You sit there, up right. Your back is pressed to the far wall of a small, dark room. You had staggered into the room to escape the rain. Meaning, you are soaking wet at this point. The shredded fabric of your clothes cling to your body. Your matted, mud and blood caked hair clung to your scalp, to your pale cheeks, to the back of your neck. The rain didn’t clean you off. In fact, its like it sunk the grim deeper into your fabric. Fused it into your hair and it stained the skin.
At some point, you are reminded of the fact that you are in pain. But you can cope, the blood loss has taken most of it away. But the dull ache. Not because your left are is shredded all the way down from the shoulder. Not because your right leg is broken, or because the bone is jutting up, ripping your already torn pant leg. The dull ache is the closing in death. The thought that you will not, or rather can’t survive the night.
Your eyes are dulling, you can feel the sight fading even though it is to dark to see anything. You cock your head, not sure if you are hearing the hissing squeak of an old door opening. But you can’t see, you had lost a lot of vision, so light isn’t reaching your eyes. All you can do is listen. A gentle slosh of water from across the room. Slowly you edge back, trying to make as little noise as possible.
Fear is a very funny thing. In your last moments, what do you think? You think of your life. Did you do it right? How many regrets can you count? Did you ‘Y.O.L.O. Swag’ enough? No, so many thing you could have done better. ‘Yes, so many regrets that will forever remain unresolved. No, not enough Y.O.L.O, but plenty of swag.’ The thought comforted you, and to cope with realizing this, you tell yourself that a lot of things can be better, that everyone has a regret or two, and that looking back now, your sure everyone needed a little more Y.O.L.O, or a little more swag.
‘Such is life’, you thought. But what now? ‘Of course!’ You think silently. You will be dead in a matter of moments. Moving on from this world. Maybe you’ll come to another place, another time. Or maybe you’ll just blink out like a light bulb. A useless shell with no energy to glow with life is the only thing that will be left of you.
The life you lived sped by, like a movie on fast forward. Birth, birthdays, happy moment, sad moment. The joy, the pain, the crying, the laughing, high times with friends. The low times with women. All so fast, but you try to remember every moment in the short time you have left on this earth. Maybe when you die, you’ll just relive the life you had. Over…And over. An endless loop.
The sound of crawling is closer now. The scuffle of shoes, or boots? But at the same time, the subtle scratching of nails…or claws. Your breathing is slowing. The end of the movie, the last few days. The camping trip with a few friends. The drinking, the smoking, the laughing, the good time you had. The sex in the tent while everyone else was passed out drunk. ‘Damn’ you think, ‘She could work it. I wished I knew her better. Wish we had more time together.’
The next scene cuts in. The thing crawling around the tent. The morning after, finding your friend missing. Searching all day, determined he just got up, still drunk, and walked into the woods to take a leak. You and everyone else thought he was just lost. ‘How fucking wrong was we, heh.’
Finding a bloody, ripped apart naked body. The clothes laying around the mess. Arms missing, legs missing. The head was on a stick. The stomach torn open, the guts missing. The lungs clawed, the heart, half eaten, sat next to the body to the left. Utter horror. A twig snapped. The noise that set the panic in.Running…running… Getting back to camp and finding another person was gone from the party.
Trying to go home. Not even packing up the car. Getting in. Closing the doors….Remembering that the keys are in the pants pocket of your dead friend… Rope from the campsite. Tie one another together. Don’t stray to far from the person next to you. Stick to the group. Its safe that way… Or so you thought.
The darkness. Getting tangled, someone being pulled one way while the group is going the other way around a tree. Another missing person. The rope is intact, but bloody. A scream let out into the night’s crisp air. Running. Find the keys…Find the keys!…Find the fucking keys!…Found them! You found the keys!
Everyone cheers. You go to grab your lady…She isn’t there. Shes gone, the loop that was once around her waist is still there…Bloody. But no one is in the rope’s grasp. A chilling scream of utter horror, sheer pain. As if the scream emitted from Hell itself. More panic. Its darker now. The full moon provided hardly any light. More people are missing with every two feet. All around, howls, yowls, barks, laughing….Screaming.
The screaming never stops as you run. Down to four people. Running…Running…Three people. You and the other two lock arms. Words of promise. Words of courage. False words. A tug to your left…now only two remain. You and the other person, so dark you can’t even tell who it is, embrace. Crying gently from you, horrible sobs from the other.
You realize, no animal sounds…No laughing… Silent. The forest is silent. No birds singing. No bugs making sounds. No wind, though you can clearly feel one. You get up, slowly. Listening. Though blinded by darkness, you can’t see anything move through what very, very little light the moon provided. You turn around to tell whomever was with you the good news. That you and whoever was with you might have a chance. A fighting chance.If you took it slow, you could make it back to the car. You have the keys! You can make it!
But when you turn around, you realize not everything was silent. In the darkness, you feel a slight tug at your waist. The rope. A sick grinding sound. Dripping. You are frozen in the place you stand, unable to imagine what is right in front of you. Something slumps over to the side. What you can only suspect as the person who was with you… Something behind the limp pile of fucking meat slowly rises. It’s not tall. In fact, its small. A sliver of light through the branches.
What you see…. What you see dashes all hope. You pull on the knot at your waist, but never taking your eyes off the small thing in front of you. The small amount of light gave away one thing. A small, almost child like mouth. Maybe somewhere around the teens. There was blood dripping from the jaws. The sound of chewing. You can see a thick clump of flesh between the thin, pale lips.
Finally, just as you untie the knot, the mouth had finished chewing the meat and swallowed it. You can feel the unseen eyes haze at you. The small mouth’s corners turned up slowly. A small smile. The kind any normal teen would have if they had done something goofy. But something was off. Other than the fact that there was blood smeared all over the mouth.
The teeth. ‘Oh god’, you thought. The teeth. Large teeth, all pointed. Like that of a wolf…A shark…. ‘No’, you think. The fear striking oil at your heart…’Like a demon.’
You slowly turn around, as if to gaze at something else. You can feel it’s gaze. It’s malice has a smell. And the smell reeks of fresh blood, rotten flesh, it reeks of….horrible, insane joy. You dash forward. You can’t remember what direction to run, so you came up with a new goal. ‘Stay in front of it until sunrise. Stay ahead of it until sunrise. Stay alive.’
It’s starting to drizzle. The clouds aren’t thick, but the rain is softly pattering down.
You run. For the worth of you and everyone who died, for everyone who is still alive, you run. The sound is back. The wind is howling. The laughing, the growling, the snarls, the gnashing of teeth is right behind you. Only a little ways, as if it’s toying with you. Something catches your leg. It wasn’t like a tree root. More like the small, thin, clawed fingers of…something.
The claws shred your flesh, your right ankle is slice, and you fall. A moment of rolling. Your head, forehead just above your left eye, meets a tree. But you don’t have a moment to say hello to the tree who you toppled into. It was on you. You notice as you put your arms out in front of you to receive the attacker. Fabric. Not yours, but the clothes of whatever…whomever…no, whatever was upon you. Mud coats you.
Life is shaken around you. The glistening of teeth. You put up your left arm as a defence. Teeth, animal, monster, demon fangs bite into your arm. Claws are shredding your clothes, along with the flesh under. Chest, shoulders, face, neck, stomach, sides, arms. The demon was making good work of you.
Crack! The sound sent you into a swirling of what little vision you had. The mouth had closed around your forearm. And when it bit down, your forearm snapped. Like when you see a junk-yard dog chew on a bone, and when they get that one good bite that snaps the bone into two. Just like that.
The rain has grown heavy now. The ground has turned slippery, allowing you to wiggle around. Such horrors…and now it rains. Honestly, for that one moment you can think only one thing…’ This is just…fucking…great…’
You lash out, in pain, in horror, but now, in anger. You strike at the being’s face with your free hand. It felt just like hitting a normal person in the face. You can fight and when you assault someone’s face, it is not a laughing matter. However, the thing was in fact laughing. It jerked it’s head back, taking a large amount of forearm flesh with it.
More clawing, chewing, chewing. The warmth of your own freshly spilled blood is dripping down upon you. It felt alien to be bathed outside with something that should be on your inside. You turn you head to the side and vomit. Out of pain? Out of fear? Who knows.
You spit a small wad of vomit into the area right above the mouth…A pause. Then all at once, the beast lets go, putting it’s palms to it’s eyes. A howl mixed with what seemed like a growl and groan. It wasn’t hurt, but distracted.
You use your legs, placing both of your feet on the thing’s chest, and kicking out. It rockets back into the darkness… Silence. You scramble to your feet, careful to not move your left arm around, because if you do…sheer pain. It floods you. You run. You got up, and you just ran. All the while, whispering one word…. ‘Fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck!’
You search an area frantically. You notice something. While the moonlight reaches between the branches, there was a dark brick-shaped blotch. The rain is heavy now, beating down. The mud and blood should wash away…But it doesn’t… And you run toward the door.
Without warning, a hand shot out from the dark. The fingers of this beast close around your right shin. Another hand shot out, the speed unable to be seen by the naked eye alone. It hits you just under the calf muscle. Snap said the shin bone. The strength of the bone no match for the strength of the monster. You hit the ground with a thug. A rock jabbing you sharply in the chest. You have no air.
You roll to your left, one last attempt. Your right elbow flies up and crashes into the thing’s face. There is slightly more light here. But it was fading very, very fast, due to the rain-clouds. You get a single, brief moment of this attacker’s face… A young man, maybe small but near late teens. His eyes are wide, as if he was caught smoking by his parents when he really shouldn’t be smoking. Though, his mouth was twisted in a grin. The rain had washed away the bile that blinded him.
His skin was red and brown, a mix of mud, sweat, and blood. The areas you had manage to strike. That area was a darker shade. Though the flesh didn’t puff out like a normal bruise. The young man’s smile, an upper and lower row of brilliant, gleaming red fangs. The young man’s eyes, rimmed in darkness. His iris is so dark, it looks as if he simply had larger pupils. But when the light hit the eyes, the dilated down a bit…As if he had no iris…Perhaps only pupil to better see in the darkness he lurked.
He was a demon in the form of a boy…A demon of innocence. You rocked forward, having rolled on to your back. You smash your elbow into his face once more, this time, breaking his nose. He groaned and you push him off. Blood loss. You crawl to the slightly open door. The light was gone, the clouds smothering the moon’s beam.
You slump through the open door and fall. You crawl to the back wall and seat yourself upright…And now, you have caught up with your real time self. You are in the dark. Cold. Bleeding to death. Scared out of your fucking mind…. But not alone. You are far from alone.
Suddenly, a flash of lightening crackles, light floods the room from a window on the wall you are on, slightly above you. There, for only a moment, you caught sight of the evil that has killed all of your friends, the cause of why you will now die ‘almost’ alone. He was short, about five foot tall. The young man had very long, shaggy black hair. He was…thin, very thin.
You can’t really tell the color of his flesh, blood and mud utterly covered the short figure. It was clearly a male. Dressed in a long sleeve shirt, very thin looking. The same with his pants. And a pair of boots, maybe a size bigger than needed. Any pattern that may be printed on the clothes is…covered, again the cloak of mud and blood.
The sleeves on the boy’s arms are shredded, he must have taken his claws to them. In fact, as you inspect the claws, you realize something… Those are the claws that killed your friends. That will kill you. And those sharp teeth… Those are the teeth that ate, fucking ate your friends. And now that you think about it…those are the same teeth that had tasted you. Those are the same teeth that will eat you.
‘Wow,’ you thought as the light cut out, clouded in utter darkness once again. Kinda surprised that you could see anything at all. ‘He has some sharp teeth.’ And then, with a deep rattling growl, everything stopped… You are no longer living. That demon had killed you…and ate you… Sorry to you for the unhappy ending.
——The next morning. Six O’clock. Location; unknown——–
“Have you seen the missing people reports?” Debby stood by the open door of the head detective’s office. Detective Manors. A graying man who as fallowed a single case, and every case related to it, for a long time. It should have been his last case, but so says a year ago. “Yup. Seems like John Dennis is out of his cage. The place they had him held up at was found…a blood bath. Almost every body we found was missing parts, clawed open, bite marks that took out areas of flesh. Fits his M.O. perfectly.”
She shuddered slightly, turning to glance behind her, as if check to see if John Dennis was standing right behind her. “How could he eat them all?” Manors shook his head, “He eats as much as he can, when he is full, John will vomit everything he ate back up, and work on the next meal.”
Debby made a face, “..Really? That is sick, wouldn’t he die for consuming raw flesh?” Manors pulled a pack of cigarettes out, selecting one, placing the butt between his lips, and flicking his Bic to light it. A moment to take a drag… He spoke, at the same time wheezing out smoke. “No. John Dennis is human. He can die. But the reason for his…defects…is a very rare case of Ectodermal Dysplasias. Normally, people with Ectodermal Dysplasias have weak teeth, weak, deformed, or missing fingernails. Thin hair or no hair. But John. Woot, John got the upside. His teeth are stronger, Sharper. His hair is thicker, his nails are like claws. That is why they called him Demon. John Demon.”
“The whole reason for being put in that nut house was because he was… somewhat insane. They had been running tests to see if his genes could be taken and spliced with future children, an attempt by the government to make a small unit of trained animal-like soldiers.”
Debby raised an eyebrow, “Um? That’s a little far fetched, don’t ya think?” Manors nodded, a gentle smile to his lips as he took another drag, “Yea, but the papers found in the lab section don’t lie, sweet cheeks.” He pulled a folder out from his gray suit’s jacket pocket. Then skidded it across the table. “Read it and ‘weep’. They fucked this kid up. When I had him in my hands, he was still…human. But the shit they did. They explored the drug code named ‘Rage’.”
“According to these papers, John Dennis, code named John ‘Demon’, has a tumor. Rather than pumping adrenalin into his system. His body has start making it’s own ‘Rage’. The tests didn’t help with that. Damn it all…”
Mark strolled in, throwing down a stack of papers, “Group of kids in the Arapaho National Forest, Colorado, found dead. Same M.O. as your Demon boy. About, what? Eight bodies found. Or…well, about eight masses of whatever is left of about eight bodies.” Mark smacked the stack of papers, sliding the papers to Manors, who took the papers and flipped through them.
A long pause…Reading…Gazing at the photos… “..Yea, that’s my boy. John Dennis. Damn, what did they do-…” He stopped, gazing at one photo. A small room. Dark other than what light flooded in from the window. The light from the window, it was a dark shade of red. Flesh, bones, puddles of vomit, mud. The room was nearly fully coated.
But one part set out. Etched into the floor, as if done with two knives duck-taped together. Manors could only guess that John had used his abnormal claws. The words carved into the wooden floor sent Manors into a swirling fit of rage, sadness, utter….shock. Manors spoke allowed, for Debby and Mark to hear.
“Manors stop taking so long. Put me out of my misery or many more will be eaten.” Manors shook his head, flicking the photo across the table, “Fucking unholy Anti-Christ… God help that boy…He really was such a nice boy at one point in time.”
Debby seemed…awed. As if she never expected Manors, the person who knows John ‘Demon’s case better than anyone, to have sympathy. “Wha-… What exactly is the story of John Dennis?” Manors frowned, leaning back in his chair, “That, young lady, is a story for around the camp fire some other time. But not now, I have work. Both of you, get out for a while.” It was left at that…For now.
Credit To – Dogma