House of Memories 3

Horror story written by aussj4link on Monday 20, July 2020

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A man seeks to find clues about several disappearances in a remote area. He finds them.

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3: Questions
Alan found himself standing in silence, unable to figure out how someone who had been missing the better part of a century, was standing here before him. And to top it off, he was no where near the age he should have been. He was a spitting image of the black and white photo he had found of Calvin online. "We are not what you think. There is no need for that gun or whatever is in your hand there." Calvin said, pointing at Alan's right hand. Alan decided to keep his hand covered, as they didn't know what he had under the jacket, giving him an advantage. He wasn't sure they wouldn't come at him if they knew that it was only a simple taser. The wound on Calvin's neck and chest was almost making Alan sick. It appeared to be a fresh slice from a jagged blade, as if it had just been made minutes ago. Alan could see bits of yellow fat and even bone at the deepest parts. A small amount of blood even appeared to ooze from the wound. The most disturbing thing to Alan was the fact that Calvin did not seem to even notice the wound. "He wouldn't drink the tea, huh?" Calvin asked Florence. Florence shook her head and then said, "Mike, we really aren't your enemy. We are trying to save your life. Most people that show up here drink the tea and then we put them up in a room and let them out the next morning." "That's reassuring." Alan said sarcastically. "Look." Calvin said as he took a step closer to Alan. Alan quickly raised his right hand, as if to indicate he would shoot Calvin should he get any closer. Calvin stopped with a disappointed look on his face as he continued, "There's things you need to be made aware of. This place is not like anything you've ever seen. There is a killer outside. The damage to your car is his way of coaxing you out. He is unbelievably fast and no one has ever made it more than a few feet outside that door at night." Calvin held his hands up as if to surrender. "If you decide to go out there, we can't stop you, but if you do, you will die." "Please, I can't bare another." Florence said as tears began to run down her cheeks. Alan thought for a second. Either this was a very good act to get him to drop his guard, or there really is a killer outside, or both. He felt surrounded and began to wonder if he would die on only his second case. He wanted to do so much more. He decided he would not die here, and he knew that panicking was the worst thing he could do now. He decided he would inquire further. "Who is this killer, and why doesn't he simply come inside and kill all he wants if he's so dangerous?" Alan asked as he engaged the lock on the door knob behind his back. "We don't know. He showed up one day while I was doing some yard work. He looked fishy so I went to tell him to leave. He has never set foot in this house before, he waits behind the treeline, always." Calvin said. "Why did you try to drug me?" Alan asked as he looked at Florence. Calvin again answered in her place. "Again, we don't know why, but he doesn't attack people during the day. When you refused the room, she decided to try to drug you and put you up in one of the rooms and then you could leave in the morning without ever having to had dealt with any of this." "How is it you've been here this whole time? You disappeared almost a hundred years ago." Alan asked. He was hesitant to ask about the wound, but he knew he would have to eventually. Though Alan was almost certain that it was just very good make up and lighting, but he couldn't explain away the smell quite so easily. "There's a lot to be said and a lot to take in. Why don't we all just go to the table, sit down, and talk? You can keep that gun on us the whole time if it makes you feel better. And there won't be any tea." Calvin said as he slowly backed away and headed toward the table in the living area. Alan thought for a second. If this was a trap, why not simply bring more people from upstairs to over power him? Unless, the people upstairs were being held against their will. There definitely was at least one person outside, the car damage was proof of that. With his car disabled, going outside would likely be a bad idea trying to fight with an unknown number of assailants. He thought about possibly making a run for it. Alan tried to recall how long the dirt road was. It took his car, driving rather slowly, about two minutes to reach the house from the main road. Much too far to attempt outrunning a pursuer, even if he was driving slowly. And even then, the roads were deserted, he would not be able to escape simply by running. He had no choice but to face whatever was going on here. Alan pulled his phone out with his free hand up to his face but kept Calvin and Florence in his peripheral. No signal. It had been so long since he was without signal no matter where he had traveled, that the idea he could one day face it had escaped his mind entirely. Real fear began to kick in as his one anchor to the outside world, was gone. With the almost assured threat waiting outside, and no way to contact anyone, Alan was forced to follow Calvin and Florence into the living area and gather as much information as possible. Calvin and Florence sat down at the same table Alan had sat at before. This time however, Alan chose a different table, one that was closer to the exit. Calvin and Florence began to stand up, presumably to sit with Alan. Alan raised his free hand and said, "That's okay, you can stay there. We can talk just like this." Calvin nodded and both of them sat back down, then Calvin began explaining, "Okay, well first of all, this place you've unfortunately come to, is like nothing you've ever encountered. There is something happening here that is... Supernatural. Now, before you go off, it is true and if you choose to act like we are just crazy, you very likely will die and you will regret it, forever." Alan realized in that moment, that they were completely insane. It all made sense now. It's one thing to believe in the possibility of supernatural things, but quite another to actually act on those beliefs as they have done with the car and attempted drugging. But the worst part of it, was that Alan was now pretty sure that the neck and chest wound Calvin had, was intentional and made recently. Calvin's psychosis made it possible for him to ignore the pain. This also meant that such a horrible wound was sure to bring him down very soon. Pain immune psychosis or not, a person cannot live with untreated damage like that. Alan made a mental note to take advantage when that happened. The only part that didn't make sense, was that Calvin, one of the people who disappeared nearly a century ago, was sitting here with not a day of age since his photo was taken. Again, very good make-up came up as a possible explanation. Alan wanted out now more than ever, but still, he was forced to sit and listen further. "How are you here now? Give me a straight answer." Alan asked before either Calvin or Florence could say a word. Calvin and Florence hesitated for a moment and gave each other a quick glance. "This is going to be tough for you to under-" Calvin said and was interrupted before he could finish. "Try me." Alan said with more conviction as he stared intently at Calvin. "Fine, you'll be here with us once you've decided we're bat-shit and walk out that door just like everyone else who's now trapped." Calvin said, and for the first time, Alan felt, just slightly, that there may be some truth here. "We're dead, all of us. And we'll be here forever. You'll join us if you walk out that door." Calvin said. Everything in Alan's head was screaming 'bullshit'. He didn't for a second believe they were dead, definitely messed up in the head, but not dead. "You look pretty alive to me." Alan said as he involuntarily looked at Calvin's neck wound and quickly looked back up at Calvin's face. The wound still slowly seeped blood and again, Alan had to will himself not to become sick. "That's definitely the part you won't believe. This place makes it so you can never really die." Calvin said as he unbuttoned his shirt to reveal more of his wound. "I got this little paper cut almost a hundred years ago. It has never healed and never stopped hurting. Hell, I don't even know where the blood comes from. I just do my best to clean it, but honestly, this floor isn't so dark in color for no reason. Stitches and bandages only make it hurt worse, but there's no need for them anyway." "Please... this really is a fate worse than death. Just wait until morning, when the sun is up and bright, then you can leave. At least, that's what we hope." Florence said. As Alan saw more of the wound, he realized there was simply no way this man should be alive. The cut was so deep, he could see bone and fat as well as arteries that oozed blood and pus. That was also when the smell really hit him. He had been smelling something, but now it was intensely pungent. He would have rationalized it as very good make-up had it not been for the very odor of rotting flesh and the depth of which the wound went made it impossible to be faked, even for the best make-up artist on the planet. For a tiny moment, he really did think, 'What if they aren't lying? What if what they say is somehow true?' But he couldn't let those thoughts take the wheel, he had to stay rational and believe only when absolute proof was verified. Until then, he would withhold belief and stay fully agnostic. Alan decided going outside was extremely risky. If nothing, he could stay awake all night and leave in the morning. Attempting to evade danger is always risky, but doing so in the dark, was nothing but foolish. Sunlight would give him a much better chance. He knew it was highly unlikely, considering the Murphy's Law situation he had fallen into, but he asked anyway, "Do you have a phone?" "No, dear. I am sorry, we do not." Florence answered. "We have no way to contact anyone out there." Alan sighed. "Okay... You're right, I don't believe you. I do believe someone is outside though, and I'm fully aware they are likely dangerous. So, I will stay until morning, but I am not sleeping." Calvin and Florence were both visibly relieved. "I will be staying down here though, close to the front door, if you don't mind." "That's fine. We can leave you to it if you wish." Florence said. Calvin was already standing up to leave, presumably back to his little room. Before Alan could answer, a woman's voice said, "You don't really think he won't kill him just because the sun is up, do you?" Alan looked towards the voice to see a woman standing at the door to the living area. How he had missed her approach until now startled him and made him scold himself for his lack of vigilance. Despite the low level of light, Alan saw she was missing a large chunk of her head. From her left ear, across where her left eye should be, to the top of the skull, was just... gone.

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    Again, it could do with a proofread, especially the last sentence of the second paragraph. Also, I have to ask, if Calvin is already dead, or at least can't be killed, why is he worried about Alan shooting him? Then, Calvin says he's dead, but later says the house makes it so you can never really die? You might need to clarify that a little.

    '...without ever having to had dealt with any of this." Try 'without having to deal with any of this.'

    The story is progressing pretty well though, and I'm interested in the explanation as to what's going on with this place. Looking forward to reading more.
    Thanks for the help, I will adjust it as soon as I get home tonight. As for the reason Calvin doesn't want to get shot is actually two reasons. The first is, that as he explains, they still feel the pain from the wound, they simply got used to it over the years, however he wouldn't want to add anymore pain if he can avoid it. The second reason is diplomacy. He wants to calm Alan down in hopes of preventing him from panicking and when he fires, and Calvin does not go down, Alan would likely run outside and be killed. It's all about diplomacy. As for the seeming contradiction in dead or not dead, think more along the lines of "undead". They are basically zombies, or perhaps ghouls. If there's anymore questions let me know. Right now this is the very early stages of the story where the aim is to introduce the situation and generate questions for the reader that will be answered later.
    Ah I forgot about them still feeling pain, my bad. Like I said, looking forward to the rest of it.
    Nicely done! Excellent ending!