So this is my first venture into Creepy territory. I wrote this to be a 4-5 parter, and am unsure if I've started out on the right foot. This first part is meant to be rather vague, and really an elongated build up while establishing the rest. Like I said, it's my first venture into unfamiliar territory as a writer, so I need a little review to see if I'm on the right track for something. That said, some material may be offensive, triggering, and just downright depressing. Read at your own risk.
The Grey : Part 1
The sun was out, but on its way down. The day’s last yellow rays cut through the clouds and newly turned red and gold leaves that adorned the small trees that spotted the small neighborhood, bouncing lively off the grass in the yards. A woman was washing her car in a driveway, while a few homes down, a man was tending to his lawn. On the opposite side of the street, the smells of a cookout wafted through the air. Across the neighborhood, children could be heard playing with friends within the safety of the white fences surrounding their yards. It was a picturesque scene: a living Hallmark Card.
Laena slumped over in the floor of her new home, chin resting on folded arms that laid across the windowsill, watching the vibrant scenes unfold. However, through the slightly dusty, smudged glass, she could only describe it as grey.
Laena had just moved to this place a few days prior along with her parents. While she had no desire to move from the busy, never-sleeping city, the pleas of their seventeen-year-old daughter did not sway the decision of her parents.
The day they moved in, a few of the neighbors had stopped in to say hello to the new additions to the area. For the most part, if not the entirety, it was the adults of the area who were stopping by to be nosey so as to have something to talk about in “private” conversation. Along with these “friendly” neighbors, some of their children were brought along as well, three of them being around Laena’s age.
While they were few in number and had the least to say during the visit, these three had grabbed Laena’s attention the most. Each one had shared the same story about the house.
According to the tales, there had been multiple deaths in Laena’s new home: some via suicide, some illness, some accidental. Nevertheless, the ending was the same: death.
Given the proximity of Halloween, these stories weren’t keeping Laena from sleeping. It was, however, entertaining to her that these three strangers were trying to scare the newcomer to the town. That night, she had asked her parents if they knew anything about the deaths when they bought the house, and her mother raised an eyebrows at Laena slightly and gave her an unamused half smile. Her Father answered the question with,“Everyone has to die somewhere. May as well be at home.”
The sun was starting its slow fade over the hilltops, and the last of the glimmering rays brought Laena out of her memories into the present. With a sigh, and more than a little effort, Laena started picking her slim frame off the floor and the familiar feeling of light headedness caused her to stumble backwards slightly. She quickly steadied herself against the wall and began trying to focus her eyes on the still half unpacked belongings scattering the house. She was supposed to be taking care of that while her parents were at work, but she just couldn’t muster up the energy to do so.
Her parents were “low-level big-wigs” at some investment company and were married to their work, often leaving Laena to her own devices. In truth, this was the reason they had moved. Her devices got her into a lot of trouble. So, they brought her here: this tranquil, fresh aired place far away from the bustle of city life.
She will be safer here. We will just leave her on her own for ten to twelve hours a day and commute the three hours to and from work.
Laena laughed quietly to herself at the thought while begrudgingly moving towards the unpacked boxes. Staring at the open containers, preparing herself the work ahead of her, the belongings began to swirl together, and the room started to spin. As the shock of the sudden movement of the room began to set in, grey overtook Laena’s vision and she felt herself falling.
It was dark when Laena woke up. At some point during her unwelcome slumber, a storm had rolled in. Pulling her cellphone out of her pocket, she looked at the time.
9 pm. Mom and Dad should be home, but this rain probably slowed them down. Thank God. Knowing I over did it today would get way too many annoying questions.
As Laena began to sit up, a wave of nausea overcome her, and she had to fight the urge to vomit in the floor. She glanced at the boxes of stuff needing unpacked and decided to do it in the morning. She was too drained and too ill to tackle it now. Turning her phone’s flashlight on, she began traversing through the mess of unpacked belongings, entering the hall to the bedrooms.
The bedroom hall was unarguably the creepiest part of the home. It was unnaturally long and wide for the layout of the house. With two doors, one halfway down the wall to her right and one at the end on the left, Laena dreaded the long walk to the end of the hall to her bedroom each night. There were no windows in the hall, so the sun had never touched these walls, not that it could anyway this time of night. It didn’t help the eeriness either that the sole light fixture in this hall was broken and hadn’t been repaired yet thanks to the clumsy efforts of her father trying to install a stylish ornamental basin to replace the dying ceiling fan at her mother’s request. Laena hated this hall. It gave her goosebumps every time she went to bed.
Laena began slowly walking down the hall towards her bedroom. Arguing with herself the entire time that it “was just a freaking hall”. As if to prove to herself she was unafraid, she turned the flashlight off and returned to her trek down the hall. But try as she might, she couldn’t shake the on-edge feeling that this hall gave her.
While stepping past the hall’s first door, her parent’s bedroom door, a flicker of motion in the room grabbed her attention. Startled she jerked herself around and peered into the room. In an instant, her heart dropped. Her breathing became quick and shallow and her chest began to pound. In front of her, just barely visible, a dark silhouette faced her.
Did someone come in while I was out of it?
Quickly she fumbled with her phone, trying to turn the flashlight back on, only taking fleeting looks at the screen before looking back at the silhouette, while millions of “what-ifs” bombarded her mind.
With an immediate flash, the light was on, and the silhouette was gone. In its place, was Laena. She had been scared of her own reflection in wardrobe mirror in her parent’s bedroom.
She stared at her reflection and drew closer to it. As she entered her the bedroom, she couldn’t take her eyes off herself. From a distance, the pale blue light from her phone made the details of herself hard to discern. However, the closer she stepped towards the mirror, the more that she could see.
Laena’s eyes were sunken in. Her once shimmering dark hair looked dull and lifeless. Her cheek bones had started protruding from her face. Her once well-fitting clothes hung off her body loosely like rags. Her skin was deathly pale with almost no signs of life left. She looked… grey. Still staring at the reflection, Laena pulled up the sleeve of her shirt, first revealing thin red lines crisscrossing in every direction. As she continued pulling up the sleeve, she could see the blue bruises with a small red wound in the middle.
How did this happen? How did I let things get so bad? I…I didn’t want things to go this far. I just wanted a little relief. Something… anything… What have I done?
Laena felt something growing inside her: some sort emotionally charged primal instinct. She didn’t fight it or concern herself with it. She only let her mind wander into whatever it wanted. Laena’s eyes began to water slightly. After what seemed like an eternity of staring at herself, it had grown too much for her to ignore. It needed to come out.
Laena ran. She ran as fast as her legs could take her. Out of the room. Down the hall. Into her bedroom and into her bathroom. She turned on the light and slammed the door behind her, leaning against it as tears poured down her cheeks and fell onto the cold linoleum.
She turned her head, just to come face to face with herself again in the medicine cabinet mirror. In the better light, she could see the dark circles under her eyes and the worn, tired expression on her face. She saw the thin, wet residue the tears had left.
She screamed in defiance of herself and hurled her phone at the mirror cracking it and sunk to the floor sobbing uncontrollably with her knees tucked closely to her chest. All the while, it kept growing inside her.
Laena couldn’t take it anymore. She pulled herself up using the sink under the medicine cabinet and stared at herself in the busted mirror for another moment before opening it. Moving a few things aside, she found what she was looking for: an x-acto blade she had hidden when first moving into the home.
She held it to her skin as her heart continued to throb and she felt the cold metal. Her vision started swimming again, but she held her focus on the task at hand, forcing herself to stay conscious.
It was over in an instant.
A single red drop hit the white porcelain of the sink and slowly rolled down towards the drain, to eventually be swallowed by the black hole. Relief began overtaking Laena. A warm feeling began to burst inside her as her heart slowed to its regular rhythm. Her teeth released the lower lip which she hadn’t even realized they had taken possession of.
Laena watched as more red drops joined the first and made their way to the drain. Drop by drop until eventually, they turned grey like everything else in her world. She was comfortable in grey.
She allowed herself to rest against the sink, taking care that the wound stayed over the sink basin. And closed her eyes for a moment to revel in the peace.
Upon opening her eyes Laena looked up at her broken reflection again. Almost instantly, and without warning, the room began to spin again. All the colors in the room began to fade into greyscale. The floor began to move as if breathing. The warm comfort instantly was replaced with fear. Laena couldn’t hold her balance and she began to hold the sink with all her strength so as to not fall over. This is when she noticed.
The new thin red line on her arm was growing, or at least appeared to. It was hard to tell as the blood seemed to be pouring out now and flowing freely down the hungry drain. It was as if something were sucking the lifeblood from her body in comparison to the drops she had just seen.
Her eyes widened with horror as she threw herself away from the sink and the hungry drain, but the movement of the floor made her lose her balance and she fell into the tub behind her, hitting her head on the wall.
Darkness began swallowing her vision, and she suddenly felt overly tired. Although she knew she had to stay awake, the darkness continued encroaching on here eyesight and she felt much too tired to move or scream. As Laena fell to sleep, she could only watch as the stream of her blood continued to flow down the drain.
The sun was on the rise and starting to wake the peaceful neighborhood from the previous night’s slumber. Or at least it would have, if not for the commotion at the neighborhood’s newest residents’ home. By this time, the police were finishing up. It was clear to the investigators as to what had happened.
This family had moved here because their daughter had some pretty serious demons. Judging from her arms, she was depressed and was shooting up. The track marks were healing, but it looked like she still cut herself relatively often. She just cut too deep this time. It freaked her out, she fell, and knocked herself out. She bled out before anyone found her.
As the police began heading out, one investigator, a young man named Adam Wright that just joined the investigation unit, was not entirely content with the conclusions that his senior officers had made.
“You know, something about this doesn’t seem right to me,” Adam said, looking at his more senior partner.
His fellow officer stopped walking and looked Adam in the eyes.
“Look, you’re new. And every new guy on the force wants to be the one that catches the big fish. But trust me, it’s better to just go with the obvious and let it go. It’s not worth it.” With that, Adam's partner walked away and got in the police cruiser.
Adam hung his head and tried to force the questions he had out of his head and began walking away from the house. Try as he might, however, he couldn’t shake the feeling that something was wrong.
End Pt 1
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