's 2016 Horror Write-off:


Submitted by Jared Ludy

The investigator opens the door and enters the room containing the patient. the lights flicker a bit and seem overall dimmer than the rest in the hospital. he's sitting up in his bed, puzzling towards his lap. It's the first time the investigator saw the suspect, and he was shocked by the man's appearance. his features were grossly pronounced. Caricatured, like a fleshy cartoon almost. He was a sickly, gaunt thing with a big pointy nose, a receded blonde hairline, and an overbite large enough for anyone to tell he has trouble fitting his top row of teeth into his mouth. 

The investigator decides to speak first, starting with something casual before easing into more serious territory.

he studies the patient's face. His eyes look slightly red, and he's sniffling. "Allergies huh? I get those too." says the detective.

The man glances up at the investigator. "Yeah." he mutters. "They're seasonal".

 "Kind of a drag, huh?" says the investigator, sympathetically. "I dunno about that." says the man. "Im kinda thankful for them."

 "why's that?" asks the detective. "Well, they're like practice for the immune system." says the man. "it's like a vaccine, or a pill. It makes you stronger. it probably even prolongs your life-span in the long run."

 "that's a neat way to look at it" says the detective. 

"every year" mutters the man. "every year your immune system gets stronger and stronger and stronger."

"until it... until..."

as the man trails off the investigator becomes confused. "until what?" he asks.

"until it..... consumes you..."

The investigator becomes disturbed. he attempts to change the subject, but before he can get a word out, the suspect continues.

"it replaces you, you know. cell by cell, it'll become you." 

the investigator goes silent. "would you mind if i ask you a few questions?" he eventually blurts out.

the man doesn't respond. he's shaking. twitching.

"i can feel it you know. i can feel it growing. squirming. growling." the patient says, his wide eyes fixed to the sheets of his bed.

"I'm so hungry mister." the man says as tears began streaming down his bony, terrified face.

the investigator thinks to himself. "no progress can be made while he's still in this condition. i need to come back later." the investigator has tried this before. every visit, he gets worse and worse. it would be no use trying to talk to him this time. not while he's this far-gone.

the investigator leaves the room, obviously somewhat defeated.

later that week, the investigator gets a call from his home. he's ordered to come down to the station at once. he meets with an officer sitting by a computer monitor "the suspect.... from your most recent case... he's gone." the investigator is obviously shocked, but the officer continues. "four doctors are missing as well, along with seven security guards. all the cameras went out too. the only tape we could recover was this one, and i think you should have a look at it." 

The investigator agreed to watch it, so the officer played it for him. 

it's from the camera inside the suspect's room, but he's now been hooked up to a heart monitor. he's in even worse condition than before. his eyes are so cartoonishly large that they almost bulge out, and his nose is ridiculously long . his overbite has grown into an almost animalistic muzzle. he starts gasping and squirming around in his bed, contorting and struggling. the monitor flatlines. the man stops spasming, and collapses back into stillness. 

after about a minute, rats start crawling out from under the bed. some scurry around the room. others settle in bed with the man, or crawl over his body.

a doctor rushes into the room and it seems like he's attempting to revive the man. he grabs a syringe from a medical kit in a nearby cabinet, rushes to the man's bed, brushes some of the rats off of him, and sticks the man's neck with the needle.

before the medicine can be injected, the man leaps onto the doctor and bites his neck, tearing out his throat with his teeth.

the doctor lies dead on the floor.

the man gets back on his feet, then sits on the bed, trembling. he pulls the doctor off the ground and sits his body in his lap.

"im sorry doctor." he says, before a pause. 

" know what im afraid of most of all i think?"

"im afraid of dying."

"i cant die doctor."

"i cant."

"thats why i need to do this."

"thats why i must consume."

"i must consume every living thing that i can."

"i must take their life."

"i must persist."

"and once ive consumed all that was alive, i must consume all that is not."

"i will take all."

"i will consume all."

"and once ive consumed everything there is to consume, i will do what must be done, doctor."

"but i will still live"

a thick, clear-white, hyphae-like appendage emerges from the man's arm, gaping open one of the pores in his skin, and it strokes the doctor's lifeless face.

"i will still live"

as he says this, screams can be heard from outside the room. the video cuts to multi-colored static for a second and then goes black.

two months later, the suspect still wasn't found. in these two months, the number of missing persons in the local area nearly tripled.


Years after the man disappeared, the investigator eventually retired. He bought a house right by the beach with an amazing view of the waves and sand.

One night while staying in this luxurious home, he had an especially large dinner and had to go to bed early because of a stomach ache.

He woke up early the next morning, to a deep, sickly sound. wheezing.

he got up from his bed and headed downstairs, the sound getting louder and louder as he approached his porch.

Once on the porch, he looked towards the sea.

A huge mass towered above the waves.

twisted, red bloody meat and viscera, fused together by gooey tendons, stood hunched over like some cowering vermin.

it stood on huge shards of bone, twisted into a crab-like arrangement.

tumorous masses littering its body wriggled and twitched.

an enormous head, strangely proportionate to its massive body looked away from the investigator and his house.

it turned to him.

it had a rodent-like mug, with hints of distorted, rubbery primate features. And a long, pointy nose.

its teeth were large and gnarly on its upper jaw.

it stared at the investigator with wholly human eyes, it's whole form shivering and trembling.

the investigator knew in his heart that what he was looking at was not human. It never could have been.

and it was so hungry.