Story #30

There was a knock on the door. It was barely audible, but Alex could hear it. He didn’t move. The knock came again,  only this time it was slightly louder than before. Alex clenched the knife he was holding. He waited in silence for another knock or a possible jiggle of the handle. He let out a long breath, not realizing that he had been holding it. Alex quietly waddled over to the door and looked out the peephole. Nobody was there. He stared for a few more minutes, but nothing happened.

Alex walked back to his couch and sat down. There were four distinct knocks this time. His palms began to sweat. He anxiously tapped his foot.

“Please help me, sir. Someone is following me.” The voice of an elderly woman whispered through his door. She began scratching at the door and whimpering.

“Go away,” he yelled.

The scratching became louder. “Help me, sir! They’re getting closer!” She yanked at the handle. Alex was no fool,  but this lady sounded desperate. As soon as he stood up,  she banged her fist at rapid speed against the door. Still gripping the knife, Alex looked through the peephole. Nobody was there. He threw open the door and peeked on either side. Emptiness. He walked out a few steps to see the empty hallway on his floor. Nothing still.

Alex turned around to go back inside,  but his door was closed. He tried to open it and it wouldn’t budge. He patted down his pockets to discover that his keys weren’t on him. He picked up his welcome mat so he could grab the extra key. With his knife pointing forward in his left hand and his right hand unlocking the door,  he was prepared for anything. Alex opened the door and blindly walked forward.

“Please help me, sir. They’re here, ” the familiar elderly voice said. Alex turned in the direction of the voice and saw a woman with long gray hair wearing a floppy black hat that covered her face. She laughed and pointed behind Alex who reflexively spun around. A large group of shadows stood there,  flickering in the dim light of his dining room. He quickly turned back to face the lady sitting on his couch. To his surprise,  she was gone.

The fluorescent dining room bulb blazed brighter than ever,  then broke. The apartment went pitch black. Alex felt cold hands grab him. He tirelessly stabbed at the dark,  but succeeded at pricking nothing. He screamed even though he knew nobody would be able to hear him.  “We’ve been waiting for you, Alex,” the shadows said.

The shadows will probably be a recurring thing in some of my stories because that’s what I’ve always seen in my nightmares.


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