The Voices Know

📅 Published on October 14, 2021

“The Voices Know”

Written by Raz T. Slasher
Edited by Craig Groshek and N.M. Brown
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 2 votes.
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I’ve seen a lot of things these last few years working security for the Twin Valley Behavioral Center.  For all its fancy wording, it is a long-term mental-health facility.  It’s not maximum security or anything, but we still get our fair share of crazy moments here.  I work the third shift, so by then, usually, the patients are all asleep.

Most nights, I just keep an eye on the monitors and read a book on my phone.  Occasionally, a new patient will be transported over in the middle of the night, but most times, even that is uneventful.  Now and again, I’ll have to take someone down for striking a staff member, riling up other patients, or trying to hurt themselves.

It’s all standard stuff for the most part.  I think the craziest thing I’ve ever dealt with, up until a few nights ago, was this one female patient who swore to anyone that would listen that I was the Archangel Michael in human form.  My friends and I got a huge kick out of that when I told them.  Even my mom and I had a few laughs over it; I usually tell her about my shifts when she asks.

So, a few nights ago, things started like every other shift.  The patients were asleep for the most part, and I talked to one of the nurses while I peeked at the security monitor.  We were talking about the latest episode of The Walking Dead like we often did.  I was right in the middle of my “I hate Andrea” tirade when a call came over my radio.

“Look alive, Kevin.  We got a new patient coming your way.  Keep your eye on this one; just putting him here till there’s a spot open in max.  Just as a heads up, though, the guy is in his thirties.”

I was a little surprised, to be honest.  We weren’t exactly equipped to handle that kind of patient.  It was a much older building, outdated by a landslide compared to most places.  That was the downside of having mental health issues in a relatively small town.  The fact that it was an adult they were bringing in was even more confusing; that had never happened before, to my knowledge.  I sighed and keyed up my mic to respond.  “Understood.  What’s your ETA?”

There was static on the walkie for a minute or so before the response came back.  “We just pulled up front, and we’re coming in hot.”

Oh, great.  That meant something had gone wrong.  The nurse I’d been talking to looked a little scared, but I did my best to put her at ease before heading to unlock the front doors.  We’d gone to one of those key card systems, but due to lack of a real budget, it was a hand-me-down from another state, so there were a few bugs.  By the time I got the damn thing open, two of the transport guards had come flying through the door with a guy in cuffs.

The guy looked like he couldn’t be older than his early thirties.  He had long, dark hair, a matching goatee, and haunting hazel eyes that seemed to stare right through me.  Various tattoos covered his somewhat pale skin.  Once inside, I locked the door behind them and directed them to the ancient “padded room” that we almost never used anymore.  There was a hospital bed in there that we kept in good condition for emergencies.

I helped them get him onto the bed, where we strapped him in.  When the job was done, they wished me luck with a chuckle and left.  They always bailed after bringing someone in, and I always envied that a bit.  I’d tried to transfer to transport once before but got that speech about “how useful” I was where they had me.

Once the transport guards left, it was my job to stay in the room with the nurse while she injected him with whatever it was they used to calm the patients when they were having “episodes.”  Just before we both left the room, the guy called us over and spoke to us.  “Can you hear them?”

I immediately put all my money on a schizophrenia diagnosis.  As if sensing this, the man looked directly into my eyes.  For a crazy guy, he seemed a lot more focused than I had expected.  He spoke to me directly now.  “They’re telling me your name is Kevin and that you’ve been working here for three years now.”

I raised a brow at the guy.  While his information was indeed correct, he could have easily overheard the transport guys talking about it.  I decided not to put any stock in it and turned to leave the room with the nurse.

The guy made one last attempt to keep us in the room.  “Your mother’s name is Nancy, and you talk to her almost every night after work.  Your father’s name was Joe, and he passed away from cancer last spring.”

Still some standard stuff, but not the kind I would expect the transport guards to talk about or even really know.  I kept my personal life private while at work.  I decided to humor the guy.  “How do you know all of that?”

The guy’s eyes still had not left mine.  “Because they’re talking about you right now.”

I rolled my eyes and looked over at the nurse.  She seemed nervous but wasn’t making any move to leave the room.  Since I couldn’t leave her all alone, I continued my conversation with the man.

“Who’s talking about me?  There’s only three of us here, sir.”

The man shook his head adamantly as he spoke.  “I don’t expect you to see them; not even I can see them.  I can hear them, though, as plain as day.”

I sighed and looked back at the nurse.  She was just standing there, watching the guy like he would grow a second head or something.  I knew I had to snap her out of it, so I moved to stand directly in front of her as I addressed her.  “Is everything okay?  We should probably leave the room now.”

She blinked at me a few times before snapping out of it.  Her voice was weak when she replied.  “Yeah, you’re right.  Sorry about that; let’s get out of here.”

Without even sparing the guy another look, the two of us left the room and locked up the door behind us.  We returned to the station we both sat at, and I went back to looking at the monitors.  After a few minutes of that, the nurse spoke up.  “There’s something off about that guy; it’s kind of creepy.”

I looked over to her with a bit of a chuckle before responding.  “We work in a mental hospital.  Everyone here is a little off.”

She shook her head at me as she continued the conversation.  “It’s more than that.  I’ve seen plenty of schizophrenic patients in my time, but not one that knew personal information like that.”

I sort of waved her off.  “Everything he said was public record.  Maybe he’s just really into obituaries.  I don’t think we have anything to worry about.  He’s locked in a padded cell, cuffed to a bed.  It’s not like he’s getting up or leaving anytime soon.  The transport guards made it seem like this was temporary anyway.”

She smiled and apologized for being jumpy, and I told her not to worry about it.  It was normal to be a little paranoid, working late at night in a place like that.  Crazy had a way of affecting people, even the sanest ones.  We resumed our conversation about The Walking Dead for a little while and ended up rehashing a lot of our same arguments before the conversation was over.

She excused herself to do some rounds, and I went back to keeping an eye on the monitors.  Someone had the foresight to install one in the padded cell, so it made my job even easier.  When I looked at the feed, the guy seemed to be talking to someone.  I looked through the feed a bit, and as I expected, there wasn’t anyone else in there with him.  I watched him for a few more minutes before checking the other feeds.

A little while later, the nurse showed up and seemed freaked out again.  I was curious now and asked her about it.  “Is everything okay?  You’re looking pretty pale right now.”

She looked at me oddly before speaking.  “Have you been messing with me?”

For the second time that night, I raised a brow.  I had no idea what the hell she was talking about and didn’t mind saying so.  “What are you talking about?  I’ve been sitting right here the whole time.”

She plopped down into the chair next to mine, and I noticed her shaking a little.  She sat there collecting herself.  “I swear I heard someone talking to me in the back hallway just a few minutes ago.  I thought maybe it was you trying to screw with me.  Swear it wasn’t you?”

Certain she’d just scared herself.  I put her mind at ease.  “Wasn’t me, and I didn’t see anyone but you on the camera feed.  What did you hear?”

She looked me square in the face.  “Did you break your left arm trying to get a cat out of a tree when you were eight?”

I sat up a little straighter in my chair and glared at her.  I knew for a fact that it wasn’t something we’d ever talked about before.  Someone had to be fucking with me, and my money was on Ben from transport.  I’d played a great prank on him a few months back at a party, and he swore he’d get me back one of these days.  It seemed odd to use a patient to do it, but at this point, I wasn’t putting anything past him.  I snapped at the nurse, “Did Ben put you up to this?”

She shook her head vehemently and put a hand on my arm.  There were tears glistening in her storm-gray eyes.  She swallowed hard and barely even managed to speak to me.  “No, I swear.  I heard someone talking about you in the hallway.  You have to believe me, Kevin.”

I shook her off and stood up immediately, deciding to check things out for myself.  This joke was losing its humor very quickly, and I planned on getting to the bottom of it as soon as possible.  I clipped the radio to my belt and headed into the back hallway.  I walked up and down it a few times, listening hard to hear whatever it was the nurse had been talking about.

When I didn’t hear anything, I went back to the nurse.  I stood there in front of the desk while I talked to her.  “Let’s go.  I want to question that new patient, but I’m not allowed to without a staff member.”

She looked terrified at the thought of seeing that guy again, and it took quite a lot of convincing to get her to change her mind.  After some debate, she followed me slowly.  When we got there, I unlocked the door with my key card, and we stepped inside.  I reached down and put the rubber stopper under the bottom of the door.  Neither of us wanted to get accidentally locked inside with the guy.

Remember when I mentioned how outdated the place was earlier?  Yeah, once that door closes, it auto-locks and can only be opened from the outside.  After a guard and a nurse got stuck in there with a violent patient, someone bought a stopper to keep it from happening again.  I felt a little weird about trusting my safety and well-being to a wedge-shaped piece of rubber.

With that issue all settled, I stood back up and turned my attention to the guy cuffed to the bed.  “All right, man, I’m going to ask you a few questions.  For starters, did Ben give you all that information on me while you were being transported here?”

The guy, just sort of, shook his head as much as he could in his position as he spoke.  “I don’t know which one of them was Ben, but no.  The voices told me, as I said before.  They tell me a lot of things.”

I moved on to my next question almost immediately.  I didn’t want to have to stay in this room any longer than I needed to.  “Who do these voices belong to?”

It wasn’t that I believed in what was going on, but I felt like I needed to cover all my bases.  This was a weird situation, no matter how you looked at it.  The guy responded easily enough, “I’m not exactly sure, but I’ve been hearing them for years.”

I nodded at that and considered what my next option was.  I came up with a great test quickly and laid it out for him.  “Mind if we try a little experiment?  I want to ask you a question about something I’ve never told anyone before.  If the answer is right, I might believe you.”

The guy nodded as if to invite the question.  I thought of a great one and got on with it.  “What was the name of the girl I lost my virginity to, and where did it happen?”

The guy looked around the room a bit as if listening for the answer.  After a few minutes of silence, he looked back at me and answered the question.  “Her name was Jessica, and you were in the back of a red and white pickup truck with a white topper.”

I took a deep breath after hearing that.  No one knew about what happened with Jessica, let alone that it had happened in a truck.  I decided to ask one more question just to make sure.  I didn’t want to jump to conclusions, after all.  “Okay, here’s the next question.  What am I most afraid of?”

I knew for a fact no one could answer this question; not even my mother knew the answer to this one.  Just like before, there were a few minutes of silence in which the guy looked around the room.

Just before he could answer, however, the nurse beat him to the punch.  “You’re terrified of being alone ever since you were a kid, and your babysitter locked you in that closet so she could spend some uninterrupted time with her boyfriend.  She threatened to tell your mother about the horror comic collection you weren’t supposed to have if you told on her.”

My eyes grew wide as I stared at the nurse.  They were clearly both hearing the same voice, and obviously, I could not.  I was officially starting to get creeped out now.  I even felt a chill run down my spine.  New questions came to mind, and I looked back to the guy.  “Is that why you’re here?  Because of the voices?”

He shook his head and set the record straight.  “No, I’m here because I killed someone.  The voices told me to do it.”

I gave a slight pause at that.  I hadn’t expected him to be a murderer.  I could not even speak at that point in time; my frayed nerves were more than obvious.  Unable to think straight, I violated protocol and left the nurse in the room, returning to the desk to sit down.  I didn’t feel prepared for what was happening and felt like I needed to put as much distance between myself and what was happening as I could without losing my job.

According to the feed, the nurse pulled the stopper as she left the room and was heading in my direction.  She sat down in the chair next to me, and neither of us looked at each other or said a word for what felt like forever.  I continued checking the monitors like I always did, but at that point, the lack of conversation was starting to get a little bit uncomfortable.

I finally turned my head towards her and spoke.  “I can’t wait till they get that guy out of here; this shit is seriously starting to get to me a little.”

The nurse just kind of nodded a bit.  She was still every bit as pale as she had been earlier, so I knew for a fact she was more freaked out than I was.  Before she could say anything in response to me, her eyes suddenly started darting around all over the place, and she stood.

I looked at myself and didn’t see a damn thing, so I attempted to get to the bottom of it.  “What’s going on now?  Do you…”

She cut me off with a light shush and a finger to her lips.  This went on for a good couple of minutes, causing shivers to once again radiate through my spine.  Eventually, she looked at me with fearful eyes.  “The voices, I think they’re children.  I didn’t notice it before, but now it’s as clear as day.  You really can’t hear them?”

I shook my head and looked at her like she was batshit crazy.  I couldn’t hear a damn thing and still harbored the thought of Ben fucking with me.  I made up my mind to radio him and confront him about it when things settled down again.  For the moment, though, I was a little curious about what the voices were saying.  “The fact that the voices belong to kids makes it that much more fucked up, you know.  So, what are they saying now anyway?”

I could see tears slowly starting to stream from her eyes.  In place of a proper response, she suddenly leaned down and hugged me tightly, which was sort of uncomfortable.  I didn’t know her well enough for her to be violating my personal space like that.  I tried to pry her off me, but she just kept squeezing tighter and crying.

She managed to get a few words out between sobs.  “I’m so sorry, Kevin, I didn’t know.”

What the hell was she going on about now?  I was starting to leave that creeped-out feeling behind, and I edged closer and closer towards being seriously pissed off.  I pushed her off as hard as I could without hurting her and broke the hold she had on me.

I stood up immediately and rounded on her.  “Tell me what the fuck you’re talking about right now.  I’m getting tired of this shit!”

She started to step towards me again but took a quick couple of steps back.  There was no way in hell I was letting that woman put her arms around me like that again.  It’s not that she wasn’t attractive; she was.  I just didn’t like a single thing about this entire situation.  At any other time, though, it might have been a different story.

She stopped trying to get closer, wiped her eyes as best as she could, and spoke to me.  “I had no idea about what happened to your little boy.  I’m always here if you need to talk.”

I couldn’t even speak.  The adrenaline was pumping through my veins like fire at this point.  Only my ex and my mother knew about that; it wasn’t in a newspaper or anything.  Blake had passed when he was only a few months old; SIDS, they said.  I teared up a little myself and just stared at her.  Whatever was going on, I was certain now that it couldn’t be Ben fucking with me.

Were these kids good, evil, somewhere in between?  What was their purpose, and why in the hell were they talking so much about me?  None of this made any sense, and I had no idea how to go about sorting it out.  I never responded to the situation; instead, I sat back down and returned to the monitors.  Seeing no one out of their rooms or even so much as a janitor walking down a hall, I switched my feed to the guy cuffed to his bed in the padded cell.

I sat there and watched his lips move on and off for a good ten minutes before I ran a hand over my face.  With that wave of adrenaline over, I was starting to feel a little tired.  Unfortunately, I still had roughly three hours left of my shift.  I rubbed my face a little bit more and got to my feet.

Before I left the station, I looked over to the nurse.  “I’m going to go get some coffee from the vending machine.  Do you want anything while I’m there?”

She nodded and asked for her usual with some creamer and a few sugar packets.  I wandered down the hall and descended the stairs to the vending area.  I slid a few quarters in the coffee machine and waited while the cup fell into place and that hot nectar of the gods began to squirt out of the nozzle.

Suddenly I heard an odd sound behind me and spun around quickly to find its source.  It sounded like the footsteps of children.  When I didn’t see anything, I pawned it off on my overworked brain and slowly turned back around to face the machine.  With one cup of coffee made, I slid another few quarters into the slot and sighed.  While it was pouring, I put the sugars and creamer she’d wanted into her coffee and snagged one of those little red stirring straws to stir up the concoction.

By the time I was done with that, my cup of coffee was all ready to go.  I made mine up the way I liked it and started heading back towards the staircase.  I froze in my tracks as I noticed several steps of small, wet footprints on the floor near the bottom set.  My first thought was that some kids were out of bed, so I followed the footprints down the hall, coffee cups in my hands.

A few minutes later, I came to a dead end.  The prints should have stopped there, but they didn’t.  It looked as if the kids had walked up the wall and across the ceiling.  At that point, I was just done, so I hurried back to and up the steps, then down the hall to the station without looking back.  I quickly handed the nurse her coffee and took a seat, jumping straight into the camera feed.

“Thanks for the coffee.  What do I owe you?” she asked before taking a sip.  I shrugged and answered without looking over at her.

“Don’t worry about it; you can buy next time.”

She smiled over at me weakly and squeaked out the words, “Thanks, I really needed this.”

Silence descended once again between us as I zoned back into my work.  I was starting to worry more the longer I sat there.  I couldn’t help but wonder what other secrets these mystery children knew about me.  There were so many things I kept to myself, but one would ruin me if anyone heard about it.  I guess some people’s dark secrets are darker than others.

I glanced over at the nurse just to check on her, but she wasn’t there.  I looked back at the feed and saw her heading to that padded cell.  She unlocked the door with her key card and stepped in, so I switched to the feed in the room.  They seemed as if they were talking, but I had no idea what they were saying.  I silently cursed management for not having sound on their cheap-ass security cameras.  Then I quietly chastised myself for never learning to read lips.

This went on for a few minutes before they both turned and looked directly at the camera.  This sent another chill up and down my spine.  It’s like they knew I was watching the two of them at that exact moment.  I calmed myself a bit by realizing they probably assumed I was watching them since I wasn’t in the room doing my job.  I grumbled a bit, got up, and headed there myself to see what was going on.

When I got there, the nurse was gone, and the guy was grinning at me.  I hadn’t passed the nurse in the hall, so that was kind of weird, considering the room was at the end of the said hall, and there was no other way to go.  I glanced around the room and still didn’t see her.

Suddenly the guy cuffed to his bed started laughing.  I jumped a little and spun around to glare at him.  “Where’s the nurse?”

He stopped laughing, but that grin never left his pale features.  His only response was, “We know what you did.”

My heart sank; this was the moment I had been dreading all night.  Just as I was about to turn around and get the hell out of there, I felt a tap on my shoulder.  I spun around and received a blow to the face with a bedpan.  I staggered a little before shaking it off.  I looked up in time to see the nurse holding the bedpan and coming at me for another attack.  I ducked to the side, pushed her away, and took off out of the room down that long hallway.

I could hear rapid footsteps right behind me.  My heart started pounding in my chest, making it a little difficult to breathe.  The station was too open, and there was no way to defend it, so I grabbed my radio as I ran by and headed to the room where they distributed the medication.  I slid my card in the slot, but nothing happened.  I looked over my shoulder and saw the nurse closing in on me with a syringe in her hand filled with some mysterious liquid.

Another swipe yielded no results, and my hand started to sweat so bad I could barely hold onto the card.  She would be right on top of me any second now, and I knew it.  The third swipe was the charm; the little green light flashed, and I heard the door unlocking.  I pushed open the door and slammed it shut behind me.

The first order of business was barricading the door so she couldn’t even get in if she used her card.  With my adrenaline pumping all over again, it didn’t take much to slide the full shelving units against the door and load them up with everything heavy that I could find.

I could hear her beating against the door and screaming the words, “We know what you did, Kevin!  You’re not going to get away with it!”

I keyed up my radio and called out for help.  “If anyone is listening right now, this is an emergency.  I need help at the Twin Valley Behavioral Center for Children.”

Oddly enough, it was Ben that responded.  “This is Ben.  What the hell is going on, Kevin?  We’re en route now to pick up that transfer from earlier.”

Thank God they were on the way.  I pulled myself together and answered as calmly as I could.  “You guys need to step on it, seriously.  I’m under attack here!”

The door slammed against the shelves with so much force they slid about an inch.  The nurse was screaming nonsensical words and slamming herself into the door repeatedly.  Those shelves were going to tip over any second now.  I tried to throw my body weight against it from my side as I waited for a response.

Eventually, Ben’s voice drifted back through the radio.  “Please tell me he didn’t get loose!”

My body was rocking with each slam against those shelves and the door.  I knew I couldn’t keep this up for much longer.  I heard the snap of bones between slams against the door, and the nurse cried out between nonsensical screams, but she didn’t stop throwing herself at that door.

I keyed up the mic to respond.  “No, but he’s done something to the nurse.  I don’t know how to explain what’s happening here; I just need you guys to hurry the fuck up!”

The reply came very quickly.  “Going as fast as we can, Ben.  We’ll be there in just a few minutes.  Just hang in there.”

That was easier said than done, given the current circumstances.  The shelves were starting to tilt to the point they were about to fall on top of me.  Needing to distract myself, I kept talking to Ben.  Having that contact with another sane person was a little comforting.  “Who did this guy kill, anyway?”

There was static for a few seconds before he answered me.  “They just found seven more bodies buried in the earthen cellar of his basement a few hours ago; that’s why we’re coming back for him so soon.  We’re transferring him to a secured, isolated location.”

I heard the door splitting as the shelving units finally toppled over and pinned me to the floor.  The radio spun out of my hand and slid halfway across the room from the impact.  I heard Ben’s voice one last time before everything went dark.  “It turns out all his victims were known child molesters.”

Rating: 10.00/10. From 2 votes.
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🎧 Available Audio Adaptations: None Available

Written by Raz T. Slasher
Edited by Craig Groshek and N.M. Brown
Thumbnail Art by Craig Groshek
Narrated by N/A

🔔 More stories from author: Raz T. Slasher

Publisher's Notes: N/A

Author's Notes: N/A

More Stories from Author Raz T. Slasher:

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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).

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