I have seen many stories on the internet, and I take them all with a grain of salt. However, several stories have piqued my interest. I believe they may be related to something I experienced during my time in Korea, nearly a decade ago. I am a member of the United States Navy and was stationed in South Korea for several years.
One night, my ship, another American vessel, and a ROK vessel were doing training maneuvers. After several hours, we were nearing the end, planning on cruising all night and returning to port the following morning. It was then that someone called a warning. I turned from my gun emplacement and looked up. There was a streak of light plunging through the air, glowing red and blue. It seemed to pulse, though never went completely dark.
That was strange enough. It came closer and closer, eventually plunging into the East Sea. Before it struck the water, as it closed in on us, I felt a strange headache, which seemed to pulse with the object. My shipmates around me all felt it as well, and we all collectively grabbed our heads, struggling to keep our eyes open. And then it stopped as the object struck the water, still miles away.
Our three ships quickly made haste for the point of impact. I am sure that the only reason we were there was to collect this object. Several civilian personnel, members of a defense contractor there to test some new communication equipment, one of the training stated objectives. But the real objective, I am convinced, was to recover this meteorite. I was not involved directly with the recovery, but some Navy personnel were.
For security reasons, I cannot divulge specifics of the ships involved or even the company involved, but I will say what I believe I can. I feel we strayed dangerously close to enemy waters, but those at the top believed recovering this worth the risk. It probably was, considering what potential it may hold. But the more I think about it, the more I realize what is happening, it would have been best if no one recovered it.
We returned to port as scheduled, and the meteorite was hauled away on a special truck. Life went on, and the strange night faded into the background. Several months later, I was on shore leave. I made my way to a local restaurant to enjoy some barbecue and soju, along with several other Americans. Most of us were Navy or Marines, but there was also a civilian. His name was Marcel. He worked at a joint US-South Korean research facility, near the naval base.
He said little about his work, but he did mention who he worked for, which I recognized as the defense contractor that had been on that training mission. I hadn't realized they operated a joint facility, so close to where I was deployed. The conversation turned to other things, and we all took full advantage of the soju. At some point in the conversation, I mentioned missing being able to watch Star Trek and Marcel offered to lend me his DVD collection of TNG. I had more time off, so I accepted, planning to binge it over the next several days.
He handed it over to me at the same restaurant the next night, and after enjoying some spicy chicken feet, I headed back to base to watch a few episodes. I decided to start at the beginning. The first disc did not have a label, just a plain disc. I assumed he lost it and replaced it with another recorded disc. I popped it in and started to play it.
It did indeed have some TNG on it, but it also had snippets of a variety of TV shows, films, music videos, and both cinematics and game-play from video games. Each was only a few seconds long, about ten to twenty, with a few longer cases going up to a minute. I watched, confused, trying to figure it out for about ten minutes. I started to get a splitting headache and had a bout of nausea that forced me to pause and spend a minute regaining my composure. The disc had one track, one that went for over an hour.
I had no idea what was going on, so I took it out and put it back in the case. I got a drink and put in the second disc, this one with a proper label. The menu popped up and I started the first episode on the disc. After about halfway through the episode, I had relaxed from the strange experience and just enjoyed the show. I watched several episodes before heading to bed, with no more headaches or other issues.
The next day I called Marcel and told him about the disc. He laughed and told me he had forgotten he had lost the first disc. It was a nervous laugh, a laugh trying to hide fear, to hide a mistake. He told me the disc was just him experimenting with video editing. We set up a meeting later that day so I could return the disc.
I kept the rest of the DVD collection for a few more days and managed to watch most of it. When I met with Marcel to return it, he seemed haggard. There were dark circles under his eyes, and his demeanor made me feel like we were doing a drug deal. His eyes shifted constantly as we made small talk, but I think he was happy to have an inane conversation. He mentioned that he was planning on leaving Korea in a few months, to work for a different company (I think it was called Parasol) though both his current and future employers were owned by the same conglomerate.
Several days later, I heard on the news that an American had driven off a bridge and died. It was later ruled a suicide. Despite my limited interaction with Marcel, it was sobering news. I still wonder if there was something I could have done. It wasn't a suicide, it was a loose end being tied up. I was redeployed back to the US in another month, yet another loose end dealt with. Or maybe I am seeing connecting strands where there is only chaff in the wind.
In recent days, this experience has been brought back to recent memory. It is not just the stories I have read. I have been having strange dreams. I don't remember much of most of them, despite feeling they were incredibly vivid, but when I awake, they remain only as a memory on the tip of the brain. What I can remember is a hodge-podge of scenes from various media, all accompanied by strange swells and beats that play at the edges of the dream.
I bought a special sleep headband and pills designed to help encourage lucid dreaming. The headband tracked my brainwaves and recorded them. I learned that I was sleeping deeply, but I remembered no more of my dreams, nor were they lucid. After a couple of weeks, things began to change. It was subtle at first, but I remembered more and more of my dreams. I found myself able to control some aspects, to move about in my dreams, but have little effect on them.
One night I found myself wandering through a sitcom like a ghostly observer. I walked into one room and noticed all the shadows were wrong, pointing towards light sources and radiating from objects with no light sources to project them. I thought I saw eyes in one of the shadows, and then I woke up, and nearly fell out of bed from a violent bout of vertigo.
Another night I was fighting my way through an FPS when the sky went dark, then the world twisted. My squad and I fought our way deeper into a city that twisted in on itself, with buildings reaching in from all directions, with a black writhing sky beyond. I don't remember waking up, but I came to my senses in my bathroom, struggling to contain my stomach's contents.
I stopped using the headband and pills. I stopped watching any visual media, resorting to only reading text. I am even paranoid about still pictures and only listen to music from discs and records I already owned. It was because of this that I began reading a lot of online fiction, and noticed some similarities.
Paranoia is a terrifying thing. I could be wrong. This could all be nothing, a symptom of some other completely natural ailment, a collection of coincidences that point to something only for the mind already looking for something. But I am too afraid to stop. This story is a test. If someone is watching me, if they have found a way to use media to manipulate our minds, then they can't have this get out. They will finish me. If I die mysteriously, if I die at all, from natural causes or by my hand, then I am right. Our minds are their playthings. Beware Parasol.
Written by GlennBob509