Despite the fact that I've been writing fiction since I was twelve, it wasn't until last year that I tried my hand at horror. This was the result. Like most of my projects, I felt that it was mediocre and lost interest... I may have a self confidence problem actually. Or maybe they really do suck. Thoughts? And how do you all feel about horror as a genre? Are you fans of it or do you prefer to avoid it? Do any of you actually write horror?
Eleven forty-three P.M. The minutes tick by slowly as Roland drinks himself into a stupor on his couch once again. Once again, it appears from the shadows, crawling slowly toward him. It is a black mass, human in appearance, except for its eyes. A bloody red, they glimmer with intelligence, and yet there is no sparkle in them, no hint of a soul. They are why he keeps doing this, getting piss drunk till he nearly passes out every night. As he stares into its eyes they swallow him whole. He is within the darkness once again.
He sees Jennifer this time. His first love. He was twelve when they first met, he moved to Cleveland halfway through the fifth grade. That year he bullied her mercilessly. She was short, freckled and slightly chubby for an eleven year old, and when he pulled her pigtails she made a squealing sound that was to him the most hilarious thing in the world.
Her parents moved her into a private middle school, and the next time he saw her was high school. The change that had come over her shocked him. She was five foot seven, with straight fiery red hair. Her freckles had disappeared, and she had filled out wonderfully. She was the most beautiful girl he had ever seen, would ever see.
Roland pursued her fiercely for three years, but he was rejected at every turn. One day, near the end of junior year, he saw her walking to school holding hands with Jonathan Hopkins.
He is reliving that day. This time, instead of running home and crying all day, he walks up to Jonathan and Jennifer. The boy waves, and Roland is at his throat, biting with all him might. Jonathan lets out a guttural howl as blood gushes from his neck, and then Roland bites again and crushes his larynx. Roland is covered in blood, it is in his eyes, tinting his vision red, in his throat, choking him, but he pays it no heed. He turns toward Jennifer, eyes filled with lust.
Roland awakens with a start. Cold sweat pours down his body. His head feels ready to split. A horrible hangover. He clambers to his feet and stumbles into his bathroom. After having a drink of water he looks in the mirror and lets out a shriek. His left eye is the same red as that thing. He shudders, remembering last night's fantasy. He has had too many of them to count now. Whenever he drinks or gets high alone that thing appears. He splashes water on his face and looks in the mirror again. His eye is normal. It was just a hallucination, thats all. He drank too much last night, thats all. The pain is beginning to subside, so he gets dressed and packs his suitcase for work.
He promised himself he would have it better than his parents ever had it, but lo and behold, he ended up working in a tiny cubicle, just like dad. Mr. Roberts is waiting for him when he gets to the building. Its Ten-Thirty. Roland is four hours late. His boss tells him that he is through with the company. At the end of the day his career will be over. Roland walks to his desk in shock. He sits down and stares at the photo on his desk. Graduation. His mother and father are so proud of their son, he'll make something of himself, they said. Then the anger. Mr. Roberts had no right. He's only been late to work twelve times, twelve times in two years of faithful service. He has always given the company everything he had, working long hours full of tedious work so that corporate pigs could make millions. He deserves more than this. He pulls a fifth of Seamo out of his suitcase. He had intended to party with some friends tonight, but he needs it more now. He sees a sinister red glow in the darkness, and his mind fades to black.
He's walking through the office, headed toward Mr. Roberts office. The clock on the wall reads nine-thirty, and by now the building just closed. His boss is only here to fill out the paperwork for his termination. In five minutes, Joe the security guard will arrive and turn on the security cameras. Roland walks into his boss's office. Mr. Roberts looks up from his paperwork. He mutters something, but Roland does not hear. The blood is pounding in his ears. His vision begins to tint red as he walks up to his boss's desk. Mr. Roberts is standing and yelling now, spitting in Roland's face. Roland rips the man's tie off and wraps it around his neck in one fluid motion. Mr. Roberts face turns a bright red, he is gasping for air, trying desperately to cling to life. He claws at his desk, searching for something, anything to defend himself with. He reaches for the phone and then Roland gives a mighty tug. Mr. Roberts is dead, his neck broken. Roland leaves the office, taking the man's tie and the termination paperwork with him, packs up his suitcase and walks home. He burns the tie and papers in his stove when he gets home, then flushes the ashes down the toilet.
Roland wakes to a knock at the door. He opens his eyes to a world painted red, blinks a few times, and it is back to normal. "Just a second," he yells "I'm coming." He checks the clock. Nine-oh-two AM saturday. No work today. Thank god for the weekends. He looks through the peephole on his door. Two men in trenchcoats. His heart skips a beat. They look shady. "What the hell do you want?" He yells. "Police, open up" is the response. One of the men flashes a badge. Roland unlocks the door and lets the men in. "what can I do for you, officers?" Roland has never feared the police. He lives out all of his desires in fantasy, and because of this he has never done anything illegal in real life. Except for the drugs, but luckily he has been clean ever since he got his job. He figures there must have been a shooting in the neighborhood or something. This isn't the best area of the city, and the police have been by for things like that before.
"I'll get straight to the point, Mr. Ptrezki." says the shorter of the two. The man is about five-three, looks like he must weigh three hundred pounds, and has a perpetual sneer on his face. "Your boss, an Andrew Roberts, was found murdered in his office at Nine Fifty-Two last night. You are a suspect." In a flash, Roland remembers his dream last night. But thats impossible, isn't it?
"How did he die?"
"His neck was broken." Responds the officer.
Roland's mind goes blank, and he collapses unconscious on the floor.
It is there in the back of his mind. He can see it quite clearly now, it's red eyes gleaming with a sinister light. The thing's arms are lanky, it's fingers boney and clawed. He shudders. It has no mouth, no nose, and the eyes pierce his soul more sharply than ever before. It shambles toward him, touches his face. Its skin is cold and clammy. It reeks of… of…