Bogleech.com's 2018 Horror Write-off:
Submitted by Inkstie
We were always told to never leave the colony, stay within the walls and ignore any information coming from the outside world unless it was important to the safety of the people.
Of course, we were taught about the monsters and abominations that lead over the world outside, I was only 16 when I heard of most of the horrors that existed beyond, tales of cities filled with dark shadow beings and a sea of undead corpses that stretched on for miles.
Our tribe had a very successful track record of keeping these threats out of reach from getting us, whatever monsters that did make it in we’re usually immediately killed or driven off rather quick through sheer force and population number.
I remember when the community came together to exterminate these ugly little pests that could turn skin to dust with the scratch of a claw, or when we had to destroy some sick mockery of a human women that had tried to mate with a lot of the guys in the colony, she was immediately noticed and terminated.
Things like this are somewhat rare though, with the encounters being kept few and far between. These events were usually manageable despite the unfortunate causalities that would be brought, and we had sort of an unspoken rule in the colony that I learned early on that after the external threat is killed or driven off, it didn’t exist.
That was until, the threats existence couldn’t be detected in the first place.
At first, we could all tell something was off.
There was a weird rift that had blanketed the whole colony, people could tell something was wrong and felt the presence of something beyond the walls within, but could never pin point it.
For a while, everyone was on edge, preparing themselves for a threat like they had not seen and buying armor and weapons to prepare for the incomprehensible horror that was coming, whatever it may be.
The town center had set up a wall of carved spikes around the walls, some specific hand-picked citizens stood outside on guard, and by then it seemed like practically everyone had some weapon for protection at their disposal.
It only took about two days before all this worry had come to a dead halt.
Just like that, everyone had not seemed to care anymore.
The spikes we’re left to sit outside the town, but all the passionate feeling of protection and preservation for the colony seemed to just die on the spot.
No one was concerned, all had dismissed the threat claiming it not be important and that if it ever “appeared” again they would take care of it, but I could tell by the vibe of the town that nobody had actually wanted to get further into the potential threat that they cared about oh so much at first.
By then, I was the only one left thinking that something was wrong.
This was brought on when I saw how my family was beginning to act after the two days
They too got caught up in the intense prepping when an oddity was detected, I remember my dad giving everyone a shotgun, even my nine year old sister.
We we’re as ready as anyone else during the time. I could see everyone was nervous but focused at the same time, knowing that they need to eliminate the terror before it eliminates them, like how we had seen the other poor people meet their demise.
Days came though after the population’s hysteria had ended, and it almost felt as though things were more off to me.
My sister would only stay in her room to herself, and whenever I would check up on her and asked if she wanted to visit the town center and go on an adventure, she would sit idly in her bed with a blank expression and not even give me a half glance before telling me that the trip would be “annoying” and bother her in some nebulous way she never explained. I tried to tell her that I would even buy her a new toy but the face that would usually perk up when I said that was replaced with one of an emotionless robot.
My mom had sat at the dinner table and never left. I would bring her food and she would eat, but nothing more. She told me she didn’t really care about going into town anymore and that she was tired, but when she said that her face almost read like she was inconvenienced by the idea of going into town to shop or even just walk around and see new things. Her days would later become just slowly rotting away in that chair by the dinner table, steadily but surely becoming skinnier.
Dad was the saddest though, even before the change he was much more prone to wanderlust and filled with wonder than the rest of my family. He was a designated scout who went outside the walls to learn of future or potential threats, or even just find rations that could benefit others. His fervor for exploration went beyond his job though, he would take secret trips outside to gather fun stuff for my family and only we had known about this.
It killed me to hear him say he doesn’t care about what’s outside the walls anymore, because it’s all just “meaningless.”
He has been sitting on his recliner for most of the time now, blankly staring at the wall.
It has been weeks now since this new trend, and I haven’t found any means of stopping it. Every attempt I make to make my family active, or even garner their full attention in any way, shape or form has only been met with failure.
Eventually it had come to me to do everything for my family, and as I did this I was only further brought down by the same mood that had come to my family encompassing the entire colony.
The streets and sidewalks we’re completely empty, and the stores either had a bored looking vendor inside or none at all.
I went to one of the stores with a vendor to bring food to my family, and when I walked out the door with six bags of food in my hands he didn’t even look over, staring bored at the counter under him and even drooling a bit.
As I walked home I noticed that the street we’re empty not because the others had disappeared, but because they all hadn’t left their homes in days.
Every window I passed by I could see my fellow town members sitting inside, blank faced and just as bored looking as my family or the vendor or anyone else I had seen in my home that had become my own personal hell.
They all showed the same signs as my family as well, They we’re anorexic due to lack of caring about even getting up for food, and all of them had very long hair that hadn’t been cut within the weeks that had passed by without notice.
Finally growing sick of the sight, I basically ran back to my house and opened the door, bringing the bags of rations over I had picked just for everyone.
My dad was still in that same chair, and I could only assume that my sister and mother we’re in the same places I had seen them before.
Something about this time I saw my dad though nearly made me tear up though, just the site of him told me that he may as well be dead, resembling that vendor I saw earlier but just a bit more dead inside. He looked down at his lap while quietly breathing.
I placed a small meal by on his lap, too which no reaction was given.
I went to the kitchen to give my mom her meal on the dining table.
Sitting by the dining table, was my mom’s lifeless body sitting in front of her last meal I placed for her, I could tell she wasn’t breathing anymore.
On the other side of her sitting lazily on the table, was a squat bird-like figure feeding messily upon the meal intended for her, scattering particles of food everywhere in the process. When I got closer though I noticed that this thing wasn’t a bird at all.
On where its belly would be was a large lipped mouth eating away at the portions with jagged, almost human like teeth. Its entire body was muscular flesh rather than feathers, and what I previously assumed was its wings were two large tumorous ears that flapped uselessly as it ate. It had two human arms attached at its bottom that only pulled the bowl closer to its maw, and it slammed a small clump of a tail on the table the more it devoured. I gasped and it looked at me surprised, with two shiny black eyes that gave me a dim stare, and a “beak” that was really just a warty nose snorting loudly.
My heart completely filled with rage. Was this it? Was THIS the beast, the monster, the incomprehensible horror that would destroy my town, my family, my life!? I ran too my room and grabbed the gun my dad had previously gave me, and aimed it directly at the little abomination, ready to watch it’s guts splatter across the ground and save what was left of my life.
But then I thought about it.
It doesn’t really matter.
I don’t know what it is, and why should I? What’s the point?
I walked back to the living room and sat on the couch next to my dad, I think he’s about to meet his end too. I don’t really know what happened to my sister, but judging from the silence coming from her room, she probably doesn’t care, and I don’t really need to know.
As I started to rest my eyes, I could hear the little thing jump off the table and crawl its way to the living room.
It made its way through the frame of the door and came towards the couch. It jumped on and sat next to me.
I lazily pet the back of its head, making it produce a perfectly human sounding but satisfied “QUACK!”