While the forensics techs tried to sample every piece of duct tape, furniture pressed hard against the windows and doors, and unbolted cabinets that held nothing of note, they also noticed, amongst a series of other oddities, that the one-bedroom apartment’s only toilet was taped shut with a cinder block used to hold down both the seat and tank lids. Opening it revealed nothing—not even water, or the remnants of a vile stench that seemed to permeate the whole building. Officers scrambled to find one shred of evidence that this apparent suicide victim had absolutely nothing to fear…but apparently fear itself. When they finally found the victims journal—scribbled with phrases, colored with pages that were almost entirely black, and otherwise almost impossible to interpret—they thought that they’d found their answer. Almost…. Whether it was a case of schizophrenia, or whether or not the mid-thirties-year-old laborer had something more tangible to fear, had yet to be seen.
(excerpt from pages 33-37, though, the three-ring binder skipped a number of pages, and many found it surprising that this riddle of a journal had any page numbers at all…)
They’re outside. It’s outside. It waits for me in the corner of my eye. You can call me crazy. I know you would.
But there it is—standing…gawking at me like a vulture above the clouds, circling. I can’t see it, although I thought I caught a glimpse, once. Now, the haze gets in the way.
I’d stayed drunk for three weeks straight in that haze. That daze where days went by, in a glimpse with just a little caution. I was trying to keep everything I couldn’t see from devouring me whole. I mean everything I couldn’t see—which is to say…nothing. Nothing at all. Or, nothingness, if you have the nerve to call it….
Okay. Let me make it more clear: I just don’t know when it’s going to happen. I don’t know how. Waiting for it seems endless, but that’s not the worst of it; being pointless is what’s so bad. I need help.
S.O.S. Even in Morse code, the thing echoes itself into the dark chasm of an endless series of steps, going round and round, the form of an anagram. Three shorts, three longs, and three shorts:
I’d ask for help, my S.O…? But it’s coming for you, all of you, too.
Okay, okay. Maybe I’m not being clear. How’s this? You’re going to die. I’m going to die. I accepted this tragedy when I was five, and had a goldfish named Sun. Why, in my five-year-old head, “Sun?” It almost seems prophetic, now. I watched my Sun get washed away in the same porcelain bowl that swallowed my piss, and I knew the same would happen to the rest of me.
Now, I’m afraid to even go to the bathroom. I’m sure that, when it does come, and if it comes soon, whoever finds me is going to find my urine and feces in buckets. I’m sorry for that, but I just can’t let any of myself go—even that which my body tells me that I’m supposed to.
Now, that’s silly, right? Not so silly when you consider that it’s just as natural to piss as it is to die, too.
I keep telling myself that it’s going to happen—whether I stay in here, or whether I go out into the world, and go back to work. Or even just answer my damned cell phone—which I could charge. Which is also dead.
They say it comes in threes. Death, that is. Three crosses on the hillside. My great uncle, my aunt to follow, and…fuck.
I’ll stay until…until….
Until not help, but it just arrives.”
The rest of the binder is filled with scribblings of barely, if at all, recognizable, insignificant objects, poems (mostly original, and impossible to derive meaning from), and excerpts from books he’d read—some of which, as detectives discovered, didn’t even exist or were never published).
(Image: www.pixabay.com, “Message in a Bottle”)Tags: Daily Post, fiction, Horror, In Threes, Prompt, S.O.S., the suicides