's 2013 Horror Write-off:

" The Glass Door "

Submitted by Lasagnaface

In the numerous travels I’ve partaken in, none have haunted me as much as my journey through the glass door. Preceding my venture through the passage, a year of training under the watchful eyes of my mentor, who I shall refer to only as Alan, both to protect the innocent, and to ensure that his memory goes untarnished by the more lurid portions of this writing. He was a man of great integrity, who desired only my happiness, and I find it truly awful that he passed in the manner he did. But, I digress- that portion of the story comes later. My name, again, for purposes of security, shall be simply Klaus; an old nickname of mine. To those close to me, you will know who I am. And if you read this, I am gone, and I will not come back. I am sorry.

My training began as a simple meditation each day upon the glass door- it was as it sounds, merely a door in modern, office style, made of a steel frame and handle, with fogged glass panels making up most of the object. It was affixed to an otherwise unremarkable private cubicle, again, not unlike what one would find in a high-end place of business or government building, with a small room visible, albeit obscured, by the foggy glass. We would sit in front of it for an hour a day, and each time, Alan would turn to me, and ask the following question; “Do you see a woman?” For nearly two seasons, I saw nothing- only the empty cubicle, with a never-ringing phone, a never-moving seat, and a never-opening window. Each time I would say that I saw nothing. Alan would simply nod, and take me back to my room. I grew frustrated. Each day, I grew more so. Staring into that damn door, at a room of nothing, my thoughts turned to mush. Then, finally, after roughly half a year, my thoughts turned from discontent confusion and growling frustration to anger, and violence. “Do you see a woman?” He asked. I rose, and screamed, and finally struck him across the face with an open palm, my eyes bloodshot and wild. I kicked him, and I spat on the door, and screamed, running back up to my room in a fit of feverish madness. As I looked back for a moment, I saw a woman behind the glass. Alan smiled back at me, and spit out a tooth. He had done this before.

The next day, once he had time to rest, we went down to the door once more. I saw her silhouette beyond the glass panes of the door, and I started to laugh uncontrollably. Alan turned to me once more, and held out a spoonful of some oily medicine. I stared down, and took it- it tasted vile, like raw vegetable oil and burned rubber.

“Open the door,” He said. I stood, and turned handle eagerly, waiting to see what was on the other side. Behind the door, impossibly, was concrete. The cubicle was solid all the way through, with nothing inside. “She isn’t really there, you know. There’s never been a woman there, and there never will be, because there is no room behind that door. Close it again.” I heeded his words, and sure enough, as I closed the door, I saw the room again, and the woman inside. I started to cry, and the world spun and pulsed around me, a deep sense of vertigo taking me. Alan put his hand on my shoulder. “It’s the medicine, Klaus, just the medicine,” he said, dragging me back to my room, where I immediately vomited onto the floor. The days after that are a blur, for the most part.

We repeated the exercise, with me growing more and more ill each day. Soon, I needed a wheelchair and an intravenous drip, for I was too weak to walk myself down the stairs, and open the door. At the end of the year, I had a catheter and a bedpan by my side at all times, for my vomit was laced with coagulated blood and thick strings of yellowish pus, from something rotting in my gut. On the last day, I was dying, covered in small sores, with a black, raised bruise on my stomach. They wheeled me down to the glass door once again, and performed surgery on me while I revealed the concrete wall behind it, slamming it shut, opening it, slamming it shut, opening it, and slamming it shut again. My vision was fading. I looked up, and screamed- from my stomach, they had pulled some manner of vile, pitch-black tumor, dripping with the same toxic oil they had fed me for the past couple seasons. They crushed it, and extracted the fluid, bottling it for later use on another subject such as myself. I felt myself dying, then. But they pulled me back from the brink of death. When the tumor had been taken out, my sores had healed within seconds, and my body was rapidly on the mend. Alan suddenly swung the door open, revealing the cubicle, and the woman inside. She wore a long purple dress, and in place of her head, she had a writhing, bony finger. She rushed towards me, and I screamed. Before she could touch me, Alan had shot her dead with a pistol.

He wheeled me into the room. He then stripped the dead body nude, and butchered it, disposing of it cleanly. I could only watch in horror as he did the deed, trying to back out of the room. But the cubicle was locked behind us. Alan looked up at me with a smile. “You were dying, fevered, and mad. Thus, she came for you, to take you back here, to steal your broken mind and body away,” he explained with pride. I could only shiver, and weep in the corner. It would seem I had unknowingly been a party to cheating death. Alan looked around the small office, mopping any errant streaks of blood splatter out of the cheap blue carpeting. The room resembled the office of some high ranking executive, with a luxurious mahogany desk, and wide glass windows behind it revealing a rain-soaked, foggy metropolis, devoid of any cars in the streets, or people walking through the skyways. Alan glanced towards me, as I stood still in shock, and spoke, closing the glass door once again. He sighed softly. “We can’t go back the way we came,” He said, swinging the door open again, and indeed, the room in which we had meditated was gone, the door giving way into an average hall, matching with the rest of the sleek office building. “Was it worth it, Klaus?”

To his question, I had no answer. I had forgotten why I first came to Alan. Perhaps, at some point before that year of fever, frustration, and vomit, I had heard a rumor, or sought him out after some previous encounter. I suppose, ultimately, it does not matter, nor does my life before the glass door. The things he showed me, and that I sought out on my own authority inside that place, rendered any previous notions about myself irrelevant, like the previous actions of a man who had spoken to god, and come back down to Earth so that he could tell of his word. Already, I heard, saw, and touched things that simply shouldn’t be known. The finger-headed woman, of course, still haunted my mind, but there was far more about the place beyond the glass door that bothered me; despite the silence, and seeming lack of people in the building and the city beyond, I constantly felt people brushing against me as if someone had nudged me as I walked past them, and I could, very faintly, hear wet, groaning voices, like someone gargling.

The place made filled me with anxiety, despite Alan’s obvious confidence in navigating through the eerie passages of the skyscraper. Finally, we reached a circular room, with many other doors, each bearing a number or letter written in some language I couldn’t decipher. Alan stopped in the middle of the chamber, and asked another question. “What do you want to see here? Secrets? Stories? A new life? A new body?” I paused, and answered as honestly as I could. “I want pleasure.”

He nodded, and led me to one of the doors, holding it open for me. “I see. I hope you find it, my friend,” He replied, and I stepped into the room, with him closing the door behind me. Immediately, I began to regret my choice- the room was empty, save for numerous leathery cushions lining the walls, and a long, steel pole in the center of the room. I looked around nervously, and took a seat. The pinkish cushion below me was slightly damp, as if coated with a light layer of sweat, making me cringe in disgust. It was then that the show began.

From seemingly out of nowhere, a voluptuous female figure entered my line of sight. I was startled, and attempted to jump, but I found myself unable to move from the seat; I could twitch, and move my fingers and forearms to a degree, but I felt as though I was weighted down with satchels of lead beads. I could only sit in terror as she began to dance.

Her body was deformed beyond belief, and each passing moment in her presence only made me feel more and more nauseous. Her body was covered in countless scars, some deep, some small, some covering larger patches of flesh, as though she had been scalded. Her head stretched forward to an unpleasant degree, almost like that of a horse, and it was devoid of any skin, leaving only throbbing muscle, and teeth that jutted out at odd angles, some growing well outside of the mouth; in fact, it would seem the thing had two mouths, with another, smaller one growing out of the right side of the face, where an eye should have been, looking like some sort of pustule until a tongue flicked out, licking over the exposed muscle, and eliciting a moan of obvious arousal. It had only one breast on its right side; instead, the whole left side of the thing’s torso extended into a mass of fat, meaty arms, with pendulous, pock-marked spheres of cancerous flesh where hands would have sprouted out, with what appeared to be small mites teeming in them.

From the waist down, however, it was of idealized, human physique, with thick buttocks, and toned thighs covered by a pair of garters, hung up on what looked like fetishistic rubber undergarments, stretching down into similarly sexualized high-heeled boots. I wanted to run, but my body, still, would not allow me, despite my best efforts. The monstrosity seemed amused by this, and ran one of its grotesque, raw hive-arms down my cheek, smearing me with some kind of foul smelling secretion, and leaving a mite to nibble at my flesh. I looked down, and to my horror, I saw the source of my paralysis- my body was growing pink and swollen, my feet having already burst out of their shoes, ballooning to hideous proportions. I screamed, and the seats in the room shifted about, one flipping over, and revealing a puffed out human face, screaming along with me. It dawned on me that I was not the first to visit this room.

I shudder, still, remembering my time as one of those raw, bloated sacs of nude flesh. I dare not try and recall exactly how many years I was held there. Suffice it to say that I was held against my will for a period long enough that I forgot I had been something before one of the vile furnishings in that room. The things I endured there, I will not describe in great detail, for they are obscene beyond knowing. My flesh was twisted, my body violated in countless ways, treated as furniture, or as a toy, and I was subjected to beatings and tortures that would have killed a man who had not already cheated death. I became home to the mites, for a time. But, eventually, I felt a warm embrace, and I was removed from the room. It took me a moment to realize what had happened. At first, I thought I was simply being adjusted for some further torment, but as the swelling died down, and my body unfurled, I realized I had been returned to the circular hub of doors in the foggy, empty skyscraper. She planted a painful, gnawing kiss upon my forehead, and left me there, next to a pile of my clothes. I looked up, and saw a glass door. I screamed, and swung it open. Impossibly, from there, I tumbled back into the room where Alan had trained me. I was furious beyond knowing.

I regret to say that, in my deranged, tortured anger, I tracked Alan back to his homeroom, and choked the life out of him with my bare hands. He was confused, and frightened. He didn’t know what I had seen, what I had experienced. I spat on his lifeless body, and fled, renting the hotel room that I now use to compose this letter. But I find myself feeling only regret, not merely over the murder, but over my return from the city beyond the glass door. It was, indeed, torture. But, in those last weeks before my release, there was, undeniably, pleasure, even tenderness as I was subjected to those horrors. For the first time in what felt like eons, I felt alive. I remembered why I sought Alan’s help. It was out of curiosity, and boredom. And so, to any who read this letter, or come to search for me, I return to that lifeless city.

I will see my lover again. Goodbye.