Posts tagged: creepypasta
“…Excuse me,” a tiny voice chirped from somewhere outside my vision. I finished whatever it was I had been doing under the counter and pulled myself up. “Is this Alderman’s Contracting?”
“That’s us.” I replied. I quickly wiped the grease off my hands and extended for a shake. “What can I do you for, ma’am?” The girl in front of me ignored my outstretched palm but offered a weak smile in exchange.
I’d say she was beautiful, but that doesn’t seem the right word. Captivating might be more accurate. Her face and hands, the only skin she was apparently willing to expose, were immaculate, if not slightly paler than normal, but from every collar and cuff of her multiple layers of jackets and sweaters peeked the signs of severe scarring. For a moment I wondered what she looked like underneath all of that, for multiple reasons. Beyond the scars, though, something else seemed strange about the girl; be it the smell of wet pine needles that had followed her into the lobby or the almost feral look in her eyes. Despite the first impression of being a shrinking violet, she carried what I can only describe as a predatory air; almost as if I was in the room with a grizzly bear instead of a waifish bundled-up undergrad.
“You did some work for… my father.” she mumbled, shuffling her feet. “The taxidermist on Highpoint?”
“Oh, yeah, yeah, I remember. Some mold in the insulation, wasn’t it?” I replied. There was no way I could forget this girl’s old man. He was an asshole. Was insistent that his ‘studio’ had to stay as dry as possible and that any mold or leakage had to absolutely be fixed right away. To his credit, he was willing to pay through the nose for it, and up front too, even though, judging from his house, there wasn’t a lot of money to go around. What I didn’t remember was this girl; I could have sworn the taxidermist lived alone. “What’s wrong? Was there a problem with the job?”
“Oh, no, nothing like that!” she was quick to correct me, “In fact, the opposite. Father was so pleased with your work, he wanted to send you a gift.”
“Oh?” I glanced down and confirmed what I had thought. The girl wasn’t holding any sort of item.
She just mustered another weak smile.
Established in 1936 by Harris Kemping Jr., the Kemping Glass Factory is most well-known for its famously ironic “curse”; the building has no windows. Rather, it no longer has any windows; it did up until 1967, when all of them were boarded up. The reason for this is what makes the building curious for those interested in the paranormal. Originally, the factory had several windows, both along the outside of the building and inside the offices of the administrative department. However, on the morning after Kemping’s death in 1959, factory workers arrived to find every one of them had been smashed, including the ones on the upper floors and inside the building. A vandalism report was sent to police and the windows were replaced, but nothing became of the odd occurrence and the matter was soon forgotten. Or, it would have been, if not for the same thing happening one year later to the day. And again, the year after that. Soon, it became clear that every year on the anniversary of Harris Kemping Jr.’s death, every window in the factory would spontaneously shatter. While at first it was deemed an unnaturally dedicated hoodlum, security footage taken after years of abuse revealed that the glass was, in fact, breaking all on its own. Following this revelation, all of the windows were boarded up, and manufacturing continues to this day in a window factory that has no windows.
Although the vast majority of sightings were recorded during the 1950s, there have been reports of some sort of creature in the woods of Hammer Hill dating back as far as 1890 and as recently as 2004. While details vary from sighting to sighting, the most common shared recollections of the Hammer Hill Horror are that it’s well over eight feet tall when standing upright, that it gives off a faint white glow, and that it’s some type of insect or other arthropod. Most that have spotted the Horror liken it to a praying mantis, although reports of a giant lobster or scorpion are also common. The Horror is notoriously shy, as well; even the most lucid glimpses of the creature have only been for a split second at best. In one report from 1946, a man even swore that it vanished into thin air right in front of him.
While it’s been regarded as an urban legend for the majority of its history, the Hammer Hill Horror did receive a fair bit of press after its most famous sighting in the summer of 1954. After not returning from a day-hike one afternoon, a search party was sent out to locate local Boy Scout Troop 26. The seven boys and their adult leader were found the next morning camped out inside Hammer Hill crater. The impact site of a meteorite in 531 AD, according to geologists, the Hammer Hill crater is a well-known clearing in the backwoods of Santa Aria famous for its unnatural rock formations, shattered splinters, experts say, of the rock that once fell to earth there. Each of the rescued scouts, ranging in age from 11 to 15, shared the same story upon questioning: that they had been trapped inside the crater all night by a luminescent creature circling the perimeter. When the scout leader had attempted to exit, he had been attacked by the thing with “bladed arms”. Indeed, the 35 year old man did show authorities several cuts and abrasions on his forearms and chest which, upon medical examination, were deemed to have come from a blade at least nine inches long. In addition, while the crater itself has always been known not to grow any flora, dead plant matter was found along the outer rim that day as well, killed by what appeared to be a winter frost. This baffles botanists even today, as that night had been balmy, even for Oregon in July.
After a number of copycat sightings, however, the hype surrounding Hammer Hill crater died off, leaving only another chapter in what continues to be a local legend. Although none of the boys would recant their story in later years, none grew up to show any sort of long-term emotional scarring or mental health issues, so the case, while still unexplained, has mostly been dropped.
Log Date: August 8, 1806
It has been three weeks since we set out from Saint Michael’s, and until now we had yet to find any luck in locating a suitable place to lay foundation. The northern country is not made for the hospitality of man, it would seem. At every turn is another rocky cliff face or brine soaked sandbar, and each of these miserable locales are punctuated with endless miles of dark aspen woods. All of our crew longs for the warmth and sunlight of the southern conquests, but God’s will continues to push us northward.
It was only today that our crew discovered a place where our fledgling order might take root. Pocketed between a sprawling range of hills and the ocean we discovered a small clearing of strangely hard packed dirt. Some of the men are claiming it’s providence that such a ready-made foundation for building could crop up in the center of the wild, but secretly, the place sets me at unease. Even as I write I cannot help but feel as though our crew is being judged with invisible eyes, as if something lurks just beyond the treeline. We must soldier on, however; as a missionary I have already chosen the judgment of the invisible as my life’s work, after all.
Log Date: August 13, 1806
Construction is already well underway for what will soon become the Saint Anna Mission of Christ. The lumber in this wood is denser than we had anticipated, and the heavy, dark material should make for sturdy building. Although I have yet to make a formal introduction to the local population, I have heard contact has been made elsewhere. Some of the others reported to me this morning they had seen a small host of natives watching them from the edge of the clearing, but they had fled when we greeted them. A few of the other priests are worried over the tribe’s apparent skittishness, but I would prefer a fearful lot to a warmongering one. Even as far out into the wilderness as we are, there have been rumors coming about other missions being massacred by savages; I would be made a liar to say that it does not make me nervous.
Log Date: November 18, 1806
Everything is going better than we could have hoped. In spite of the bad weather that plagues this part of the continent, our freshly finished complex holds fast against any and all manners of wind, rain, and sleet. Conversation with the natives is still a slow process, but we have, at very least, established some sort of connection with them. The language is not unlike the other tribes found in the area, although we have encountered an odd word or phrase intermixed. One in particular we hear muttered more often than others appears when the seemingly paranoid natives are at their most frightful: “jintos”. Our group of scholars has yet to discern its meaning.
Log Date: February 25, 1807
A breakthrough! Today one of the scholars managed to get a local to agree to an extended interview about the surrounding area and its people. Through this endeavor, a wealth of information has been supplied to us. To start, it would appear that the locals are not a complete tribe, as we had thought, but rather a small core of holy men split off from the main group, who live farther inland. We had wondered why their numbers seemed so few, but this explains it. The man went on to tell us that he and his comrades were a sort of retainer; apparently, the “jintos” we have been hearing so much about is actually the name of the land on which we’ve come to live, and is protected, as the man has told us, by a host of guardian spirits.
This is a truly exciting development. Knowing that these men are others like us, isolated from their families in the name of their beliefs, has planted a seed of kinship in me. Each passing day I look forward to working alongside them more and more.
Log Date: May 3, 1807
An attack by wild animals left three of our own killed last night. We awoke to find the men, part of the original construction group, strewn about our lawn, dismembered and maimed by whatever beasts lurk in the woods. The Jintil, as we have learned the locals call themselves, are even more disturbed by this than we are. They tell me this is the spirits’ doing, and we should repent as soon as possible. I assured them that I would turn to my own God, and that He would see us through this dark time. That did not seem to alleviate their concerns, I’m afraid.
Log Date: October 9, 1807
The fall harvest is ruined. Some blight has fallen upon it and has left it nothing more than a breeding ground for the insects. I can see the fear in superstitious men’s eyes, but more pressing is the logical fear that comes from this wretched turn of events; our food supply has been severely diminished. We must brace ourselves for a long and difficult winter.
Log Date: October 31, 1807
The Jintil are leaving. It saddens me to see them go, but I understand their reasons. The whole valley has fallen to rot, and the boughs of the trees sag under the weight of swarms of mosquitos. In all my years as a priest, I have never seen a plague of this magnitude.
I managed one last conversation with the natives before they departed. I asked them if anything like this had ever happened here before, to which they replied with a down-struck “no”. I then inquired as to why this place was so important to their tribe, even when none lived here. The response I got keeps me awake tonight as I write this.
Jintos is the entrance to the world of the dead.
Log Date: November 4, 1807
We are beset on all sides by monsters. Not more than a single night after the Jintil’s departure, the beasts of the wood have grown as bold as to score our windowpanes and doorways with tooth and claw. We spend our nights huddled together, spades and hoes in hand, just waiting for whatever lurks in the shadows to finally burst in and take us.
Between this, and the hunger, I don’t know how much longer Saint Anna can last.
Log Date: November 18, 1807
God help me.
Over half of us are gone now, dragged into the woods by horrors known only to Hell. Just today I watched an insect the size of a horse descended upon us, vivisecting at least three my comrades before my own eyes. I do not understand where these abominations come from, only that they emerge in waves from beyond the dark corners of the wood.
I know now Saint Anna is doomed. I can only hope this record gets back to the church, and that any parties who come to us hereafter know to turn and run.
The preceding journal is the only known record of the failed Saint Anna Mission of Christ. Discovered in the Spring of 1808 by travelers, the book was found sitting on a desk in the main building of the seemingly abandoned complex. Even up to the present day, however, the book’s authenticity is called into question. No corpses, dismembered or otherwise, have ever been discovered at the Saint Anna mission site, so it is more likely that the missionaries simply left when supplies ran out.
The Saint Anna Mission of Christ is a protected historical site by the state of Oregon, and can be visited during guest hours Monday through Friday from 10 AM to 7 PM. For more information, please contact the Santa Aria Historical Society at (540)215-8807.
That’s all the sign said. No address, no phone number. I was about to curse my bad luck, but my inner cynic quickly reminded me that even if I wasn’t lost, my cell probably wasn’t getting a signal in this storm, anyway. I wrapped my coat tighter and fanned about with my flashlight.
My car had gotten into a tussle with some downed branches a few yards back and lost, hard. Now I was stuck on some back country road in the woods in the middle of the night, rain battering down all around me, and the only sign of civilization, no pun intended, was this damn post. I traced the adjacent path with my light up the hill, before it veered off out of sight. I couldn’t see a light on, but there was apparently a building up there, and that was the closest thing to a lead I had. At very least there would be a porch where I could get out of the rain for a while. With a heave, I pulled my shoe out of the mud and began trekking up the hill.
To my surprise, a light was on in the small building, and I quickly ran to the door and gave it a furious knock. There was a shuffle from behind the door, a pause, and then a click as the latch was undone and the door was pulled open. Standing in front of me was an old man, tall, and bone-thin.
“Sorry to b-bother so late…” I did my best to articulate between my chattering teeth, “my car broke down back at the road, and…”
“Oh! Oh, heavens come in, quick. You’ll freeze to death in this weather!” the man exclaimed as he dragged me through the door. “Let me get you a towel and some tea, hold on…”
“Uh, just a phone is fine. I’ll be okay if I can call for a ride… what’s this place’s address?” I asked, looking around. The guy was definitely a taxidermist, since no one should have any other excuse for keeping this many stuffed animals. I quickly took a head count and noted 13 deer (not counting a number of racks that were mounted alone), 7 squirrels, 3 raccoons, a bearskin rug, and some kind of wild boar lurking in the corner. A part of me was glad the whole place reeked of embalming fluid; because I’m positive it masked an even worse stench of musk that must have seeped into everything.
“No can do on the phone; storm knocked the line out.” The taxidermist shook his head. I noted he ignored my question, but I didn’t want to bring it up. No point, anyway, if I couldn’t make a call for a ride. He disappeared into a back room and returned with an old towel. “Tea’s on, it’ll be ready in a few minutes. Take a seat, please, at least until the storm passes over.”
I couldn’t argue that, so I pulled up a wooden stool and sat, pulling the towel around my shoulders.
The taxidermist wasn’t exactly the type to immediately put you at ease. He was thinner than anyone I had ever met, like I said before. His eyes were sunken and dark, and they had a strange blur to them that almost reminded me of the other twenty-five pairs he shared a working space with. Underneath a pair of beaten overalls he was wearing a black turtleneck, which only made him seem paler by contrast. Honestly, he reminded me a bit of a skeleton.
“I’m surprised I found anyone up here.” I said as the old man returned to whatever he was working on. Looked like he was sharpening knives. “Do you live here?”
“Yep, got a kitchen and a bedroom in the back… my family… isn’t around anymore, so something small like this suits me fine.” He held a knife up to the light and squinted. What did he use that for, anyway?
“Still, it’s gotta be, what? One in the morning?” I added gingerly. I didn’t mean to interrogate the guy, but his eccentricity had me curious. I could tell my questioning was getting on his nerves, though. I shrank in my seat.
“I prefer to work at night.” He said curtly. He slid out from his work bench and made his way to the back room. “Gonna go check on the tea.” he muttered as he slipped out of sight. I only got a glance at what was in the kitchen, but I could have sworn I saw a meat hook hanging from the ceiling.
After a minute or two of waiting surrounded by dead animals, the taxidermist returned with a worn out old coffee mug and held it out. I took it from him and peered inside at the liquid he claimed to be tea. Looked more like sewage, honestly. I sat and stared into it, unsure of what to do.
“Well? Drink up… it’ll help with that chill.” He goaded me with a leer. It was at this point I noticed how rotten and crooked his teeth were. “Go on, DRINK!” he leaned in.
‘Oh my God’, I thought with a shiver, ‘I’ve walked in on some kind of mountain man psychopath. This stuff is poison. He’s gonna cut me open and stuff me and pose me in his basement or something. Fuck, he probably has a whole menagerie of victims down there, what am I gonna…’
“S-sorry!” I stammered, whipping my phone out. Even if the battery was just dying, it gave me an excuse to put the cup down. I tapped the screen and nearly yelped with joy when I saw a text message had gotten through.
‘hey we found ur car, r u ok?’
‘yeah I’m fine, I’m at the house up the hill. Meet you at the road.’ I replied, fumbling with the keyboard.
“Well, looks like I have a ride. Thanks for the hospitality.” I said, failing to hide my grin. I extended my hand for a shake. Take that, you fucking nutjob.
“Ah, that’s great for you!” he returned my smile and shake. He glanced at the mug of tea I had left behind. “Guess you won’t be needing that, then?” he motioned, before picking it up, throwing his head back, and taking a long swig. “Your loss.”
“Uh, heh heh, guess so.” I murmured, before turning and leaving the house. I guess I had just been paranoid.
As I sat in the back seat of my friend’s car driving off, though, I had to wonder.
Was that a seam I saw running down his throat?
I first saw the smoke three days after Henry had disappeared.
“Hey, Mags, what do you think that is?” I asked, gesturing my coffee cup out the back window, towards the dark ribbon snaking out of the cornfield towards the sunset. Maggie looked up from her crossword, but the butt end of the pen never left her mouth.
“Looks like a fire.” She mumbled in a way that made me feel like an idiot for asking.
“Well… yeah.” I started, unsure of why I had bothered to ask, myself, for a moment, “…but why is there a fire in the cornfield to begin with?”
“…” Maggie finally gave me her undivided attention, setting down the pen and staring, “…if it really bugs you so much, go put it out yourself. I doubt the Parkers are terribly worried about their corn right now, anyway, what with Henry… missing…” She trailed off. It obviously made her uncomfortable to talk about Henry Parker. Nothing like a missing person case had happened in our area in a very long time, so the tension amongst the town was enough to make three days feel like three months. I sighed and gave the bridge of my nose a quick rubbing.
“Hrm… maybe I will.” I finally grumbled, setting down my cold coffee and letting myself out the back door. Despite the uncharacteristically warm September we had been having, dusk was approaching quickly, and even though I was five feet from the door I was already cursing my decision not to grab a coat. Quickly filling a bucket with water, I set off into the corn towards the trail of smoke.
It was almost completely dark by the time I got close enough to the smoke that I could smell it, and again I scolded myself for coming out so unprepared; this time for lack of a flashlight. Visibility in the cornfield was low enough during the daylight hours, but now it was enough to make me almost immediately lost. Luckily, I had the smoke to serve as a beacon towards my destination, and every now and then I would glance up to check my progress.
Then the smoke moved.
It was impossible, I reckoned. I was sure I had been going in a straight line, but being turned around in this gloom wasn’t out of the question. But, no, as I looked up towards the sky I could see the origin of the trail was definitely moving around in the rows. In fact, I realized too late, the two of us were converging.
“Oh, fuck.” I stammered, backpedaling. I suddenly had no drive to douse this fire, or whatever it was that was coming towards me. I was about to turn and run, but it was too late. I saw it.
It might have been human once. It had all the characteristics of a human: arms, legs, the works. But no human could have survived what this… thing had evidently been through. Its body was black and charred; burnt to a cinder. I stared, and, despite having no way of doing so, it seemed to stare back, smoke billowing out of its eyes’ empty sockets. Slowly, its mouth creaked open as if to speak, but only more smoke spewed out, as if the creature’s insides were nothing but gas. I panicked, threw the bucket of water as hard as I could at the creature, turned, and bolted for the house. I heard a clang, a splash, and a hiss that I couldn’t be sure was coming from the thing or steam being released, but not once did I turn and look back, even after I was sure it wasn’t in pursuit.
Even after I stumbled back into the house, past a troubled Maggie, and into bed.
Even after they found Henry Parker’s body, stuffed up his chimney.
Below I have listed a series of text messages I received on the night of November 19, 2006. I wasn’t entirely sure if something paranormal was at work here, so I’ll let you be the judge. Commentary will be provided under each message in Italics.
Time Received: Nov 19, 5:49 PM
Hey, is your ph@@@ acti@g sttttTTT@@@nge?
This was a message from a friend who lived a few blocks up from me at the time. Previously, my phone had not been doing anything out of the ordinary, but judging from the garbled text here, this was the start of the chain. It would also appear that this friend was experiencing the same phenomenon I would soon be seeing. More on that later.
Sent: Private Number
Time Received: Nov 19, 6:12 PM
Nothing but chatter in this message, but it’s an important part of the larger picture.
Sent: Private Number
Time Received: Nov 19, 6:13 PM
This message was sent immediately after the previous one. It’s definitely from the same source, given the repeated bludgeoning of the Z key, but I still have yet to figure out what the significance of “GOOD MORNING” was. At this point I was getting a little frustrated at my phone company, since I assumed this was caused by technical difficulties on their end. I even almost turned my phone off, but I’m glad I didn’t.
Time Received: Nov 19, 6:17 PM
This is the point where the tone and subject matter of the messages start to change. You’ll notice that “Private Number” has started to glitch; I had never seen my phone do this and it hasn’t since. Additionally, the content of the message seems to, for the first time of the night, be coming from an intelligent source rather than bits of junk. It sounds confused.
Time Received: Nov 19, 6:21 PM
r u at home dude? Check outside ur window. fog is wicked!!!!
This was a normal text message from a drinking buddy. He mentions the fog, which may be important; it was, as he (kind of) says, unnaturally thick that night. More like a dark smoke than fog, really.
Time Received: Nov 19, 6:27 PM
GET ON YOUR KNEES
Sent: Private Number
Time Received: Nov 19, 6:30 PM
thickerthanblood thickerthanblood thickerthanblood thickerthanblood
Time Received: Nov 19, 6:31 PM
This is the part where the text messages stop becoming annoying and switch over to unsettling. I got these three in rapid-fire succession, each from a different source: one from the glitched line, one from the unlisted, and one which apparently came from my own phone. I assume the last one was another glitch caused by who or whatever was doing this, but at this point it was pretty clear there was some sort of intelligence behind the messages, even if they were rudimentary. Doesn’t sound confused anymore, either; sounds angry.
Sent: Private Number
Time Received: Nov 19, 8:56 PM
L is for the way you LOOK at me
O is for the @@NLY one I see
V is very verrrr@@@@ exzzzztraordin@@@@
First new message in the past two and a half hours and it was garbled Nat King Cole lyrics? Can’t say I wasn’t a little disappointed. Got a little laugh, though.
Time Received: Nov 19, 8:88 PM
Despite what the glitched time data says, I received forty copies of this message at 9 PM sharp. Again, no idea what “PROTECTTHEGATE” means, but I am interested in how that could be a phone number.
Time Received: Nov 19, 9: 12 PM
Your guess is as good as mine.
Sent: Private Number
Time Received: Nov 19, 9:30 PM
This was the last message I got that had any semblance of weirdness that night. It’s probably just more gibberish, but gates come unfastened, don’t they? Maybe there’s some kind of logic in these I’m not seeing.
So there you have it. What do the rest of you make of these? Technical difficulties at the phone company, bizarre weather corrupting airborne data, or something else?
“James Wilson… Jim.
Jim, I need you to listen to this recording and I need you need to pay very close attention to it. Approximately three weeks from now, you’re going to have a breakthrough on your research, and within the year have a working prototype for your machine ready. I know this because, well, you can probably guess from the sound of my voice, can’t you? Our voice, I should say.
But I don’t have time to be having casual conversation with myself right now. Whatever you do, you can NOT TURN THE MACHINE ON. What comes out of the portal…well, there was no way we could have known they even existed, so no one could blame us when they came through. No fossil evidence; not a single relic or artifact: an entire prehistoric race of sentient creatures perfectly hidden in the shadows of time itself. I often wonder if this was my doing, as well… no signs of extinction because they never really went extinct, they just… came here…
They’re looking for me now. They’ve been systematically wiping out us humans for long enough that it’s clear we’re not going to win this war. My only hope is to turn our machine on one last time and send this warning back to you, so that I might be able to stop this trouble before it ever starts.
Please, Jim. Just listen.”
The tape ended there. I glanced to my left to see my research partner, the guy who found the disc, was just as shaken as I was. Slowly, I asked him the question that was haunting us both:
“You don’t know a Dr. James Wilson either, do you?”
A 1998 powder blue Ford Taurus isn’t anyone’s choice for a vehicle, but it was what I ended up choosing at the lot. It wasn’t a bad car; not too many miles, recently replaced tires, and it was cheap. My only real complaint is that the previous owner had seriously gone overboard with air fresheners; the whole interior reeked of vanilla and pine. The dealer, real nice guy, said he was cutting me a deal. Told me that they were having trouble moving this one off the lot, explained that no one seemed to be interested. I guess I’m less picky than average, because the car looked fine to me, so a check and a handshake later I was driving home. That’s when the strangeness started.
I hadn’t noticed it during the complimentary test drive I had been given, but there was a lump in the padding of the seat, right in the small of my back. It wasn’t enough to make driving uncomfortable, so I assumed the foam was coming loose under the fabric and let it go. The car was a decade old, after all. For about two weeks I drove the car like that, to and from work, picking up groceries and stuff like that. The lump was pushed to the back of my mind, and I had pretty much gotten used to it. Then it moved.
At first I thought I was imagining things; foam padding doesn’t squirm around, obviously, and it had just been the slightest feeling on my back that set me off. But no, as I kept driving it became clear that the seat had shifted, it definitely felt different against my spine. At this point I thought maybe this is what was wrong initially with the seat; that maybe the loose foam had shifted when I first got the car. Once I got home, I decided, I would examine it in more detail.
By the time I got into my driveway the lump was downright irritating, so I hopped out of my seat and began to probe the fabric with my fingers. Whatever was in there, I quickly noticed, it wasn’t foam padding. The consistency was thicker than foam, almost gelatinous, and there was hard pieces inside it that felt almost like stone. I couldn’t make it out at the time, but the shape of the thing was familiar, too. Confirming my suspicions, I also noted for the first time a long seam in the seat that someone had stitched up. The previous owner must have stuck something in there. I hopped back in to take the car to the dealer and complain. This is the sort of thing a salesman should tell you, you know? Maybe they just didn’t know about it; I hadn’t seen it at first, either.
I was about halfway to the dealership when the thing in the seat began writhing around. Not a shift like before, but actively crawling underneath the fabric. If you can imagine the feeling of something worming its way across your lower back, you can probably replicate my reaction. The number on the speedometer doubled.
I nearly ruined those recently replaced tires swerving into the dealership parking lot. It didn’t take long to find the man who had sold me the car, and even less time to grab him by the shirt sleeve and stammer out what had happened. He was surprised by my story but strangely receptive (more than I would be if some punk teenager started rambling about squirming car seats), and came back with me to the car, pulling out a pocket utility knife as we walked. As we cut the fabric of the seat open, the stench that spewed out almost literally knocked us back out of the car, but what we smelled didn’t make either of our stomachs turn nearly as bad as what we saw.
Inside the seat, under the fabric, we found a half-rotten human hand.
At the end of the road in my neighborhood there’s this long, dirt driveway that winds up the hill and into the woods. Normally, you’d think that sort of thing would be a curious elementary schooler’s dream come true, but to be honest I never thought much about it growing up. My friends all lived closer to the city, and there weren’t any other kids on the street to play with, so if there were any local urban legends about the place I never really heard them. If they existed, I’m sure they pale in comparison to what I eventually found out the driveway led to.
It wasn’t until I moved back into my parents’ place after college that I started to wonder about it. Before it had just been white noise to my hyperactive little brain, but coming home after four years away from it, it finally dawned on me how strange the driveway was. It was the only one on the street that wasn’t paved, and there was no mailbox that I could see. All the other houses were on quarter-acre lots, so twenty feet was closer to average length for a driveway than what appeared to stretch on for miles. Everything about the path seemed out of place for its location, and it finally was starting to register as something worth asking about to me. So I did.
Neither of my folks knew much more about the place than I did. “Nobody lives up there.” My mom told me, not looking up from her half-chopped vegetables. “The whole neighborhood used to be a farm, and I think that’s the original farmhouse. Not sure why they haven’t torn it down yet.”
“Probably some deal with the old owner when the contractor bought the property.” My father added, “‘I’ll buy the land you’re not using, but you can still live on it’ or some legal crap like that. The lot’s some weird, useless shape, so that’s why they haven’t bulldozed the whole place now that it’s empty.” I nodded in agreement. My father’s explanation made sense, even if it was a little anticlimactic. Still, I felt like the puzzle was missing a piece. I resolved to drive up to the house one free afternoon to snoop around a bit myself.
Luckily, that day came sooner than I had anticipated, and that Thursday afternoon I had a backpack stuffed with snacks and a flashlight for some sweet abandoned building rummage action. I didn’t know how deep into the woods the road actually went, so I hopped into my car and drove up. As it turns out, this was the right decision; after turning off into the woods, the path swirled and twisted around for what had to be at least a mile through the foliage until it eventually broke open to a field on top of the hill, with a definitely abandoned ranch style farmhouse perched in the center. As I stepped out of my car at the front of the house, I made note of the cheap beer bottles and cigarette butts that littered the front porch; obviously some teenagers were more privy to the place than I had been at their age. Gingerly, I tested the front door and found to my luck, if you want to call it that, that it was unlocked. The door swung open easily and before I knew it I was inside.
Immediately, I was greeted by the smell of dog. Well, “smell” is probably an understatement. If you’ve ever been to a house that kept pets and wasn’t particularly clean, you can imagine what I’m talking about, only magnify that exponentially. Basically, it reeked; the whole place stank of piss and wet fur. I would have assumed that a handful of strays had taken up residence, but aside from the smell and the average wear of being left alone for seventy years, the living room appeared to be in good condition. A few moth-eaten recliners, a sagging couch, a small old-timey TV, floral print wallpaper, and four inches of dust; it was your typical abandoned building. There was even a small family portrait hanging on the far wall. Father, mother, and three teenage sons, definitely from the 40’s, as I had estimated from the décor, and even a nice little scribe of their name at the bottom: The Fishers. The Fisher Farm, I thought with a smirk. It was almost catchy. That’s when I noticed it: a strip of old police tape hanging from the doorway to the kitchen. Do not cross and all that? Yeah, now I was curious.
While the smell hadn’t changed between the two rooms, there was nothing that said “normal” about the kitchen. The wallpaper had been shredded and while the linoleum tile had wiped up well enough, the stains on the wood cabinets and peeled drywall revealed without a doubt that there had been blood spilled in the room. A lot of it. My stomach knotted nervously; I hadn’t really expected to find anything out of the ordinary up here, and this was well beyond ordinary. I turned to leave, probably faster than a twenty-something would like to admit, and that’s when the nervousness erupted into full blown fear.
Painted in the dried blood on the wall opposite me were a slew of sloppily scribed words. I couldn’t understand it; it wasn’t any language I recognized. Hell, as far as I could tell, only four fifths of the letters came from our alphabet. I didn’t need to be able to read it to know what it said, however. To me, it screamed “GET THE HELL OUT OF HERE.” It was like I was suddenly being watched by this huge crowd of wild animals; hungrily eying up this delicious sack of fresh human meat. Logically, of course, I shouldn’t have panicked the way I did. It could have easily been some punks’ sad attempt at a tag, for all I knew. At the time, though, it was all I could do but to tear through the house back the way I came, dive into my car, and speed back through the woods to the safety of my old home.
It was about three weeks before my curiosity beat out the fading terror and made me interested in what exactly had happened at the Fisher house again. I wasn’t about to go anywhere near the house itself, but I did take a trip to the library that weekend to do a little digging through the old newspapers. After about an hour of trial and error, I happened upon the following articles:
DISTURBING RITUAL AT HAMMER HILL FARM
SEPTEMBER 14, 1944
Authorities today discovered a grisly scene inside a rural home outside Hammer Hill yesterday. After a tip from local grocer that the Fisher brothers had not been seen in a few weeks, an officer was sent to check on the three boys where he discovered this. Details are largely being kept hidden by police at this time, however we can confirm the bodies of Hollis and Marcus Fisher, as well as at least thirty dogs of various age and breed, were recovered from the residence, all mutilated. More on this story as it develops.
JAKE FISHER CAUGHT, INTERROGATED
SEPTEMBER 17, 1944
After a three day manhunt, Hammer Hill police confirm today they have the previously wanted Jake Fisher in custody. Fisher is under suspicion for the murder of his two older brothers as well as the kidnapping and the mutilation of over three dozen neighborhood pets. Police sources say Fisher has been unreceptive to questioning beyond incoherent babbling. The closest Fisher has come to making a statement is this single phrase: “It all went as he said”. As always, we will continue coverage of this story as more information is revealed.
MAD DOG KILLER COMMITS SUICIDE IN JAIL CELL
SEPTEMBER 18, 1944
Police sources have announced today that Jake Fisher, while in custody for murder in the first degree as well as extreme animal cruelty, was found dead in his holding cell this morning. The official word at this time is that Fisher had scratched at his face and throat until his jugular vein ruptured. The official cause of death is being handed down as blood loss.
That was more than enough information for me to know that I was done with the Fisher family for the rest of my life. After several minutes of slow breathing to calm my nausea, I put the old papers away, went home, and resolved to never think about the house at the end of the road again. Whatever Jake Fisher had been planning, it was ancient history and I was fine on letting it stay that way.
That was until this morning. This morning, I found dog tracks in my garden. Dog tracks from a dog with foot long paws that walks on its hind legs.