I had one week to try and do anything I could to get myself out of this situation. All those poets who go on about the eternal afternoons of youth, I can guarantee they were never in a situation like mine.
The Internet, much like today was exceedingly full of shit, so much so that even my preteen brain picked up on it and gave up on that route. What it did contain made my blood run cold. Murder statistics being on a rising trend for the past 5 years.
Looking back on this as an adult , that could have been a coincidence blown out of proportion by my hormone addled mind. Thing is, as an adult I also looked up the amount of murder cases in the local area during the same time, significantly down. Where was the influx of bodies coming from? Why was reporting so thin?
The library brought me more of the same, a few newspaper clippings of unsolved murders or disappearances , but nothing , no reports, no local legends, nothing that would help me figure out what these things were .
My week dragged on in a haze of failed ideas and insomnia. Saturday slowly rolling toward me like the world's most relaxed freight train, and here I was tied to the tracks.
Insomnia sucks, insomnia as a child sucks even more, and the absolute king hoover of insomnia is when it happens to someone with an already messed up sleep schedule.
Strike three , but I wasn't out.
Saturday at midnight marked day 3 of zero sleep, fifteen minutes after my parents left I heard their footsteps , they didn't even bother to knock this time.
Trench coat sticks his head into the doorframe of my room " Hiya bud, ready for a little t.v. party?" I don't like his nice voice anymore it just reminds me what is underneath.
" Sure, but can you guys…not do that , thing, again ?" I say meekly. I don't know how thin the ice I'm on with these things is, but I'm not taking any chances.
Maw walks by carrying a case of soda with a brand I don't recognize and a few grocery bags full of snack brands I do, all of my favorites in fact.
" About that kid, I think we can make a deal that we don't do that stuff in your house anymore. We were all really hungry, and sorry to say but you were the only other option." He doesn't sound remorseful, more like he is making a deal.
"That'd be good for me, I haven't been sleeping." I tell him honestly.
As we walk to the living room and I hook up this catnip for the worst things on earth, I notice Hell Mantis is looking completely different. It is now an obese older man holding a big gulp with two long straws coming from the top. I'd have never noticed before, but when I really stare I can see the flaws and imperfections that give the illusion away.
" Help yourself to the snacks before …what was it you called him?" Trench coat says pointing to Maw.
"Maw" I say , scared I might offend it.
" I like that, one of the better human names he's received. " the pierced monster states almost proudly.
" You guys eat regular food? " I'm curious despite the situation.
" You wouldn't know would you. Okay, tell you what, I'll tell you a little bit about us. Only fair i guess.
Yes , we eat normal food, we also eat people, live animals and lots of other stuff just for fun. But what really feeds us, what we can't live without are those emotions.
Fear mostly, but rage , desperation and confusion are all good too. " Maw makes a harsh gurgling noise and Trench Coat rolls his mismatched eyes.
" I was getting to that.
Sorry maw likes to butt in. What he was saying is that he is a special case, he can actually get a little bit of feeding from folks feeling happy.
Not like he has a huge chance of that, maw is also special in that he can only take nourishment from the innocent. If he was a little brighter maybe he'd find some isolated hillbillies and become their backwoods god, but Maw likes blood and guts, he's good people." Trench coat finishes as everyone gets comfortable and starts dipping into the snacks.
At first I think I'm too scared to eat, but within the first hour I'm getting some Orbitz and a bag of doritos .
With my newfound information I'm able to make a bit more sense of the shows being played. I'm going to try and give a summary of one. Maybe others have seen it? Maybe people know what's going on better than I do?
It was called " Have a Taste" and I'll transcribe it here as best as I can remember. The setting was a dilipidated talk show looking ordeal with rows and rows of creatures just like the freaks cackling in my living room.
The announcer was rake thin , with long thin eyes and a tongue that whipped around a tiny pucker of a mouth that somehow produced a commanding stage performer tone.
Announcer: Hello everything in world and out, it's time for everyone's favorite Residual Emotional Extraction, Have A Taste!
I know some of our audience is trapped on some deep dark places, but never fear, by the infernal majesty of your Terro-con connection you will be able to sample some of the finest emotion you could ever get.
We can't give you a feast, but you can…
Audience: Have a Taste!
( a middle aged man is wheeled onto the stage , he is bruised and scared.)
Man: Where am I? How did I get here?
Announcer: For all you fans if confusion just let that wash on over you. I am more of a fear guy myself though…
( Announcer produces what appears to be a magicians wand the man doesn't understand but starts to sweat. The announcer slowly brings it within inches of his eye as a small needle slides out of the tip, the camera closes in , the man is full in screaming and trying to get away, in a flash the announcer snaps his hand backward turning the wand into a limp bouquet. )
Announcer: Didn't you trust me?
( the announcer takes a step away, tossing the bouquet to the audience, in the same motion he rips off one eyelid of the man)
Announcer: And that is the fear we wanted! But we know we need to crank that up a notch so you folks at home can…
Audience: Have a Taste!
Announcer: So my friend, it looks like you'll really be keeping an eye out from now on, but I bet you'd like a chance to make this all go away wouldn't you? Well you can have it.
In one hand I have an envelope that contains a word that would vaporize anyone from my prestigious bloodline with but an utterance.
In the other I have a belt covered in industrial fishhooks, 5 inches long , I'd make a joke but I don't think the censors would appreciate that now would they?
You get a choice, do I tear your head from your shoulders, offering you a quick death and a trip to the nearest afterlife, or do you roll the dice and see how long you can last?
Man (sobbing)- The dice, the dice!
( two assistants that are seemingly patched together wheel out a die that is approximately 3 feet high and dimpled with thousands if not millions of tiny numbers. They roll it, and it skips into the audience, crushing several members. )
Announcer- That was a lucky roll, put if 200,000 possibilities you rolled 14! Good for you.
( the man looks visibly relieved. )
Announcer- I've never seen someone survive 14 hours of this , but you could be the lucky fella!
The announcer then brutally lashed the man with the belt. Giant wet pieces of flesh flew with every strike, but he lasted an hour and a half. Sometimes I still have to tell myself that thing must have been keeping him alive somehow, I was seeing organs 45 minutes in. No one should be able to put up with that.
"All that did was work up my appetite , you guys?" Trench coat says standing.
The other two exchange sounds I can't really call words and all three turn their faces or similar body parts toward my tear soaked self.
" You get to come with us kid, we wouldn't want us to do it here would you? Do we have a deal?" Something gives me pause, the structure of the sentence, like he us trying to force me to agree.
I know I have no choice, so I say " fine" in a robotic tone that is slowly starting to become my default.
We wander the streets for an hour and a new wave of fear hits me as I see how easy these things can blend into the darkness, anyone watching me would have no idea that ten feet or so ahead is 700 to 800 pounds of nightmare fuel.
We pass my best friends house and briefly we pause , my stomach drops and I start to hyperventilate. Trench coat laughs and says " just messing with you kid. " as we keep walking.
My brain is fried from lack of sleep combined with the tortured death I just saw and I don't recognize the neighbourhood we are in.
They pick a small single story house, all three work as a well oiled machine. Hell mantis silently scouts the house while the other two and myself make it to the back door. I can't see what trench coat does but when he is done the back door slides silently open and we are walking through a home owned by an obviously old obvious bachelor.
I pick out some war medals and trinkets , pictures of grand children, all things that make me feel worse and worse about what is going to happen.
The freaks begin purposefully making more noise, then take places at various points in the room. I realise I'm the only one standing , facing the man as a flashlight on a shotgun shines in my face.
"You got two seconds to get the fuck outta my house ya little shit! " he screams , chambering a round.
I'm frozen as he counts to one and takes a step forward. For a second I see him in a bath robe , white hair frazzled and sticking out at odd angles, looking just confused and aprehensive. He doesn't want to shoot me, just get back to bed without calling the cops.
But as he steps forward Trench coat is there is a blur holding the barrel of the gun up to his own face, lighting him in a ghastly fashion. The old man pulls the trigger and the room us daylight for a brief second.
Trench Coat slowly lowers his head, his jawbone is shattered and the skin shredded, but otherwise he looks unconcerned.
He reaches up and tears the bone chunks out of his face, tossing them at the old man who is standing frozen in horror.
He points to the gaping hole, then to the old man, and then, with a swipe and a tearing noise rips off the old man's jaw.
As he stumbles backward Trench Coat slams his jaw into his face.
" That's better isn't it? For me anyway" Trench coat says and kicks the man in the chest, I'm covered in blood already as Maw bites out a large piece of the old man's back, I see a piece of spine leaking yellow fluid and the old man hits the ground, he'll mantis begins to stab him at random seemingly taking glee in his twitching and convulsions.
It goes without saying that I'm never going to forget that night. Especially having the gore slowly licked from me by Hell mantis while the severed head it wielded made satisfied moaning noises.
As I said, plenty more, but there is only so much I care to relate at one time.
Link to part 1 https://www.reddit.com/nosleep/comments/jz37mv/why_i_dont_watch_britcoms_part_1/?utm_medium=android_app&utm_source=share