's 2017 Horror Write-off:


Submitted by Hugo A Gomez (email)

3 months before she disappeared and 12 years before I discovered what happened to her, my mother told me about the ruins that were supposed to be her first place of work as a teacher

At first glance you can see that the place used to be much larger, most likely other people just started looting the building materials to maybe sell them, "better so" my mother said, it's not as if they were useful there , the rest of the building was in an appalling condition, the walls had been vandalized and the windows had been broken, the weeds flooded much of the halls, and in what I assume was the science lab i saw a still young and growing tree

"Escuela Patricio Espinosa para jóvenes cristianos"  It was going to be the name of the place, and for the small town of Santa Monica-Antioquia it was nothing less than a miracle made reality, my mother's hometown was not really a big deal, and it has only become smaller with the passing of the years , my mother alredy having  lived several years in the city of Medellin admits that she did not miss her people, however we always went there to celebrate the holy weeks and the New years, since she still had a relative there

On one of these trips she told me about the beginning of the whole thing , in the mid-90s the mayor of Santa Monica of those days had proposed in his election campaign , according to his own words "the best School of all Colombia", a great exaggeration for many , but the place really needed a better school, so they elcted him just because of that, when the constructions started the town began to feel an excitement that was only growing  more and more, The project was huge and of the highest quality and technology, maybe what that mayor said was not an exaggeration they thought

A school obviously needs teachers, and my mother, the first of her family to graduate from a university seized the opportunity, she sent her resume to the one who was supposed to be the future principal of the school and was accepted almost immediately, the only thing she had to Do now was wait for the place to open

But the place did not open, with the passing of the months the project only continued to expand, more and more things were added to the list of  plans of that place, they demolished parts of the school that were alredy finished only to rebuild them in more quirky ways, they painted the walls of 7 different colors and  they changed the designs of the uniforms at least 12 times over, the people began to say that the school would never open, it would always be a job under construction, it turns out they were right

The dozens of changes in the day of delivery and the seemingly endless budget of this school ended up opening the suspicions of many, suspicions that were confirmed when it was discovered which was the true function of this Project

It turned out that the " Escuela Patricio Espinosa para jóvenes cristianos " was nothing more than a front to launder drug money, the plan from the beginning was always to never finish the place, so they would have the perfect excuse to continue spending the blood money, this Secret was discovered by someone who worked the night shift,  he ended up listening to a conversation between the future principal and the one and only Pablo Escobar

From there all just went to shit, the worker spread the word, and the people created a protest that became a riot that became a lawsuit that reached national levels, when the authorities finally intervened, these discovered what many assumed was already True, the mayor and most of his office was being paid with the same drug money, Santa Monica's case became one of the country's largest corruption cases

They Obviously closed the construction of the school to the disappointment of many (my mother included), it was thought that even after all the things that happened the school could still open, but it was simply not possible, there was no money to finish anything, and so the school closed without receiving a single student, I ceased to be the place that would house the future of a whole generation of children and became a monument to the corruption of the Colombia from that time, Life continued in spite of everything, and little by little the people began to forget about that place

Normally the story would have ended here, but that place had other plans

I remember vividly the day mom disappeared, I was about 10 years old at the time, I was busy watching TV and dad was working, she was in the kitchen preparing lunch when she received a call, in that  conversation she was really cheerful , when she hung up she said she had to leave for a few days, that a family member was very ill and that i had to tell dad about it, I saw this as something common, it was not the first time that she would do this, she packed her essentials in a carry-on suitcase And without saying good-bye she left home, I never saw her again, or at least that what i believed until a few months back

In the search for her, many things were discovered, one of them was that there was no sick family member but a rich Bogotan with which my mother had metings for many years, in fact it was because this individual that we realized that she was missing, according to him mom never reached the place agreed for the sexual escapade, I still think that was the worst way to find out about both things

Dad never stopped looking for her, even when the years passed  and when everyone (including me) assumed that she had already died, he never stopped looking for her, he died without finding a trace, despair killed him, and even if I get sick from thinking it, I'm glad it went that way, because if dad founded what I found and seen what I saw, Im sure he would have died on the spot

One of the things that dad discovered was that mom was not the only one who disappeared in those days, at least 30 people disappeared throughout the department, but unfortunately that was something almost normal, (Colombia has changed a lot since then, but in other parts it has not changed so much) so we never thought too much about it, I am sure that if he had inquired more, he would have discovered that all the missing persons were teachers

All this leads to what happened a few months ago, it turns out that the relative we used to visit had died, and in his will he had left me his house, this surprised me, because it had been years since my last visit ,but at that time I was nostalgic for the good times lived there, so I decided to seize the opportunity and I went back to Santa Monica

The place was basically a ghost town, the vast majority of the inhabitants either had died or had gone to the city in search of other opportunities, in the two weeks where I lived there I think I only saw 6 different people , I had decided to sell the house for whatever amount I was offered (it was not  a very nice house) when I dont know why, but from one moment to another, I wanted to visit the ruins of the school

When I got to the place I could see that the whole area around the ruins had been covered by a rusty iron grating, at other times that would have been enough to make me leave, but that day I was too bored to leave, so I looked for a hole in the fence to sneak by and when I finally found it, i went in, I had to walk about 15 minutes to reach my destination and finally look at the ruins again

The first thing I realized was how clean the place looked, from afar you could see that the place had been remodeled, the windows were replaced and the walls painted,  it no longer could be considered ruins, now  it really looked like a school, that didn't make sense, why would a town who was about to die spend so much money on fixing this place full of disappointment?

When I actually got inside the school I could see that the interior was just as clean, it felt as if the place was ready to receive students at any time, I was already beginning to have desires to leave when I look inside the first classroom

There inside, in front of about 5 rows of empty desks, was a statue, the statue was that of a middle-aged man, it was extremely detailed and the only thing that revealed that it was not in fact a man but a statue is that his whole surface was of the uniform color of  concrete, his pose was that of someone writing on the blackboard, it was the statue of a teacher

My mind immediately began to create theories on how this was possible, and the more I investigated the more I could feel dread growing inside me, I didn't want to be here, but in the end my curiosity won, every room had a different statue, men and women, some looked As if they were on the brink of retirement, other looked as if this was their first jobs, the were all in positions that implied the profession they intended to exert

I thought this was some sort of abstract art, something that only its creator might be able to understand, when I finally saw it, after that all rational thinking of my mind was completely derailed

In one of those classrooms in front of me was the statue of my mother

It was exactly as I remembered her, even the slightest detail had been replicated to perfection, her hair tied in a braid, her snub nose, her full lips, she even wore the same clothes she had on the day she left, only instead of cloth they were made of the Same material as the rest of her, i was terrified, why was this here? What kind of  joke is this?, it was at that moment when the statue began to move

It was almost imperceptible at first, but when I realized my mother's statue was looking at me, it was beginning to move slowly, every movement produced ruptures on the surface of the concrete, and I could see with horror that under the surface there was Bleeding red flesh, the statue was alive and it was approaching me

The thing that was not my mother began to smile, this produced a crisp sound that I'm sure I'll never forget, in her smile i saw real teeth, as white as marble, the rest of her face had broken, showing muscles and nerves that suffered from spasms, as if it were the first time they were used

She looked at my whit hollow eyeholes and In a empty voice, almost like an echo but and yet I could acknowledge as my mother's voice she said

-You must be very excited to be here  if you entered before the holidays end, but no matter, after all, the construction has ended, soon we will open our doors and finally we will be able to  fulfill our mission, finally we can teach

I have few memories of what happened next, the only thing I remember is that I ran, I ran as hard as i could muster, I had to escape, and somehow i did, when I was out of that place I dared to look back, what I saw was terrible, in the windows you could see all the statues,the teachers were all watching me and smiling so much that their cheeks had broken

When I finally got back to thinking normally, I was back in my house in the village, i immediately packed what I could and In that same day i left that place never to return

I do not know why I am writing this, after all I do not plan to tell anyone what had elapsed in that place, but I have come too far and I think the best thing would be to end all this whit the reason why I decided to put this on paper

Lately there have been multiple abduction of children, from the smallest to those who would be on the verge of graduating from their respective schools, in other circumstances i would think it was just another tragedy of this country, but i no longer can, my mind ends up connecting these Kidnappings with what happened in that place, this is just a theory that I have (and I do not plan to confirm it) but when I see in the news that another child disappeared I can only think of what the being that looked like my mom said

soon we will open our doors

After all,what it's a school without students.