Sure, I’m never fully free of what happened. Like, I’m sure I’ll never fully be rid of you either. But if I got out of that other hell, I can keep fighting you off. I’m strong, I deserve to live, and I have people in my life that will help me fight, and who are worth fighting for. I’m surprised you haven’t been beaten up like this before given how hellish life on Earth can be, and just how many strong survivors there are.

Why are you laughing? What do you mean I said it myself? You saying I’m right about you coming back? Life on Earth being hellish? What? Are you saying people see your Lake of Fire as a better alternative and willingly surrender?

Shut up; you’re a liar. Okay, there’s the last candle, just need a dagger now. But yeah, I got through actual hell, with real monsters. I figured I could take on a lying horror story knock-off. Now let’s get you banished, shall we?

No, I don’t know what will happen to you once I do the stabbing and the incantation, but I’m sure it’ll be better than having to scrape melted demon goop off the kitchen floor. I mean, I know we’re not getting the bond back on this apartment, but why push it?

Nope, not listening to you beg sorry. You had your chance to leave me alone. Now where did I stick that incantation, I know it’s on the fridge here somewhere… here we go. Hostis Esto, Hostis Esto. APAGE! APAGE! Me solum relinquatis. APAGE! APAGE! Urgh.



Is he gone? Holy crap he’s gone, it worked. Now where’s the phone? Phone… phone… phone… got it. Please pick up please pick up… Hey honey it’s me. It just happened. Yeah, that. Can you please come home? No, I’m good. I’m all good. And yup, the body in the loungeroom is gone. I’m going to be okay now.


July 14, 2023 02:36

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Hassan Azi
13:09 Jul 20, 2023

Thanks for posting this. I'm a sucker for stories where a human protagonist is pit against a stronger inhuman enemy and ends up winning by ruthlessly exploiting the opponent's weaknesses. It demonstrates the cold and calculating nature of humans which is scary in itself. I'm wondering if the beast's presence didn't have an influence on the people who turned on you, I wouldn't be surprised if it planned on isolating you to make you more vulnerable


Jayde Trilo
14:32 Jul 20, 2023

Thanks for that, and I agree, seeing humans win when they really shouldn't can be quite terrifying at times. You make an excellent point about the monster possibly causing people to mistreat the protagonist to make her more vulnerable. Though I'm not going to confirm or deny that read. There are all types of monsters out there. Some that manipulate like you suggest, some that swoop in whenever they see an opportunity, and some that just don't know and don't care about their targets. I think I'll leave it up to the reader to imagine which on...


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Emilie Ocean
15:51 Jul 18, 2023

Hey Jayde! You have a unique style - I absolutely LOVED reading your horror story. I felt like I was in the room fighting the monster with the protagonist. Thanks for this lively tale :D


Jayde Trilo
08:58 Jul 19, 2023

Thanks :D Was so worried about how this one would turn out, so it means a lot reading your comment. Glad I could put you in a room with a monster.


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