The nightmares will eat you from the inside out...

I don't have a lot of time to write this. Whatever's out there wants in. I can hear it banging on the door and moaning. It's gonna get in eventually. Maybe I can fight it off when it gets in.

It was about three days ago when people started to, well, disappear. The cops thought there was a serial killer on the loose. But I know better, and hopefully after reading this, you will too.

Another creature is pounding at my house, drawn by the incessant wail of the first. Soon there will be too many. I'll be eaten alive, if I'm lucky. If I'm not, I'll become one of them.

You might be wondering if these are zombies. But you'd be wrong.

They move too fast, they think, and they talk. They can imitate your relatives or friends. One of the creatures outside is warbling in my dead wife's voice. Oh, how I wish I could shut them out. Forget everything. I remember my first encounter with these beasts. Before all this, I was working as a night watchman at the local bank. It was a fairly good job, good pay for easy hours, and there was next to no crime in my small town. Maybe a mugging or so, or a hunting permit violation. I was working that one night, dozing off in the manager's office. His chair was leather, and very comfy. I slept for perhaps two hours.

When I came to, I heard a scratching coming from near the front entrance. Trusty flashlight in hand, I strolled towards the source of the noise. When I approached the front hall, the scratching just stopped. And absolute silence took its place. My town is not famed for being noisy at night, but this?

This was strange. I wandered around for a short while, and deciding nothing was amiss, I went back to the manager's office. I thought I had left the chair by the desk, but now it was by the door, blocking my entry. I wrote it off as my bad memory playing tricks on me again and went back to sleep. I heard a bump soon after, I think it was maybe an hour. It sounded like a car door being slammed.

But this was at about 1 in the morning, so everyone should've been asleep. The noise was not coming from outside the bank.

The bumping sped up until it sounded almost like a heartbeat. I'm not a cowardly man, or so I'd like to believe, but on that warm, summer night, I was shaking. The heartbeat continued. It sounded like it was in the main hall. I ran in there, and as soon as I stepped foot in the room, the sound stopped again. All sound stopped. A cold sweat ran down my back. I was scared. I shone my flashlight around.

"Is anyone here?" I asked foolishly. Someone, no, something responded.

"Yesss, we are here," the voice said.

'Who's 'we'?" I asked.

"And what are you doing here? The bank is closed," the thing chuckled.

"We are your worst nightmares, and we are here to remind you of this."

The hairs on the back of my neck stood up. "Me personally?" I asked.

Surely, this was some prank by a local teenager. Might as well play into it, to amuse these buggers. Or maybe it was an escapee from the nearby mental institution. Then I must play into it, or he may flay me.

"All humans," the voice replied after a few seconds.

"You speak as if you are not a human," I retorted.

I feel like this is Narnia on crack, except you don't need to jump into a wardrobe. It's all around already. And there are no good creatures in this dark world. I heard another laugh.

"We are the monsters that hide in the back of your mind, we are not humans." This unnerved me, so I shined my flashlight in the voice's direction.

The heartbeat started up again, as my light revealed a surprisingly normal-looking man. He was of moderate build, and had short brown hair. His back was to me, so I could not see his face. His clothes were patched and frayed around the hems. He slowly turned around, and the sight of his face sent me running back to the manager's office.

His face, it was decaying. Like food that has gone bad, and it's got fungus all over it. The heartbeat sound magnified when he raised his hand. He laughed as a still-pumping heart dropped from his hand, and landed with a splat on the floor. I stayed in that office until dawn. The man had vanished. As I was about to leave the bank, and never look back, something dripped on my shoulder. I put my fingers to the drop, and they came back red. I looked up and screamed.

A woman was affixed to the ceiling, with her chest ripped open and her heart missing. I left that place immediately. I didn't even wait for the cops, which I would usually do. I drove to my secluded cabin and stayed there, for two days. Next to no food, barely any water. And now here I am, still writing. Maybe someday, you, whoever you might be, will find this, and will know what has happened. The world's been overrun. Perhaps you know this already. But it's over for me. My daughter is now screaming for me to come outside, to save her from the scary people. I know this is a trick. Her bloodcurdling scream breaks my heart, but I know my daughter is dead. That can't be her.

Can it?

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