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My first short story is now available on Amazon.com! Head on over and get your copy today!


 

For a sneak preview, check out the first three chapters here -> https://goo.gl/sQR9Py.

 

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Episode 3.1 – Dr. Edward Garfield’s Journal


It’s been more than a couple days. 12, to be exact. 12 days since you’ve seen a flashing ‘1’ on the unplugged answering machine. You’ve managed to finally clean and redecorate the study, and pack away the eerie answering machine into some box, stored away in some corner you didn’t care to remember where.  All that was left was to throw out the papers that were left in the desk drawers.

Each drawer seemed to be filled with official-looking documents and folders, sporting a weird looking logo you’ve never seen before. “The Office of Dr. Edward Garfield“, was plastered under the logo on each piece of paper. Edward Garfield. Edward Garfield?  You take a moment to consider if you have any relatives by that name but no one comes to mind. Why would papers belonging to some Doctor’s office be in this study?  As far as you’re concerned this was just some house your great-grandparents had built that no one else seemed to have wanted.

The strangest part about the documents were that none of them looked old. In fact, some looked they could have been quite recent.

You’re sure the house was abandoned, right?

Most of the jargon is completely foreign to you. They could be talking about Kryptonite for all you know. As you skim through the rest of the drawers, you find some papers that look like journal notes from this doctor’s personal notepad. It’s pretty strange, though. The dates are blacked out, patient’s names (you assume) are written in bright, bold red and the signature at the end of the documents is…

There’s a particular entry that catches your eye – it has multiple pages, the first bright red name you see is Ben. You see Lim’s name too and oddly enough, the papers are warm. Very warm. Almost as if they’ve just been printed.

A little reading could  do you some good, don’tcha think?

——————– Journal Entry ——————–

-------------------- Journal Entry --------------------

----------------------------------------

—————————————-

Ben from the second call? Are they really being held captive?

Who exactly is Dr. Edward Garfield?

You don’t know what to think at this point but maybe the answers are in the rest of these pages. I guess you’ll have to keep reading to find out.

*To be continued*


   <-Previous  |  Next ->

Episode 2 – How Many Are There?!

That voice message was beyond creepy. Creepy enough that you haven’t been in the study for the past 3 days. Luckily, you were too busy cleaning and refurbishing the rest of the house, so you can gladly avoid going in there. But 3 days later, you’re right back where you started, with a dusty study to clean and an answering machine with the weirdest prank voicemail you’ve ever heard. It can’t be helped at this point. Everything’s where you left it, a surprising relief. But first thing’s first, you need to get rid of that answering machine.

Walking over towards the desk is difficult by itself. All you have to do is unplug it and throw it away. And as you pass by the desk to reach towards the outlet, you see it.

There it is again, the flashing red ‘1’ on the answering machine. You’re a daring one, aren’t you? You’re seriously considering listening to the message.

You think it’ll be a different one this time and you can’t help but press play.

“You have one new voice message. Voice message received today at 5:18 a.m. Message from unknown number.”

——————–Begin Message——————–

*shuffling feet*

“Will you keep quiet?!”, the familiar voice from yesterday shouted, “Geez, you guys are such losers sometimes.”

You can hear the hushed giggles behind her. How many people are on today’s call?

“Seriously, keep it down. We’re screwed if Mr. Edgar finds out about this.” The name alone seemed to cease the laughter – maybe even the excitement altogether. The name made you a little unsettled yourself.  “Hey, bird brain! Miss me? Sure you did!” This woman may just love the sound of her own voice. “Sorry I had to cut you off last time. Just know I saved your life. You’re welcome, kiddo.”

Sure. Thanks, mysterious-lady-who-is-leaving-weird-voicemails-on-the-old-answering-machine.

“Anyway, there’s someone that wants to me–”

“Oh, come on Lim, I can introduce myself.” a faint voice protrudes her monologue.

Lim scoffs, “What’s up your butthole? I was getting to that!”

“No you weren’t. You were gonna talk on forever and ever. I swear you’re completely in love with your own voice.” You’re fascinated by this new like-minded man, who seems to speak bluntly even though he’s whispering shyly. “Move over, please.”

Hear that? Lim spiels her extensive encyclopedia of expletives as she shuffles away from the phone.

“Hi, there. I’m Ben.”

*a momentary lull*

“It’s not an actual call, dumbass.” Lim finally chimes in.

“Oh- oh yeah, it isn’t. Silly me.” a quick chuckle and a clear of the throat, “Sorry about that. I got a bit overexcited. I always do when it comes to people from the outside. I’m not sure if you’ll even listen to this, or if anyone will, actually, but it’s comforting to at least pretend you’re there.”

“Don’t worry, someone’s listening.” Lim’s referring to you. 

Of course, since you’re still playing the recording. 

“Right, bird brain? I’m sure you’re listening.” There’s a strange chilling feeling now – the kind that proves you really think these people know exactly who you are. 

“If that’s true, then that’s a relief”,Ben again clears his throat. “Well, it’s a pleasure to meet you Bird Brain.”

After two calls, you’ve got quite the nickname for yourself. 

“You’re  the first  ‘outside’ person I’ve spoken to in the last four years,” Ben started again, “so I think this is my only chance to tell anyone how I got here.”

“Don’t overdo it, Ben.”

“I know Lim, I know.” Their voices become heavy with a serious tone that’s disconcerting, at best. “I don’t remember much anyway. All I remember is that I was on my way to the dorm’s kitchen when someone grabbed me from behind and stuck a needle in my neck. Then I was here, I guess.”

Dorm? College dorm, maybe? He’s probably in his 20’s.

More importantly.. needle?

“No worries, I plan to leave in a few days on the anniversary. I think five years is enough of my life to steal away from me. I’m leaving. I have to leave, even if it means killing everyone here.”

*another momentary lull*

“Wait.. that sounded a bit too scary.” His forced chuckle proves he’s being more serious than hypothetical. “I just need to get ‘it’ from Mr. Edgar’s room.”

“Ben! Enough! Keep your dumb death wish to yourself!”

‘it’ seemed to set Lim off. Either ‘it’ should never be touched or Mr. Edgar’s room should never been entered. 

“No one’s forcing you to help me, Lim”, his voice unchanged, “You wanna know what ‘it’ is, Bird Brain? Well, I don’t really know either. I just know its the key to knowing how to survive being alive. That may mean nothing to you right now but if I can get my hands on it, you won’t have to worry about that.”

“Okay, okay. That’s enough from Mr. Loon Town.” Lim was clearly annoyed.

“He’s a nut job who believes every little thing the nurses whisper around here. He’s obviously too dense to notice they’re doing it on purpose. Like I said, every gets in and can get out, so–”

“What about Ace?”

*silence*

You can hear Lim exhale a jagged breath. ‘Ace’ seems to be a bigger trigger than ‘it’.

Who’s Ace?

*a door suddenly swings open; a slight rustling*

Surprisingly, your door stays closed this time. One less thing to spook you out.

“Ben, Lim, Jasmine, Hank and Katie, it’s testing time.” The unfamiliar, grim voice of a woman fills the study, clearer than anything else heard from the answering machine.

“Come on! Jazzy’s only a child. Don’t do this to her.” Another man’s voice chimes in, from quite a distance away from the phone.

“Hank, don’t make things worse for yourself.” she says with obvious apathy to his plea.

*bustling feet*

*soft sobbing of a child*

“Talk to you in a couple days” Lim whispers.

*dial tone*

——————–End Message——————–


<- Previous  |  Next ->

Episode 1 – You Hear It

On the desk of an old study, in this glorious abandoned house you’ve now inherited, lies an old phone and it’s answering machine. Like everything else in this room, it is enveloped in dust and weathered from age and loneliness. There are so many possibilities for this new house of yours; so much to clean and so much to create. You should have a quick look around first. There must be some things you want to keep – antique souvenirs, right?

But first, this answering machine has a bright, red ‘1’ flashing on it. This must’ve been an old message. You doubt it was anything important but listening to it wouldn’t hurt. You click the play button positioned right next to the flashing ‘1’ and you hear the automated voice chime:

“You have one new voice message. Voice message received today at 10:38 a.m.”

10:38 a.m.? Today? Why would the phone still be connected in an abandoned house?

“Message from unknown number”, it finishes as you wait for the message to begin.

  ——————– Begin Message——————-

*a loud burst of static* 

“H..h..”

*the static begins to fade in and out as a faint voice can be heard uttering something*

“Hel..he..lo?”

*the frequency begins to stabilize*

You finally hear a woman’s voice; it sounds quite clear. Her voice doesn’t seem to have any urgency in it. As a matter of fact, her voice is gentle and calm — almost monotonous. “For fuck’s sake, does thing even work?” She begins, with a hint of irritation that barely makes her sound believable. You hear a bit of rustling  in the background of the transmission. Is she alone? 

“Hello,” she starts again, “you’re probably wondering what you’re listening to so I’ll get straight to the point. You’re listening to a secret; a secret that might make you wind up here if you go and yap about it to anyone, okay? If you want to know more than that, well, too bad. Hmm. You’re trying to figure out who I am and where I am, aren’t you? You’re thinking this must be an old recording since you’re listening to an answering machine. Don’t hurt your pea-brain with all that thinking you’re doing.”

“I am ‘Mind-your-own-business’. I’m currently at ‘You-don’t-need-to-know’ and the year this is being recorded is ‘You’re-too-nosy-you-little-shit’.” She begins to chuckle sounding genuinely amused with her one-sided banter.

“Okay, okay. The least I can tell you is that I’m in a basement. Not the crazy psycho-killer basements. It’s more like the basement someone’s 45-year old son lives in. Wait.. that’s basically the same thing when I really think about it. Well, never mind, its just a fucking basement. It’s pretty decent to be honest. Its well furnished, spacious for all of us, tubs of human remains in the corner, screaming caged animals — y’know, the usual. Am I right?”

Was the last part a joke? I’m sure you didn’t find it funny. Are you gonna turn off the answering machine now? No you won’t, because she might say something more interesting next.

“I quite like it in here. It’s not top-notch but it’s better than outside.”

She scoffs. “I can’t say I don’t miss out there but what’s so good about outside? You know what outside is good for? Not a fucking thing! ” her tone suddenly rising to a shout.

“Outside is a scary place, and I’m sure you see that too. Everything’s a big secret, drug-induced conspiracy! But anyway,” she calms down slightly, “enjoy it while you’re out there. We all end up in this Basement one of these days, one way or another.”

Why would you end up in the “Basement”?

“Of course you’ll end up in the Basement!”, your wondering if she can hear your thoughts. 

“It’s basically a rite of passage these days. Everyone is the same. Everyone in this basement is in the same predicament, hence we all end up here. It’s a bit unfortunate that we’ll lose our memory if– when we leave but that’s just that, I guess.”

I’m sure you start to think this is just some prank call gone awry.

“I’m not a weirdo, you prick. I’m sure that’s what you’re thinking. I’m telling you, everyone’s been here. Your mom, your dad, your best friend. Even your future kids are gonna end up here. It’s because they think we all need–”

There’s complete static. We all need what?! What do we possibly need?! What is this ‘Basement’?! You’re frantically trying to figure out how to fix the answering machine. You push this button, then that one. You check if the message is still playing, and it is. You check the chord. 

You check the chord and realize that the phone isn’t even plugged in.

“Yeah. That’s why we’re here”, the message resumes with the woman being unaware of the interruption. “Like I said, don’t go yapping, no one’s gonna believe you anyway. Most haven’t gone there yet or don’t remember. Save yourself the trouble, kiddo.”

* three heavy knocks*

You’re frozen because you thought you were alone. No, you’re absolutely sure you’re alone.

“It’s Mr. Edgar,” a stern voice booms from the door, “I’m coming in.”

You turn to see who this “Mr. Edgar” is.

“Woah!” You’re attention is back on the answering machine. “I’ll call you back. Mr. Edgar is here and he’ll murder me and whoever you are if he sees me making this call.”

You can hear the door opening but it sounds like the one in the very room you’re in. And as you turn to stare at the door again, watching it slowly open unlike the fast pace of your heartbeat,

“Oh, shit. By-”

*dial tone*

——————–The message ends.——————–

Finally the door is completely open and no one’s there.


Next ->

How to Survive being Alive — New Release Tomorrow!

As promised, there is a new story I’ll be publishing on my Wattpad page and here it is!

How to Survive Being Alive

I’ll be publishing the first chapter tomorrow, so please give it a read and some support.

To help you along, here is a snippet of Episode 1:

“Hello,” she starts again, “you’re probably wondering what you’re listening to so I’ll get straight to the point. You’re listening to a secret; a secret that might make you wind up here if you go and yap about it to anyone, okay? If you want to know more than that, well, too bad. Hmm. You’re trying to figure out who I am and where I am, aren’t you? You’re thinking this must be an old recording since you’re listening to an answering machine. Don’t hurt your pea-brain with all that thinking you’re doing.”


I can’t wait for you to read it and engage with it. I’ll post tomorrow with the official link.

See you then!