I was sitting on the couch in the basement, scrolling mindlessly through the endless library of content on Netflix when the text came. It had been sent from an unknown number, and read:
WHATEVER YOU DO, DON’T LEAVE THE BASEMENT. LOCK THE DOOR. TURN OFF THE LIGHTS. YOU ARE IN GRAVE DANGER. DO NOT LEAVE THE BASEMENT.
At first, I thought it was a prank text. Some punk texting numbers at random, hoping to scare someone.
But at the same time, it was a little strange how they knew I was in my basement. After all, someone who was texting this to random numbers wouldn’t be able to tell if the person they were pranking even had a basement.
I inadvertently shot a quick glance at the small basement window. Nothing. Not a soul in sight.
I decided to ignore the message, figuring whoever it was had simply gotten lucky and had texted someone who happened to be in their basement. However, less than a minute later, I got another text:
IT IS URGENT THAT YOU HEED THIS WARNING. CLOSE AND LOCK THE DOOR. TURN OFF ALL LIGHTS AND SILENCE ALL ELECTRONICS. AND WHATEVER YOU DO, DON’T LEAVE YOUR BASEMENT.
Did they know I hadn’t shut my door? That I hadn’t turned off my lights?
I was beginning to feel worried, but a quick glance at the window proved that no one was watching me. Or, at least, that no one was there now.
I stood up, turned off the big screen, and stretched. I decided to get a little sleep in before I had to go in for work that night. As I walked up the stairs, however, the texts started.
My phone began vibrating non-stop, receiving text after text after text. As I reached the top step, I pulled out my phone to see who they were from.
The texts had all come from that same unknown number, saying things like:
DO NOT LEAVE YOUR BASEMENT.
IT IS IMPERATIVE THAT YOU STOP MOVING RIGHT NOW AND TURN OFF ALL LIGHTS.
YOUR LIFE IS IN DANGER. DO NOT MOVE.
PLEASE. THIS IS FOR YOUR OWN GOOD. DO NOT LEAVE THE BASEMENT.
How the hell did they know I was moving?
The basement doorway loomed in front of me, showing the dark expanse of my kitchen. I hadn’t realized that the sky had become overcast. I cautiously took a step into the kitchen. My phone buzzed again, but I ignored it. Whoever was texting had to be playing some sort of prank, though I wasn’t finding it very funny.
The floorboard creaked beneath my foot as I stepped out into the kitchen. Suddenly, a flash of lighting lit up the gray sky, and almost immediately, the rumble of thunder followed. I shivered, but continued to walk.
Then, I heard a loud creak. However, this time, it didn’t come from under my foot. In fact, it didn’t come from a floorboard at all.
This creak came from my door.
The sound was the unmistakable noise of the front door opening slowly, as if whoever was opening it was attempting to do it quietly.
As soon as the door opened, I got another text. I didn’t bother to get out my phone; just leaped down into my basement and closed the door. I locked it, then strung the chain, and even carried a heavy chair up to barricade the door, but I still didn't feel safe.
I carefully crept down the stairs and sat down on an old chair, pulling my phone out of my pocket to read the last few texts.
The first one read: FOR GOD’S SAKE PLEASE DON’T LEAVE.
The most recent one read: NOW YOU HAVE BEEN CHOSEN. DO NOT TRUST ANYONE. AND DON’T LEAVE THE BASEMENT.
I’ve been chosen? What the hell does that mean?
Finally, I did what I should have done in the first place. I texted the unknown number back.
Listen, I don’t know what’s going on and I’m not sure that I want to find out. Please just leave me the hell alone. I don’t want to be a part of any of this.
They didn’t respond.
Suddenly, I heard a sound coming from behind the basement door. A creak. The sound of pressure being placed upon a floorboard.
Then, I heard the sound of the doorknob being jiggled. I froze. It jiggled again. And again. Every small noise coming from beyond the locked door of the basement filled me with terror, paralyzing me with horror.
I looked around the small basement for anything that could remotely be considered a weapon. The room was, unfortunately, mostly empty, with the closest thing to a self-defense tool being the remote for the TV. I grabbed it and crouched down in the corner of the room.
My breathing felt too loud. My head felt like it was spinning. The cold basement seemed to close in around me.
I started imagining sounds. At least, I thought I was imagining them. I began hearing footsteps. Voices. Whispers. They echoed around me. I heard yells coming from outside my house. Then screams. Then silence. After what felt like an hour, the sounds stopped.
I breathed a sigh of relief. Maybe it was all in my head after all.
Then, I heard a knock on the basement window.
As previously mentioned, the basement window is small. In fact, I could barely see out of it. However, I was able to catch a glimpse of something outside darting past it. I mustered up every last drop of courage in me and weakly yelled:
A few moments of silence followed, then a voice replied:
“Oh, just a traveler seeking shelter from the storm.” the voice sounded male, and somewhat strained, like he was speaking through gritted teeth.
Who the hell would be out here in the middle of the rain?
I live in a rural area in the middle of nowhere. I don’t have any neighbors, and the nearest grocery store is half an hour’s drive away. Something was wrong.
“I’m sorry...but I can’t let you in.”
“Why not?” the voice replied, this time a hint of anger in it.
I didn't reply. The texts and the sounds in my house seemed a little too real to be a part of some elaborate prank. Instead, I shifted a little to my right, just out of view from the window for anyone looking inside the house from the yard.
Thank God I did that, because a few seconds after I did, something leaned over and peered into the dark basement.
It’s impossible to describe the thing in the window, simply because I could hardly see it. The dust and dirt combined with the size of the window made it difficult to make out what was staring at me. All that I could see were two solid red eyes looking around inside my basement. Two small, black pupils glanced around, attempting to find me. I placed my head between my knees, and tried to steady my breathing.
It’s been 48 hours since then. I’ve been living off of the potato chips and energy drinks down in my basement. I’m running out, and I know soon, I’ll have to leave to get more food. I’ve spent the past couple of days sitting in the dark, listening to the sounds of footsteps and knocking on my doors. It’s maddening, but there’s nothing I can do.
I’ve tried calling the cops, and I’ve tried calling the place I work at.
I have a signal, but for some reason, it never works. No one ever picks up. I’m terrified, and I don’t know what to do.
If anyone is out there reading this, please, please, if you receive an odd text from an unknown number, listen to what it says.
Written by StaticWrites