Storm of the Century

📅 Published on October 23, 2020

“Storm of the Century”

Written by Bobbie Geno
Edited by Craig Groshek
Thumbnail Art by Craig Groshek
Narrated by N/A

Copyright Statement: Unless explicitly stated, all stories published on are the property of (and under copyright to) their respective authors, and may not be narrated or performed, adapted to film, television or audio mediums, republished in a print or electronic book, reposted on any other website, blog, or online platform, or otherwise monetized without the express written consent of its author(s).

🎧 Available Audio Adaptations: None Available


Rating: 10.00/10. From 8 votes.
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Dear whoever finds this,

My name is Stephen. I’m 25 years old and, well, if you’re reading this then I’m afraid that I’m long gone. Where, you ask?

Your guess is as good as mine, dead, alive, or something much worse, I cannot tell you. I’m currently sat in my basement. I say currently but I’ve been in this dreary, beaten brick-walled prison for weeks now, maybe months.

Time isn’t relevant down here. Nothing is relevant, I’m here now and in all honesty, I don’t know whether that’s good or bad.

I started counting down the days by etching a dash for each day but after the sun went down and never came up, I stopped.

The small rectangular window being my only connection to the outside world didn’t last very long. Although, with the rain cascading down it, I couldn’t really see out of it anyway. Just a warped screenshot of my neighborhood.

What was once my beacon of hope became my tormentor. Knowing just outside that window I could be free…but for how long?

The voices come to me regularly. I only ever get a short respite before they start weeping again. Telling me it’s safe out, pleading at me to open the door.

All I know is I’m safe right now. Safety is a concept I took for granted; now I truly know the meaning of the word. Being able to walk outside, breathe the fresh air without knowing it could be your last.

I’m getting ahead of myself. I need to get this written down whilst I still can and whilst I’m still sane enough to remember. I’ll go back to the beginning, to before the sun went black and this basement became my tomb. Before the voices became tempting.

I used to have a pretty boring life. Stacking shelves 5 days a week, painting portraits and luscious landscapes in the little free time I had in between. Sometimes I’d conjure up morbid scenes. Future cities built like concrete jungles. Barren nuclear wastelands. There’s something calming about seeing a decimated world and then looking out of your window to see luscious fields, unknowing it could all be decimated in a few short weeks. God, even a flock of pigeons would’ve been a welcome sight if I only knew.

It was during one of my 15-hour shifts stacking boxes on top of boxes that something felt…off.

It was the start of this lockdown, the storm in its youth but still on the tip of everyone’s tongue. The media were calling it the storm of the century. We didn’t have many, if any, storms in England. An occasional bit of shitty weather, but never like this. It was a pain with all the panic buyers but hey, they were paying my overtime for a menial task so I can’t complain.

Susie came up to me just after my shift started. Her cute button nose looking up to me.

The 5’ 2” brunette 21-year-old had been a close friend since secondary school. We’d never really talked much in school or even outside of it really, now that I think of it. I guess my version of a close friend was someone I’d say hi to more than once a week. We worked together for a few months now and she always made time for me. Although I didn’t reply much, we’d text on and off to catch up on each other’s lives. We both had rough patches in our lives and for some odd reason, we’d also confide in each other.

“Hey, Stephen, any plans for the weekend?” she said, her eyes twinkling with a look of excitement splattered across her face.

“Hi, Sue! No, not much. Just going to have a quiet one in. Gotta take my dog Rex to the vet whilst I get the chance.”

“Ah, right… sounds fun. Well… I’m having a party Saturday night, so feel free to stop by. I mean, if you’re not too busy.”

“Yeah, sure, I’ll think about it,” I confidently said, knowing fully well that I wouldn’t be attending.

I hated the social expectation that having friends brought with it. I’d much rather stay in my own bubble and mind my own business. The companionship was nice at times but I’d soon find myself overwhelmed and anxious.

A smile lit up her face instantly to my ‘acceptance’ as she skipped off down the aisle leaving me to get on with my day. I popped my playlist on and blocked out the world before getting back to the endless stacking of ravaged shelves hoping they’d last longer than 10 minutes before I had to repeat the whole ordeal.

It was about 6 hours into my usual routine of plugging out the world when it was disturbed by this guttural calling. Distant first. I could hear it in the background when the music was quiet. Thinking it was just parts of the songs that I’d never picked up on, or distortion through my headphones. I couldn’t make out a single note of it but, it was definitely something. It got progressively louder throughout the next few tracks, right up till it started drowning out my music, then my thoughts. Until all I could think and hear was… it. I ripped out my headphones hoping it would end my torment. It worked for a split second, my ears trying to recover, when just as quickly as it had stopped, a gargantuan boom echoed around me, reverberating through my bones.

“Come here, come here… COME HERE!”

I snapped, too, and realized Mrs. Peters, one of our regular late afternoon shoppers, was calling me.

“Come here!” she barked whilst pointing to the can of dog food just out of reach of her frail, bony fingers.

The veil of anxiety washed away just as quickly as it was coursing through my veins.

“Of course! Coming!” I cheerfully exhaled as I reached past her plucking the can of processed shit that her dog would happily munch down on later.

As she snatched the ‘premium dog chum’ out of my hand I noticed something.

Her hands… they were completely white and frozen to the touch.

I swear my heart skipped a beat when she touched me. A vicious sweat broke across my brow instantly as I saw her eyes. Oh god, her eyes.

The usual brown safe haven of Mrs. Peters’s warming eyes had disappeared…all I could see was a never-ending abyss in place of those dark amber eyes. Staring into my soul, judging my every sin. I felt completely powerless. A sharp pain seared into the back of my skull, crippling me completely. The calling came back, this time it wasn’t distant and wasn’t coming from her…I mean, she was mouthing the words but I could hear it inside of my head like a siren wail intoxicating my very existence. Whilst this didn’t sound like the usually chirpy pensioner, it definitely sounded like the monstrosity stood before me.

I stumbled back hitting the shelves behind causing a small army of cereal boxes to crash to the floor.

Every cell of my being wanted to just run out of the store and never come back. I looked up, terror somehow playing me like a puppet master even though no part of me wanted to see that thing again.

She. Wasn’t. There. I don’t mean she had walked off, she took about a year to get around the shop as it was on a good day. She completely disappeared.

In an aisle full of assholes acting as roadblocks, how could this 82-year-old lady disappear without so much as a trace? Worst of all, that damned can was back on the shelf.

I picked myself up and steadied myself. Trying not to look crazy after already making a dick of myself, I patted my shirt down, pushing the picture of Mrs. Peters’s godforsaken face to the furthest recesses of my mind. A few people saw and gave me odd looks. Concerned but definitely confusion riddled within. I plastered a fake smile on my face and got on with my day.

The rest of my shift went without a hitch, trying to forget about the day’s earlier event, just attributing it to my overactive imagination and a little old lady demanding help who managed to pull a Houdini with all the extra bodies in the store. I was working ridiculous shifts and tired to no end. I just needed a rest… right?

It wasn’t that easy though. I had this overpowering feeling of dread poisoning my every thought. Thinking back now I shouldn’t have been so naive, but hey, no one could’ve predicted what was to happen, and in all honesty, what could I do?

Anyway, I was just about done with my shift, drained, hungry, and ready for a quick bike home to my empty, two-story wooden farmhouse passed down through the family. I was the only one left of the Charles family. My mum passed away when I was just 7…Breast cancer. My father, a drunk who didn’t know what he loved more, alcohol or himself, ran away shortly after. Only leaving a note at the foot of the basement door. No one has heard from him since. My grandparents took rein of my childhood and I can’t lie, they gave me a good life. They let me run free and well, I guess that’s why I’m the way I am today. When I turned 18, the house got signed into my name and I’ve lived there ever since.

Being a kid in the middle of nowhere, without anyone your age means you have to find other ways to entertain yourself. I used to have a few imaginary friends…I forget their names now, but they helped a lot. My background doesn’t matter too much to this tale. I used to have to go to the doctors a few times a week as a child. After a couple of years pumped with medication, my grandparents stopped making me go, thought it was too much for someone my age. Thanks to everything I had to take and being so young, I forgot what it was that I went for exactly. Sorry, I’m losing track again.

I’d like to say that was the only encounter I had that day but cycling home at 1 am was like walking to Mordor.

The shadows taunted me, enticing me to take just one look. No matter how hard I tried to focus on the roads, each alleyway whispered my deepest desires, my inner fears. I could feel every hair on my body raised, goosebumps tickling my arms. The hoards hidden in the depths of the winding side roads challenged me to look. The rain had started to hammer down calling for my attention to remain on the roads.

Turning the block just before the home stretch usually gave me a second wind, carrying me back to those four warm walls, my shelter from everything and everyone. That’s when I heard a piercing scream, it wasn’t just calling for anyone either…it called me by my name.

“Stephen, please help!”

I slammed on my brakes almost flying over the handlebars and just stopped for what felt like forever. Scanning the area like a captain with his periscope.


A chill ran down my spine and didn’t stop till my whole body shivered. It was right behind me. Not in one of the dens of thieves shrouded in darkness, but what felt like two feet behind me.

Every logical part of me was telling me to go, don’t turn back, get home, bolt the door, and hide. After an age of deliberating, I slowly craned my head around, right foot resting just above my pedal ready for a sprint.

There she was, it was… Mrs. Peters. Those same vile eyes staring me down, consuming me. The flickering street light barely illuminating her corpse-like body but there was no mistaking those eyes. This time I could see further into them somehow, as if the darkness of the night enveloping around us gave them more strength. I hadn’t noticed at first but she was completely bare. No clothing, nothing. Her feet dirty and black from the gravel. You’d think that was enough to unnerve me, and I suppose it was. That’s when I noticed the skin on her body. It sagged but not like it naturally would through old age, it was as if it wasn’t hers or at least, wasn’t whatever was stood in front of me. I’ve never seen skin so white and devoid of life. I didn’t wait to see what she had in store for me. She started to reach forward, as if begging for help again, just as she did at work. Before her hand had lifted even an inch I threw my right leg forward pushing down on that pedal as if my life depended on it. I didn’t stop; I barely even took a breath till I saw my front door. I ran in, hearing it again.

“Stephen, it’s me.”

This time I couldn’t decipher where from but I didn’t care. If I got inside, I’d be safe, right?

Throwing the door open and slamming it behind me, I heard nails clicking on the old pine flooring. At first slow, now sounding to gallop towards me.

The image of the woman running towards me, skin trailing behind her like a flag, flooded my thoughts. I started to run and just as I got to the foot of my stairs, something lunged on me. Making me collapse to the floor. My head thumped off the floor, throwing me into a state of shock and without thinking, I covered my face fearing the worst. Praying to god to make it quick, don’t make me suffer.

I felt its presence bearing over me. Blocking out the porch light shining through my front door. The clicking of its nails sending shrieks through my body. It got closer.

I felt a warm breath on my hands, being my last bastion of defense. The disgusting stretch it brought with it was enough to make me throw up. Then a loud piggy snort and licking ensued…  Fuck.

It was Rex.

The big old brute of a Staffie was happy to see me. Lord knows I was happy to see him too. I let out a sigh of relief feeling all the tension fade away, pushing myself to a seated position against the wall and played with him for a few minutes. Immediately forgetting about what had just happened. Dogs have a way of doing that.

I got myself a quick shower, made dinner and went to serve Rex his in the dog bowl he protected with his life. Looking for dog food I noticed something. Among all of the cans, there was just one out of place. Now Rex was a fussy dog, believe it or not, so I knew to get the same select few each time.

Out of the cans that stood to attention, to the left, out of regiment, was the one Mrs. Peters asked for earlier. Premium dog chum.

The thoughts crashing down on me again like waves on the coast, a second panic attack starting to usher its way in.

Without second-guessing myself, I picked it up, opened my back door, and threw it. Not very neighbor-friendly, but I’d had enough. Trying to convince myself I wasn’t crazy, I served up Rex’s meal and shortly after got myself into bed.

As much as my brain wanted to process everything that had happened throughout the day, I was exhausted. I drifted off in record time.

The next morning I woke up, head foggy. I may have passed out instantly but waking up well-rested was not on the agenda that day. Rex was just sitting in his corner in the morning, he gave me a nod of approval and I patted him on the head.

“Hey buddy, you ready for the vets?” I said in a voice we all save for our furballs.

The storm was starting to pick up outside. Those ominous clouds soon took over the sky, blocking out the sun and I decided I’ll take him next week.

With my plans dashed for the one day weekend I had, I decided to skip breakfast and get straight to painting.

I opted to do another portrait, something a bit cheery. I’d had enough morbidity for a while so wanted to take my mind off. As the hours passed, fully taken in with the masterpiece I was creating, Rex still sat in his corner, I decided to grab a bite to eat.

The wind was whistling through the hollow bones of my home. I took another look outside and all I could see were those jet black clouds. Never-ending. The rain was heaving now. Mini rivers raging down the sides of the street and creating whirlpools around the drains.

I scanned the street for any sign of life, not a soul was out. Well, that’s what I thought. As I started to turn and draw my curtains I noticed footprints in the grass just in front of my window. No tracks of someone walking to that spot outside my window. Just two footprints about three feet away.

The rain must’ve been coming down for hours by that time but the grass looked completely dry where those feet had been. As if whoever had been out there, had been there all day. I noticed a blackening around the edges of the solitary tracks. Was it burnt or some sort of substance? As I tried to inspect the unknown goo closer, a glint in the window caught my attention. Two piercing orbs just hung there, just below my eye line. Looking closer to see where they were emanating from I noticed something…they weren’t coming from outside. They were right behind me. A tingle ran down my spine as the pin dropped. I span around, almost sweeping myself off my feet. Nothing.

Something in the back of my head made me look over to the basement door. A sense of dread always swept across me with the thought of going down there.

Still standing by the window, I listened out in silence. Trying to detect anything out of place. I can’t tell you how difficult this was with the rain bombarding the windows and the wind threatening to rip my door off.


I contorted my neck almost giving myself whiplash.


I looked over to the labor of my day, the painting. The noise coming directly behind it.

In denial of the terror I was experiencing, I crept over to it. The area being dimly lit by the grey strands of sunlight that pierced the clouds made it difficult to see from the other side of the room.

It was as I got closer that I started to hone in on the source of the sound.

The goddamned painting.

The innocent blonde-haired Mona Lisa I had created wasn’t how I left it.

The hair that boasted a light gold was brown with dirty grey roots threatening to take over.

The smile which once shone brighter than the pearly whites now featured brown, decaying teeth that no longer sat where they should.

I couldn’t breathe. A new voice came to me that instant. It imitated Susie, badly.

Gargled words plagued my mind; I was too shaken up by the picture to even try to comprehend them. If I could hazard a guess now, parts sounded Latin but I feel some of the things I heard weren’t intended for human ears or minds. They paralyzed me, leaving me a complete nervous wreck. Unable to move, think, hell I don’t even remember breathing.

As terrifying as they were, I felt a sense of clarity and something familiar about them from my core which didn’t manifest itself till afterwards.

As suddenly as the tongue of ancients had started lashing my mind, they disappeared.

Turning back to that ghastly painting after having been on all fours clutching at my head.

It had returned to the serene woman it was before. No eyes of pure sorrow, no tattered skin, and her teeth back to their former glory.

Knowing I was beginning to fall into a madness concocted by my own mixture of lack of sleep, anxiety and my own worst enemy, my mind. I decided it was time to go to sleep. Rex hadn’t moved all day, hadn’t touched his bowl of food either.

Before I hit the hay, I decided to replace his food just in case he started to get fussy with his usual delicacy. Picking up the first can I could reach from the cupboard, I lazily opened it up and lathered it into his bowl. To make sure he had something, I also put a couple of dog treats next to his bowl. The little guy hadn’t eaten all day.

Finally, nothing to do but surrender to the night. My head hit my goose feathered pillow and I was lost in the comfort of my king size mattress for one.

I was plagued by horrible things that night. Even now I can’t quite recall what I witnessed or what I heard but this overbearing feeling of doom took over me. The only thing I can remember is seeing the blackness. The ever-evolving dark that seemed to take form and dissipate back into nothingness. Endless. It was almost the same as when you close your eyes in the dark. Your eyelids firmly shut but your eyes still functioning and seeing…nothing.

Multi-colored strips flash by and you know nothing is there but your instincts scream at you to open your eyes.

I woke up, sheets soaked and my body dripping with sweat. A buzz of paranoia overwhelmed me. Every limb feeling like static as my nerves were bombarded. Scanning my room everything was in order, no boogie man ready to pounce and no noises other than that rain and wind whistling through the neighborhood.

I laughed to myself, gave myself a quick pep talk so I could get ready for a long day at work, and jumped in the shower.

Getting out of the shower, towel draped across me like a Roman emperor, I heard a quick tapping on the front door. It got louder and louder, whoever was down there must’ve had something important to tell me. As long as it wasn’t one of those idiot door-to-door salesmen.

No, I would not like your miracle cleaner.

Throwing my dressing gown on, the tapping turned into loud bangs.

“Let us in” rang through my house as I clambered down the stairs.

The wind really must’ve been picking up as the call for help drifted away and didn’t really begin or end from the door.

I got to the foot of the door and swung it open.

“I heard you the first time!  I have a doorbell, you know!” I said trying to act as alpha as I could.

There was nothing there, again. Nothing except a torrent of water and wind buffeting my porch. The storm was getting into its worst now and I could see the trees swaying as if they had no roots. A piercing but distant sound of sheet metal warping and grinding could also be heard in the distance.

I was so shaken up from the last few days of panic buying, and from whatever it was I’d been seeing and hearing, that I completely forgot my house was in the danger zone for the storm.

Knowing I wouldn’t be able to go into work till this has cleared, I called in and told them I wouldn’t be there. They didn’t understand my reasoning but I didn’t care, I wanted to stay safe and going to work during this wasn’t happening.

Instead, I decided to storm proof my house. This was an older house and whilst it had been standing strong for a few generations, I wasn’t stupid enough to think the house could take the full brunt of the storm without a little help.

I threw my heavy-duty jacket on, boots and waterproofs and ventured out to the local hardware store to pick up some 2x4s and nails. The second I stepped outside I was challenged by the ungodly weather. Soaked within seconds. I ran to and from the store, almost getting pushed into the road numerous times.

Getting home, I quickly got to the task of boarding up my windows. I made quick work of it, fighting with the wind as it tried to wrestle the planks from my grasp. As I was getting to the last ones I realized this was where those footprints had been. Surveying the grass I couldn’t see them now or the black remnants that should’ve been burnt into the terrain still.

This eased me a little. Knowing what I’d seen the other night wasn’t there and could’ve just been my imagination brought everything into perspective.

Finishing off, I debated whether covering the windows was enough. After getting weary of the rain within the next minute, I decided to leave it. No need to board the doors I thought, not yet at least.

The storm was predicted to last about another week and things went on without a hitch for the first two days. Nothing to scare me or entice me out of my home. I painted like never before. Using the visions I’d had as inspiration instead of as fuel to burn myself to the ground.

It was day three when I started hearing the scratching. Minding my business and playing with Rex in his corner, the sound of nails on a chalkboard screeched through my soul.

It was coming from outside my living room window, where the footprints had been. The slow insidious noise that demanded all attention slowly got more erratic. Walking over to the window, I tried to peer out through the slats of light, staying hidden from the instigator of the sound.

The sky had a red hue to it with dark grey encompassing almost every inch visible. But in front of my window, stood… something.

This wasn’t what I was used to. This wasn’t something anyone would be used to. This wasn’t natural.

Standing directly in front of the window was this thing. It was nothing like what I had encountered in the previous days.

Its body was brown and mummified, shavings of skin hung to its frame, ready to flake off at the slightest shake. The flesh around its chest had started to rot. I could see maggots poking their heads out as they took in fresh air for the first time. Quickly retreating and burrowing their way back into the banquet.

Its legs and arms were almost completely scabbed over, with dark reds oozing here and there. I saw those bony fingers again.  Whilst the rest of the thing was putrid, its hands were bleach-white, which quickly faded to the rotten brown at the wrists. Usually, veins would show like the northern lights on a white this pale but it was completely devoid of any life. Its long nails had cracked and shattered into dozens of sharp daggers. I couldn’t quite make out its face. I didn’t want to either. Whatever that thing was, I had already seen enough. It just stood there twitching unnaturally every few seconds. Cracks traversing its forearms with each rupture of movement.

It struggled to lift its carcass like arm, but eventually managed to raise it to just about my eye level. So far it hadn’t made any signs it knew I was there, angled like a contortionist with my head at 90 degrees with the rest of my body pressed up against the wall.

Its blackened nails pressed against the pane of glass that was peaking between the planks on the other side of the window, and clumsily scraped across it. Each millimeter bringing with it a chorus of pain and suffering. I struggled not to let out the agony in my breath but held it down. Its fingers danced along the glass for another minute before I heard a bark come from behind me. Finally, Rex had woken up. I gave him a little nod and held my finger to my lips, hoping he would be quiet. He seemed to get with the program straight away.

Turning back to the show before me, I saw nothing. No noises, no hideous monster to drag me out.

That’s when I looked out the window properly this time. My head no longer dangling at an angle, looking straight ahead I realized something.

It hadn’t just been scratching the window…  It had written something. Trying to make out the jagged etchings I realized that they were letters.


At first, I stood there in disbelief…  This couldn’t be real, could it? As it all dawned upon me, I started to shake, tears starting to caress my cheeks and fell to the floor before me.

Scared to death and worried about what might happen next, I started to board up every opening in my house. Any entrance and exit I had were blocked. Nothing in, nothing out. I’d be safe from the storm and whatever it brought with it. The only thing coming through were a few beams of sunlight in most openings, rays of hope to keep me going. Although with the storm showing no signs of stopping soon, those were few and far between.

I shouted over to Rex, thinking my trusty companion would protect me but he was still in his corner. No nod. Maybe he’s been as tired as I have. I didn’t bother to go over to him allowing him to get as much sleep as he needed. I don’t know whether he saw them but with every hour that the cogs in my head would go into overdrive, he’d stay in the corner more, sleep more throughout the day when he’d usually be bounding around. I didn’t take it out on him but he must’ve picked up that I was starting to lose it at that point.

The storm calmed down a little when it got to the beginning of day six. I thought the nightmare of voices, banging and visits were going to be coming to an end with it. Saying I was wrong would be an understatement.

The banging now became a regular occurrence in the house. I say that casually however, every single time I heard it, I winced, shrouded in the pure terror that the thing outside was one bang closer to getting through my wooden fortress, getting to me, and doing whatever the fuck it wants to me.

Every single time I thought I had gotten used to the rhythmic beat, my skin crawled and I braced as I heard the house creak. Each time I thought of those wooden planks getting weaker and weaker. Every now and then, I’d see its fingers slip through the openings and feel around. It still had Mrs. Peters’s voice. Routinely imitating her and asking me to come to it.

After a few more days of the apparition asking to come in with its filthy mitts, I heard something. Something out of place with the usual pleas, which had become even more distorted and impatient. The sound of wood splintering. As I turned over to my living room window I noticed a new light shining through the room. At first, I thought this had already been there but after a second barrage of knocking in the space of a few minutes, it got larger. More light seeping in and with it, I could see it. Part of it, at least.

It was getting closer to me.

The grotesque being before me must’ve noticed the weakening timber too as it let out another torrent, sending splinters crashing against the thin windowpane.

My shelter was breached.

I turned for Rex…nothing…he just laid there. Looking directly at that window. The bowl I had moved next to his bed still untouched from days before.

Calling to him, his ears wouldn’t even lift in acknowledgment of my cries.

Not knowing what else I could do, I stood there, waiting for whatever this thing had in store for me. I stood frozen in place for what felt like hours, eyes glazed over watching it. The banging subsided shortly after but it was still standing there.

To my horror, a new sound resonated through the bones of my home. A weird creaking. I couldn’t work out what the hell it was until I saw those rotten fingers wrap around a plank of wood directly eye-level.

They clamped around it through the thin cracks and suddenly started pulling at it.

“No, no, no, no, no!”

My vision started going blurry and an overwhelming queasiness flared up inside of me. The 2×4 started to bend and flex, with it I could hear the sound of the nails being yanked out. One was ripped from the safety of the window frame and I heard it ping off the patio outside.

Before I could even move, a block of light blinded me. The first plank was gone and I finally saw its face. This thing was much larger than I initially thought. I was in line with its mouth and jaw, or what was left of it.

Hanging completely agape, I could see three sets of teeth lining the roof of its mouth. All starting in separate places but intertwining as they grew out. Many were missing and the large majority of them were green and blackened.

Its lower jaw was devoid of anything but that disgusting tongue. It hung there loosely, detached from the lower jaw which should’ve been its nest. I could see bloody crevices scattered inside, assuming that had been where its upper teeth had laid before its jaw fell open.

I’d didn’t have any hair on its head. Just a rotting scalp littered in craters and missing chunks of flesh. The rest of its face looked ready to fall off as the skin clung to its extremely bony features. Bags drooped around its soulless eye sockets.

To my dismay, the sockets were empty. Two vast chasms carved into its skull knowing no end, deeper than any mountain is high.

I let out a whimper staring into the things open mouth. I could see everything and nothing inside, all at the same time. Unsure if what I was seeing was a conjuring of my own warped mind. It twitched immediately, its putrefied body agonizingly close to ripping apart. After it had finished its centipede dance, it stopped, mannequin-like in front of the window. I took the chance and started to back away from the new entrance to my home. Right foot. Left foot. Right foot. Left foot. Right fo–

A moaning was let out by the antique wood floor beneath my right foot as it ached from the weight of my body. As quickly as I’d turned to look at the source of the “I’m here” alarm, the thing started ripping at the rest of the panels as if they were twigs. Its arms getting caught up in between the planks they broke through, blood oozing out of the old, infected wounds scattered across them as it plunged further through.

The sound of tree flesh being ripped apart was suddenly overridden by the voice in my head again.

“Come here.”

I felt every syllable chime through me. This time was different though. This time the voice had a face to it. This time it matched the abysmal horror in front of me.

I clamped my hands down over my ears, trying to uselessly block out the barking. Knowing I was simply waiting for my slaughter I started to wake up and step away again, turning around so I could no longer see it.


A sudden burst of adrenaline surged through my veins, throwing my limbs into overdrive as I started to run. Without thinking, I flung open the basement door. After locking it and bracing it with a small colony of boxes and paint cans, I threw a shelf, the placement of which I would have found rather annoying in any other situation, over the pile for good measure.

I sat down here in silence for a long time. I could hear wet feet slapping against the wooden floor above me and the occasional scream of frustration. It was directly overhead, and I could hear its muffled, disfigured breathing getting heavier by the minute. I followed it around the house, hearing each slap on the floor. As if it was heaving itself with each step.

It would wander past the basement door but never seemed to stop in front of it. I guess my adrenaline-fueled escape plan had worked for now. It wasn’t long after the footsteps ceased that I realized what situation I was in.

With how quickly I ran into the basement, I didn’t have time to think about what I’d need down here.

Twelve feet above me, there was a kitchen full of food. I’d get hungry eventually and I’d need to venture up there. Maybe the thing would give up and leave?

I still didn’t want to risk it though. So I waited it out that night. As the darkness consumed the night, the window of my basement became an abyss. I decided I’d try to get some rest and then go up once the sun had started to come up. The pattering of the rain outside comforted me and drowned out anything else.

I woke up the next…I woke up. Looking to the window and still seeing no color. I’d felt like I’d slept for a while but, the sun still wasn’t out. I hadn’t slept for a whole day and woken at night, had I?

I didn’t even have a way of checking.

My phone was upstairs and whilst I did have to make the journey up there soon, my phone wasn’t a priority.

That’s when my eye caught something in the corner of the room. A three-foot-high shadow nestled next to the washing machine. Everything seemed to slow down for what felt like an eternity. The rain still hitting the glass outside at the same pace. I felt on high alert, every drop making my ears perk up. My eyes trying to pick up the still-vague form in the corner.

I could hear its muffled breathing, echoing across the basement. Eventually, the shadow moved. It was as if the unknown entity had woken up and just noticed I was there. Registering me, it started to approach. I could hear its nails skipping across the concrete floor.

It got within 10 feet and all I could see was the familiar white tuft of fur on his chest.

It was Rex.

That’s when I realized I hadn’t brought him down. In my own selfish survivalist actions, I forgot. I’d thought of going up for food but not Rex. How could I forget him?

But then if I hadn’t brought Rex down, how had he got down here. He was definitely still in his bed when I’d run away down the basement steps. Surely I couldn’t have missed him running down the stairs with me.

Even as I’m writing this now, he’s still on the other side of the room. The light from the single bulb hanging from the ceiling doesn’t reach that side of the cellar. He’s still not come out of the dark. Every now and then, the light will flicker and he’ll seem to get closer. No matter how much I call him, he doesn’t come out.

He’ll stand at the edge for hours on end. Looking directly at me. I’ve tried taking a closer look but no matter how hard I try, all I see is the snow-like emblem on his chest whilst the rest of him is obscured by darkness.

It looked like it had to be him and I’d forgotten he got down here but whenever he’d stand watch over me for hours, I’d stay prompted against the wall. My eyes never looking anywhere else but at him. During the staring contests, I hear the voices again. Mrs. Peters calling me for help and Susie crying too. They’d start off sounding as they were in real life, each passing minute they got progressively more disturbed. Rather than taking turns they now sang a horrific duet at me. They wouldn’t stop. They haven’t stopped.

I just want to make them stop.

They’re not even the worst part of the voices. It’s not always there but it creeps in from time to time. A manic, deep laughter will fill in the background noise. Acting as adlibs to the weathering women’s voices.

I’m not sure how much more of them I can take. Susie’s voice will routinely call me and beg me to open the window. When she speaks I completely avoid looking to that part of the cellar. Not wanting to see if she’s there. I know she’s not there, but if there was a face to this mocking of her, I didn’t want to see it.

Another few restless sleeps later her voice would be accompanied with a whistling sound at the glass.

I’ve started to place my hands over my eyes and open my fingers slightly so I can just see the smallest sections through them. This way I can slowly look at the window with less chance of getting an eyeful.

I’ll scan each corner and work my way to the center of the glass and each time I do, I see a new etching. It’s trying to spell something again. It hasn’t finished it yet but I’ll keep you updated on that.

Now the voice reminiscent of Mrs. Peters hasn’t stopped saying the same thing over. All it ever says is ‘come here’. Never-ending. Once every dozen times it lowers an octave and gets more hoarse, sounding in even more pain each time.

I hear her along with the wet slapping of feet upstairs. They won’t happen every time but after a few hours. They come back, taunting me, freely hobbling through my own house whilst I’m trapped down here.

They’ve constantly barraged me. To the point that I’m unable to think of anything. I’m unable to feel anything. All there is are the voices, the footsteps and the high pitched scratching at the damn window.

Even though the voices seem to have no host. I can clearly tell they’re coming from somewhere. Susie’s voice from the cellar window, Mrs. Peters beckon from the top of the stairs. The only one that I still can’t pin down is that laughter.

I feel every bit of malice in it. I feel the fact that whatever is making it, really wants to hurt me. I’ve somehow handled the rest of this nightmare just about but whenever that laughter starts. I can’t stop the tears from rolling down my face as I feel the hatred, instilled in terror. I’m completely powerless to it. They are nowhere, but they completely surround me every waking minute.

I’ve managed to write all of this down now and for the first time in, however long I’ve been here, everything’s gone quiet. I can’t hear any steps, nor any voice or laughs to torment me. Even ‘Rex’ is sat in the corner and hasn’t moved for the past half an hour. At least, I think that’s how long it has been.  There’s no way of actually telling.

The howling wind and rain have eased up and I can see still clouds in the sky. Still overcast with no hope for the sun to shine through and wash away the void but, not pitch black like before. The stillness in the air is refreshing, although stifled by the dust molecules that continue to circulate around me.

The bulb dangling above me is starting to flicker, though. With each passing minute, the basement is getting darker. I’m not sure how much longer I can stay down here.

I think I’ll just get some sleep for now. Nothing else I can do. When I wake up, I’ll make a plan to get out of this hell. I’ll update you soon.

* * * * * *

It’s me again.

I’ve not got long to write this, but I’ll get everything I can down. I managed to get some shut-eye. This, however, was disturbed by a loud smash. The light has completely gone out.

I woke up due to it blowing out and sending shards around the room. Luckily none actually injured me and I’ve got a sharp piece ready next to my right thigh. At least now I had something to protect myself with other than the biro I’m currently using to write.

‘Rex’ awoke from his slumber thanks to it too. He’s not moved but I can feel him staring through me. With each passing second, he seems to move but when I close my eyes, he’s right back to the same spot. I still can’t focus on him completely, no matter how hard I try.

It wasn’t until he seemed to lower his head that I noticed the intruders to the left of him. Two figures slumped up against the wall. They’re not really moving either. They’re both contorted awkwardly, husky breathing following suit.

The trio is sat directly across from me.

Even as I write this I doubt you’ll be able to read it with my quivering body. I’m trying to stay as still as possible.

The footsteps have found their way to the door under the stairs and since then, they’ve been pounding at it constantly. The boxes tumbling down the stairs as the hits get stronger, the door weaker. Clearer voices coming through now.

“Let us in!”

No distortion this time. It’s definitely a male’s voice. He’s laughing at me, too. I’ve got no way out.

Food will be meaningless if I’m stuck in the basement and the prospect of trying to run doesn’t give me a glimmer of hope. I think it’s time to let go. I’ve lost.

I’m going to sit with the others now. There’s a slot for me to fit in between Rex and the others. Maybe it won’t be that bad.

Whoever finds this, just know I tried to fight it as long as I could. I hope this is a testament to that. This battle is with something way above me, way above you, something way above us all. I’d rather let myself go than be taken away by the thing upstairs.


* * * * * *

Hi, my name is Tim. I’m not relevant to this story but, I’ve just moved into my dream home and after hearing scurrying from my cellar I stumbled upon this notepad. I managed to buy this place far cheaper than market value and I think that’ll help explain the madness that this poor soul went through. You see, when I was inquiring about the property, I asked why it was going for so cheap. Apparently, the previous owner was a paranoid schizophrenic and stopped taking his medication.

He hadn’t left his house for over a month, missing work as well, so his manager went to check up on him a few times. After a few weeks of nothing and still seeing his house boarded up, he decided to call the police. They found him in his basement…slumped against the wall. He had slit his wrist and cut out his eyes using a shard of glass. There wasn’t anyone else there and no signs of a break-in. Just three black stains lined up against the wall next to him.

I asked about the dog too but, nothing was ever found to suggest he ever had one.

There never was any storm of the century here either.

I’m sorry I couldn’t give you much closure on this, but I felt it was right to share his story; it seemed to be his dying wish. Whether what he saw happened or not, my guess is as good as yours. All I can say is there’s definitely something making noises in this basement. Probably just rats.

Rating: 10.00/10. From 8 votes.
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🎧 Available Audio Adaptations: None Available

Written by Bobbie Geno
Edited by Craig Groshek
Thumbnail Art by Craig Groshek
Narrated by N/A

🔔 More stories from author: Bobbie Geno

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