You Are Alone
California, United States
Staying late after school isn’t fun. But staying until late in the night is even worse. Do you know what the school building is like after dark? It’s too calm, a type of calm you would never expect for a building like this. When you sit in the classroom working you would expect to hear someone shouting or kids giggling. But instead it’s quiet and crisp, like a thread that is so taut even the smallest strike would break it. And while you sit there listening out for any sort of sound the back of your mind is screaming for the world to stop making noise. The fuzzy sound of nothing will make you crazy and you will cover your ears to try and drown out the nothing only to make it worse.
When you walk down the halls of the school the last light from the classroom is out and you have to resort to the flashlight from your phone. As you walk your confidence that was lost from nothing slowly returns to you. You are alone. And the darkness around you seems to pull you into an embrace. A cold but steady embrace. You will walk down the once full halls and stare at each of the closed and locked classrooms. Each one a reminder that you are alone in this giant building. The man following you isn’t there. You are alone. The footsteps gaining speed aren’t real. You are alone. You might tug at the locked doors to escape even though you are alone. He isn’t getting closer. You are alone. You may throw yourself onto the ground and cover your head in the empty and dark halls. After you stay there for a few seconds you will eventually remind yourself, you are alone. You get up and begin your descent down the stairs.
The halls are darker than the water in an abandoned well. When you walk down the stairs it’s like the void was swallowed by an even darker and bigger void. An echo of footsteps is the only thing reminding you that you are on stairs. You try to speed up and get to the bottom because you believe it may make you feel better. But when you get there it’s like you are a piece of a puzzle that doesn’t fit in the spot it was placed in. It feels like you are an echo trying to escape to the first exit you can find. You seem to walk quicker, like you are afraid of the nothing. But you know you are alone.
If you get to the final flight of stairs to the garage you get an overwhelming sense of loneliness. You are alone, you know that for a fact now, and yet it feels worse than the unsure loneliness. You may pause at the top of the stairs. And look around the surrounding halls. And for a moment, a brief second, you may see him. You are alone though. It’s okay. But still your chest tightens and your skin feels like a fossil that has been taken out of its place in the ground. You can’t move even though your mind is screaming at you to run.
If you are finally able to snap back to your senses you quickly walk down the stairs and you enter the dank, dim, and gray garage. Your mind will be fuzzy as your lungs scream for air but you only let go of your breath when you reach the safety of your car. The feeling of safety will only stay for a moment before you realize that your car won’t work. And the rotten feeling of dread comes back to your stomach, you are alone. No one can help you. You check your phone, any sane person would, and attempt to call someone, anyone, for help.
The rotten pit will only grow in your stomach while the sound of static fills your ear. Once again you will cover your ears begging for the world of nothing to be silent. Over and over again the thought repeats in your mind; you are alone. You are alone. You are alone. Eyes burning into your skull make you cover your head tighter. You are alone. You only lift your head at the sound footsteps coming your way. You are alone. The man taps your window. You slowly open your car door. You are alone? When you step out the once crisp and humid air is now warm. And in the last moments of consciousness you will smile to yourself. You are not alone.
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