lunes, 3 de septiembre de 2012

The Prowler.

I know none of you will ever believe me. But I'm not writing this for you to believe me. I'm writing this because I have absolutely nothing else to do. I'm trapped for eternity in this place.

I grew up and lived my entire life in the most average place you could find in these times. It wasn't a particularly calm place, nor was it noisy. It was an average capital of an average country, in a middle-class house on the outskirts of the city.
In these times, fear has been obliterated. There's simply nothing we can fear anymore, nor nothing that can surprise our fear gland. Science has eradicated all the unknown. And with everything known, there's no more darkness to dread.  Besides the previous, internet has made scientific knowledge available to everyone, with the special spice of ruthless images that make us tougher, resilient to what could still be unknown.
Nowadays, as almost every irrationality, fear is nothing else than a sign of weakness and ignorance. A sign of social backwardness. Of stupidity.

I grew up in a family in which what is commonly known as "paranormal" wasn't something extraordinary to fear. My grandmother, who lived exactly in the house next to mine and my mother's, kept Ouija boards, tarot cards, runes, and several books about magic, occultism and "the paranormal". Uncommon shades, sounds, and dreams were not something to be scared of. We had this motto: Fear the living more than the dead.
Apart from the general immutability that my family and I had developed, we had an important number of animals at home. This way, every unfamiliar sound was more often attachable to them than to anything else. And we lived happily. Calm, informed, and safe.

The night that took me here, I was sitting coolly in front of my computer as I listened to my mother's peaceful breathing in the adjoining room. My father had never lived with us. He had merely given me his last name and disappeared. Since then, it had always been just me and my mother.
Having all this time to reflect now, I still can't figure out why this had to happen to me. Besides having, maybe, a less common family, we were all average people.
Being a common, lazy Thursday night, I was scrolling down on some ordinary cinema critique when I heard a strange noise.
I looked around. Having so many cats, usually at least one of them was always with me. However, when I looked around, there was none. I paid a little bit of attention for a short time, but as nothing else came up, I shrugged and, as always, blamed the cats.
I kept scrolling down. It was about eleven pm. Not so late.
Then, a couple of minutes later, I heard the sound one more time. This time it was louder, clearer and stranger. It couldn't have been the cats anymore, unless one of them had suddenly learnt to walk backwards on the ceiling. This time I stood up, slightly alarmed. I paid attention again. The sound, which had seemed near just seconds ago, seemed now a little bit more distant.
In vain, I tried to look for cats around me again. When they were alarmed, it meant that it was something to be alarmed by. If they were calm, there was nothing to fear. However, this time I had none of them to look.
Suddenly, what seemed to be walking on the ceiling fell down on the floor with a short, dry sound. Unconsciously, the back of my hair bristled, and I gave the first short steps to my room's entrance. Every sound had ceased, and everything was silent again.
I leant over my door's frame, turned on the lights of the living room, and lurked for anything odd. There was my mother's crafting table, the dining table, and over one of the chairs, one of my cat's bed. Everything seemed normal, except for the cat's bed. I approached it with short steps until I was able to see the little bed's content. Had it been empty, it would have been a good sign; however, it was filled with red stains, fur, and wreckages of what seemed to be animal flesh. 
While I was still in a silent shock I heard the odd footsteps on the ceiling again, and despite all my formation, this time I panicked and ran to my mother's room.
When I approached her bed, I didn't take long to realize that something wasn't right.
With the slender illumination that came from the living room, I could distinguish the outlines of what seemed to be a human body squatting over my mother's bed.
My heart stopped beating and the adrenaline, in a matter of microseconds, increased all my sensory capacity.  With my pupils widened, I could clearly see what was squatting over my mother, yet I had absolutely no idea of what it was or where such a creature could have come from.
As I could first see with its silhouette, it had a human shape. It was thin, skinny; I could actually see its bones through its grey and black stained skin. Its arms were shorter than an average human being's, but its fingers where longer, crowned with horrifying claws which it buried in the bed covers. Its feet were very similar to its hands. And its head: bald, grey, and slightly purple because of several veins that could be seen on top of it, hold a face with holes for eyes, two smaller holes for a nose and a horrifying, serrated mouth with a jaw that hung with the weight of one of my cats.
Regardless the fact that it had no eyes, I knew he was ogling at me. 
Bubba was still alive. She made no sound but I could see her foot trying to escape from death. I prayed that she died quickly.
Then there was my mum.
She was also still alive. Under the open legs of this creature, I could notice her slow, serene breathing under the bed coats. The question was for how much longer.
As suddenly as everything had happened, the creature opened its jaws and let Bubba fell dead over the floor with a slight sound of splashing blood. I knew the next victim was going to be my mother.
In a vain attempt to try to save her with the most naive emotion of all, I approached the creature, hoping that it killed me first. Nonetheless, since the moment in which the thing stepped inside my house, there was absolutely no escape for anyone.
In a quick movement, the creature threw its claws toward me with its open jaws, and I lost consciousness.

I woke up in a hospital bed. I couldn't see properly and one of my arms refused to respond to my will of wiping the tears that flooded through my sore eyes.  No matter how blurry the scene was for me, noticing myself alone in the dorm, I realized my mother had died too. She would had never left me alone. She would have fought with the nurses just for taking care of me, just to ensure my dreams. But she wasn't there. All I could see were moisten, distorted images, and all I could hear was the beep of the machine that seemed to inform people of my vital status. 
That night, I couldn't sleep anymore. Therefore, I stayed awake as my eyes slowly dried and I was able to see clear again little by little. With the only trembling arm that worked, I touched my face. I had a patch over my right eye and several scars over all my face. As I approached to examine my own neck, I heard the footsteps on the ceiling again.
This time my reflex was to close the only eye I had left and hide as well and quickly as I could under the hospital blankets.

I recovered well. I have nice food, nice company, and nice safety. When I move toward to a mirror, I see an average human being with a missing eye and a thick scar that crosses my face from the forehead to my lower lip. But that doesn't mean I'm a less average person.
I've become a good friend of one of the nurses. She told me once what happened that night when I was seventeen. Well, she couldn't actually tell what had happened, but she could tell me what the police found: three corpses, several dead cats, and all the furniture destroyed. I tried to inquire about the corpses' state, but she didn't give me too much information, only that one of the bodies' guts had been taken out of its trunk and left splattered all around the plot.
Considering that in 5 years I've never received a visit, I speculate that the two other corpses where my grandmother and grandfather.

I lied. I did receive a visit once, when I had just got here. It was an aunt. She brought me chocolates. I couldn't speak too much because I was still in shock, but it was a nice visit. However, when she was just leaving, the Prowler (how I started to call it with time) approached her and I screamed so loud that the nurses had to come and sedate me.
My aunt never came back, nor anyone else.

We haven't become good friends, you know, with the Prowler. But I got used to it. And the more used to it I get, the more often it appears. I stopped screaming when I realized I was completely by myself with it. No one else can see it, so every scream is in vain and a waste of energy.
It is not that it has become less terrifying, or less ferocious. I still tremble when it opens its jaws. I can still picture Bubba giving her last breath of life.
However, I won't be able to commit suicide inside this place, and the Prowler is not going to kill me. I've tried it. It wants to keep me alive. So everything I can do now is try to make these next 60 years as bearable as I can, while I figure out how to kill myself.

As I have had a pretty good behavior, the nurses let me write in a notebook of thick sheets (so I can't cut myself) with the most harmless pen they could find: a crayon. As I have a lot of spare time, writing is almost everything I do.
Every time I try to describe the Prowler's appearance with this light blue crayon, for a second I forget it's real and only staring at the paper everything feels suddenly peaceful again, unreal.
However, I only have to lift my head up once again from the notebook, and there it is again. Gaping at me with those empty holes that it has for eyes.  

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