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Horror Suspense Fiction

It’s Tuesday. It must be Tuesday. It has to be. I’ve been down here, hiding from her for… How long has it been? Five, six… For months, now. If she finds me, she’ll kill me. She’s starving. Her teeth are as sharp as any Doberman’s. Her claws can tear flesh from bone. I have to keep hiding if I want to outlast her. I can.

Every day, I come to this room and make a mark on the wall, right here. At least, I think. I can’t remember. Is it Tuesday? What if I forgot to make the mark, yesterday? Or today? I haven’t seen the sun since I came down here so I’m not sure when it’s day or night. There are no clocks, no watches. My phone lost its charge a long time ago. There’s nothing but an endless terror, trying to find scraps of food to keep me alive while I stay just out of her reach. It’s not important.

If I’m really quiet and I put my ear up to the walls, I can hear her breathing. That’s where she lives, now. She’s so hungry. You can hear snarl and gnaw at something she found, like a rat or something else I don’t want to think about. She attacked me once and took a bite out of my arm. I found a few beans in the bottom of a discarded can, sending me into an exaltation of such a small morsel. While I was distracted, her cleaver-like teeth tore into the muscle. God, there was blood everywhere. In a panic, I grabbed a hammer and swung it at her. The blow glanced off her shoulder, catching her bone on the way out. She screamed, showing me her artillery, and scurried into a hole in the wall, where the sheetrock had broken off. That’s where she lives, now. There was so much blood.

She watches me. She’s waiting for me to fall asleep.

I think she’s asleep, now. If I put my ear up to the wall, I can hear the slow, deep breaths of slumber. I try to sleep when she does. If I let my guard down, she’ll come out of the wall when I’m not paying attention. It would only take a moment to slash my throat out with her claws. They’re so long and sharp. They’re like steak knives. One heartbeat of not paying attention and that’s all she would need. She’s so hungry.

I can’t escape, either. I locked the door. I locked it, bolted it, sealed it, and blocked it off. I did what I could to make sure it can’t be reopened. I wanted to trap her down here. I had to make sure she couldn’t get out, no matter what happened. I had to trap her down here. It was the only way. Now I can’t get out. I’m trapped here with her. I thought I could handle her. It made so much sense at the beginning. It always does. Now I’m trapped with her and she’s going to kill me and eat the meat off my bones. But it was the only way.

Is it Tuesday?

It was fine, at first. I had her under control. But that was back when there was food. It couldn’t last forever. But I thought there would be enough to last long enough. I really did. It’s not like I’ve had to do this, before. No one has. After the food ran out, she got more aggressive over the span of days as she slowly starved. Eventually, she couldn’t take it, anymore. That’s when I lost control. And when something changed inside her. I’d never seen such ferocity. Now, my life is in danger. She’ll eat what she can find, inside the walls. It’s satiating her hunger, for now. She makes attempts to get at me. But they’re really just tests. She’s testing me to see how I react. But it won’t last forever. Once the food in the walls runs out, then she’ll come for me. Eventually, she’ll win. I know she will. Eventually, she’ll come after me. She’s faster than I am. But that won’t matter. I won’t have anywhere to run. I’m locked in here. She’s going to kill me.

She lives in the walls, now. Did I tell you that? She does. At night, I can hear her scratching the inside of the sheetrock. She wants me to know she’s there. She’s always there. She’s watching me. Scratch, scratch, scratch…

Quiet. She’s awake, now. I can hear her moving through the walls. She brushes up against the sheetrock and climbs over the pipes. She walks over the air vents and hangs from the cables. She’s on the move, now. Do you hear her? If I don’t breathe and stay perfectly still, maybe she won’t know where I am. Maybe she won’t notice me. If I stay quiet, maybe I’ll live another day.

Wait. I see her, just passed the corner. Just a little of her. She’s walking out into the open and scraping her huge murderous claws along the cement floor. They’re so loud. Oh my god. She looks hungry. She’s sniffing the ground, looking for my scent. She’s pulling her lips back and showing those teeth, still stained red from her last kill.

I’m moving to a dark place, as slowly and quietly as I can; over here where the light doesn’t quite reach. I’ll pull my legs in so all of me is in shadow. Look at her rear her head in the air and sniff. She’s looking for me. Smelling the air for a hint of my scent. Maybe if I hide over here, she won’t find me. Maybe she’ll go back into the walls. She lives there, now.

I had to bring her down here. It was the only way. We’d planned this shelter, together. We came down here and stacked the cans of food and packed the bags of freeze-dried meat. It was all we could do against the threat of the bomb. We knew it was coming. Everyone knew. Every day was a new story in the news about how the relationship with China had been breaking down. A nuclear strike was going to happen, eventually. So, we made a shelter out of our basement. It took months, but we did it. It was all we could do. We had to. We would’ve died, otherwise. I don’t want to think about what happened to the people who stayed above ground.

But now I’m trapped down here with her. We’ve run out of food and there’s nowhere to run. I set the lock so that it can’t be opened for another month. No one can get in or out. I’ll be dead by then. She’ll find me.

She’s coming this way. There’s drool, hanging from the corner of her mouth as she snarls. She doesn’t look like my daughter, anymore. My sweet little girl. She’s not my daughter and hasn’t been for a long time. She’s a monster, now. The hunger has taken over. She’s coming for me. 

March 08, 2021 22:57

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17 comments

Michael Boquet
01:56 Mar 12, 2021

Creepy story! I love the rambling style of your prose, yet it's always clear what's happening and what your narrator is talking about. A solid piece of horror fiction. Well done.

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J.S. Johnston
02:23 Mar 12, 2021

Thanks! :-D

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Eric Hyzer
17:12 Mar 17, 2021

Nice little story. It has a "The Tell-Tale Heat" feel to it, and I found it very entertaining and creepy. Good work!

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J.S. Johnston
17:57 Mar 17, 2021

Thanks! :-)

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Kate Winchester
16:23 Mar 20, 2021

Creepy! I liked it! I like how we don't find out what the monster is until the end. At first, I thought it was a cat or cat like, but then we learn that it was once human. Good job!

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J.S. Johnston
16:48 Mar 20, 2021

Thanks! :-D

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Skyler Woods
05:40 Mar 15, 2021

Do you mind if I narrate this on my YouTube channel? The video would premiere next week and I'd send you the link.

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J.S. Johnston
15:42 Mar 15, 2021

I don't mind, at all. Just make sure you give me credit with a link to the story in the video description. :-)

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Skyler Woods
21:40 Mar 15, 2021

I most definitely will.

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Skyler Woods
05:40 Mar 16, 2021

Hi Jeff, I just had one question. Is it okay if I re-title your story Monster's Victim? I do this to shorten titles so I can fit the author's name and the title in the video description box.

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Skyler Woods
05:41 Mar 16, 2021

Hi Jeff, I just had one question. Is it okay if I re-title your story Monster's Victim? I do this to shorten titles so I can fit the author's name and the title in the video description box.

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J.S. Johnston
16:25 Mar 16, 2021

I assume you mean the title of the video that you see with the thumbnail. Yeah, that might be a few letters too long. If you have to rename it, call it "Prey"

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J.S. Johnston
18:11 Mar 16, 2021

Ooh! Better yet. You can call it, "Trapped"

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Skyler Woods
03:08 Mar 22, 2021

Hi Jeff, I just wanted to tell you that your story will premiere on Thursday at 6pm.

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J.S. Johnston
04:00 Mar 22, 2021

Thanks. Don't forget to send me the link when it's up. I can't wait to hear it!

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Skyler Woods
23:11 Mar 16, 2021

Okay.

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