Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Entry #84

I'm so sorry for not telling you what's been happening. It's just...there's been so much going on. Everything happened at the last swim meet of the season. It was out in Long Island, 3 days in a row of races.

Saturday night, the second and last night at the hotel, we swimmers decided to pull a prank on our head coach. We wanted to trash his room, but he went to bed too early. So we decided to saran wrap his car. It was pretty late, but we ran to a nearby grocery store, got five rolls of saran wrap and found his car. Only six of us were in on the prank (including Mike. He was back to swimming a while ago, I just never asked him about Ken), and I got a whole video of it. Well, video of most of it, up to the point when I saw Locust.

We were being really cautious, checking to see if the coach was looking out his window, and hiding if we thought he was. I was looking up at the window, and pointing the camera at the window, when it made a squeaking noise. Sort of like nails on a chalkboard, painful and metallic. The screen glitched out, went to static, and shut off.

None of my friends noticed the noise, they were too involved with not tearing the saran wrap. I was trying to fix the camera when I saw him. Locust was just standing in the shadow by the corner of the hotel. I could tell he was watching us. All the blood rushed to my head and my vision got really fuzzy.

I was stupid. I shouldn't have left my friends out there with Locust standing there. I made an excuse that I had to see if the night clerk at the hotel's front desk was telling our parents about what we were doing, and I went inside. As soon as I got in the door I felt better.

I sat in the lobby for a few minutes, playing with the camera and trying to make it work again. It still doesn't work, even now. After a while, I went back out to see if they were done, because it was almost midnight, even though I didn't want to chance seeing Locust again.

I stepped out the door, and I saw Mike crawling toward me. There was a trail of red behind him. None of the other kids were in sight. I couldn't speak. I stammered, I don't even know what I was going to say. He grabbed my leg and whispered something I couldn't hear. I bent down. My legs were shaking so badly I practically fell on Mike.

He said to me, "You brought him here, didn't you?"

All I could do was nod. I sat there for a moment before I turned to run into the hotel to get help. As I got up, I saw a black pant leg directly in front of me. Except they weren't pants. They were little masses of swarming black tentacles, forming the general shape of pants. His suit was made of tentacles, just like his hat.

The last thing I saw before I blacked out was his head, towering far above me.

I woke up in my hotel bed, next to my parents' bed. It was time to get up for breakfast. I didn't want to know what was happening, but I had to. I got up, got dressed, and went to breakfast before my parents could wake up.

Sitting at one of the tables were all the people involved in the prank, all of them laughing and eating. Including Mike.

I sat at a different table, far away from them.

I don't know what the hell happened there, but now I know Mike knows something. Even if it's secondhand knowledge from Ken, I need it. I need it to be "ready" for whatever James is saying I need to be ready for. I took these three days off from swimming, but I'm going back tomorrow. And I'm confronting Mike.


Sunday, March 20, 2011

Entry #83

I jumped. I decided to just gather what courage--or stupidity, I don't actually know which--and simply walk into his room and jump.

I wasn't so stupid that I didn't gather stuff I thought I would need. After all, it was pitch dark, and windy, so I knew it was going to be deep. So I brought a flashlight, my Swiss Army knife, and a backpack I filled with little snacks. Granola bars, little cereals, stuff like that.

I decided not to tell anyone in my family about this...escapade. They would know I was crazy. Heh, I know I'm crazy. Especially now.

So four days ago, I put the backpack on, walked into his room, opened the closet, and jumped in. I was prepared to break my legs, or at least bump hard and bruise myself. I had closed my eyes, but after a few seconds of falling, I opened them. A sense of peacefulness had come over me, a feeling that I didn't control. In fact, I knew I should have been panicked, but I wasn't.

It was slightly less dark, and it grew brighter the longer I fell. I knew I was falling, I could hear the wind whooshing past my ears. I must have been falling for at least a minute.

Then I saw the ground. It was the same ground I had seen when I had killed the Howler. Except this time it was rushing up to meet me. I didn't even bother bracing myself for impact, I knew I was going too fast to survive. So I just closed my eyes again.

I must have blacked out for a second, because I woke up and I was lying on the ground. Something must have caught me, or something really strange must have happened. HA, "really strange", like none of this is really strange? Impossible, more like. Impossible.

I rolled over and saw the sign. A little wooden sign propped up on a stick, with the cursive engraved on it. "Let's play," it said. A little arrow pointed ahead, with an even smaller word saying "champain". I stood up and saw past the sign. A field of reddish grass stretched before me. There was a severe line, cutting the green grass I was standing on from the crunchy red grass ahead.

I stepped over the little line, and felt a shiver run through my body. I knew I couldn't turn back even if I wanted to. I looked at my watch. The date was 3-17-11.

It took me 3 weeks to walk across that plain. I ran out of food and water by the end of week 1, but every time I sat down, there was an exact clone of my water bottle and a few granola bars when I looked behind me. By the time I got to the playground, I was stumbling badly. My legs were giving out. The watch said 4-7-11.

The playground was a sick, warped vision of a normal playground. The slide stretched up for what must have been 10 stories, the swings covered with spikes. The steps were impossibly tall, and the jungle gym had nettles--red ones--growing and winding over it. The playground endlessly repeated, stretching to each side.

It was a nightmare. I collapsed on the sand in the playground and fell asleep. I hadn't been sleeping well on that plain, I had nightmares every night. But when I fell asleep on that playground, it was the best sleep I had ever had.

When I woke up, there was a black door in front of me. It was perched on the sand. There was a grotesque door handle that looked like it was carved out of part of a bone. Attached to the door was another cursive note.

"Face yourself. Look through the door."

I had to do it. I opened the door quickly. Before me was a pit. The pit was full of motionless bodies, bodies standing completely still, shoulder to shoulder.

All the people in there were me.

They each had some deformity, some part of them twisted, missing, decayed. And they all were staring at me, grinning. I couldn't stand it. I screamed, and slammed the door closed. I turned to grab my backpack, and there was suddenly another door in front of me. It was the same color, same texture as my bedroom door.

I barely read the note on it before I flung myself through the door. It said, "Go back. You aren't ready yet, Rye."

I flew through the door and blacked out again. When I woke up on my bed, the clock by my bed said it was 3-20-11. My watch still said it was 4-7-11.

I know I'm going back. I just don't know when.


Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Entry #82

I went into James's room yesterday. I sat around from 9 A.M. to around 2 P.M., just trying to gather the courage to go in. I had both his notes in my pocket.

I opened the door and shone the flashlight in. Due to the lack of use, my parents had turned off the circuit breaker for his room. The previous owner, who was also the builder of the house, had done a shoddy job with all the wiring, and he made it so each room had its own circuit breaker. I didn't want to turn it back on because I didn't want my parents to know what I was doing.

My parents basically ignore the room now. They act like it's not there.

So I shone the flashlight, and the first thing I saw was another ripped-off corner--another note. It was lying in front of his bed, stuck in the carpet. I crept in and flipped the note so I could see it.

All it had was another arrow, and the word "CLOSET" bisected by the arrow. James has a fairly large closet in his room. Not a walk-in, but large. Both of the sliding doors to it were closed.

I turned my flashlight to the doors. There was a larger corner pinned onto the door with a tack. All it said was "JUMP".

Yeah, I was nervous. I felt like I was about to vomit. But I swallowed the bile and whisked the door open.

Void. Black emptiness. The air whooshed past me from the room into the void, and the room suddenly turned cold. There was no closet left. The room terminated at the edge of the closet. My flashlight's beam didn't even penetrate the blackness.

I was too scared. I couldn't do it. I couldn't jump like he wanted me to. I slammed the closet door shut, ran out of the room, and shut that door. I don't know if I can go back in there.


Sunday, March 13, 2011

Entry #81

There was absolutely nothing back at the 909. Nothing. No traces of--well, of anything. No footprints in the mud, no box like the last time. I was there all day, looking for something. There was no point.

And when I got back, there was this.
I'm going into his room now. It's been shut off, forgotten, since the last time I was in there. James wants me in there now. I have no idea how he's getting the notes to me, but it's going to help me help him.

I would have gone in there as soon as I saw the note, but to be completely honest, I haven't had the courage to go into the room again. I'm afraid everything's just going to become...real, I guess. I know it is, but I just want to wake up. I can't wake up. This is my life, and I don't know why this happened to my family, but I--we, actually, as a family--have to face it. I have to act.


Friday, March 11, 2011

Entry #80

So I looked up the two words I didn't know on that paper. "Champain" and "aery".

According to a gardening website, "champain" means "flat, open plain". Aery means "nest, haven". So I have to cross a plain, pass a playground, and find a haven...sounds easy enough, right? Nope. Heh.

Still have no idea what James's little puzzle in the corner is. Why is he playing games with me now? Doesn't he want to be safe? God.

I'm going to keep my eye out for any playgrounds in the area. I know Locust wants this to be fairly easy for me to find. He wants to play with me.

Tomorrow I'm going to the 909. It's finally dry enough. Wish me luck, again.


Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Entry #79

Thank God. I can't believe I'm actually saying this, but thank God, there's another note. Cursive again. And the corner isn't ripped out. Well, I think it was meant to be, but it wasn't.

And that's James's writing in the corner. Hahaha, finally something! Can I show my parents this? Is it proof enough? Should I wait?

And really, what does it mean?

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Entry #78

In regards to the funeral...

I think it's two weeks from now. I want to confront my parents so much, but they don't know I've been listening carefully to what they've been saying. I've picked up little bits of information every time I hear them talking. They don't want me to know (yet, at least, I hope they'll tell me at some point), so they change the topic if I come into the room while they're talking.

I've been having visions again. Last night I woke up, and felt compelled to look outside. It was the middle of the night, supposed to be pitch black.

The sky was red again. Everything was normal, but the sky was red. It wasn't bright out, everything was obscured in shadow, but the sky was red. I slammed the shade shut as fast as I could, but not before I thought I saw someone sitting in the swinging chair out front.

It's hard to go to sleep when you know there's things like that outside your house. I can feel the air changing when I go outside. I can feel a heaviness in the air, a heaviness that's not caused by humidity or weather. It's just an unnatural stillness. I can't stand it.


Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Entry #77

I heard my parents talking about a funeral for James today. They were discussing where to have it.

They were in their bedroom, with the door closed. I could hear them talking when I woke up, and when I got up to go to the bathroom, I heard my dad say "James" clearly. Then I heard my mom shush him, and they went silent. My mom heard me walk by.

I went to the bathroom, then I carefully opened the door so it wouldn't make noise and walked up to the bedroom door so I could listen. I heard them name three funeral homes nearby, and I heard my mom ask if there should be a wake.

I went back to my room before I heard any more. If I had heard anything else, I would have walked in and told them that James was still alive. They would really think I was crazy.

You have no idea of the feeling I had when I got back to my room. It was just a hopeless, desperate feeling in my gut, weighing me down, making me feel as if I couldn't do anything. And if I could do anything, it would be wrong. After all, if I told my parents what had happened to me, even if I showed them the papers, the journal, the shirts, the cloth, they would still think I was crazy. I know they think I'm still affected in some way. I am, in a way.

What do I do? They're going to have a funeral for James.


Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Entry #76

Couldn't go out to the 909 again. Too much rain, too much cold, too much snow. I'm still sorta tired from waking up at 5:30 A.M. to get to the swim meet both days this weekend. We decided not to go to a hotel, even though we had a reservation. My mom just said she didn't want to stay in a hotel, so we just drove home both days.

My legs are very sore. Combined with the tennis I've had the past two days (Yes, I went straight to tennis after the swim meet yesterday. Dumb idea.), I'm pretty ready for my 'easy' day tomorrow. I only have swim practice, no tennis.

I'm not going to try for the 909 tomorrow, even if the rain stops. It'll be ridiculously muddy and cold, and I just want a day where I can chill on the computer or watch T.V. or something.