Jess

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Thrillers  |  House: Booksie Classic
She had no idea what she was getting into when she moved to her new house.

Submitted: April 04, 2014

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Submitted: April 04, 2014

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I walked into the house that was deep in the woods. The realtor had given me the key that morning. The house was fairly isolated; the closest neighbor was more than half a mile away. It was just what I needed to focus on my art.  I unlocked the front door, and by that I mean the 4 deadbolts. The house was empty and my footsteps echoed across the hardwood floors. This was the first time I was actually seeing the place. I lived too far away and settled for pictures uploaded by the realtor. So far, it was exactly the same as the pictures. The floor to ceiling windows in the foyer overlooked the gorgeous woodland views. The kitchen cabinets had locks on them; the previous owners probably had little kids or something. I walked into the home office, what would soon be my studio. They left one single thing in the house, the painting on the back wall of my studio. It was an old timey portrait of a man. Probably one of the town fathers. It was creepy and it did the whole thing where the eyes follow you. I planned on taking it down a bit later.

Once I settled in, things went back to normal. I began to work on my painting again. I left the creepy portrait up in my studio. It was kind of nice and it was a work of art after all. My days were productive. It was nice to be all alone for once. I could never get anything done in my old apartment. I took a walk every night before sunset. There was this lake not too far from my house. I went there every day to sit for a while. I met my neighbors a few days ago, an adorable elderly couple, the Robinsons. They had a cute little cabin not too far from the other side of the lake. They were my closest neighbors.

Living in such a desolate place began to take its effect on me. I decided that I needed a companion. I remember having a dog when I was growing up. My parents brought home a puppy right before my fourth Christmas. We named him Pluto. Two years later, he was hit by a car. I was devastated and couldn’t bring myself to form another bond of the sort. The echo of my footsteps throughout the house reminded me constantly of my loneliness.

I drove into town on the weekend and adopted a dog from the city shelter. I named him Pluto, in memory of my early childhood friend. He joined me on my daily walks to the lake. My neighbors stopped coming to the lake. I figured that they probably went out of town.

Pluto and I trekked to the lake less often as it began to get colder. When it began to snow, we kept indoors for most of our time. We spent our days painting, messing around, and exploring the house. One day, I let Pluto out to relieve himself. I was watched from inside because it was snowing outside. I turned to put some dishes away. I looked back outside and Pluto was gone. I grabbed a coat, ran outside and called for him but he didn’t show up. After ten freezing and futile minutes I went back inside. I figured he would come back soon. As time passed, I began to get worried because the temperature dropped as steadily as the sun.

Pluto never returned. I planned on donating all of his stuff to the local shelter. As I was pulling the bucket of dog food from the shelf, the scoop fell. I kneeled down and reached under the shelf to grab it. The floor boards creaked more than usual under my weight, as if they were loose. I tested it by stepping on and off of the loose portion. I knocked on the wood and it sounded hollow beneath. I went and grabbed a knife from the kitchen. I stuck the knife into the crack and lifted the floor board up. Stairs descended from the opening and I headed down the stairwell. I pressed my hands against the sides of the stairwell to stabilize myself. The walls were made of metal. I figured it could have been a panic room. It got darker as I got further down. When it got too dark to see what was in front of me I slid my hands down lower on the walls. My fingers felt sharp ridges in the metal. It felt like something sharp had been dragged across it. It was deep too. The exposed metal cut my finger and I jerked my hand away. I put the cut finger up to my mouth and sucked on it. The metallic taste of blood touched my tongue. I felt more scrapes in the walls, they were scattered around everywhere. It was as if someone had done it while going down the stairs. When I reached the last step and moved into the opening of the room I could taste the stale air. It had a weird tinge to it that I couldn’t quite pick up. I used the walls to guide me through the darkness. I walked the perimeter looking for a light switch. I came upon a string hanging from the ceiling. It connected to a single fluorescent light bulb that hung from the roof of the room. I pulled it and it took a moment to process what I saw. There was writing all over the walls. Scratchy hand writing in varying sizes. It scattered all over the room, filling most of the space on the metal walls. It was in blood. I fell to my knees and could hear my heart beat in my ears. There was another noise as well. I noticed a door behind me that I must have missed during my perimeter sweep. The door had planks and three padlocks sealing it closed. The thumping sound was coming from behind it, as if whatever was within was trying to get out. Before I could manage a sane thought, I was already running up the stairs, taking them two at a time. The scrapes in the walls had dried blood around them. When I got to the top of the stairs, I didn’t stop. I heard the splitting sound of wood breaking and a blood curdling screech and I sped up. I ran out of the house and toward the house of my closest neighbors. I could call the police from there. Only when the snow started to fall did I realize that I had forgotten a coat. I was already more than halfway to the Robinson’s house and I wasn’t going back to see whatever had escaped from the secret room. I didn’t notice the small mound in front of me until I got a face full of snow. I had tripped over something and noticed some fur sticking out from the snow. I brushed the fresh snow away and found Pluto… Or what was left of him. Something must have attacked him because the flesh on his stomach was torn away and his intestines littered the ground. The blood had turned the snow red in the surrounding places. I had no time to mourn my loss for I heard another screech, a closer screech. I made a mad dash for the Robinson’s front door. I banged on it. “Let me in! It’s Jess! Help me!” I yelled. No answer. I ran for the back door. I tried the door knob and it was unlocked. I locked the door behind me. “Mr. and Mrs. Robinson, we need to get out of here! Is anyone home?” I screamed into the seemingly empty house. I picked up the phone and the line was dead. I went to the second floor. The Robinson’s were there. Their bodies were on opposite sides of the room. The room was fetid with the stench of death. From the color of their skin both of them had to have been dead for a while. There was a thump on the front door. Whatever was chasing me was trying to break the door in. I ran out the back and into the forest. The adrenaline was the only thing keeping me going. The very uneven ground made it difficult but every time I tripped, I got right back up. I never looked back at my pursuer because I knew the fear would paralyze me. From the shrillness of its cry, it could not be human. I twisted my ankle on something deep in the snow. I tried to get up but it was severely injured. I tried to crawl away as fast as I could but the creature was too close. It pounced on me. I was crushed under the weight. I tried to fight it, I tried to push it away.

“Jess! Jess!”, it called my name. The voice sounded muffled and far too human. I need to get away, I need to get away, I thought to myself. As the hard pounding sound of my heart subsided the voice became clearer.

“Jess! Calm down!” It yelled. My pulse was beginning to return to normal. “God, we have no idea how you got out but it’s time to go back now,” the creature said while holding me to the ground. I began to feel the pain in my ankle. It felt broken. “Those–those people. They were dead,” I sputtered out.

“Jess, you killed them,” the voice said.

What? But-but, I couldn’t have. I was with Pluto and–oh, my God, Pluto! What happened to him? Something attacked him!”

“Jess, you killed him too.”

“But who are you, what are you? Why were you chasing me? Why are you trying to kill me?”

“We’re trying to help you Jess, it’s time to go back now.”

“Jess? Why do you keep calling me Jess? My name is Sarah. Where are we going back too?”

“Your name is Jessica Burt, you’ve been a patient at McLean Psychiatric Hospital for the past 8 years.”


© Copyright 2018 Victoria Fuentes. All rights reserved.

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