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The following text may involve you and those around you in something regrettable. This is not a joke. Please continue at your own discretion.

On December 17th, 1994, bodies of the Dunne family were found in a fear-induced coma in their home in Mayo, Ireland. The father was found under the kitchen table frozen stiff as a rock in a paralysis with his eyes gaping open, the same as the eldest child who was clutching to the bathroom curtains upstairs. Nearly 15 meters away from the house, the mother’s body was found in the same frozen state with their newborn clutched in her arms, who was unaffected by the mysterious trauma that had occurred that night. In 1996, that child was found paralyzed in a Catholic convent with his eyes bulging in fear. The comas were clinically diagnosed as lasting for an indeterminable amount of time, most likely permanently. The cause remains unknown.

In loving Memory of Melanie K. Horowitz,

You will be missed.

My name is Julian Shaw. I was born on the 4th of June 1988, in the UK before I moved out to Oregon and attended Lincoln High. Now, I’ve since moved to Toronto to pursue my dreams competing as an Olympic swimmer after years of lifeguard duty at kiddy pools. Nintendo, creamy macaroni, road trips; as the song goes, these are a few of my favorite things. Also, I just started my first attempt as an amateur writer with a novel inspired by my pet jellyfish. I’m telling you all this beforehand because I like to let you, my readers, know exactly who’s talking to you.

Have you ever woken up with big red marks on your face from the pillow you slept on, or along the side of your body? I don’t know about you, but I can’t sleep with any more than my underwear. This happens to me all the time. However, a couple days ago, I woke up with a red imprint on my chest, a mark that scared the living God out of me when I looked in the mirror to brush my teeth that morning. With no other impressions on my body, I noticed a large hand imprint right over my heart, except this was most definitely no ordinary hand. It was almost twice the size of my own when I measured mine against it, and had poke marks where pointed nails appear to have grabbed along my collarbone. I didn’t look into it too much, and continued on with my day. I can’t think for shit in the morning. At noon, I had swimming practice at the pool with my team. Now, as I haven’t yet mentioned, one of my friends on the team, Connor, hasn’t been coming in for practice for a while. When I walked out of the showers with my towel that day, my team was standing around in a circle with our coach. It turns out, Connor had been found paralyzed in his bed. He was taken to the hospital to be monitored in a coma that could not be explained by anyone. I did some research, and there are apparently countless cases of spontaneous comas throughout the world in which perfectly healthy people simply freeze into vegetables for no apparent reason and never wake up. I was disturbed to find out later as I visited him in the hospital that they were not able to close his eyelids because the muscles had kept them wired open. It’s tragic what happened to him, and to so many people around the world who this inexplicably happens to.

March 22nd, 2011

Now, what I’m about to tell you can be frightening and difficult to wrap your brain around, but I tell you in my best interest and for your future safety. I woke up the next morning with another hand mark on my body, just as unsettling and vicious as the first. Nothing particularly unusual happened that day, except for a message on Facebook from my little sister Melanie. She’s not actually my little sister, but she might as well be. I babysat her from ages 6 – 11 and have come to know her family almost as my own. Opening my inbox, I see 2 untitled messages sent a couple nights ago that make me realize how seldom I check my Facebook. Here’s a copy-and-paste of the contents of these 2 messages:

March 21

im scared julian, please help me. everythings so quiet

ive been hearing things at night lately, and the past two nights i think something grabbed me

i think its in my house right now. can you please come quickly, i don’t know what to do. i cant hear mom

March 21

Jlian don;f jlook ay iy . ifd you look ay it. it will gtet yiou

it;s in my roon m righy now. please hh

After reading them, I started to get a sinking feeling in my gut, remembering that I’m 2 days late reading it. I tried calling Melanie’s house, but no one picked up. After calling the police, I rushed down to see them myself, only to arrive at a parade of ambulances and police cars. Melanie and her mother, who she lived with, were both found paralyzed like cold grey statues with blank eyes. They were almost completely dehydrated and had low vital signs. There was nothing that could be done for either of them.

I stayed up pretty late that night trying to figure out what Melanie had been trying to tell me. At first glance, the second message looked as if she had just gotten back smashed out of her mind from her first party, but deciphering what I think she was trying to type, I noticed the message was a warning. It said not look at it, and that it would get me if I did look at it. It didn’t take long before I realized that whatever it was, if it was in her room like she was saying, she would’ve had her eyes closed to avoid looking at it, which explains the scrambled text. Melanie was trying to warn me about something that was moments away from killing her. But, what I found most disturbing was what she said earlier in the message, that she had felt something grab her on the 2 nights preceding the incident.

March 23rd, 2011

This takes us to the present. Last night, it came for me. I thank God that I persevered through that hell and am alive to tell you all. I got sleepy at around 2 in the morning and went to bed after my obsession with Melanie’s message. Then, as I was sound asleep, I heard something thumping around in my room. Remembering Melanie’s final warning, I kept my eyes shut and pretended I was asleep. It was the most dreadful sound you could imagine, like a great clacking noise every time it took a step, and deep, vehement breaths. I heard it moving around in every direction of me, on the walls, the ceiling, just inspecting the place. I distinctly remember hearing it knock over my TV, which I found broken on the floor this morning. After maybe 20 minutes of shear terror, I heard it speak. It crawled up next to my ear and started seething through its teeth, begging me to open my eyes. I resisted the urge as it screamed louder, “Look at me!” Whatever this thing was, I got the distinct feeling that it was not from this world. The very presence of it brings a grim and empty feeling inside. It grasped my leg and squeezed, then clutched my chest and clawed its hand down my body with a light scrape. Just before it left, it stopped in front of me for a few minutes and beckoned me to look with terror. The smell was deathly, as if it had come from a coal mine. I kept my eyes firmly shut, but I could both feel and hear it just inches from my face.

I’m still not sure what to do tonight, but I remember it ranting on that it will stalk me every night until the day I die. It is some kind of malicious being that as I’ve come to realize appears on the 3rd night after it touches you and will freeze you with fear if you so much as get even a glimpse of it. Whether you believe in the supernatural or not, this thing is most definitely real. So, these are my parting words to you. If you see its hand mark on you in the morning, you may rest the next night, but on the night after you must remain asleep without opening your eyes even a crack, for the life of you. You will hear it screaming and you will feel it tormenting your body, but you mustn’t react. It is pure hell; a power beyond our realm.

There was one other curious thing it mentioned before leaving. It said that he stalks the living one-by-one, and finds its next victim through someone the previous victim knew. If you don’t know the victim, then you will be protected from this evil. It’s trying to kill me because one of its victims knew Connor, and Connor knew Melanie, and Melanie knows me. Now, I’ve told you about my story, and myself, and as it said last night, that’s enough for someone like you to know me. The only way out is to let at least 10 strangers know who you are, which is what I’m doing to you right now. I am sincerely sorry, but I’m saving my own ass. Good luck.

Written by Kieland
Content is available under CC BY-SA