Corn Hill Creep

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Horror  |  House: Booksie Classic

A short horror story I wrote. Its about an encounter that a man has on a late night walk home. I hope you enjoy

Rain. Always fucking raining. I think to myself as I trudge back home from my girlfriend’s house. It’s late on a Friday night and with the exception of a few drunk college kids stumbling home, I have the dark streets to myself. This late in October, the rain carries a chill that cuts through my light jacket like a knife. I curse myself for not thinking to bring an umbrella, pull my collar up tighter and reflect back on how I got myself into this mess to begin with.

Ordinarily, I’d be driving myself home, blasting some hardcore punk music and feeling sorry for the poor sap that found themselves caught out in this miserable weather. Well, tonight that sap is me, and it’s my own damn fault. You see, I was never one of those people who knew just when to call it quits with the booze and drugs. Nope not this guy. I’m the type of guy who rockets himself into an entirely new dimension of being fucked up, and decides to drive his dumb ass home. I’m sure you can piece together the rest of the story. So multiple court dates and a $5000 fine later, I’m drenched to the bone walking the lonely, dark road home.

The light from the streetlamps is just barely enough to keep me from stepping in some obnoxiously large puddles while I continue down main street. Walking quickly, with my hands stuck firmly in the pockets of my jacket, I come to the sprawling park that my apartment building buts up to. Of course, it’s on the far side of said park, and I have a decision to make. Do I take the longer, but well-lit route just skirting the outside of the park, or do I walk the path that runs directly through it? During the day, my choice would be pretty obvious, but this late at night I have to search my mind for the correct answer.

The driving rain and autumn chill makes up my mind for me. Cutting through the park it is. I hang a right and start making my way down the poorly lit path that runs straight through the gnarled trees and dense bushes. I’m walking hurriedly with my head down into the rain. I’m not the type of person who scares easily, even so I can’t say that I’m a fan of the choice that I made. The trees are swaying crazily in the wind and every bush I pass seems to reach its branches out towards me in an attempt to drag me off the path and into the inky blackness just outside of the pools of light.

I’m just about to come up on the halfway mark, and I hear a strange noise being carried on the wings of the wind. It’s enough to make me stop dead in my tracks and strain my ears against the malicious weather, trying discern what exactly I’m hearing. Several long seconds seem to drag on into infinity before I hear it again, only closer. It like nothing I’ve ever heard before or since. The best way I can describe it would be an animal caught in the throes of death. It’s a unique, primal sound that cuts its way through the shitty weather directly into my ears. I can feel the hairs on the back of my neck standing on end.

After hearing the sound for the second time, I decide that it’s time to get my ass in gear and high tail it back home. At this point I’m not breaking into a full run, but I’m certainly not taking my time either. The darkness, rain and wind are wreaking havoc on my senses and playing tricks on my eyes. Every shadow, every tree appears to be some kind of creature hell bent on dragging me down into the depths. I’m so focused on getting myself out of the situation, I almost don’t notice it. Almost.

About 50 feet ahead of me, just on the edge of the small circle illuminated by one of the few streetlights on my path, is what appears to be a person with their back to me. Now this isn’t a totally uncommon thing to see, but this late at night (and in this weather) it’s a little more so. My guard is immediately raised, and my pace slows to that of a leisurely walk. As I get closer, it sounds like the person in front of me is….crying? I do my best to approach the stranger quietly, while still keeping my head on a swivel. I’ve never been a very trusting person, and now is not the time to start. When I’m about 10 feet away, I can really see just who is in front of me. A man with long, unkempt black hair, dirty blue jeans and a stained, red parka is hovering on the very edge of the light provided by the streetlamp with his back to me. And yes, he’s crying, with both of his hands covering his face.

I stop a short distance from the man and try to get his attention, which doesn’t seem to work. I raise my voice and try again, I still get no response. Sighing deeply, I close the few remaining feet between us and put my hand on his shoulder.  He instantly stops crying, turns to face me, and drops his hands. I can physically feel my blood run cold.

Where there should be eyes, there’s nothing but two deep black voids sunken into the creature’s face. Its mouth is a jagged, blood red line that runs the entirety from ear to ear. It has no nose to speak of, just a smooth patch of grey leathery skin. Its appearance hits me like a kick in the face. My breath catches in my chest as I try to backpedal away from this monstrosity. Fear, fear like I’ve never known before crashes over me in waves, and causes me to trip myself on my own feet. I land hard on my back, never taking my eyes off of the creature in front of me. It reaches its hands towards me and I truly see them for the first time. Nails the size of steak knives protrude from its gnarled claws. As it takes a few shuffling steps towards me, it opens its terrifying version of a mouth which shows off another pitch-black void, and unleashes an inhuman wail that shakes me to my very core.

“What the fuck are you?!” I yell as the creature advances on me. The sickly, yellow light cast from the streetlamp catching on the edge of one of its claws is the last indication I need to run for my life, so run I do. I get to my feet and sprint in the direction I was originally heading. Running towards home and in my mind, ultimate salvation. For a brief, wonderful moment I can hear nothing beyond my feet pounding on the pavement and the blood rushing in my ears. Then, above the noise I hear it. “What the fuck are you? What the fuck are you?” I chance a look behind me, and it’s there. Barely 10 feet behind me running faster than I ever thought possible, and mimicking my words exactly. I whip my head around and brace myself into the wind and rain. And I run. I run harder than I’ve ever run before. I run for my life. I run as if the devil himself is chasing me, and as far as I know, that could very well be true.

Absolute, primal fear carries me on quaking legs through the park at a speed id never be able to match under normal circumstances. My breath comes in ragged gasps. My heart slams against my rib cage and threatens to burst out of my chest. And through all of this, I can still hear it running me down. The creature lets out another terrifying shriek that lets me know it’s still right on my tail. I can feel my body begging me to stop running and my strength waning. I know that I won’t be able to keep this pace for much longer. Warm tears steam down my otherwise freezing cold face as I concede to my dismal fate. I imagine just how it’s going to feel to have my skin filet off my bones by those maddening claws. I can see that horrific mouth opening wide enough to swallow me whole. I can smell my warm blood being spilt on the cold ground.

 And just when I think I can’t go any further, I see it.

My home. The large, oppressive concrete building that I dared to call ugly on any normal day has never looked more beautiful. I push my body past its limits and hit the road at a dead sprint. The rain is coming in sheets and is nearly enough to cover the sound of my feet slapping the soaking pavement. I can feel the creature breathing down my neck and I don’t dare turn around. One slip. One mistake. One false move and I know it will have me. I quickly come to the front door to the apartment building and I crash through it.

I land on all fours in the lobby of my building, and quickly scramble back to the door. I slam it closed and support it with my back, expecting the creature to collide with it at any second. I plant both feet, brace my arms in the doorway, grit my teeth and…..nothing. I manage to stay standing in that position for several more minutes before my body simply gives out and I collapse in a heap in front of the door. I sit with my back and head resting on the door, legs splayed out in front of me. My entire body quivers from pure fear as I try desperately to gain control over my irregular breaths and thrashing heart. I’m just barely beginning to calm myself when I hear it. It starts out so quietly that I’m almost able to convince myself that it’s not real. But I know the truth.

“Come back outside. Help me mister. Help me.” The creature whispers to me in the voice of a child. Before I can truly comprehend what is happening, I see the doorknob start to turn. I grab onto it and brace the door with all of my strength. Giggling. I hear giggling coming from the other side of the threshold. I feel the last threads of my sanity begin to break as I go mad with terror. At the last second, memory surfaces from deep within my psyche and I look up. The door has a heavy-duty bolt lock, installed by the property owner not but two weeks ago. I thank the god of paranoid landlords, throw the bolt closed and back off the door.

The heavy steel door shakes in its frame as the being tries to break it down. All the while I hear it speaking to me in a multitude of voices. A child. An old woman. An angry man. And of course, I hear myself “What the fuck are you? What the fuck are you? “. I face the door and let out a loud, angry, confused but ultimately impotent scream. I scream the longest, most vile string of curse words I can muster. I scream because I am totally lost in a sea of fear. In between my outbursts, I finally notice something. There’s no sounds emanating from the opposite side of the door. silence.

This time, I don’t wait around to see what the fuck that thing was up to now. I whip my body around and burst into the stairway. Taking the stairs two and three at a time, I make it up to the third floor and slam the door to the stairwell closed behind me. With shaking hands, I reach into my pocket and somehow manage to grab the correct key for my door. My dilapidated body cascades through the threshold of my apartment. And after locking the door and throwing the deadbolt on, I lay face down on my worn carpet, infused with the comforting smell of cigarette smoke.

After a few minutes spent collecting my thoughts and trying to calm my rebelling body, I make my way into my bathroom. I catch my refection an almost don’t recognize the person staring back at me. My hair is a soaking mess, sticking up in odd formations. Eyes stand open wide and roll around crazily in my skull. My mouth hangs agape, gasping for air. I splash cold water on my face and stumble into my bedroom where I crash facedown onto my un-made bed. Total Silence rules my environment for a few precious moments. Until I hear it. My closet door creeps open ever so slightly.

“We found you!” A child exclaims from my closet, where the door stands agar. I stand up slowly and turn to face the source of the terror coursing through my body. “It’s not nice to hide from us” it proclaims as one of its demon-like claws clutches the edge of the door and inches it open. In the deep, black abyss that is my closet, the ambient light from outside catches on the creatures jagged teeth.  I have time to utter one defiant phrase before my life is ripped away from me.

“Fuck you Creep”

Submitted: October 31, 2017

© Copyright 2020 Jake P. Fortin. All rights reserved.

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